The Real John Ruskin

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I've always wondered why Ruskin is often portrayed a proto-Labourite or Communist when anyone who has read his works could see plainly that is not the case. From Unto This Last :

But even more discomfiting to the bien-pensant socialist is Ruskin's rather frank praise of war and warriors, which he ties to his aesthetic theories. From The Crown of Wild Olive :

Ruskin's brand of radical Toryism has much in common with his friend Carlyle -- the same nostalgia for feudal structures and noblesse oblige , a desire for a more "heroic" existence and strong leaders. However Ruskin never published a defense of slavery, which made him more palatable to the schools of guild socialists that appeared under the influence of William Morris and the Pre-Raphaelites during the late nineteenth/early twentieth century.

Interestingly, some of those guild socialists clustered around A.R. Orage's New Age journal, which also served as a forum for Distributivism, C.H. Douglas's Social Credit, Nietzscheans like Anthony Ludovici and Oscar Levy, and reactionary modernists like T.E. Hulme. A few of its prominent contributors would go on to support fascism, namely Ezra Pound and Ramiro de Maeztu, both of whom tried to link fascist corporatism with the guild socialism that had been promoted by New Age . Mosley's British Union also championed what they considered to be a version of guild socialism.