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What happens to a great playwright when he’s no longer a braindead liberal?
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As Mamet puts it, “Fear of Global Warming was, in the seventies, and as propounded by many of the same scientists, a fear of Global Cooling. See also Malthus’s…assurance that as population outstripped agricultural production, humanity must soon…starve. See also the Y2K scare, antinuclear hysteria, and the yearly assurance that some new influenza is going to devastate the population.”
“The Left,” he continues, “in addition to its embrace of the false (higher taxes means increased prosperity for all) and its acceptance of the moot as incontrovertible (Global Warming), must account for the incidental effect of the sum of these decisions. This effect is the destruction of our culture.”
MAMET IS PROUD of being an American, proud of being a Jew in America, and proud of Israel. He pities the Jewish liberal who denounces this country, attacks Israel, and denies “his heritage, and his co-religionaries in their distress.”He quotes the muddled linguist Noam Chomsky, who has strayed far from his field of expertise: “To summarize, contrary to the claim that is constantly reiterated, Israel has no right to use force to defend itself against rockets from Gaza, even if they are regarded as terrorist crimes.”
“Of course Mr. Chomsky feels that all is not right with the world,”Mamet writes. “His hobby is promoting the cause of people who want to kill him.”
Throughout his book, with these and other trenchant observations, he speaks of what in this age of approved euphemism is the unspeakable—tradition, absolute values, the primacy of the individual. And if conservatism is applied intelligence, informed by the best that’s been thought and said down through the ages, reinforced by acceptance of immutable truths and leavened with a healthy dose of common sense, then by any measure, David Mamet is a conservative.
According to the bibliography he appends, he has read seriously and widely—Tolstoy and Trollope, Melanie Phillips and Shelby Steele, Victor Davis Hanson and Friedrich Hayek, Niall Ferguson and Milton Friedman, Whittaker Chambers, Noam Chomsky, Eric Hoffer, Paul Johnson, Mencken, Macaulay, Podhoretz, Sontag, Sowell and Veblen, to name a few. In short, an eclectic reading list tending toward the conservative, although no Burke, Buckley, Kirk. But that will no doubt come.
“I spoke with my first conservative at age sixty,”he writes, a Republican rabbi in Hollywood (“Where did he find one?”asks Suzanne Fields in one of her splendid columns) who steered him toward some of the more conservative writers.
But now that the ice has been broken, and broken with singular eloquence, one suspects the conversation will continue.
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?