The Fleming Foundation Cultural Commentary


Season 1, The Best Revenge, Episode 10: The Finer Things


In this episode of The Best Revenge, Dr. Fleming and Stephen discuss how “the experts” can ruin basic enjoyment of wine, beer, spirits, tobacco, food, and pretty much anything pleasurable. Original Air Date: August 26, 2017 Show Run Time: 50 minutes Show Guest(s): Dr. Thomas Fleming Show Host(s): Stephen Heiner The Best Revenge is available for Gold subscribers and higher.   The Best Revenge℗ is a Production of the Fleming Foundation. Copyright 2017. All rights are reserved and any duplication without explicit written permission is forbidden.


Simple Simon’s Political Lexicon: Conservative, Part I

As preface to discussing Conservative, I begin with a few more words on Liberal (which I have inserted into the previous article.) The term “Liberal” is simple in conception but obscured by confusion and deliberate misrepresentation.  After all, it comes from liber, the Latin word for “free” and was used to translate the Greek eleutheros, which had secondary senses that range from humane to noble to generous.  We still speak of “the liberal arts” and of people who are liberal in making gifts or doing favors.  It is quite proper to speak of non-political liberalism as a peculiarly western form...


Chesterton Conclusion–Go Back to Being Roman

But Rome endures in more places than the seven hills on the Tiber.  The civilization of Europe and its colonies is only an extension of the Roman world, from which we have never been really cut off. Where world- historians such as Spengler have seen ages and cycles severed from each other by cataclysmic events, Chesterton sees continuity. We do not understand, to be sure, the few monuments left by our distant neolithic ancestors; but the Greek gods have never died in that fashion; and the Roman empire has never died at all. Of the most modem industrial cities in...


The Counter-Revolution–Back to Square One (Conclusion)

Then what are we to do with the Great Books of the revolutionary tradition?  They are to a great extent a poisoned chalice which is fatal to those who drink from it.  There is a sense in which the system of American education is taking care of at least some of the problem.  Apart from Great Books colleges and Western Civ courses, no one actually reads Montaigne or Voltaire.  They are simply dead white males that only a conservative fuddy-duddy would read. But suppose we confine the question only to people we care about, our children and students.  Do we...


Wednesday’s Child: A Fair Name

In Italy, a sagra is a local fair, festival, or fête, usually – oh, but let us be truthful, invariably – dedicated to food, and sometimes accompanied by a historical pageant, a sporting event, a marionette show, or some other spectacle that may aid digestion. There is a Frog Festival at Casteldilago near Arrone, an Onion Festival at Cannara, a Stuffed Eggplant Festival in Savona, a Lattarino Festival on Lake Bolsena, in homage to a local fish by that name and now in its forty-second year, a Frico Festival in Friuli, involving an italianized cheese-and-potato rösti, and an almost infinite...


Ask the Autodidact:  “How Bad are the Harry Potter Books?”

After having read or listened to so many of the books on your Auto-Didact list, my daughter Annie has grown to trust my literary judgment.  If Dad says a book is worth reading, it is.  If Dad says it isn’t, it isn’t. Well, my daughter is of an age where all her peers have read or are reading the Harry Potter books.  I’ve told her the Harry Potter books aren’t worth her time.  While that answer is good enough for Annie, many of her friends and classmates press Annie to explain why her dad––who is also the pastor of the...


Ukraine in the Cross Hairs?  (FREE)

With Steve Bannon now out of the White House, will the generals surrounding Donald Trump push the president into a confrontation with Russia over Ukraine? According to, “Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is set to travel to Ukraine, becoming the first U.S. defense secretary to visit the country since Robert Gates, the Pentagon announced Friday. “Mattis will meet with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak on Aug. 24, Ukraine’s independence day. “ ‘During these engagements, the secretary will reassure our Ukrainian partners that the U.S. remains firmly committed to the goal of restoring Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial...


The War of Gods and Demons: Chesterton, Part II

Chesterton was certainly not alone in treating the Romans fairly, but he is among the few who saw the conflict in the proper civilizational terms, as a conflict between decent paganism that prepared the world for the Incarnation and the filthy sort of paganism that instead of adoring the Christ child would have joined Herod in seeking to kill him.  Chesterton begins his essay “The War of  Gods and Demons,” a chapter in The Everlasting Man, with a deep reflection on the failure of so much academic history on Rome: Merely political histories of Rome may be right enough in...


I HATE TRUMP, 2:  08-19-17, 9:00 AM CDT

I have always hated Trump, even when he was a star on reality TV.  Even before.  To me, The Art of the Deal is really The Art of the Steal.   That is what all businessmen are, fundamentally, especially big businessmen:  thieves.  One of my professors (Harvard Law, 1987!) told the class that someone—I guess it was JFK—once said that property is theft.  He was so right!  I absolutely hate the rich.  A little guy like me, worth only a couple hundred million, can’t get justice in this country.  Look at poor Bernie Sanders’ wife, the way she is being...


Season 1, From Under the Rubble, Episode 13: Charlottesville


In this episode of From Under the Rubble, Dr. Thomas Fleming explores the recent events in Charlottesville, Virginia. Dr. Fleming examines what happened, what President Trump should (not) have said, the role that the media played, and the proper context and definition of words like “fascist,” “racist,” “alt-right,” and the newly coined “alt-left.” Original Air Date: August 18, 2017 Show Run Time: 52 minutes Show Guest(s): Dr. Thomas Fleming Show Host(s): Stephen Heiner From Under the Rubble episodes are available to Gold subscribers and higher.   From Under the Rubble℗ is a Production of the Fleming Foundation. Copyright 2017. All...