Horowitz’s Obasm

In one of the most tortured pieces of writing since the invention of language, David Horowitz argues that the ascension of Obama is one of the greatest events in world history. His article—in which he refers to himself and people who think like himself as “conservatives” sixteen times, but in which his stated assumptions, values, and ideals are overwhelmingly liberal—concludes with this:

What matters today is that many Americans have begun to join their country’s cause, and conservatives should celebrate that fact and encourage it. What matters now is that the American dream with its enormous power to inspire at home and abroad is back in business. What it means is that the race card has been played out and America can once again see itself—and be seen—for what it is: a land of incomparable opportunity, incomparable tolerance, and justice for all. Conservative values—individual responsibility, equal opportunity, racial and ethnic pluralism, and family—are now symbolically embedded in the American White House. As a result, a great dimension of American power has been restored. Will these values be supported, strengthened, put into practice? It is up to us to see that they are.

“Conservatives” such as Horowitz are like tail-wagging dogs starved for affection. All you have to do, if you’re a leftist, is give them a little hint of something that seems “conservative,” and you’ve got them. They are the easiest marks on the planet.

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James N. writes:

David Horowitz, in his conversion from the left (and, to be fair, he’s really given most of it up) has explicitly excepted the Civil Rights Movement from his critique. Marching at age 13 with Civil Rights protesters was his proudest moment, even today. He can find a way to inject this boast into almost every subject he writes about, except Middle Eastern affairs.

This is true, I think, for most of us. The manifest injustices and cruelties which arose out of American petit apartheid (the water fountains, the public shaming of older men by calling them “boy,” etc, etc) still resonate with us 50 years later.

It is no longer obvious to me that American grand apartheid (the existence of separate institutions by blacks, for blacks) was an error. The result of “mainstreaming” blacks has been destructive to them, and to us. The ways in which this is true are numerous, and are frequent grist for the VFR mill. However, I’m not sure that you (or I) can take the next step, from documenting the crimes and malfeasances arising out of a “color-blind” society to a critique of the social, legal, and political changes which made them possible.

Whether you can have separateness without cruelty and abuse is, of course, unclear. I suppose that’s why it’s hard to think about, or to discuss.

Bruce B. writes:

I knew Horowitz wasn’t on our side but I never remembered him being THAT bad. He seems to be reverting to his leftist instincts. After reading that, it’s absolutely bizarre that he ever published anything of yours in the first place.

Sage McLaughlin writes:

So now “ethnic pluralism” is a specially conservative value? And since when did the Obamas somehow symbolically embody equal opportunity? Both have been beneficiaries of a racial spoils system, and if somebody thinks he can make a case that Obama’s ascension through the filthiest gutter in all of American politics—the Chicago patronage racket—somehow represents a triumph of individual responsibility and equal opportunity, I’d love to see him try.

And does Horowitz actually believe that the race card has been “played out,” much less that Obama somehow symbolizes that fact? Where was he when Obama used the race card preemptively, accusing the Republicans of racism before the McCain campaign had even issued its first ad (“They’re going to say he’s got a funny name, that he doesn’t look like those guys on the dollar bill, etc.”)? Where was he when Obama’s acolytes accused the opposition of using “coded” racist language at practically every turn? Where was he when blacks voted for Obama almost to every last man, woman, and dead person? Where was he when Obama’s inauguration closed with a prayer for non-white power, coupled with a demand for white spiritual refabrication?

In short, where do people like Horowitz get the idea that the Obama presidency will somehow mean the end of white guilt and the moral blackmail of whites by nonwhites, when it is in fact the entire basis of the Obamanomenon in the first place? Where, in that whole five-day orgy of racial hectoring we’ve just been subjected to, did anybody pick up any hint that now whites are absolved? The desperate belief on the part of whites that they would now be free from the constant lash of black rage, white guilt, and systematic silencing and disempowerment, has to be the biggest case of mass self deception in the whole history of the American people. When one does ask these clueless whites for a single shred of supporting evidence that Obama will somehow end the exploitation of white guilt and de-legitimize the race card in America, the only thing one ever gets in return is shocked, wide-eyed silence, as though someone has just shouted an obscenity during a wedding.

LA replies:

Not to mention the fact that the entire system of race-based preferences remains intact and ain’t going nowhere, certainly not under President Obama. Horowitz used to make his opposition to race-based preferences the centerpiece of his “conservatism.” Now he’s acting as though race-based preferences have disappeared, and that, through the election of Obama, we’ve finally reached the 1963 content-of-our-character paradise! How foolish can a person be?

Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 20, 2009 10:53 PM | Send

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