Frum on the Martin case

I have ignored David Frum since he consummated his self-discrediting three years ago. A man so far beneath contempt is also beneath notice.

But I’ll make an exception for this, since it’s part of the larger pattern of reckless statements in the Trayvon Martin case. In “Trayvon Martin, and the backlash against the backlash,” appearing in the March 24 National Post (via Nicholas Stix, also via Huffington Post), Frum writes:

The more details emerge, the more it looks as if Martin was hunted and killed by a trigger-happy bully.

Yet local police have not arrested the killer. No charges have been laid. The killer claimed to have acted in self-defence, and despite many problems in his story—including the killer’s own violent history—the police opted to believe him.

Frum doesn’t stop at subscribing to the leftist view of Martin’s death. He also says that there is no problem of black-on-white violence in America. The wildings, the murders and beatings of whites in one savage crime after another—these, he says, are nothing more than a statistical artifact in a country of 300 million people, a meaningless phenomenon which unprincipled conservatives have used to gin up a backlash against Obama. And now, he crows, thanks to the murder of Trayvon Martin, there is a “backlash against the backlash”:

As is so often the case, Rush Limbaugh gave these new racial fears their most explicit voice. In September 2009, after Drudge publicized an assault on an Illinois school bus, Limbaugh had this to say: “It’s Obama’s America, is it not? Obama’s America—white kids getting beat up on school buses now.”

This mood of “backlash” has dominated U.S. politics since 2009—until now. [In the copy of the article at his site, Nicholas Stix interjects: “One popular radio host does not a backlash make.”] Now the “backlash” has created an apparent martyr in Trayvon Martin. And it is in Martin’s name that the backlash against the backlash will be launched and be heard.

Which, translated into terms of reality, means this: now that the conservative “backlash,” i.e., whites’ increasing awareness of and concern about black-on-white violence, has been discredited by the racial murder of Martin which was a product of that “backlash,” young black males will be more empowered than ever to use racial violence against whites.

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LA adds:

See also “Neocon establishment dumps Frum,” from March 2010.

April 3

Daniel F. writes:

Re your comments on Frum in connection with the recent “martyrdom” incident in Florida. Frum now reflexively agrees with almost anything the mainstream media says on social/cultural issues (except, sometimes, on immigration). He is no longer part of any conservative political conversation of which I am aware. The man seems to be trying to make himself the Kevin Phillips of his generation.

As you probably know, Phillips worked for the Nixon campaign in 1968 (ah, there’s a high point of American conservatism!), wrote a book entitled “The Emerging Repubican Majority” around that time, became disaffected from the GOP and conservatives during the course of the 1970s, and has been a consistent supporter of leftwing conventional wisdom since about 1980. One occasionally sees Phillips cited by older liberals as a “conservative” who wisely sees that “true” conservatism consists in going along with whatever the center-left orthodoxy of the time happens to be. If we still have any sort of left/right political debate going on in 2032 (which we may not), I expect that Frum will be cited by leftwing greybeards in that way.

Frum’s apostasy seems to have worked out for him as a business proposition, since he’s a featured pundit on the Daily Beast website. [LA replies: Is that a big step up from being a featured pundit at National Review?] I recall that, upon closing up his own website and moving to Daily Beast, he put a post heaping embarrassingly effusive praise on Tina Brown, his new boss.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at April 02, 2012 02:34 PM | Send

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