Nils August Andresen makes the case for the titular proposition.
A party needs a well-educated echelon – call it an elite – to formulate policy to deal with complex challenges. Without the philosophical and academic achievements of the likes of Friedrich von Hayek, Milton Friedman and James Q. Wilson, the Reagan revolution would not have been possible.
The problem is that the current GOP leadership--people like Sarah Palin, Jim DeMint, et al.--plus lots of purportedly conservative talking heads like Dan Riehl or Mark Levin are essentially anti-intellectual populists.
The great conservative thinker Russell Kirk described an earlier generation of "conservative" populists in terms that would fit people like Palin or Riehl perfectly:
A Populist, whose basic conviction is that the cure for democracy is more democracy, conserves nothing - even though he may wish to do so. Populism, in effect, is what Walter Bagehot called the "ignorant democratic conservatism of the masses." It is the tendency later called Populism that Tocqueville dreaded when he wrote that the triumph of democracy might lead to the stagnation of the society of the future, all change being resisted by the conservatism of mediocrity and complacency. ...
Populism is a revolt against the Smart Guys. I am very ready to confess that the present Smart Guys, as represented by the dominant mentality of the Academy and of what the Bergers call the Knowledge Class today, are insufficiently endowed with right reason and moral imagination. But it would not be an improvement to supplant them by persons of thoroughgoing ignorance and incompetence.