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Topic: Anti-democratic thought

Anti-democratic thought encompasses a range of conservative and right-wing ideas that are skeptical of or hostile to majority rule and democratic decision-making.

More on: Anti-democratic thought

The podcast episodes provided explore the anti-democratic ideas and political philosophies of thinkers such as James Burnham, John C. Calhoun, and Wilmore Kendall, who grappled with the tension between majority rule and preserving a particular cultural and political order.

These episodes delve into how conservative intellectuals have often viewed the masses as a 'brainless mob' that needs to be controlled by elites, and how this anti-democratic thinking has influenced contemporary right-wing populists who seek to enforce a moral orthodoxy through state power by replacing existing elites with those who share their values.

The episodes also analyze the complex and often contradictory relationship that conservative thinkers have had with American democracy.

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