A Choice Not An Echo
A Choice, Not An Echo is a book by Phyllis Schlafly published in the summer of 1964, which became an instant classic of conservative political writing. In 2023, National Review called this book the "canonical text of movement conservatism." It describes the perennial struggle between the Establishment and conservative wings in nominating the Republican Party candidate for president. This book was also one of the first criticisms of what is now called the Deep State. It became a runaway bestseller as 3 million copies were sold.
This book set the intellectual foundation for conservative populism that became increasingly dominant in American politics, as exemplified by the nomination and election of Donald Trump as president. As observed by the Rolling Stones:
|“||In a January 2017 profile, The New York Times noted that during high school [future Alabama Sen. Jeff] Sessions became enamored with Phyllis Schlafly’s A Choice Not an Echo, which highlighted the schism between the Republican Party establishment of Nelson Rockefeller and its right wing. The book, noted the Times, rallied conservatives to “topple the party’s kingmakers and compromisers,” laying the groundwork for Barry Goldwater, and foreshadowing what would come decades later with the rise of the Tea Party and Donald Trump.||”|
|“||One of the best written, most interesting, fascinating pieces of political advocacy that I have ever read in my life.||”|
Conservative Mike Huckabee said that this book "was a tremendous influence in my life as a young teenager and helped me to understand the intellectual framework for the why of the conservative movement."
Description of this popular volume
This book, which is about 50,000 words in length in its expanded anniversary edition, was originally published by Pere Marquette Press, ISBN 0-686-11486-8, and then an updated and expanded version was published as a 50th anniversary edition in 2014 by Regnery, with a forward by Ron Paul, ISBN 978-1-62157-315-9.
This book was written in 1964, and created space within the Republican Party for the modern conservative movement. The book detailed how the liberal "Rockefeller Republican" wing of the GOP had manipulated the party's choice of nominees in prior national conventions to nominate people like Wendell Willkie and Dwight Eisenhower, and called on conservatives to rally against the liberal wing and offer a true conservative for the nomination. Hence, the title of the book.
Millions of copies of this book were bought and distributed by supporters of Goldwater, making it one of the all-time best selling conservative political books in the United States. The book helped launch the career of Phyllis Schlafly as a movement conservative.
Subsequent influence on political events
The conservative movement more fully defined itself by stopping the Equal Rights Amendment in the 1970s.
This book is also noteworthy for exposing the group of elite globalists who held secret annual meetings to try to exercise control over multiple countries, and this book coined the word the "DeBilderbergers" to describe them (later the Dutch name was shortened to the English "Bilderbergers").
The election of Donald Trump as president in 2016 was the fulfillment of the vision in this prophetic work. The New York Times credited this book with the rise of Trump and Jeff Sessions, who was Trump's top nominee for his Cabinet:
|“||In high school, ... Mr. Sessions was fascinated by Phyllis Schlafly’s book “A Choice Not an Echo,” a catechism on the split between the Republican Party establishment and its right wing. The book enjoined true conservatives to topple the party’s kingmakers and compromisers, presaging the rise of the Tea Party and Mr. Trump — and now, Mr. Sessions himself.||”|
- The Choice, Not An Echo - a column about the election of President Trump
- Conscience of a Conservative
- The Gospel of Mark, which was the outsider eyewitness account, irreverent towards the Herod Roman rulers, religious authorities, and even the Apostles.
- https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/the-trials-of-jeff-sessions-trumps-radical-attorney-general-198536/ (Aug. 4, 2017)
- Sharon LaFraniere and Matt Apuzzo, "Jeff Sessions, a Lifelong Outsider, Finds the Inside Track," New York Times (Jan. 6, 2017).