100 episodes

The Saving Elephants Podcast features engaging conversations about conservative values with a mercifully modern twist.  Tired of political shock-talk and rank punditry on your radio and TV?  Curious about what conservative thinkers of yesteryear had to say but don't have time to read some terribly long, boring book they wrote?  Want to learn why conservatism still holds value for Millennials today? Join us as we re-ignite conservatism for Millennials!

Saving Elephants | Millennials defending & expressing conservative values Josh Lewis

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    • 4.7 • 56 Ratings

The Saving Elephants Podcast features engaging conversations about conservative values with a mercifully modern twist.  Tired of political shock-talk and rank punditry on your radio and TV?  Curious about what conservative thinkers of yesteryear had to say but don't have time to read some terribly long, boring book they wrote?  Want to learn why conservatism still holds value for Millennials today? Join us as we re-ignite conservatism for Millennials!

    155 – Melodic Musings with Barney Quick

    155 – Melodic Musings with Barney Quick

    How might music point us to the good, the true, and the beautiful?  What is the purpose of music, and we are guilty of misusing it?  Why are we so obsessed with Taylor Swift?  Musician and conservative journalist Barney Quick joins Josh to discuss how conservatism might better inform our approach to music.  Also discussed are whether or not the elephants can be saved at all, how an owning-the-libs approach misses the spirit of conservatism, and whether or not Principles First has lost its first principles.
     
    About Barney Quick
    Barney Quick is a journalist whose work appears in magazine features.  He is a frequent contributor to Ordinary Times and a Senior Freelance Contributor for The Freeman News-Letter.  He has been maintaining his blog, Late in the Day, since 2012.  But you can find the bulk of his writings on his substack Precipice.
     
    Barney is also a musician and jazz guitarist who could find lucrative gigs, but is well aware he’s chosen a musical life that isn’t going to pay a lot of bills.
     
    Barney is an adjunct lecturer in jazz history and rock and roll history at his local community college.
     
    You can follow Barney on Twitter @Penandguitar
     

    • 57 min
    154 – That Old Burkean Saw with Cal Davenport

    154 – That Old Burkean Saw with Cal Davenport

    After a stint of episodes taking deep dives into obscure topics, Josh returns to some conservative first-principles by inviting long-time friend of the podcast Cal Davenport on for a wide-ranging discussion on whether or not the fusionist consensus is truly dead, why all the energy in the Right seems to be going towards the NatCons, what’s leading to the rise of populism, how to repackage conservative ideas into digestible slogans, who belongs on the Mt. Rushmore of conservative thought, and how Edmund Burke factors into all of this.  Trigger warning for the Straussian listener: this episode gets a bit Burke-y.
     
    About Cal Davenport
    Cal Davenport is a veteran podcaster and writer.  He has written for The Wasington Examiner, RedState, The Resurgent and more.  He has worked in Congress, for political campaigns, for think tanks, and in political consulting.  Cal received his M.A. in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Witten/Herdecke University.  You can follow Cal on Twitter @jcaldavenport
     

    • 1 hr 5 min
    153 – Full-Time with David Bahnsen

    153 – Full-Time with David Bahnsen

    David Bahnsen returns to the podcast to discuss his latest book: Full-Time: Work and the Meaning of Life.  David holds a high view of work and, in an era where self-help gurus are teaching us how to work less to achieve a work/life balance, David wants to shift the paradigm to work/rest and celebrate the productive nature of our being.  Also discussed in this episode are what the church gets wrong about work, how each generation brings different challenges and advantages to work culture, universal basic income (UBI), whether the Marxist are right and work under a capitalist system is exploitation, and what the future of retirement might mean for working Americans.
     
    About David Bahnsen
    From David’s website:
     
    David L. Bahnsen is the founder, Managing Partner, and Chief Investment Officer of The Bahnsen Group, a bi-coastal private wealth management firm with offices in Newport Beach, CA, New York City, Minneapolis, and Nashville managing over $3.5 billion in client assets.  David is consistently named as one of the top financial advisors in America by Barron’s, Forbes, and the Financial Times.  He is a frequent guest on CNBC, Bloomberg, and Fox Business and is a regular contributor to National Review and Forbes.  He has written his own political viewpoint blog for over a decade.
     
    David serves on the Board of Directors for the National Review Institute and was the Vice-President of the Lincoln Club of Orange County for eight years.  He is a committed donor and activist across all spectrums of national, state, and local politics, and views the cause of Buckley and Reagan as the need of the hour.
     
    David is passionate about opposition to crony capitalism, and has lectured and written for years about the need for pro-growth economic policy.  Every part of his political worldview stems from a desire to see greater freedom as a catalyst to greater human flourishing.
     
    He is the author of the book, Crisis of Responsibility: Our Cultural Addiction to Blame and How You Can Cure It and his most recent book, There’s No Free Lunch: 250 Economic Truths.
     
    His ultimate passions are his lovely wife of 18+ years, Joleen, their gorgeous and brilliant children, sons Mitchell and Graham, and daughter Sadie, and the life they’ve created together in Newport Beach, California.
     

    • 56 min
    152 – Humanist Conservatives with Jeffery Tyler Syck

    152 – Humanist Conservatives with Jeffery Tyler Syck

    Fusionism—the viewpoint advocated by the likes of William F. Buckley and Frank Meyer of order and liberty mutually reinforcing each other—has been the dominant form of conservatism in the United States for a generation.  In the era of Trump and the rise of nationalist populism on the Right, however, fusionism has steadily lost influence.  Should conservatives double down on what’s worked in the past?  Or is it time for a different approach that was advocated by some of the original critics of fusionism on the Right?
     
    Joining Saving Elephants host Josh Lewis is Jeffery Tyler Syck to argue for a conservative alternative to the fusionists and NatCons: humanist conservatism.  The humanist conservative is interested in preserving the diverse daily practices of human existence, as advocated by noteworthy thinkers like Michael Oakeshott, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, and Peter Viereck.  It’s a quitter, more moderated form of conservatism that—Syck believes—could offer an antidote to the excess of the nationalist populous radicalism ascendant on the Right.
     
    About Jeffery Tyler Syck
    From jtylersyck.com
     
    Jeffery Tyler Syck is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Pikeville.
     
    Tyler’s academic research focuses on the development of American democracy and the history of political ideologies. He is the editor of the forthcoming book “A Republic of Virtue: The Political Essays of John Quincy Adams” and is completing a second book manuscript entitled “The Untold Origins of American Democracy.” This second book describes how the political debates between John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson forever altered the republic created by the American founders – leaving behind an increasingly majoritarian democracy. His essays and articles on politics, philosophy, and history have appeared in several public facing publications including Law and Liberty, Persuasion, and the Louisville Courier-Journal. Tyler’s academic work has recently been published in the journal Pietas.
     
    A native of Pike County Kentucky, Tyler’s political thought and writing are strongly shaped by the culture of Appalachia. With their tightly knit communities, the mountains of Appalachia have instilled in him a love of all things local. As such his writing most often advocates for a rejuvenation of local democracy and a renaissance of rural culture.
     
    Tyler received a Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Arts in Government from the University of Virginia. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Government and History from Morehead State University where he graduated with honors.
     
    You can follow Tyler on Twitter @tylersyck
     

    • 1 hr 3 min
    151 – The God of This Lower World

    151 – The God of This Lower World

    What is the single most important virtue for a leader to possess?  What quality can make the run-of-the-mill politician into a statesman?  Is it integrity, communication skills, resilience, courage, empathy, or wisdom?  All of these things are important, of course, and if any are sufficiently lacking we wouldn’t call that a good leader.  But what would you say is the chief virtue?
     
    Conservative thinkers from Burke to Kirk to Kristol to Strauss and even many of the ancient and medieval thinkers from Aristotle to Plato to St. Thomas Aquainis identified a single virtue as the chief “political” virtue.  A virtue so important that Edmund Burke referred to it as the god of this lower world.
     
    What is that virtue?  That’s exactly what Saving Elephants host Josh Lewis explores in this solo episode.
     
    Mentioned in the episode: Saul Alinsky’s interview on William F. Buckley’s Firing Line.
     

    • 55 min
    150 – We Don't Need No Indoctrination with Luke Sheahan

    150 – We Don't Need No Indoctrination with Luke Sheahan

    What is the purpose of higher education?  Is it primarily to prepare us for the jobs of the future?  Is it to ensure the leaders of tomorrow hold the right opinions on important issues?  Is it to provide a safe haven for the pursuit of Truth?
     
    Thinkers on the Right have held differing—sometimes incompatible—views on the purpose of higher education.  Joining Saving Elephants host Josh Lewis is returning guest Luke Sheahan to explore these arguments and how conservatives might respond to the rise of radicalism and wokism on college campuses.
     
    About Luke Sheahan
     
    From Luke’s website: Luke Sheahan is Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science at Duquesne University and a Non-Resident Scholar at the Program for Research on Religion and Urban Civil Society (PRRUCS) at the University of Pennsylvania.  He researches the intersection of First Amendment rights and political theory.  Sheahan’s scholarly articles and reviews have appeared in The Political Science Reviewer, Humanitas, Anamnesis, and The Journal of Value Inquiry and he has lectured widely on religious liberty, freedom of speech, and freedom of association.  He is author of Why Associations Matter: The Case for First Amendment Pluralism.  He is writing a second book tentatively titled “Pluralism and Toleration: Difference, Justice, and the Social Group.”
     
    From 2018-2019, Sheahan was Associate Director and Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the Freedom Project at Wellesley College and from 2016-2018, Sheahan was a Postdoctoral Associate and Research Fellow in the Department of Political Science at Duke University.  He received a PhD and MA in political theory from the Catholic University of America and a B.S. in political science from the Honors College at Oregon State University.  He is a five-time recipient of the Humane Studies Fellowship from the Institute for Humane Studies, a 2014 recipient of the Richard M. Weaver Fellowship from the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI), and a 2018 recipient of the Leonard P. Liggio Memorial Fellowship.
     
    In 2022 the Russell Kirk Center announced the appointment of Dr. Luke C. Sheahan as the fifth editor in the history of The University Bookman, originally established by none other than Russell Kirk, seeking to redeem the time by identifying and discussing those books that diagnose the modern age and support the renewal of culture and the common good.
     
    You can follow Luke on Twitter @lsheahan
     

    • 59 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
56 Ratings

56 Ratings

Back-to-the-center ,

Intellectual Integrity!

A very rare podcast that delivers an honest and objective view point that can be critical of both extremes while maintaining principled conservative values. Its a breath of fresh air during these polarizing times.

TheYellowDart82 ,

Incredible show!

I love this podcast! It's an excellent blend of the movers and shakers in the conservative movement and various and sundry non-famous guests who bring a unique outside-the-beltway perspective. These conversations pack a lot of information in each hour-long episode that's refreshingly more engaging than what typically passes for political chatter.

Crucious ,

Engages the Mind!

I began listening to Saving Elephants in my attempt to define what is ‘Conservatism’ four months ago. This podcast was incredibly helpful to give direction, references and thoughtful input to my quandary. Since then I’ve binged listened to 25 of the podcasts. I have to say I enjoy and appreciate how Josh engages the mind and not the emotions. In my opinion, this is a rare commodity for talk shows today. Whether he is co-hosting, conducting an interview or going solo, you can be sure the show is well prepared, the material engaging and thought provoking. Whether you agree or disagree, it will be based upon the merits of the topic and not surface pablum. He goes deep into the material!

It is for these qualities I keep returning and have subscribed to Saving Elephants.

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