Skip to comments.Lies, Damned Lies and Left-Wing Scholars
Posted on 05/20/2002 8:26:18 AM PDT by mondonico
"YOU LEFT THE FIELD OF IDEAS to people like me to be corrupted, while you went off to make money, " said Ellsworth Toohey to his former boss Gale Wynand in Ayn Rands The Fountainhead. The Toohey character represents the liberal intelligentsia. Wynand represents the country club Republican.
This one statement by a fictional character articulates the present social, political, and cultural state of America, where the liberal intelligentsia has corrupted the field of ideas. They have accomplished this so thoroughly that they have nearly rewritten history and science to conform to their doctrine.
It was only last week that the media corrupted the history of Supreme Court opinion concerning the Second Amendment. The media, even putative conservative media such as Fox News and Alan Keyes distorted the judicial interpretation to be consistent with the propaganda of the gun-control lobby. Propaganda was disseminated as the gospel truth.
However, this is just one example.
A few months ago, Michael Bellesiles published a book called Arming America, which received the prestigious Bancroft Award for history books. Bellesiles claimed that Americans did not own many guns in the early years of the republic and therefore the Second Amendment is bogus. Of course, this was well received by gun control zealots. Peer reviewers said that this book was the greatest thing since sliced bread. However, there was one problem. Bellesiles claimed his evidence came from probate records, records that did not exist. Was Bellesiles lying or ignorant?
A textbook used in my crime theory graduate course, written by PhDs (one of whom was the chair of the Sociology Department and the other the Dean of the University) contains erroneous political commentary presented as fact. The authors state that Reagan conducted," a war on the poor, " and that Reagan cut funding for Project Head Start. The fact is that Reagans Head Start budget increased every year except 1985 and the budget doubled it in 1986. Were the authors lying or ignorant?
While doing research for my thesis I accessed the website of a professor from a college in Texas. The professor posted notes from a lecture on white-collar crime, part of which concerned environmental crime. This is a quote from the website:
White-collar crime can describe situations where companies or individuals knowingly (and illegally) pollute the environment. Neglect of worker safety requirements may also be considered white-collar crime. Chemical companies, coalmines, and asbestos operations experience high rates of death while (they) make profit. Remember the Dioxin that was sprayed on streets of Times Beach, Missouri? Remember Love Canal? .Dioxin is one of the most toxic substances known to human beings. Three ounces can kill one million people. Deaths that result from corporate neglect should be considered "murder by neglect."
The statement about three ounces of Dioxin being able to poison one million people sounded incredible to me. I e-mailed Nigel Walker Ph.D. of the Laboratory of Computational Biology and Risk Analysis Environmental Toxicology Program, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and asked if three ounces of Dioxin could poison three million people. Dr. Walkers reply was:
It is a hypothetical question and indeed I find that hard to believe too. Im not sure where this number comes from .Three ounces divided over a lifetime to a million people is somewhat higher than the acceptable intake. So some biological effects may occur but death is not likely one of them . So the answer is that one may expect anywhere from none to maybe a thousand or so deaths (as an absolute worst case scenario) but the true answer is not known and may very well be zero.
Simply put, the Texas college professor did not tell the truth. All of his students now believe the myth that three ounces of Dioxin can poison a million people--a myth he no doubt learned from an environmental advocacy group.
The History Channel normally shows a movie and then has various historians and other experts comment about the movie. Kenneth Jackson, the Chair of the History Department of Columbia University is one such commentator. He was analyzing a movie about a Hispanic Marine during WWII who spoke fluent Japanese and was instrumental during certain Pacific campaigns. Professor Jackson mentioned that the internment of Japanese was a racist policy. I e-mailed him and reminded him of several facts that would be contrary to that proposition. One was that the Japanese invaded American soil (Pearl Harbor). Jacksons reply to me was that Pearl Harbor was not American soil--it was a possession.
This would seem to be a distinction without a difference. Pearl Harbor was not American soil in 1941? Yet, Professor Jackson is a regarded historian and frequent commentator on TV. He is the Chairman of the History Department of an Ivy League University. What Professor Jackson says, many people believe.
What all these examples have in common is that each of the professors presented the liberal perspective about certain issues and only the liberal perspective. This perspective is often a myth--a myth that has been debunked--by conservatives, by centrists or by honest liberals.
Indubitably, liberals have corrupted the "field of ideas" as Ellsworth Toohey said. They have controlled the opinion and idea-making professions of the academy, the media, and the arts while conservatives were controlling the industries that supplied those professions. This not a recent phenomenon. I have read William Buckley carp that liberals controlled the media in the 1930s.
Unless more conservatives become members of what Robert Bork calls the "chattering classes" American society will become a totalitarian society. The "field of ideas" will eventually determine the culture of America.
There is a saying that nothing is as powerful as an idea whose time has come--and if conservatives dont fight back, it could soon be the false, left-wing idea now taking root in our culture.
And that's the root of the problem.
People's personalities drive them in certian directions. People who love to be fawned over seek performance and media jobs. A professor is a "performer" as well within his classroom.
A large part of the way such people place themselves in way to be fawned over is to spout fashonable ideas. I can't imagine how a person actually "believes" such things that they may say. But I know different people are driven by entirely different things. So perhaps it is more important for such people to be "loved" than to be "truthful".
Most Conservatives have no problem recognizing this inherent deceptive streak in Communists and Nazis, but fail to understand that the same ethic, perhaps in softer tones, but the same ethic, governs the so-called "Liberal" establishment in the West.
"Left-Wing Scholars" may be an oxymoron to boot.
William Flax Return Of The Gods Web Site
There is truth in what you write, but there is another phenomenon at play here, and has been for the past Century. With the explosion in economic job catagories in the 20th Century--throughout the Century--many of those, who in other ages were drawn to the verbal arts, went into some of those new job opportunities. There was a tremendous syphoning off of the best and brightest, and an incredible dumbing down of those who went into the verbal arts. Our educational establishments, media and Clergy all reflect this reality.
To sum it up, those who would ordinarily be defending the Conservative tradition have indeed been off making money, and the result is that everything we believe in--indeed everything which made those new opportunities possible, to boot--is in peril today.
William Flax Return Of The Gods Web Site
Could it be that the vast majority of Americans are voting with the buttons on their radios?
My Republican Primary runoff election saw less than 100 people turn out at my precinct. Made my vote "count" for a lot of people...
LOL! Well, better you than some liberal.
Here in Illinois, we're seeing an interesting phenomenon -- democrats taking Republican ballots in the primary elections so they can elect democrats. The local dems have discovered that they can't buy a vote in the general, so they get themselves involved in the primaries, take out the conservative, then they're as good as elected. The dems don't even bother to field candidates for local races. Why spend the money when all you have to do is win the Republican primary.
This past primary season, we had a very conservative county chairman who refused to back the liberal candidate for the state senate seat. The family of the lib (real estate and construction developers) took the conservative chairman out and put in a democrat. Everyone was (and still is) terrified of the family (they fancy themselves to be Clintons, and they're white-trashy enough to pull it off), and the family now believes it's favorite son has been crowned senator for life, since they own the county chairman and the entire executive committee.
Sometimes I wonder why I reformed . . .