Convention requires me to disclose that I have known, admired, and learned from Thomas G. West for more than twenty years. I also recently became his colleague as a scholar and lecturer at Hillsdale College. Moreover, Professor West and I studied many of the same subjects, with some of the same teachers. Cynics might therefore be tempted to discount the ensuing praise for his new book as logrolling by an ally. But I beg to be believed when I say that I would lavish acclaim on The Political Theory of the American Founding, whoever wrote it—though, in my judgment, only Tom West could have.1


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