April 13, 2009
A major problem for those on our side of the fence is the unwillingness of the liberal and neocon media to admit us into the public discussion. This has meant that independent authors and thinkers, who have stood ever so minutely to the right of the mainstream media and its permissible discourse, have been kept from the recognition that they richly deserve. While pimply adolescents hold forth on FOX News and fill the pages of the movement conservative press with their breathlessly given platitudes, such provocative authors as Steve Sailer, Rob Stove, Peter Brimelow, Dan McCarthy, Tom Piatak, John Zmirak, Richard Spencer, Stacey McCain, Jim Hunter, Grant Havers, and Tom Bertonneau, and others must remain perpetually in the shadows.
This situation was brought home to me with particular force when I learned that the establishment liberal academic Alan Wolfe had taken a potshot me in his most recent book, which was published by Random House, The Future of Liberalism. According to Wolfe, who was restating opinions that he”d already given in The New Republic and Chronicles of Higher Education, I am the very embodiment of a Teutonic authoritarian tradition prefigured by the subject of one of my monographs, Carl Schmitt. Together with Leo Strauss, who is also associated with Schmitt, I have apparently wrought harm on this country by legitimating the anti-liberal tendencies set into operation by such Schmitt-clones as Newt Gingrich and FOX news contributors all. Of course such commentary about me makes no more sense than blaming the inmates at Ausschwitz for the triumph of Nazi ideology. Why have the neocons been knocking me from pillar to post when I”ve been feeding them their ideas?
All the same, Wolfe may be spreading views about me that are difficult to refute.
Wolfe’s judgments may seem perfectly acceptable to those who read him in the national press or who learn of his ideas through upscale publishing houses. The fact that I”m not given space by the same sources in which to lay out my views might suggest that Wolfe is right. I am, indeed, a fascist lunatic, who is responsible for unleashing neocon thinking on the American government.
Presumably neocons have wrecked my life and career because they wish to hide my considerable impact on them. We may soon learn that I”ve been meeting with these troublemakers in some DC hideaway, where I have briefed them on the esoteric meanings of Schmitt’s texts as they relate to GOP strategy. In any case whatever is said about me or anyone who reads me must be true, unless we can find suitably powerful weapons with which to answer our critics. In the meantime these enemies will not grant us even the elementary courtesy of letting us answer their charges in the media that is under their control.
Allow me to pose this rhetorical question: Has anyone of you ever been allowed to answer attacks on yourselves or your friends in the Wall Street Journal, National Review or New York Times? Here’s my answer to my question. With the exception of a letter of mine that landed up unexpectedly in the Times (I couldn”t imagine the same happening at National Review) and which was a rejoinder to an observation about me that had appeared in an earlier issue of the same paper, and another communication of mine that went into The New Republic as an answer to Wolfe’s review of After Liberalism, in the last thirty years I”ve never succeeded in placing anything I”ve written in any hostile publication, even in response to things that had been previously published about me. Needless to say, this is not just my problem. It is indicative of the ostracism that has been imposed on the entire Alternative Right.
The need for publications of our own, and for ones that can exert far-reaching influence, was also made apparent when the foreign policy quarterly Orbis fell under total neocon control. The new editor, Mackubin T.Owens, who succeeded the conservative realist and Calvinist theologian James Kurth, is a headstrong and intellectually crude advocate of global democracy. Exchanging his former career as a marine officer for a new one as a neoconservative missionary, Owens has filled the last few issues of Orbis with his hand-to-mouth speculations about American history as the unfolding of global democracy at home and abroad. He has also presented Norman Podhoretz’s World War IV as the key to understanding America’s mission to the world from the time of its founding onward.
Not satisfied with the use of his editorial authority to transform his quarterly into a comic book version of Commentary, Owens has also removed editorial members who would have opposed his ideological agenda or who were closely identified with his predecessor. Among his most outrageous acts was to have rejected essays that had been accepted by those he had forced off the staff. My own text fell into this unlucky number, and I am still waiting for a note from Owens explaining why my twenty-page essay on George Kennan, which I was told had gone into production, was suddenly dropped, without a word of explanation. It is remarkable how neocons treat those whose assets they are taking with the dignity that an LA street gang might show toward a rival gang from which it is claiming turf. But if our group had publishing assets in the millions of dollars, would the same loutish behavior have been exhibited? And if we had media resources that permitted us to reach twenty million people in a single instant, would Owens have mastered his neocon zeal long enough to have saved himself an ugly fight? My answer to both questions is an emphatic “yes.”
And now that I”m on a roll, I”d like to get something else off my chest, my answer to a reservation recently expressed by a young political writer who is afraid to be associated with publications run by “that wild man Taki.” My response to this statement of anxiety is that the wild man in question is to be praised because he helps aging lunatics like me present their ideas to a receptive public. After all, the same neocon authorities who describe Taki as a wild man have depicted me as non compos mentis. And from the perspective of our critics, there is merit in their charges. Anyone on the Alternative Right must be crazy, bigoted or both. Why else then has the “conservative movement” marginalized them?
It’s not as if the establishment movement, endorsed as the official opposition by the New York-Washington liberal press, has not given us worthy issues to fight over. For example, two weeks ago we were allowed to take sides in a global contest between the Frumbag and the Windbag. And we may even soon be allowed to give our opinions about whose commentaries we enjoy more, those of Rich Lowry or Karl Rove or who is the greater Christian conservative theologian, Martin Luther king or Ramesh Ponnuru. With so many discussable issues relating to the movement and its future, one would have to be a madman or a savage to look for more divisive things to debate. No wonder such people are kept out of public view! For all we know, they may be anti-Semites!