Among the lessons taught by the French Revolution there is none sadder or more striking than this, that you may make everything else out of the passions of men except a political system that will work, and that there is nothing so pitilessly and unconsciously cruel as sincerity formulated into dogma.
—James Russell Lowell

This quote comes from this week’s reading in our Russell Kirk reading group and expresses well what Kirk means by “ideology”: a political philosophy that relentlessly applies an all-too-simple but fervently held idea or slogan to the uncomfortably complex exigencies of human life.