2018-05-15 11:03:12 UTC
MAY 13, 2018 · 9:23 PM
Althouse’s Commenters Delineate A Trend
Is something in the etho-cultural air? I wonder. Suddenly hints that
patience with the resistance/progressive/Democratic/mainstream media assault
on the Presidency, democracy, fairness, honesty, civic discourse and the
rule of law is running out even with typically left-leaning citizens are
turning up in multiple venues all at once. This is, of course, gratifying
here at Ethics Alarms, since I have regarded this as an ethics crisis since
Fascinating evidence can be found in the comments to a recent post by Ann
Althouse, in which she pointed to a res ipsa loquitur piece in Politico,
“‘What Happened to Alan Dershowitz?’, which I would summarize as “Whatever
could have possessed Alan Dershowitz to make him opt for objectivity,
principles and integrity at a time like this?” Ann, as she frequently does,
didn’t comment substantively on the essay, deciding instead to make an arch
observation while pointing the way for her readers. She flagged what she
called “the most obvious quote” in the essay: “Maybe the question isn’t what
happened to Alan Dershowitz. Maybe it’s what happened to everyone else.” Of
course, nothing happened to Dershowitz. He’s doing what a lawyer, an analyst
and a trustworthy pundit is supposed to do: apply the same standards to
everybody; not let emotion rule reason, and when all around him are losing
their heads and blaming it on him, keeping his own despite temptations to
follow the mob.
Ann’s readers distinguished themselves in their reactions. I wonder if the
Democrats are paying attention. They are fools if they don’t.
Read as many as you can. Here’s a representative sample:
Well, DUH! Rosanne said it best in Kimmel: “We haven’t moved. The rest of
you have gone so far left that no one supports you anymore.”
Dershowitz proves the axiom of the French Revolution: the radicals of
yesterday become the mainstream of today and will be the executed
conservatives of tomorrow.
Liberalism, having no anchor of morality, just moved right on to extreme
leftism. Everything is relative.
The angry left seems to get farther and farther into a fugue state that
resembles The Terror, but so far without the Guillotine.
The latter half of the article becomes a trudge, just going around and
around in circles. No, Mr. Neuborne, Dershowitz‘s position is not that the
president is above the law but only that the president cannot break the law
by performing his constitutionally sanctioned responsibilities.
Dershowitz is a liberal, his critics are not. At the heart of liberalism is
liberty, and when liberty involves justice, it requires that justice be
blind. We don’t create one rule for Trump, and expect a different rule for
everyone else. That is a differentiated justice, a corrupted justice.
What has happened is pride. It’s what always happens when a society abandons
shared principals and common virtues. The factors used used to answer the
question “how am I doing?” shift from comparison against principles to
comparison against other people. If more people are beneath you in the
comparison, you feel you are succeeding, you feel you’re better, you feel
you’re doing well. The problem with comparison against other people is that
it creates enmity between you and others. That another person may be
succeeding, that another person may be correct, that another person may come
out of a discussion or argument with the better reasoning or position,
threatens your own sense of well-being. Therefore all things warp to make
sure others stay below you. Facts are ignored, Your own true beliefs or
former positions or abandoned, you want other people to fail, you don’t care
if you ruin society, before you are willing recognize that there may be
someone else correct or above you in something. In extreme cases it creates
a scorched earth political philosophy. I may not be able to win but I’m
gonna do everything to make sure they don’t win. It’s what destroys
societies companies and families. Pride. Simple thing to describe. Difficult
thing to admit in ourselves
The thought comes to mind that Dershowitz really is that most trustworthy
man who followed a Higher Loyalty in DC, like Comey pretended to be. DJT
could use him on the SCOTUS.
Classic liberals (Nat Hentoff (RIP), Camille Paglia, Ann Althouse, Alan
Dershowitz) seek the truth wherever it leads them. Modern liberals seek
rigid compliance to the latest progressive narrative.
…So what changed?History, it turned out, did not march in the right
direction–as first Reagan and Gingrich and now Trump shows. That’s annoying.
At the same time, progs are still confident that they are on the side of
HIstory–which means they can now cast aside opposition and dispense with
respect for alternative views….Dersh doesn’t care about History and doggedly
sticks to the old, actual liberal perspective. He is a traitor, and traitors
are the worst.
“He is a traitor, and traitors are the worst.” One doesn’t have to be black
to know that leaving the plantation can get you killed.
Dershowitz has marched beyond the Berlin PC Wall. It was built to keep
people from leaving. The author of this article declares himself a guard.
But he is shooting blanks behind the razor wire line.
It is interesting that the positions taken by classical liberals are often
today impugned as (and for) being conservative. I consider myself a
classical liberal but I more often align with conservative policies.
There are a lot more, and like most long comment threads online, it
deteriorates as it continues, even though Ann is a scrupulous moderator.
Nonetheless, I see hope in this and other signs that a pervasive, unethical,
coercive, political strategy that strikes at the heart of core American
principles may be finally generating the furious bi-partisan backlash it
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