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In the nature of things, people do not ordinarily blame the victims as the intellectuals blamed America for 9/11.
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The anti-American indictments of so many Mailers, Sontags, and Saids and their perfervid European confreres, for all their spurious bravura, are palpably hollow. The intellectuals who chafe at an America rendered strong by the culture, values, and commerce they abhor found it irresistible to indict it when the Islamists who mean to destroy it attacked it for those very reasons. Such is the background to their symbiosis — not root causes, but brute causes.
More than 200 years ago, the philosopher Edmund Burke enunciated a trenchant insight into the global significance of the French Revolution that was at that moment devouring lives across France and was shortly to convulse most of Europe:
We are in a war of a peculiar nature. It is not with an ordinary community, which is hostile or friendly as passion or as interest may veer about: not with a state that makes war through wantonness, and abandons it through lassitude. We are at war with a system, which by its essence, is inimical to all other governments, and which makes peace or war, as peace or war may best contribute to their subversion. It is with an armed doctrine that we are at war. It has, by its essence, a faction of opinion, and of interest, and of enthusiasm, in every country.
Revolutionary politics and armed doctrines find an echo in every country. Communism was able to bridge seemingly impenetrable cultural and geographical divides. The response of the intellectuals to the barbarities of 9/11 put us on notice that Islamism has done no less in our own time.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?