WHO CARES if Donald Trump and John Kasich have bailed on the scheduled Fox News Channel's scheduled Salt Lake City debate of March 21? Moaning and groaning about it won't help. What Mr. Cruz needs to do is . . .
For more than a century, artists and intellectuals have castigated everydayfolks who believe in hard work, personal responsibility, family, and God. The elite see middle-class Americans as drudges, materialists, consumerists, and exploiters, mired in commerce and industry, holding to pre-Enlightenment values and beliefs, ignorant of art. They give us unflattering (in their view) names: the bourgeoisie, philistines, Tea Partiers. Our president, Barack Hussein Obama, indirectly coined the term "bitter clingers," referring to guns and God and antipathy "toward people who aren't like them." So powerful is the disdain of the elite for the common man and woman that the Clever Ones now put great effort into saving children from their misguided, uncultured, immoral parents. See, e.g., unrepentant terrorist Bill Ayers, now a retired and, it is said, distinguished professor of public education. Karl Marx would have broken the grip of the bourgeoisie through revolution; modern radicals hope to do the same by corrupting the schools, mocking the bourgeoisie, and fundamentally transforming the institutions and processes of civilization itself. You can see this process at work on any given day by reading the editorial page of the Houston Chronicle, a self-anointed vanguard against the likes of you and me. We are unlovely, uncultured men and women of little brain and less heart, unlike our betters in, say, the Occupy movement. Modern artists, many of them, self-consciously set out to shock and insult common folks (épater la bourgeoisie, at they say).
What a shock it is, then, to see the most gifted American filmmakers of our time -- Ethan and Joel Coen -- dismantle the pretensions of the elite in one of the most brilliant scenes . . .
HE WAS a conventional FDR-style liberal Democrat. Other than that, nothing would have recommended him to intellectual elite of his time. They would have seen him -- to borrow from the essay quoted below -- as a member of "the hapless 'herd,' the 'booboisie,' all of whom [Mencken] deemed the 'peasantry' that blighted American cultural life."
Yet one night each week, while we lived on the farm, he . . .
. . . start a conversation about Western Civilization that is neither ironic ("nice idea; we should try it") nor critical ("source of the world's misery") nor nonjudgmental ("China: just as good as us").
Such conversations rarely occur, of course, because those who disdain the civilization that forms the basis of their prosperity and security are obnoxiously loud, while those who recognize the superiority -- not the perfection; the superiority -- of Western Civilization have been taught to keep quiet about their eccentric, politically incorrect belief.
Well. This very conversation starts in earnest at 7:00 p.m. tonight . . .