[Vision2020] Chris Hedges' New Book "Death of the Liberal Class": Obama is "Poster Child for the Death of the Liberal Class"
ophite at gmail.com
Tue Dec 21 13:06:19 PST 2010
I listened to this interview.
It was a bunch of supercilious boomer nonsense from a fading leftist
who believes that his unreported arrest in front of the White House
was apparently meaningful political action (indeed, the only
meaningful political action) rather than a waste of bail money with no
rational relationship to any conceivable policy goal. He also does
not, apparently, recognize that the period which he is discussing was
an uninterrupted series of the following:
Japanese detention, the McCarthy era, the Korean war, the Cuban
Missile Crisis, the Bay of Pigs, Vietnam, Watergate, Ford, the failed
Carter administration, Reagan, the first Gulf War, welfare reform, and
George W. Bush. During this period, union membership declined, wages
stagnated, and segregation continued.
He seems to excuse the enormous problems the left faced because his
preferred tactic -- public protest -- was more prominent.
Consequently, he's no longer able to engage productively in politics,
and pretends at being a martyr of the left, when it's his tactics --
and not his politics -- that are outdated and unproductive.
On Tue, Dec 21, 2010 at 10:11 AM, Ted Moffett <starbliss at gmail.com> wrote:
> Chris Hedges was interviewed on Amy Goodman's "Democracy Now"
> yesterday. The interview should be viewable online at website below:
> Information on Chris Hedges book "Death of the Liberal Class" below:
> Death of the Liberal Class
> Chris Hedges
> October 2010 ISBN: 1568586442
> For decades the liberal class was a defense against the worst excesses
> of power. But the pillars of this class—the press, the universities,
> trade unions, the Democrats, and the liberal church—have collapsed as
> effective counterweights to the corporate state. In its absence the
> needs of the poor, the working class, and even the middle class no
> longer have a champion. The death of the liberal class has permitted
> the rise of a new and terrifying political configuration. In his
> devastating new book, Chris Hedges chronicles the gradual corruption
> and decline of the liberal class, which no longer provides an
> institutional check to mitigate corporate control of politics,
> education, labor, the arts, religious institutions, or financial
> systems. Without any impediments, the corporate state is dismantling
> the last vestiges of protection for ordinary citizens once put into
> place by the liberal class.
> A lucid and disturbing look inside America's fallen liberal
> institutions, Hedges tells of his own experiences, especially of his
> role as a journalist for the New York Times. Although the liberal
> class was always compromised by its embrace of the power elite, as
> well as its deep hostility to American radicals who questioned the
> assumptions and the structures of the elite, it nevertheless provided
> a mechanism that made incremental reform possible. But with the rise
> of the corporate state, the liberal class has been forced to distort
> its basic belief systems to support unfettered capitalism, the
> national security state, globalization, and staggering income
> inequalities. It relinquished it moral authority to become courtier
> and apologist for a system of power that despises liberal values.
> The anger among the working and the middle class is, without a
> functioning liberal class, being expressed in ideologies that detest
> democratic institutions and the civilities of a liberal democracy. The
> death of the liberal class is creating a power vacuum that
> speculators, war profiteers, and gangsters, often led by charismatic
> demagogues, are beginning to fill. Totalitarian and proto-fascists,
> from militias to Tea Party movements, ridicule and taunt the liberal
> class and its democratic values. The promises of these movements are
> fantastic and unrealistic, but their critiques of the liberal class
> are grounded in a disturbing truth. History has shown time and again
> that when the liberal class ceases to function, as happened in Tsarist
> Russia, Weimar Germany, and the former Yugoslavia, it always opens a
> Pandora's Box of evils that infect the remnants of civil society.
> See Chris on his book tour this November and December!
> Chris Hedges, a Pulitzer Prize-winner, is the former Middle East
> Bureau Chief of The New York Times, and a Senior Fellow at The Nation
> Institute. He is the author of several books, including War is a Force
> That Gives Us Meaning, Losing Moses on the Freeway: The 10
> Commandments in America, I Don't Believe in Atheists, and American
> Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America. He lives in
> Princeton, New Jersey.
> Vision2020 Post: Ted Moffett
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