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The Left Before The Fall
Politco ^ | August 04, 2007 | By Rich Lowry

Posted on 08/04/2007 3:03:00 PM PDT by mmanager

From a distance of nearly 50 years, the liberalism of 1960 is hardly recognizable. It was comfortable with the use of American power abroad, unabashedly patriotic, and forward-looking. But that was before The Fall.

In his eye-opening new book Camelot and the Cultural Revolution, Jim Piereson argues The Fall was the assassination of President Kennedy. It represented more than the tragic death of a young president, but the descent of liberalism from an optimistic creed focused on pragmatic improvements in the American condition to a darker philosophy obsessed with America's sins. Echoes of the assassination -- and the meaning attributed to it by JFK's admirers -- can still be heard in the querulous tones of contemporary liberalism.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Philosophy; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: camelot; jimpiereson; kennedy; liberals; radicalleft; rats; richlowry
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"Their agenda took on a punitive edge, focused on compensating victim groups and expiating the country's guilt."

Their percieved quilt continues.

1 posted on 08/04/2007 3:03:07 PM PDT by mmanager
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To: mmanager

I guess it is a quilt. But it is their guilt.

Fixed it.

2 posted on 08/04/2007 3:04:25 PM PDT by mmanager (Fred instead of Purebred, Crossbred and the Hothead)
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To: mmanager
a darker philosophy obsessed with America's sins.

The American Left in less than one complete sentence.

Theirs is a curiously anti-American philosophy, as in anti-America's tradition of optimism and improvement. They are so self-obssessed, so angry over the failures and pains of their own lives, but they can't get over it and grow up. They have to wallow in their misery, not exorcise it but exercise it. And since no one likes to feel they are to blame for their own misery, they want to take us all along for the ride--we're ALL to blame, and we ALL must pay the price for OUR sins--the sins of people long dead, people none of us ever met.

It's a really weird philosophical position--to make themselves feel better, they want to inflict hardship on some and after acquiring their fortunes, they want to give it to others in order to expunge their OWN perceived sinfulness.

3 posted on 08/04/2007 3:21:26 PM PDT by Darkwolf377 (Unapologetic Republican)
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To: mmanager
Until that happens, JFK has to be remembered, in Piereson’s words, as “the last articulate spokesman for the now lost world of American liberalism.”

Yes, but just what does the term “liberalism” really mean? I commonly means that government can spend your money better than you can, but it more broad than that. It is a license to depart from logics and facts to construct a city in the sky, a Camelot, where government decrees the forces of nature and defines human nature, where it is forbidden to have any unforeseen consequences, and where an idea is only evaluated on the basis of good intentions as opposed to effect or cost. Indeed, “cost” is a concept foreign to liberalism, because in Camelot, nothing costs anything. There are only “benefits”.

Thanks to internet forums like this one, and talk radio, more and more people are seeing liberalism for what it is- a frantic and futile attempt to be freed from reality. Indeed, the word “liberal” is now said far more often with a sneer and smirk (as in “$%&#@*# Liberal!), that liberals who used to be proud of the label now insist on being called “progressive”. Thankfully, after a few years the confusion between “liberalism” and being a “Classical Liberal” will go away.

Liberals are so desirous of being able to selectively detach from reality that it remains the last great unacknowledged mental disorder of the 21st century. These people must be dealt with firmly and quickly to marginalize them so they don’t hurt more people, destroy more wealth and put us in greater danger.

4 posted on 08/04/2007 3:28:19 PM PDT by theBuckwheat
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To: theBuckwheat


5 posted on 08/04/2007 3:39:50 PM PDT by Matchett-PI (The 'RAT Party - Home of our most envious, hypocritical, and greedy citizens.)
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To: mmanager

The war on poverty has claimed hundresd of more thousands than the war in Iraq. The fruitless battles to save the poor still rage.

6 posted on 08/04/2007 3:44:18 PM PDT by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 . Happiness is a down sleeping bag)
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To: mmanager

I have a love/hate relationship with the ‘60s. It is still, by far, my favorite era for music. Even a lot of the drug-inspired music is very interesting to me; I love its inventiveness and unpredictability.

But I hate the damaging ideas that came out of that decade:

Drugs. I think we’re still dealing with a lot of moral ambiguity on that subject.

“Free love,” i.e. casual sex with no sense of responsibility or commitment.

Women’s lib, which is OK in concept to a point, but morphed into a world where both parents usually HAVE to work in order to support a family. Nannies or day-care centers take care of small kids while the parents work, then they later become latch-key kids. Not to mention that it spawned an insufferable group of militiant feminazis that have taken the concept WAY overboard to ridiculous extremes.

People like Malcom X and the Black Panthers.

The Great Society, which produced anything but.

The socialism of the “New Left.”

...and so on.

We are still reeling from the changes that were put into motion in that decade.

(Now, excuse me while I call up “Brown-Eyed Girl” from my iTunes list... >:)

7 posted on 08/04/2007 3:54:19 PM PDT by RepublitarianRoger
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To: mmanager

The worst thing about JFK getting shot was the free ride that it gave to the rest of this “white trash with money” clan to achieve other positions of power and influence.

8 posted on 08/04/2007 4:28:15 PM PDT by Emmett McCarthy
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To: RepublitarianRoger

“Women’s lib, which is OK in concept to a point, but morphed into a world where both parents usually HAVE to work in order to support a family.”

Exactly. In order to have a decent standard of living, one of the wage earners has to pay for the huge tax burden.

9 posted on 08/04/2007 4:34:50 PM PDT by 2nd Bn, 11th Mar (The "P" in Democrat stands for patriotism.)
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To: mmanager

Patched your guiltwork, I see.

10 posted on 08/04/2007 4:39:54 PM PDT by Mamzelle
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To: theBuckwheat
It is essential to understand the puerility of liberalism. It is the philosophy of the child grown to adulthood but unable to mature individual.
11 posted on 08/04/2007 4:44:04 PM PDT by quadrant
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To: theBuckwheat
It is essential to understand the puerility of liberalism. It is the philosophy of the child grown to adulthood but unable to mature emotionally into an adult
12 posted on 08/04/2007 4:44:57 PM PDT by quadrant
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To: mmanager
Jim Piereson argues The Fall was the assassination of President Kennedy.

As an aside, or maybe not, I just finished finished an interesting book by ace espionage writer Charles McCarry called The Tears of Autumn, with an unusual take on who was behind Kennedy's assassination, none of the usual suspects.

13 posted on 08/04/2007 5:00:13 PM PDT by caveat emptor
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To: mmanager

I have to admit, you had me going there with your quilt. Made me want to take a power nap, LOL.

14 posted on 08/04/2007 5:03:19 PM PDT by Attention Surplus Disorder (When Bubba lies, the finger flies!)
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To: RepublitarianRoger

“But I hate the damaging ideas that came out of that decade:”

There were no new ideas. The ideas had been around for decades.

Marxist rebellion since Manifesto published 1848.

Unions and increased socialism in America clearly since the 1930s.

Womens’ rights ongoing, since voting (1920)and flapping (1920s).

Many civil rights which blacks had previously been promised weren’t fully realized until the 1960s.

Drugs were not introduced in the 1960s. Cocaine was used long before, as was marijuana.

As a 1965 HS grad, I know we were NOT all alike. We were NOT all druggies, did NOT all have shoulder length hair, did NOT all listen to music 24/7, did NOT all protest the war in Vietnam, etc.

Always, always, always remember in 1972 McGovern got obliterated by the Silent Majority who re-elected Nixon.

15 posted on 08/04/2007 5:24:07 PM PDT by truth_seeker
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To: Mamzelle

Good one!

16 posted on 08/04/2007 6:05:41 PM PDT by mmanager (Fred instead of Purebred, Crossbred and the Hothead)
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To: mmanager
And political correctness as the weapon of choice.
17 posted on 08/04/2007 6:09:48 PM PDT by b4its2late (I am a nobody, and nobody is perfect; therefore, I am perfect.)
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To: mmanager

I don’t believe this for a minute that at some point the left was ever exalted. This does not mean that the right was ever pure, either; but in the left you find the lowest and most repugnant philosophies imaginable.

You can find parallels in the philosophy of the left all the way from Ralph Waldo Emerson to Dave Foreman of Earth First!, who also proposed similar ideas for replacing civilization with isolated villages of ignorant peasants, if in a much cruder form.

Parallels between the idealization of nature by Henry David Thoreau and today’s eco nuts.

And you see parallels between the Civil War era apologist for slavery George Fitzhugh, and today’s self-proclaimed “elites” of the left, who still can’t get it through their head that most people shouldn’t be treated as herd animals.

No, I do not see the national socialism of FDR as any indicator of exaltation, any more than by his flawed economic policies, the depression was extended for years.

Perhaps Harry S. Truman came closest, because even though he began as a tool of big city machine politics, he never studied nor understood the philosophies of the left, and was far more realistic.

JFK really never did amount to much in his brief two years in office, other than duplicity in the Bay of Pigs invasion and a less than effective embargo of Cuba. His legacy is sustained only by his cult of personality, what the left hoped he would deliver, but never did.

As for the rest, Ann Coulter really should have written several more volumes to her book Liberal Treachery. She could do a re-write of J. Evetts Haley’s book, A Texan Looks At Lyndon (LBJ), which would fill one volume by itself.

18 posted on 08/04/2007 6:36:19 PM PDT by Popocatapetl
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To: mmanager

No, they have the wrong Kennedy assasination.

The liberal turn to the extreme left began after the assasination of Robert Kennedy in 1968. That year was a turning point in American politics and popular culture.

The Dems started tearing the country apart over Vietnam—which is a war ramped up by their own—Kennedy and Johnson.

So much so, that by 1970, with Kent State, and the uncontrollable college campus student movements, there was almost anarchy. The Dems smelled blood in the water in 1972, with the ridiculous political escapade called Watergate, which resulted in the removal of a twice elected President from power in the face of impeachment, in August 1974.

By the spring of 1975, the Dems cut off aid to South Vietnam when North Vietnam invaded them, and we watched the ultimate humilation of our 16 year effort to stop Communism in Indo China, and the waste of the sacrifice of 58,000 of our young men.

Yes, and they NEVER, EVER TOOK RESPONSIBLITY for the three million people who were slaughtered in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia in the ensuing years.

The abandonment of Vietnam came at a time when we were facing down nuclear war with the Soviet Union and their expanionism into the Middle East.

But to the Dems, the act of performing the ultimate humiliation of our country over Vietnam was just the beginning. The electorate, reacting to Watergate, voted in the innocuous looking Democrat peanut farmer from Plains, Ga., Jimmy Carter— a dictator loving, Jew hating, America loathing weasel of a human being. His foreign policy actions almost totally defeated the United States in Central America, the Mid East, and in Europe. His view of the future—living with Communism and loving their feminine side. Hell, what’s 21% interest rates, gas lines, runaway inflation, and the near collapse of the American economy compared to adulation from the America’s enemies. And that a-hole is still drawing breath and doing damage.

Then, for a bright shining moment, when all seemed lost and we would never find our way, Ronald Reagan came on the scene. Oh, the lefty Dems could not stand this America loving, freedom loving, enemy of Communism—they fought him every step of the way—Tip O’Neill,Lowell Weicher, Ted Kennedy, John Kerry,Patrick Leahy and others—fought every initiative of Reagan. Ted Kennedy even worked directly with the Soviets behind Reagan’s back to undercut him in 1983 during the nuclear showdown in Europe, an act of treason for which he has yet to be held to account.

Yet Ronald REagn did the unthinkable. Without firing a shot, he brought the Soviet Union to near collapse, brought down the Berlin Wall, and freed over 150 million people from the cruel yoke of Communism in Eastern Europe. To someone growing up in the 1960s, when duck-and-cover was considered a survival strategy, this type of victory in the Cold War was unthinkable.

Domestically, the Dems forever changed the process of Supreme Court justice nominations over Judge Bork in 1987. Again, Ted Kennedy led the charge. They fought Bush the Elder like they did Reagan, until he caved in to them in 1990 with the raise in taxes. They fought nuclear power for thirty years,keeping us mired in MidEast oil and politics, and preventing our energy independence.

Also in 1990, we faced our first post Vietnam large scale military challenge in the first Gulf War. Again, the rabid Left fought every effort to create a coalition to fight what was clearly a threat to our interests in the Middle East. Again they were fighting for our defeat in the run-up to the war. And who can forget the Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas hearings in 1991, when a pubic hair became the topic of water cooler discussions nationwide.

With Clinton in power during the dark years of 1993-2001, we saw abuses of power and executive privilege that were unimaginable a few short years before. The Left consolidated their gains in the various arms and departments of the US Government,such as Justice, the CIA, and the FBI(they were in control of the State Department since the days of WW2) again creating problems for the next President. They were the ones to lob missiles into Iraq at Saddam Hussein, and were ready to commit ground troops in a stupid, useless war over a fake genocide in Kosovo in 1999.

Yet, they were loathe to fight a war on terror after September 11, 2001, and have worked diligently for our defeat since then.

Their support of abortion has denied us 50 million children,their love of homosexuals and their lifestyle has now pervaded our entire culture down to the kindergarten level, their control of the teachers in schools and colleges have furthered their lies, and their control of minorities has perpetuated racial conflict. Political correctness and diversity are used to control thought, in a country that prides itself on being free.

If we are to survive, we must speak to our friends, neighbors and relatives how the treason and treachery of the present Democratic Part will affect our country and our children and grandchildren. They must be told how the Democrat Party is now a party of Communist fascists, bent on total socialism and redistribution of wealth,and the complete abdication of personal responsibility.

The Democrats now control Congress, with the almost insanely treasonous leadership of Reid and Pelosi, and party leadership by Dean. The hatred they spew against Republicans, the President, the lies they peprpetuate(yellowcake, Plame, etc.) are working toward their pinnacle of achievement—the election of Hillary Clinton as President. This is a woman, who is the wife and enabler of a rapist and serial adulterer draft dodging former President, an in-your-face Marxist-Leninist, and who hates our military and our Constitution is about to be crowned Queen in 2008. The drooling at tthat prospect is just starting.

Yes, the left has traveled far since 1968. No one believed they could ensnare a whole political party and shape it and its leaders to an anti-American agenda that would make Joe Stalin smile, but they have.

19 posted on 08/04/2007 7:41:52 PM PDT by exit82 (I have a gut feeling: Michael Chertoff is a jerk.)
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To: All
If TV had come along in the 1960s instead of the 1950s JFK would not have received enough votes to make the Chicago election fraud matter.

The popularity of JFK was primarily due to TV, especially color, he was telegenic. Period. Being young and rich attracted some but it was 99 percent TV. It was all show, ask Vaughn Meader.

The New Left grew out of revelations coming out of the Soviet Union about Stalin (1956). There still would have been New Left "anti-war," pro-Communists leftists; Eugene McCarthyites, McGovernites, and all kinds of problems for traditional liberal Democrats. Some in the MSM would still have praised the troublemakers as the "most intelligent generation ever."

NYTines icon Scotty Reston reported years after the assassination that Khrushchev had humiliated Kennedy so thoroughly at Vienna (1961) that Viet Nam was Kennedy's effort to prove that he could not be pushed around. His other choice to prove himself was Berlin.

Reston was the first to talk to Kennedy after the hastily arranged one-on-one meeting with Khrushchev after the conference, Kennedy was devastated.

IMO Kennedy knew he'd be running away if he ordered a pull-out -- especially after, many believed, the Kennedy's had approved President Diem's assassination (1963).

We know lots about JFK today, even with the "Fairness Doctrine" we'd have found out back then too, the print press was still free though hard to find sometimes. US News and Time magazines were real news magazines back then, they would have reported on Kennedy had he served two terms. IMO.

Kennedy was no big deal for the average Joe unless Joe was turned on by reality TV shows mixed with generous helpings of fantasy. Ask Vaughn Meader.

20 posted on 08/04/2007 8:14:19 PM PDT by WilliamofCarmichael (If modern America's Man on Horseback is out there, Get on the damn horse already!)
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