Everyone Knows This Cont’d


From a reader:


Mr. Goldberg,


Just in case anyone was wondering if there is a need for your excellent tome, since it contains nothing new for “students of history”, I thought I’d point out an exchange that took place on This Week. Stephanopoulos had a typical (I almost wrote tendentious, but I figure that term has hit its 60 day overuse expiration as soi disant did a few months back) panel (Donna Brazille, Paul Krugman, Robert Reich and George Will) and they were discussing whether Sen. McCain’s unwillingness to bail out homeowners and lenders was either appropriate or politically useful. Mr. Reich stated that John McCain made Herbert Hoover look like an activist. This brought on a great deal of laughter by everyone except Mr. Will who replied “He was” meaning Hoover. This brought on a little more laughter, Mr. Reich resumed blathering from his high-chair for a moment, and then they went to break. The impression left was that Mr. Will is such an antiquarian arch-conservative that he thinks of laissez-faire’s greatest champion as an activist.

All I can think of when I hear this seemingly know-nothing babble from of one of our most highly educated (or at least credentialed) citizens is George Costanza telling Jerry Seinfeld: “Remember Jerry, it’s not a lie if you believe it.”

So, obviously, there’s no need for another popular history of 20th century American intellectual and political movements.




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