December 10, 2019

Now Playing

Juliet Naked
(Reviewed September 21, 2018)

An amusing but slight adaptation of a Nick Hornby novel which can laugh at its characters without precluding the possibility that they may laugh at themselves

Won't You Be My Neighbor?
(Reviewed September 20, 2018)

Did Mr Rogers’s extraordinary capacity for love end up producing a generation of haters?

Lady Bird
(Reviewed March 6, 2018)

A delightful and not entirely politically correct movie about growing up as a Catholic schoolgirl in 2002-2003

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
(Reviewed February 22, 2018)

An occasionally amusing parable of guilt and forgiveness whose setting in small-town America, like the prejudices of its author, does it no favors

ENTRY from November 20, 2019

That the lawyer and commentator Joe diGenova is the latest critic of George Soros to be trashed as an anti-Semite on Twitter is yet another reminder, if one were needed, of the left’s grand project, ably abetted if not led by the media, to delegitimize all dissent from or opinion contrary to their own orthodoxy. This they are able to do by associating such heterodox views, usually through the magic of “intersectionality,” with a cardinal sin against one or more of the left’s own most-favored and putatively oppressed minorities. An attack on one member of a victim-group can be regarded as an attack on the group, and an attack on the group can be regarded as an attack on all victim-groups as well as those who claim to speak for them.

The tactic is particularly blatant in this case because the minority in question — the Jewish one — nearly always appears in leftist mythology as one of the oppressors rather than one of the favored oppressees. “Zionists” are invariably the bad guys vis à vis the Palestinians, and there’s nothing easier for an Ilhan Omar or a Jeremy Corbyn than to elide any distinction that might otherwise be made between “Zionist” and “Jew.” But Jewish lefties like the fabulously wealthy Mr Soros  — particularly if they have done as much as he has for the radicals and revolutionaries who now dominate the Democratic party — can don the vesture of victimization at will as a convenient method of discrediting their critics as racially motivated.

That this transparently cynical tactic still works to the extent that it does, if only in mobilizing an army of Twitter trolls, suggests to me that public opinion is well along the way towards being molded by the left in their own image and thus to regard with tolerance and, by degrees, with favor the cancel culture’s favorite sport: that of identifying among our public men and the occasional woman hidden enemies needing to be exposed and shamed and suppressing their dangerous opinions.
  Full Entry

Media MadnessBefore there was Howard Kurtz’s Media Madness, there was mine — now, alas, out of print but still available while supplies last for the cost of shipping and handling. Send $5.99 to me in care of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, 1730 M Street, Suite 910, Washington, D.C. 20036

Honor, A HistoryAlso available, now in paperback and Kindle version, is Honor, A History, which was first published in 2006. A study of Western cultural artifacts, from the epics of Homer to the movies and TV shows of today, it is focused on explaining why Western ideas of honor developed so differently from those elsewhere — and especially from the savage honor cultures of the Islamic world. The book then goes on to trace the collapse and ultimate rejection of the old Western honor culture from World War I until the present day and to suggest the conditions that would have to prevail for its revival.

Recent Articles

Revolutionism redux, part II October 31, 2019.
A New York Times town hall meeting reveals that paper’s newsroom as the epicenter of the revolutionary dynamic now manifesting itself among American progressives — From The New Criterion of October, 2019 ... Full Article

Revolutionism Redux, Part I September 30, 2019.
On the perils of the modern revolutionary mindset — From The New Criterion of September, 2019 ... Full Article

Report from an alternative universe June 30, 2019.
What do they know of Media-land who only Media-land know? — From The New Criterion of June, 2019 ... Full Article

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