Magazine March 8, 2021, Issue

How Populists Talk

George C. Wallace, 1968 (Bettmann/Contributor/Getty Images)
Or, voices from Philistia

In the last several years, I’ve heard the word “fancy” a lot — as in “you people with your fancy books and your fancy degrees and your fancy music and your fancy parties and . . .” Fancy, fancy, fancy. From time immemorial, populists and demagogues of all stripes have inveighed against the fancy. (And sometimes the fancy are guilty, true.)

The president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, a left-wing populist, ridicules “la prensa fifí.” Great phrase, right? You think of a French poodle, being walked by a dowager. “La prensa fifí,” the fancy press (i.e., the press that bothers

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In This Issue



Books, Arts & Manners




Readers react to commentary on the federal legalization of marijuana, Zionism, and academic credentials.
The Week

The Week

That light you may have seen in the night sky, brighter than Halley’s Comet, steadier than the aurora borealis, is the Lincoln Project blowing up.


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