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William F. Buckley, Jr. (1925-2008):

The AP reports that National Review founder William F. Buckley, Jr. died this morning at the age of 82. Kathryn Lopez has an initial comment on NRO here. the NYT obit is here.

Related Posts (on one page):

  1. William F. Buckley and American Conservatism:
  2. William F. Buckley, Jr. (1925-2008):
Anderson (mail):
I liked this from the NYT:

For Murray Kempton, one of his many friends on the left, the Buckley press conference style called up "an Edwardian resident commissioner reading aloud the 39 articles of the Anglican establishment to a conscript of assembled Zulus."
2.27.2008 11:56am
Guest101:
The NYT clearly had the obit on the shelf and ready to go, as it initially referred to 2 of Buckley's books "to be published in 2007." They've already corrected that error, though.
2.27.2008 11:57am
Anderson (mail):
The NYT clearly had the obit on the shelf and ready to go

Newspapers almost always do, tho I seem to recall that a few were brought up short by Diana's death.

Virginia Woolf wrote Thomas Hardy's obit for the Times, and found herself having to update it over a good 20 years or so as he persisted in not only living, but continuing to publish.
2.27.2008 12:01pm
Richard A. (mail):
I suspect that what killed him was when the National Review Online started to publish such inanity as the following line from Stephen A. Schwartz:

"To my last breath I will defend the Trotsky who alone, and pursued from country to country, and finally laid low in his own blood in a hideously hot little house in Mexico City, said no to Soviet coddling of Hitlerism, to the Moscow purges, and to the betrayal of the Spanish Republic, and who had the capacity to admit he had been wrong."
2.27.2008 12:04pm
Terrivus:
Reading these obituaries has led me to wonder: Where are the next generation's conservative intellectuals? I suppose after Buckley comes George Will, Bill Kristol, and David Brooks, but what about the generation after that -- today's 20- and 30-somethings? (Buckley founded NR when he was 29.)

I wonder if you'll even find anyone like that today under 40 -- an erudite, well-spoken, personable, and bold conservative thinker and writer. And I wonder if the absence of such a person is a sign of the conservative movement having been taken over by evangelicals, who -- aside from sometimes being personable -- generally do not possess any of the traits just identified -- or even consider some of them worthwhile.

It seems like too many conservatives today view the highest echelons of education, writing, and speaking as something to be suspicious of, not celebrated. That is equal parts a shame, an embarrassment, and a cause for concern. And it is one of the reasons I read the VC: it seems like one of the few places where you'll still find intellectual, reasoned conservatives challenging both the status quo and the reigning orthodoxy (liberal or conservative) with effective, thoughtful arguments. It seems to be a dying breed... or am I being too pessimistic?
2.27.2008 12:08pm
Anderson (mail):
It seems to be a dying breed... or am I being too pessimistic?

Andrew Sullivan's The Conservative Soul makes similar points, which holding himself forth as an exception to the trend.
2.27.2008 12:11pm
Anderson (mail):
(That *was* a doozy, Richard A. -- here's the link.)
2.27.2008 12:13pm
AntonK (mail):

It seems like too many conservatives today view the highest echelons of education, writing, and speaking as something to be suspicious of, not celebrated. That is equal parts a shame, an embarrassment, and a cause for concern. And it is one of the reasons I read the VC: it seems like one of the few places where you'll still find intellectual, reasoned conservatives challenging both the status quo and the reigning orthodoxy (liberal or conservative) with effective, thoughtful arguments. It seems to be a dying breed... or am I being too pessimistic?
Yes, too pessimistic and downright silly. You're referring to the conservative distaste for "institutions" of higher education, not higher education itself.

There are many places where "...you'll still find intellectual, reasoned conservatives challenging both the status quo and the reigning orthodoxy (liberal or conservative) with effective, thoughtful arguments," just not at most humanities and social science departments in universities.
2.27.2008 12:31pm
Anderson (mail):
There are many places ...

Well, don't keep us all in suspense.
2.27.2008 12:34pm
Helen:
I briefly held a job writing and updating "canned" obituaries for the very-much-alive, just in case. When Spiro Agnew resigned, it caught everyone by surprise, and the story that ran was his hastily-edited obituary.
2.27.2008 12:38pm
The McGehee (mail) (www):

a sign of the conservative movement having been taken over by evangelicals

Lordy, Lordy. I keep seeing this meme. Is it coming from the same place that assigns George W. Bush -- a lifelong Methodist -- to the evangelical movement?
2.27.2008 12:39pm
Paul B:
Terrivus, you are being silly suggesting that today's conservatives are hostile to the institutions of higher education unlike Buckley. Have you not heard of "God and Man at Yale?"

No there are not any Buckleys on the horizon in conservative intellectual thought today, any more than there is a Buckley of the left. What he accomplished was to create from scratch the conservative intellectual movement. You can't do that a second time.
2.27.2008 12:40pm
liberty (mail) (www):
Re: NRO article

wow. That was a lot of commie-Jewish-anti-Jewish-neocon-American-Euro-socialist inside baseball.

It truly could have been written in the Daily Worker. How boring.

So, you guys used to be Trotskyites and now you're conservative and sometimes work for the administration. Big whoop.
2.27.2008 12:43pm
samuil (mail):
Well, this seems to be the end of the "American Conservative" movement, IMHO.

Seriously. Mr. Buckley's death, while only marginally affecting events (due to his relegation to the sidelines recently, alas), has a tremendous symbolic effect. End of an Era sort of thing.

The team brandishing the label "conservative" nowadays (NRO, WND, RedState, Rush, etc. etc. etc.) need to come up with a new word for their philosophy. Just make one up. (I like "Freeperism," myself).

And I would love to know what was on his desk when he died. Was it Liberal Fascism? I will choose to believe so, and that reading it killed him.
2.27.2008 12:46pm
Terrivus:

You're referring to the conservative distaste for "institutions" of higher education, not higher education itself


No, I'm in fact referring to higher education itself, and the derivative effects of higher education. There is a tendency in conservatism -- at least, today's conservatism -- to denigrate the "know-it-all" and champion the ignoramus. There is a trend toward treating the former as a blowhard/wonk and treating the latter as being more in tune with the "common man." Mike Huckabee scores points with a significant portion of today's conservatives for being a "miracles guy, not a math guy." This is not simply suspicion at particular institutions of higher education -- it's suspicion at the concept of higher education and, more broadly, erudition in the first place.


There are many places where "...you'll still find intellectual, reasoned conservatives challenging both the status quo and the reigning orthodoxy (liberal or conservative) with effective, thoughtful arguments."


Please, name them. I'm happy to start reading some of them and determine whether they're (a) actually marshaling thoughtful arguments in a manner that will gain broader support; or, instead, (b) simply serving as think-tank hacks for warmed-over ideas that have had 25 years to gain traction but have failed to do so.
2.27.2008 12:46pm
Cornellian (mail):
It's a shame to think the conservative movement has, in such a short period of time, gone from the likes of Buckley to the likes of Coulter.
2.27.2008 12:47pm
Gramarye:
liberty:

NYT article, I think you meant? The NRO link for me just takes me to a tiny blog post that has to be under 100 words. Plus NRO is hardly "Daily Worker" fare. Much closer to "Daily Supervisor" and even closer to "Daily Owner."
2.27.2008 12:48pm
Terrivus:

you are being silly suggesting that today's conservatives are hostile to the institutions of higher education unlike Buckley.


That's not what I said; that's how another commenter characterized what I said. Buckley was just as hostile to Yale (as an institution) as some of today's conservative commentators are. My point is that many of today's conservative commentators are quick to deride not just the institution (often, by the way, in the absence of the coherent, cohesive, intellectual argument Buckley offered -- but rather just prima facie), but also the very concept that erudition and intellectualism are concepts that are not only worthwhile but valuable assets in debating policy differences and marshaling forcible arguments.
2.27.2008 12:54pm
liberty (mail) (www):
Gramarye,

The NRO article that Anderson linked was 2207 words long and just as I described it.
2.27.2008 12:57pm
Brett Bellmore:
One of the highlights of my youth was when Firing Line was filmed at my College, Michigan Tech, and I got to see Buckley lean back so far in his chair that it fell over backwards. Never did find out if it made it past the cutting room floor.
2.27.2008 12:57pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
I used to watch Buckley's Firing Line program on PBS regularly, and he was by far the best interviewer on TV. I remember separate interviews by Buckley and Dick Cavett of Henry Kissinger. Cavett (also a Yale graduate) asked Kissinger questions like "Did you always wear glasses?" On the other hand, Buckley probed for insights on how he conducted foreign policy.
2.27.2008 1:04pm
Gramarye:
liberty: Whoops, I didn't see that, was looking at the NRO link in the OP. :-/ Mea culpa.
2.27.2008 1:08pm
goldsmith (mail):
"There is a tendency in conservatism -- at least, today's conservatism -- to denigrate the "know-it-all" and champion the ignoramus. There is a trend toward treating the former as a blowhard/wonk and treating the latter as being more in tune with the "common man."

It's the slow morphing of the Republican party into the old Democratic party.

And it's what happens when the political sphere transits philosophical and intellectual spheres, casting its dark shadow on the surfaces of those fragile worlds.
2.27.2008 1:11pm
donaldk2 (mail):
My reaction to the linked Stephen Schwartz article was exactly as liberty's. It could be a dead-on parody of a 1930's political diatribe - maybe by S.J.Perelman.

Contra Cornellian: Ann Coulter is not in the line of descent from WFB. The latter chain is epitomized by Charles Krauthammer, and following him a good helping of under-30 university journalists. I hope.

Coulter is in the line of Westbrook Pegler, descending through the Joe McCarthy fan-club (the people who gave anti-communism a bad name.) She will have her followers, too. There's good money in it.
2.27.2008 1:13pm
Kristian (mail) (www):

I wonder if you'll even find anyone like that today under 40 -- an erudite, well-spoken, personable, and bold conservative thinker and writer. And I wonder if the absence of such a person is a sign of the conservative movement having been taken over by evangelicals, who -- aside from sometimes being personable -- generally do not possess any of the traits just identified -- or even consider some of them worthwhile.

When he was under 40, how many of "an erudite, well-spoken, personable, and bold conservative thinker and writer" were there? I think he was unique.

FWIW, I thoroughly enjoyed his book, Miles Gone By which I got on Audible.com, and was read by himself. It was illuminating to hear the humor in his voice that I sometimes missed in his writing. It changed the way I read him, that is for sure.
2.27.2008 1:21pm
AntonK (mail):
Speaking of "...effective, thoughtful arguments," they've turned off comments at the Huffington Post, because they know what will happen: William F. Buckley Dead At 82 - Politics on The Huffington Post.
2.27.2008 1:45pm
Tim Dowling (mail):
Requiescat in pace
2.27.2008 1:51pm
DangerMouse:
There is a tendency in conservatism -- at least, today's conservatism -- to denigrate the "know-it-all" and champion the ignoramus. There is a trend toward treating the former as a blowhard/wonk and treating the latter as being more in tune with the "common man.

If you knew anything about conservativism, you'd realize that there IS no distinction between the "common man" and "wisdom. There is an extreme distaste in conservativism for detached intellectialusm. Detached intellectualism is the same thing as the God of Reason that gave us the horrors of the French Revolution, Communism &Socialism. But that doesn't mean that conservatives don't appreciate or admire wit or intelligence. They only dislike the notion that intelligence should be separated from the values and traditions of Western civilization. Buckley was right in saying that he'd rather be ruled by the first 200 people in the phone book than the professors at Yale, because intellectual power detached from culture and morality is worthless, and in fact, is a prescription for Evil.

In any event, what makes you think that there's a "tendency" at all that conservativism champions stupidity? Perhaps you don't understand the point about detached intellectualism, but there are plenty of Right-leaning think tanks that are busy pushing new ideas all the time. That you're unaware of them perhaps means that YOU are the ignoramus.
2.27.2008 1:54pm
Matthew Friendly (mail):
This is very sad news, and is the end of an important era in American history.

I wonder if the unexpected death of his wife several months back contributed to WFB's death. The loss of hope and meaning that sometimes follows a spouse's death can have such an effect.
2.27.2008 2:09pm
Anderson (mail):
If you knew anything about conservativism, you'd realize that there IS no distinction between the "common man" and "wisdom.

Ummmm ...

[National Review] proved it by lining up squarely behind Southern segregationists, saying blacks should be denied the vote. After some conservatives objected, Mr. Buckley suggested instead that both uneducated whites and blacks should not be allowed to vote.

(From the NYT obit.) "Common man," indeed.
2.27.2008 2:13pm
Arkady:

I used to watch Buckley's Firing Line program on PBS regularly...


What, no irony?
2.27.2008 2:24pm
DangerMouse:
Anderson,

Ummmm...

If you think I'm going to believe the NYT, you're fooling yourself. I have no idea if that summary was from an article that was satirical or whatever. Note the lack of any quoted reference.
2.27.2008 2:29pm
Anderson (mail):
DangerMouse has a point. Why, Buckley may not even be dead!
2.27.2008 2:45pm
IB Bill (mail) (www):
I agree with those say Buckley is unique. There was only one Buckley. When the next towering intellect comes along, whatever political affiliation, he or she will be unique, too.
2.27.2008 2:49pm
DangerMouse:
Anderson,

He DID work for the CIA, after all.
2.27.2008 2:50pm
Glenn W. Bowen (mail):

I suspect that what killed him was when the National Review Online started to publish such inanity as the following line from Stephen A. Schwartz:


I suspect that, like many men who survive their spouses, he found that only have of him remained.

Rest in peace.
2.27.2008 3:11pm
Glenn W. Bowen (mail):
have=half

apologies.
2.27.2008 3:14pm
wooga:
"Common man," indeed.
- Anderson

Yes, the morons of this earth are not the common man. The common man has a basic education, and works for a living. This excludes those who don't work (non-workers tend to occupy both ends of the economic spectrum). You should see the appeal to both capitalists and Trotskyites here...
Personally, I do not believe the government should look after the lazy or stupid, but rather should serve only for the common needs (not the broader term 'good'), and as a safety net for the workers. Similarly, I fear a government run by elitist snobs (which I admit would include a gov't of my own clones!), since, as explained in my favorite quote from CS Lewis:

Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.
2.27.2008 3:18pm
wooga:
And that quote, I believe, sums up Buckley's views as well. In short, "statism = bad".
2.27.2008 3:20pm
Prufrock765 (mail):
How many thousands (..millions..) of Americans born between 1935 and 1975 cut their political teeth on the writing of WFB and his followers. While I am no longer a subscriber to the magazine or to all of its guiding precepts, I vividly remember the first time, 23 years ago, that I picked up a copy of NR.
The world is a slightly less intelligent, less witty, less smiling place than it was yesterday.
I hope that Bill and Pat are holding hands and that he is telling her a joke.

RIP
2.27.2008 3:31pm
Michael B (mail):
Some of Bach's Brandenburg concertos are in order, requiescat in pace and thank you for the intelligence, grace, wit - and the memories, Mr. Buckley.
2.27.2008 3:52pm
Houston Lawyer:
Buckley made it clear in the National Review that a rich intellectual life included religion, family, food, music and much more. He showed many of us what it means to live a life in full. His was a voice in the wilderness when he began. Because of his work, there are many similar voices now. His followers may be midgets standing on the shoulders of a giant, but they have the benefit of his wisdom, most of which has been recorded for posterity.
2.27.2008 3:59pm
Thales (mail) (www):
RIP. I admired his erudition, style and command of English, even though I disagreed with much of what he had to say. The quoted position on segregation is unfortunately true and all too typical of the 1950s, though he later repudiated it in the 60s. One thing the Times obit doesn't mention, but makes his career of speaking and writing all the more impressive is that English was not his first language (he was taught French and Spanish, and began English later). His son Christopher is a wickedly funny writer as well: a friend quipped that the crabapple didn't fall far from the tree.
2.27.2008 3:59pm
JimSaco (mail):
Too bad he had to live to see "conservative" redefined to mean "willing to put someone on the Rack".
2.27.2008 4:03pm
Just Dropping By (mail):
Are Gore Vidal's whereabouts accounted for at the time of his death? (After all, he has a motive based on the fact that he can now go ahead and republish that article Buckley successfully sued him on twice before for libel.)
2.27.2008 4:30pm
Buckland (mail):

Contra Cornellian: Ann Coulter is not in the line of descent from WFB. The latter chain is epitomized by Charles Krauthammer, and following him a good helping of under-30 university journalists. I hope.

Coulter is in the line of Westbrook Pegler, descending through the Joe McCarthy fan-club (the people who gave anti-communism a bad name.) She will have her followers, too. There's good money in it.


I'm not sure about that. I've always thought that Coulter was trying to emulate WFB in some of her rants. Buckley wasn't always the calm erudite speaker that as he is parodied as. He's the guy who answered the letters to the editor part of NR with witty, ill tempered, and often crude comebacks. He's also the guy who called Gore Vidal a God Damn Faggot on national TV while covering the 1986 Republican convention.

Where Coulter gets it wrong is not realizing the outrageous comeback works better when it's framed by the classic New England layered argumentation. Several strata of logic punctuated by the very occasional outrageous works: Outrageousness from a knockout blonde is a good try, but rarely works.
2.27.2008 4:47pm
Anderson (mail):
Outrageousness from a knockout blonde is a good try, but rarely works.

Well, Coulter is scarcely in a position to try it, but perhaps a knockout blonde could do so.
2.27.2008 4:55pm
Buckland (mail):
1986 --> 1968 above.....
2.27.2008 5:00pm
Hoosier:
Buckley lured me over to the Dark Side while I was an undergraduate in the mid- to late-80s. "Firing Line" was amazing: At that time a *full hour,* no commercial breaks, given over to the calm discussion of one significant public issue. Only C-SPAN now has anything quite comparable. But their presenters seek to avoid injecting their personalities into the shows (Brian Lamb has reportedly never said the words "Brian Lamb" on camera.) So that wit and charm are missing.

WFB had been growing rather morbid for some time now. I recall him telling an interviewer in 2004 that this was the last presidential cycle he would witness. Not even said as a prediction, but rather as a simple statement of fact. He would drop similar lines into his columns every now and again. He reminded me of my dad in this--and only in this--respect: A devout Irish Catholic who knew for some time that his body was failing, but whose strong faith reconciled him to his own death.

I don't agree with the statement that Fundamentalists have taken over the conservative movement and led it into an intellectual desert. But such a statement *does* hit upon a significant insight. Buckley's Catholicism was a significant force in shaping his thinking; it gave him a very old and rich intellectual/artistic tradition from which to draw. He had moorings, to use one of his favorite metaphores.

Perhaps part of what people perceive to be missing in today's conservatism is a result of the simple fact that those of us who were born in the '60s or later know only the post-Vat II Church. We are culturally *extremely* cut-off from what George Will has called the "stained-glass mind" of, in this case, the pre-Concillar Church. I'm not a critic of Vat II when it comes to theology. But I think we--the first Vat II generation of American Catholics-- are intellectually indistinguishable from much of Protestant America.

So, perhaps there cannot be another Buckley.
2.27.2008 5:01pm
Hoosier:
Buckland--I don't think he said "Goddam Faggot." I think it was "Goddam Queer."

So, gee, stop maligning the guy for things he didn't say.
2.27.2008 5:03pm
Thales (mail) (www):
Yeah, Buckley could be quite nasty all right. I consider that one of his unseemly legacies, like the misguided conservative embrace of "state's rights." It is somewhat entertaining, though a statement about our debased public culture, to watch him and Vidal (another literary public intellectual) resort to name calling. It occurs simply because they can't dislodge each other by reasoning, as they completely lack common premises. The 1968 debates should be on YouTube somewhere.
2.27.2008 5:05pm
JosephSlater (mail):
First and foremost, while I do not share Buckley's politics, he was a smart and thoughtful man, and he will be missed. While he was not always entirely civil (none of us are), one might profitably compare the tone on "Firing Line" to, say, the shows of Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, etc. And people I know that knew Buckley personally (also folks who didn't share his politics) say he was a decent and honorable man.

AntonK, re the Huffington Post, did you read some of the comments on this blog re the death of Tom Lantos? Bad taste has no political boundaries.
2.27.2008 5:11pm
Michael B (mail):
It's a dubious propostion that "fundamentalists" have "taken over" the Republican party; it's arguably much more the case that ideological fundamentalists and fideists of the Left have taken over the Democratic party.
2.27.2008 5:37pm
Jon Rowe (mail) (www):
He's also the guy who called Gore Vidal a God Damn Faggot on national TV while covering the 1986 Republican convention.

It wasn't in 1986, and not that it makes it okay, but it was after Vidal called him a crypo-fascists or a Nazi or something of the like.
2.27.2008 5:49pm
Phelps (mail) (www):
I believe Buckley called Vidal a queer and threatened to sock him in his goddamned face. Let's get it right.

Where are the next generation's conservative intellectuals?


They have all shifted to libertarian intellectuals.
2.27.2008 6:18pm
Jon Rowe (mail) (www):
YouTube has the clip. Buckley was so upset by what Vidal said that he was almost in tears if not actually in tears.
2.27.2008 6:38pm
Hoosier:
Where have all the conservative intellectuals gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the conservative intellectuals gone?
Long time ago . . .
2.27.2008 10:44pm
Terrivus:

There are many places where "...you'll still find intellectual, reasoned conservatives challenging both the status quo and the reigning orthodoxy (liberal or conservative) with effective, thoughtful arguments."


I'm still waiting for some examples...

Bueller...
2.28.2008 12:02am
Paul Barnes (mail):
Richard Garnett
Alvin Plantinga
Robert P. George
Joseph Ratzinger
Francis Beckwith
Peter Kreeft

I might even include Alasdair MacIntyre as some form of conservative. Mind you, I believe that all of these men (possibly with the exception of Plantinga) are Catholics...which might explain something about their relationship with Buckley.
2.28.2008 2:18am
Hoosier:
Plantinga is CRC, although he's at Notre Dame. And there's no question that he leans toward a sort of cultural conservatism. But like all Calvinists, he's a rationalist at his deep, deep core.

MacIntyre is a communitarian, and has never quite given up on his youthful Marxism. So I have given up trying to figure out how he might vote. (To be honest, I don't even know his citizenship.)

But you're right in that he has a great appeal to the sort of people I was hinting at in my long-ish post above; that is, those of us who lean conservative, but come from the Catholic intellectual tradition. Who thus can't call ourselves economic libertarians, and who have some theoretical and pragmatic reservations about the sufficeincy of Liberalism.

I keep "After Virtue" on display in my office, and when students ask, I lend them a copy. (My colleagues never want to borrow it, and I think they fear some sort of contaigion.)

I find it hard to disagree with his conclusion that intellectual rationalism is merely emotivism--at seveal degrees of remove. Also that post-modern intellectual skepticism has made it impossible for rationalists to find solid epistemological grounding. He is probably right, too, in thinking that the only moral reasoning that has not been dissolved in the PoMo solvent is a form of Thomistic Catholicism, in part because it provides a means of interpreting "texts" that has not been "problematized" by Po Mo. (At least not *yet*.) One finds this in Ratzinger, too, of course. So I don't mean to imply that MacIntyre is a lone Voice in the Wilderness.

His approach to philosophizing is also very congenial to those of us who lean conservative. He is very easy to understand, and for reasons that conservatives appreciate: He always grounds his thinking in concrete life experience. His writing teaches through narrative, and forces one to think about the way his ideas would affect real lives of real people who are struggling to do the right thing.

He makes me wish that I were not a *lapsed* Catholic.
2.28.2008 8:59am
Thales (mail) (www):
"like all Calvinists, he's a rationalist at his deep, deep core"

I find it hard to describe a doctrine that simultaneously believes in the mutually contradictory concepts of predestination and free will/moral responsibility as "rationalist." Interesting thoughts on MacIntyre, however. I actually think he's a kind of Nietzschean rather than a Marxist, in that he seems to believe in philosophy by conquest/absorption rather than persuasion (see Three Rival Versions). His linguistic dissolution in After Virtue of the concept of natural rights, which he holds is one with ghosts and fairies (one might add God), is of a piece with the Genealogy of Morality.
2.28.2008 11:14am
Randy R. (mail):
"In any event, what makes you think that there's a "tendency" at all that conservativism champions stupidity?"

Oh, I don't know. Let's try a few on for size, shall we?

Invading countries under false premises
Violating law by torturing people
Violating civil rights and then granting immunity to those who do
Opposing civil rights for blacks
Opposing civil rights for gays
Spending our country into debt
Isolating ourselves from our allies as well as our enemies
Name calling of our allies
Passing laws to prevent Mr. Shaivo from pulling the plug on his wife

I could go on, but at what point does tendencies become a trend?

Okay, so I'm talking a cheap shot. But when people like Michal B. claim that the left has become filled with ideological fundatmentalists, what else is there to do?
2.28.2008 12:36pm
Michael B (mail):
Well, Randy, are you suggesting ideologically based fideisms and fundamentalisms are not viable concepts, as such, or are you suggesting they are viable concepts, but are not as widespread as was suggested?
2.28.2008 1:27pm
Randy R. (mail):
" it's arguably much more the case that ideological fundamentalists and fideists of the Left have taken over the Democratic party.'

If you can provide any support for this notion, please supply it.
2.28.2008 8:09pm
Michael B (mail):
I can. Answer my question, absent any avoidance, and I will.
2.28.2008 9:36pm
Michael B (mail):
Btw, Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism (hit #1 at Amazon recently) is a solid place to begin an inquiry into the Left's ideologically based fideism and fundamentalism, its roots, genesis, assumptions. Still, my own answer will be forthcoming only after an unequivocal answer of your own.
2.28.2008 11:23pm