July 21, 2011


Elites Gone Bad: What America needs is a better class of left-winger. (David Gelernter, June 13, 2011, Weekly Standard)

[P]atriotic Americans on the left and right used to be proud of particulars: the principles on which the nation was founded, the heroes who created and protected it, its world-shaping achievements and relentless struggle to master its worst urges and put its best into practice. And these patriots embraced America's traditional mission: to be the American Zion, the promised land, the leader of free nations; the city upon a hill, watched by all the world--as John Winthrop wrote, quoting the Bible, as his ship hauled towards Boston in 1630.

But today's left finds little to admire in American history. The new Philadelphia museum built around George Washington's partially reconstructed home is typical in its view of Washington as, first and foremost, a slave owner. Neither of the two extraordinary accomplishments of modern America, victory in the Cold War and the all-but-eradication of race prejudice in a single generation, inspires modern Obamacrats. They rarely mention the Cold War, and they evidently regard the country as still in the grip of prejudice. In fact Rahm Emanuel, former Obama chief of staff and mayor-elect of Chicago, has endorsed the idea of compensation payments to the descendants of former slaves. Thus, America the Inexcusable--unless Emanuel's idea of fairness is that nonperpetrators must compensate nonvictims for crimes they never suffered but would have if they had been born 200 years ago. (Probably.) No clearer evidence exists that the left, and Rahm Emanuel, are out of ideas.

Most disturbing of all, there are signs that the Obamacrats' respect for at least one element of the American creed of liberty, equality, and democracy is slipping. The Obama administration, the Democrats in Congress, and left-leaning local players have all shown their growing dislike of democracy. And if you reject history and democracy, you leave yourself precious little to admire (much less love) in the U.S.A.

He'd need to have a come-to-Jesus moment on abortion, but Bill Clinton could win the Republican nomination and couldn't win the Democratic today. But a GOP that is at war against immigration and religious freedom is hardly reconciled to the American mission itself.

Posted by at July 21, 2011 7:07 AM

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