October 28, 2004


Real divide is only in elitist minds (Victor Davis Hanson, October 27, 2004 , SF Chronicle)

[T]he true nature of our loud divisiveness is rarely remarked upon. In the last three decades, there has been a steady evolution from liberal to moderately conservative politics among a majority of the voters, whether gauged by the recent spate of Republican presidents or Bill Clinton's calculated shift to the center. Now the House, Senate, presidency and the majority of state governorships and legislatures are in Republican hands. A Bush win will ensure a conservative Supreme Court for a generation.

In contrast, the universities, the arts, the major influential media and Hollywood are predominately liberal -- and furious. They bring an enormous amount of capital, talent, education and cultural influence into the political fray -- but continue to lose real political power. The talented elite plays the same role to the rest of America as the Europeans do to the United States -- venting and seething because the supposedly less sophisticated, but far more powerful, average Joes don't embrace their visions of utopia.

Elites from college professors and George Soros to Bruce Springsteen and Garrison Keillor believe that their underappreciated political insight is a natural byproduct of their own proven artistic genius, education, talent or capital. How then can a tongue-tied George W. Bush and his cronies so easily fool Americans, when novelists, actors, singers, comedians and venture capitalists have spent so much time and money warning them of their danger?

For all Sean Penn's rants, Rather's sermons, Michael Moore's mythodramas and Jon Stewart's postmodern snickers, America, even in times of a controversial war and rocky economy, is still not impressed. National Public Radio, "Nightline" and the New York Times are working overtime to assert their views in this philosophical debate; Jimmy Carter and Al Gore -- not George H. W. Bush and Bob Dole -- are fuming. Most Americans snore or flip the channel.

It is apparently a terrible thing to be sensitive, glib, smart, educated or chic -- and not be listened to, as we have seen from this noisy and often hysterical campaign among elites. That is the real divide in this country, and it is only going to get worse.

Yeah, but they're so dang loud about it...

Posted by Orrin Judd at October 28, 2004 11:58 AM

I'm kind of concerned about what the left is going to do as the speed of the avalanche increases. Sure, they don't approve of guns, but when has a little hyprocrasy ever stopped a liberal? And now that the Libertarians are playing footsie with the Greens that's like a politcal peanut butter cup: "You got your extreme right wing political beliefs in my nutty left wing pseudo Marxism!:

Posted by: Governor Breck at October 28, 2004 12:49 PM

Like a boorish tourist who can't speak the local language our snobs (not an elite) constantly raise their voices believing it will overcome their inability to connect. The locals are usually both revolted and amused by the imported clown act.

Posted by: luciferous at October 28, 2004 2:24 PM

The people cited in this piece are ancient, none of the kids today would think they're in the least bit relevant.

Posted by: erp at October 28, 2004 2:28 PM

Governor Breck wrote: "And now that the Libertarians are playing footsie with the Greens that's like a politcal peanut butter cup ..."

That's a dandy metaphor, but it's worth noting that this footsie has not involved ideological flirtation, but merely a practical (and temporary) teaming up to press the case for third parties in general.

Posted by: Semolina Pilchard at October 28, 2004 3:30 PM


This is just the first step. If third parties expect to go anywhere, they will have to enter the mainstream. Don't be surprised when the Libertarian Party develops its own social conservative faction. They will claim that they are just as socially conservative as Republicans in opposing abortion, gay rights and drug legalization, but they don't think Republicans are as fiscally conservative as they would like them to be.

Posted by: Vince at October 28, 2004 3:48 PM

Vince -- And they would be right in that case. Where do I sign up?

Posted by: jd watson at October 28, 2004 4:21 PM

Jd Watson:

If that is your perogative, then join the Constitution Party. They may not be as fiscally conservative as Libertarians, but it is a start.

Posted by: Vince at October 28, 2004 5:51 PM

Why don't you relax for an election Vince, no need to fight the next war until this one is won. A Bush win should sufficiently vanquish the liberals this time arounf and then you can fight the Libertarians as the country heads towards becoming fiscaly conservative and socially liberal over the rest of your life. Thwe fun part is that I don't think we need a third party to do it.

Posted by: Perry at October 28, 2004 7:35 PM


VDH seems like the real deal, anybody have anything to say which is critical of this guy?

Posted by: Perry at October 28, 2004 7:38 PM


The country is actually becoming more socially conservative. Roe vs. Wade will be overturned in the next few years, and a constitutional amendment to defend traditional marriage is likley to pass--maybe not today, but it will once some liberal judge throws out DOMA or declares traditional marriage unconstitutional. The Homeschooling movement is creating a whole bunch of socially conservative youth who will grow up and win the Culture War.

Posted by: Vince at October 29, 2004 2:21 AM

Homeschooling is still a drop in the bucket. You're getting a little ahead of the game, Roe v Wade won't go down so soon, if ever.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at October 29, 2004 4:50 AM

Hanson for President in 2008!

Posted by: Genecis at October 29, 2004 11:28 AM