The Corner

The Eternal Struggle, Remains Eternal After All

I grew up anti-Communist. I remain anti-Communist. I share with my National Review colleagues and forebears an abiding hatred of Communism. And that hatred extends to ill-conceived, poorly articulated, envy-driven jargon from street radicals. But at the same time I’ve got to say there’s something truly refreshing, even reassuring, about the all of the Marxist twaddle coming out of these protests. These Red goons, buffoons, ruffians and tatterdemalions didn’t spring forth ex nihilo. They’ve been living among us all of this time. All that is new is the opportunity for them to out themselves in YouTube videos and the rest. 

I think we’ve all known that, but it’s useful to be reminded of it. It’s also useful (as I argue in the current issue) to be reminded of the fact that given the flimsiest of excuses a great number of mainstream liberals will drop their apparently feigned resolve against leftwing radicalism and leap at the opportunity to express solidarity with the crazies. So far, except for one honorable dissent from the editors of The New Republic, I haven’t seen any prominent liberals expressing any serious concern about what the occupiers are actually saying. And what significant reluctance we have seen from liberal politicians, starting with Obama, is quite transparently motivated not by principle but by strategy. If the Occupy Wall Street mob swept the country, I’m sure some of these liberals would, eventually, find a backbone — particularly when it came time to redistribute their stock portfolios or seize their McMansions. But until then, most of them seem perfectly happy to encourage the rabble and treat their ideas as legitimate.

Here’s one useful tip: Whenever the substance of the Occupy Wall Street movement troubles Democratic politicians their response is to hide behind platitudes about free speech. “It’s about their right to express themselves!” Well, no it’s not. Free speech is important, but it’s really not the issue. It certainly wasn’t even much of a concern when it was the Tea Party expressing itself — which it managed to do without inviting mass arrests. Back then, leading Democrats considered dissent racist or un-American. Now they celebrate free speech so they can hide from dealing with the issues at hand honestly. Democratic politicians think that this gives them cover. It doesn’t. It just shows that they’re afraid to disagree with the protesters either because they agree with them or because they know the protests are popular among their own supporters. Either way, it’s proof that the much ballyhooed wall between mainstream radicalism and mainstream liberalism is more like a speed bump.

It’s one thing to have suspicions. It’s another thing to have them confirmed. And for that, I’m grateful for Occupy Wall Street.

Most Popular

Culture

Thank You, Kanye West

It was “a plan by the Devil to have our kids committing suicide at an all-time high.” So said Kanye West, who recently declared, via Twitter, that he was running for president, on the “Birthday Party” ticket. It’s about the best explanation I’ve heard for the non-coronavirus that plagues us. There’s ... Read More
Culture

Thank You, Kanye West

It was “a plan by the Devil to have our kids committing suicide at an all-time high.” So said Kanye West, who recently declared, via Twitter, that he was running for president, on the “Birthday Party” ticket. It’s about the best explanation I’ve heard for the non-coronavirus that plagues us. There’s ... Read More
Education

The Case for Reopening Schools

On the menu today: My reader who is the head of research for a top-ten hospital weighs in on how to get kids back into classrooms safely this fall, a blathering Biden comment I missed that could have gotten his Twitter account suspended, and California’s state government tries to implement an ambitious ... Read More
Education

The Case for Reopening Schools

On the menu today: My reader who is the head of research for a top-ten hospital weighs in on how to get kids back into classrooms safely this fall, a blathering Biden comment I missed that could have gotten his Twitter account suspended, and California’s state government tries to implement an ambitious ... Read More
Culture

In Defense of Terry Crews

There are many worthy nominees for the craziest moment in the current cultural turmoil, but the controversy over tweets by actor Terry Crews deserves to be high on the list. In one of his offending tweets, Crews said on July 4th: https://twitter.com/terrycrews/status/1279493774679261185?s=21 It wasn’t ... Read More
Culture

In Defense of Terry Crews

There are many worthy nominees for the craziest moment in the current cultural turmoil, but the controversy over tweets by actor Terry Crews deserves to be high on the list. In one of his offending tweets, Crews said on July 4th: https://twitter.com/terrycrews/status/1279493774679261185?s=21 It wasn’t ... Read More
Science & Tech

The Ideological Corruption of Science

Why don't many people “trust the science” anymore? Perhaps because science, as an institution, has fallen prey to the same ideological infection that has invaded and corrupted many other institutions. But it is too rarely discussed, which is why a Sunday Wall Street Journal column by theoretical physicist ... Read More
Science & Tech

The Ideological Corruption of Science

Why don't many people “trust the science” anymore? Perhaps because science, as an institution, has fallen prey to the same ideological infection that has invaded and corrupted many other institutions. But it is too rarely discussed, which is why a Sunday Wall Street Journal column by theoretical physicist ... Read More
Science & Tech

Evaluating Fauci’s Record

The White House is getting a lot of heat by pointing out that Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious-disease official, has a spottier record on predicting the course of pandemics than the media would have you believe. “White House officials now want to rein in Fauci by cherry-picking instances in ... Read More
Science & Tech

Evaluating Fauci’s Record

The White House is getting a lot of heat by pointing out that Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious-disease official, has a spottier record on predicting the course of pandemics than the media would have you believe. “White House officials now want to rein in Fauci by cherry-picking instances in ... Read More