This morning’s NROriginals e-mail (subscribe here) includes a short story by the left-wing author Kurt Vonnegut. Except that “Harrison Bergeron” is one of the most conservative short stories you’ll ever read. Three years ago, I compiled a short list of conservative and libertarian science-fiction titles for NR (go here and scroll to the bottom). “Harrison Bergeron” made the cut:
“Harrison Bergeron,” by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.: Although Vonnegut was a man of the Left, this tale is so conservative that NR reprinted it in 1965. The opener: “The year was 2081, and everybody was finally equal . . . due to the 211th, 212th, and 213th Amendments to the Constitution, and to the unceasing vigilance of agents of the United States Handicapper General.” Coming in at just a little more than 2,000 words, this is a short-short story. “Harrison Bergeron” may be found in Welcome to the Monkey House, a collection of Vonnegut’s work.