Kudos to Camille Paglia, the often right and always entertaining professor with we regularly disagree but never find disagreeable, for having the courage to call American liberals out for what they really are.
Yes, something very ugly has surfaced in contemporary American liberalism, as evidenced by the irrational and sometimes infantile abuse directed toward anyone who strays from a strict party line. Liberalism, like second-wave feminism, seems to have become a new religion for those who profess contempt for religion. It has been reduced to an elitist set of rhetorical formulas, which posit the working class as passive, mindless victims in desperate need of salvation by the state. Individual rights and free expression, which used to be liberal values, are being gradually subsumed to worship of government power.
We know and have known many people like this, with whom a rational conversation is impossible, people who run out of things to say once they’ve used up all the “facts” they read in the latest issue of The Nation, Mother Jones or Newsweek. The inability of these people to thing beyond what they’re fed, to extrapolate beyond talking points they’re read or to have a coversation that doesn’t end in anger and name-calling on their part is why we don’t miss the ones we knew and won’t the ones we know, should it come to that. Paglia, on the other hand, is welcome to join us for a beer any time.