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Thursday, September 25, 2003

Liberal "self-doubt"

There is no shortage of commentary out there on The New Republic senior editor Jonathan Chait's screed, Mad About You:   The Case for Bush Hatred, which has this concluding paragraph:

To be a liberal today is to feel as though you've been transported into some alternative universe in which a transparently mediocre man is revered as a moral and strategic giant. You ask yourself why Bush is considered a great, or even a likeable, man. You wonder what it is you have been missing. Being a liberal, you probably subject yourself to frequent periods of self-doubt. But then you conclude that you're actually not missing anything at all. You decide Bush is a dullard lacking any moral constraints in his pursuit of partisan gain, loyal to no principle save the comfort of the very rich, unburdened by any thoughtful consideration of the national interest, and a man who, on those occasions when he actually does make a correct decision, does so almost by accident. 

I love that line:   "Being a liberal, you probably subject yourself to frequent periods of self-doubt." 

Translation:   "I shall stop for a moment to consider whether anyone with whom I disagree could possibly have an ounce of intelligence or integrity.  I shall ponder whether I could be wrong in any small particular.  Could it be that I have erred, that my magnificient intellectual prowess could have gone astray, that my sarcasm and hyperbole could be off target?" 

And the ready answer — oh painful soulsearching, oh razor-blades of self-doubt! — "Nawwwww, didn't think so.  Glad that's settled."

Friend Chait, I thank you for the hearty, if unintended, laugh your column has given me.

Posted by Beldar at 08:05 PM in Politics (2006 & earlier) | Permalink


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» Jonathan Chait from Right on the Left Beach

Tracked on Sep 26, 2003 10:46:51 AM


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