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An appreciation of Seymour Martin Lipset In his youth, the author of Agrarian Socialism was a Trotskyist; in his mature years, he figured prominently among neoconservative intellectuals, a group whose ideas and debates played an important role in shaping American public policy over the second half of the 20th century. It is an understatement to say this was a wide swing in political ideology. Admittedly, Seymour Martin Lipset’s swing never went all the way. He never identified as a Republican. His natural political allies were centrist and conservative Democrats such as Bill Clinton and Daniel Patrick Moynihan. Nonetheless, he contributed to the set of ideas that American conservatives now embrace.

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