(Note: my wife went to bed early and I’ve been drinking – the following posts will not be heavily edited – read at your own risk).
Part of the problem with becoming a reactionary is that you can’t really become a reactionary.
I’ve spent the better part of two years trying to learn to be able to think like Filmer, for example. I can read his writing and understand his arguments. I can agree with his points, but I can’t really quite actually think in the same way that he thought. The problem is that – at root – I think it’s impossible for someone raised in modern times to stop thinking like a progressive – even when said person is rejecting progressivism.
We see everything in terms of "problems" that "need" "solutions" which are to "flow" from "systems of government" that are "designed." It’s un-reactionary to even have a position on how society should be structured.
The reactionary and even the conservative (the old kind that don’t really exist anymore – which perhaps best illustrates my argument) shouldn’t view the world this way. The goal isn’t to make the world perfect, it’s to make the world a little less crappy. The goal isn’t to make everyone better off, as some people aren’t capable of "being made" (damn it, I can’t even get this point out without talking like a progressive) better off.
The fact of the matter is that the truly reactionary society may not capable of being described in modern language.
The best I’ve been able to come up with is to use certain heuristics. For example, I assume that someone who wrote a book a couple hundred years ago that is still easy to obtain and read is a lot smarter than anyone else that I’m going to read in the present. I try not to think of people in the past as "child-like" in any way compared to modern people. But the root problem remains – progressives have successfully won the battle of language. The victory has been nearly absolute. Perhaps this is the biggest obstacle to any reactionary movement (damn it again!).