It’s a gas gas gas
In his “reply” to Monday’s post, David Horowitz, International Man of Mystery, writes,
Is it typical for professors of literature to review books based on fund-raising literature? Apparently it is if they’re progressive.
Um, no, David, you poor thing. That wasn’t a book review. This is a book review. [Noon, February 11: note to David and other unpracticed blog readers: the “this” in the previous sentence is actually an Internets hyperlink! Click on it and see! It does not refer to the rest of this post. Sorry for the confusion! --MB] I responded to your promotional email for the book, as I subtly suggested in the sentence, “In his promotional email for the book . . . Horowitz catalogues some of the reprobates and miscreants I’m in with.”
Michael Berube—one of the professors profiled in my new book—has written a lengthy blog about the book but using a fund-raising letter the Center sent out as a text.
It wasn’t lengthy, and it wasn’t a “blog.” A “blog” is a web log. On a web log, one writes “posts.” Just saying.
This leads Berube to attack the inclusion of Robert Reich among the profiles. But Robert Reich is not included among the profiles—this was a mistake made by author of the fund-raising letter.
My bad! Oh, no, hold on. Actually, your bad. Here’s “your” letter:
This book, a product of the research we are able to do thanks to your financial support [sic] CSPC’s National Campaign for Academic Freedom, exposes the tip of the iceberg, and then some, of the worst “hate America” voices in academia today. What we’ve exposed will astound and anger you:
. . .
At Brandeis University: Robert Reich is a Professor of Social and Economic Policy. He was Bill Clinton’s Labor Secretary and is a multi-millionaire. That doesn’t keep from [sic] telling his students that the U.S. has “fallen under the sway of radical conservatives who, by the malicious application of intolerant moral precepts, intended to secure the “reign of the rich” at the expense of most Americans.”
The person who signed this letter is “David Horowitz.”
Now of course, old man, I realize you didn’t actually “write” that “letter.” But it’s kinda weird and postmodern and deconstructive of you to blame the “author” for his “mistake.” As Michel Foucault once put it, the “author-function . . . results from a complex operation whose purpose is to construct the rational entity we call an author, except in the case of David Horowitz, who is neither a rational entity nor an ‘author.’”
On the basis of another leftists review on Amazon, Berube thinks the book is apparently just a bunch of reprints of David’s DiscoverTheNetworks pages.
As it happens, I have not been quite so obsessed with your Amazon reviews as you have, David. In fact, I haven’t even seen them. Why would I bother? The book isn’t even out yet—how can it be getting all these Amazon reviews? I got my impression of your “book” (the mistakes in which, I’m sure, you will shortly blame on the “author”) from hearing about my own entry in it—an entry about which, you may remember, I said
I could dilate endlessly on the random-access technique by which Horowitz cut and pasted those last two phrases into his account of me (they occur near the end of the essay, and have nothing to do with each other), but I think you get the point by now. Horowitz can be a fairly clever guy when he wants to be, but here he’s not even trying. This is genuinely stupid stuff. I mean, Michelle Malkin quality stupid. Personally, I’m disappointed.
I mean, when I say that cultural critics try to “correlate developments in culture and the arts with large-scale economic transformations” and you accuse me of “teaching literature so as to bring about ‘economic transformations,’” that’s really quite stupid. And I say that in a wholly non-judgmental way, old sport.
Back to your “blog”:
Sorry Michael it’s not. Berube’s blog also notes that Professor Ron Karenga is included (and he is) and is described as a torturer and the inventor of Kwanzaa which he is. Berube’s retort: most of David’s readership thinks torture is just fine. Thanks Michael for justifying your inclusion in a book about what’s wrong with the university.
Hey kids! It’s time for a FrontPage Readers Poll! Do either of you support the use of torture?
Now, while that’s going on, allow me to observe that many supporters of the War on Terror and Global Struggle against Extremism have, in fact, come out in favor of torture in the past four and a half years. More than this, they have accused various liberals and journalists of “treason” and “aiding and abetting” and “blah blah blah” whenever we expose—or merely object to—the Cheney Archipelago of secret torture sites that are now strung around the globe. (We don’t take these accusations personally, of course, because we know we’re dealing with people who will accuse us of treason simply for quoting the Bill of Rights.) I’m just pointing that out, David. And yes, I suppose that as far as you’re concerned, this justifies my inclusion in a book about what’s wrong with the university.
What I actually said, however, was that the phrase “torturer and the inventor of Kwanzaa” is a little like “arsonist and the creator of Grandparents’ Day.” It’s a problem of moral scale, you see.
OK, now that that’s all cleared up, let’s get to your rousing conclusion already:
Of course the fact he is only reading a fund-raising letter (avoiding therein the stress of reading a 112,000 word book) doesn’t prevent Berube from prouncing The Professors an outrage. I consider that an medal of honor Michael. Now why don’t you try actually reading the book Herr literature professor and writing a real response. If you have intellectual fortitude to do this, I’ll post it and answer you.
Prouncing? What’s a prounce? You mean I lie in wait and then I prounce? Rowrrrrrr! If I have intellectual fortitude to do this, of course. And yes, I did say that it’s an outrage that you didn’t rank us, and that only 23 of the 101 are AAUP members. See “random-access cut and paste technique,” above.
PS: The book is only a stressful read for radicals; for the others it’s a gas.
It’s a gas? It’s a gas? You mean, like, grazing in the grass it’s a gas baby can you dig it? What is this sixties hippie lingo, old man? And what’s with all the typos and solecisms? You weren’t doing bong hits when you wrote this, were you? Because you know Acapulco Gold is bad-ass weed.
Now, it’s true that I have not yet received my copy of your book.
And here I need to explain to my readers that over the past couple of years, David has sent me my very own personal copy of Uncivil Wars, his book on reparations; Left Illusions, one of his six or eight or fifteen memoirs about his intellectual odyssey from far-left firebrand to wingnut crank; and two copies of Unholy Alliance, the book in which everyone from Noam Chomsky to Todd Gitlin is cast as a Friend of Osama. The first of these is inscribed personally to me, calling me “a worthy adversary.” It’s a gesture I haven’t reciprocated, as you might imagine.
You know what, folks? I think David hasn’t quite forgiven me for that. Remember what he said about my neglect of his work last year?
radicals like Berube can’t be bothered to actually read or respond rationally to anything that ruffles their progressive feathers, let alone be concerned about the fact that their entire political focus since 9/11 has been in getting our terrorist enemies off the hook. (Doubters can consult the archives of The Nation, The Progressive and any number of leftwing sites on the web to confirm the negative posture of progressives towards the war on terror and their sympathetic back-bending for terrorists.) Naturally, not a single leftwing journal or blogger, for that matter, so much as noticed Unholy Alliance, or addressed its arguments, despite the fact that there is no better known critic of the left than myself and Unholy Alliance makes the same claims that now incite them.
That’s right, David, there is no better known critic of the left than yourself. And my entire political focus since 9/11 has been in getting our terrorist enemies off the hook. That’s why I’ve failed to read your book.
So, about that review you demand. How’s never? Is never good for you?
And finally, dear “author,” one friendly piece of advice. You need to stop blaming other people for your “mistakes.” Like the “mistake” in which you lied about the student who was flunked for refusing to write an essay on how Bush is a war criminal, and then replied to the exposure of your lie by writing the now-classic ”Some of Our Facts Were Wrong; Our Point Was Right.” Or the “mistake” in which you lied about the biology professor who showed Fahrenheit 9/11 to his class and then replied to the exposure of your lie by complaining that you don’t have “the resources to look into all the complaints” you publicize and that criticisms of your truthiness are just “nit picking, irrelevant attacks.” And, of course, the famous “mistake” in which your site dropped fifteen paragraphs of my debate with to you and then accused me of “intellectual laziness.” You really need to start taking some personal responsibility for your behavior, old man. And you need to stop fantasizing that “left wing fascists” are “attacking” you.
If you have intellectual fortitude to do this.
Doesn’t DHo realize that because we spend nearly every waking moment trying to get terroist enemies off the hook, we just don’t have much time to read his piddle? It’s hard work, man, really hard work!Posted by on 02/10 at 09:39 AM
I’m not sure a bong is involved. DHo seems more like a crack-pipe man. That probably makes the delusions more robust.Posted by Scott McLemee on 02/10 at 09:56 AM
I would suggest the “prounce” is one of those words that sound like the object it is meant to represent (would that be an onomatopoeia?).
In this case, “prounce” actually means to mispronounce something.
In either case, David’s just abusing the language.
RichPosted by on 02/10 at 10:05 AM
My first inclination on reading this post was that it was an exercise in futility. After all, Horowitz depends, for his publicity and his meal money, on people who are much more eager to hate straw men than they are to engage in debate.
But, your post is highly entertaining and informative for those who have eyes to see and ears to hear. So thanks for taking the time to refute not only Horowitz’s recent post, but also his slightest pretence to intellectual honesty.
Also-- can you imagine a “lengthy blog” about David Horowitz? Unless it had access to some kind of brain scan info, how quickly would that get old?Posted by on 02/10 at 10:05 AM
You should definitely star the site
discovermyfootupyourass.orgPosted by norbizness on 02/10 at 10:20 AM
Apropos Jumping Jack Flash, by all accounts Sir Mick still has a bit of game.
As for this radicals and gas thing: in Ft Collins, Nov 1969, going to see the Stones concert (ticket price: $6) was pro forma a radical act. To the best of my imperfect knowledge it was not specifically a gas. Maynard G Krebs might’ve had a gas.Posted by black dog barking on 02/10 at 10:33 AM
Now why don’t you try actually reading the book Herr literature professor and writing a real response.
You get the nerve of that guy? Surely it’s Monsieur literature professor, tyvm.
Seriously: it’s hard to imagine the above half-wisecrack written by anyone over 25. More likely “David Horowitz” has turned into a boiler room operation, with lax-to-no quality control exerted by the real-life D-Ho.Posted by on 02/10 at 10:33 AM
Never is good for me as well. Actually, day after never is better.
BTW, put me down for a Steelers victory. I think THIS will be the year that those boys in leather helmets bring home the prize. It’ll be a gas.Posted by DocMara on 02/10 at 10:50 AM
I don’t suppose it’s really a good sign when your ad campaign involves challenging and daring people to buy and read your book so they can refute it.
“The Professors”—The only way to know for sure it’s worthless crap is to buy it and read it. Pick up your copy today.Posted by on 02/10 at 11:08 AM
I think that kth has it right about the boiler room operation. Horowitz is actually a good example of the replacement of the “author” by a sort of group reflection of, yes, economic transformations. Consider that his fund-raising letter was clearly not written by him; he says as much as his official excuse for the mistake. His book is the pasted-together collection of tidbits found by flunkies surfing Google. His debates are handled by more cut-and-pasting done by said flunkies. The money for the entire operation comes from Scaife or wherever, not the readers to whom the fundraising letter is ostensibly directed; there is no way in which such sales could be large enough to fund the communal Horowitz operation. His only function appears to be to front for the outfit on the hours of TV that his backers have arranged, and perhaps to provide the Bush-true bit of childish personal animosity needed to give the simulacrum the crucial minimum of human authenticity: “I don’t like that Berube guy”, he mumbles peevishly as they put on his TV makeup, “Have them write something about his blog.”
So there is really no Horowitz as such. Even his backers have probably long forgotten the original inpulse that caused them to toss some of their millions that made them set up the Horowitz operation. Rather, those “charitable foundations” were themselves collections of bored flunkies and one inherited-wealth rich guy, whose sole contribution was to mumble peevishly “I don’t like those professors, have them pass some laws to shut them up or something.”Posted by on 02/10 at 11:16 AM
Personally, I’m looking forward to seeing how DHo uses the trusty ol’ cut & paste on this one:
“That’s right, David, there is no better known critic of the left than yourself. And my entire political focus since 9/11 has been in getting our terrorist enemies off the hook.”
He’ll use the first comment as a blurb on the back of his next book, and the latter to have your phone tapped.Posted by ms lynch on 02/10 at 11:22 AM
Norbizness, that should be
icantgetmyfootupyourassbecauseyourheadsintheway.orgPosted by on 02/10 at 11:24 AM
Remember when Charles Barkley claimed that he had been misquoted in his own autobiography? Something here reminds me of that.
If Sir Charles hadn’t been an undersized African-American power forward, he would definitely be chair of a department at Harvard by now.Posted by Sean on 02/10 at 11:36 AM
p.s. The book is out, I saw it in the bookstore. But I didn’t see my name in the index, so I put it down.Posted by Sean on 02/10 at 11:39 AM
Damn my liberal even-mindedness; I read this “exchange” and what comes to mind is, “this isn’t fair.” It’s as if the Steelers were matched up against the local Elks’ Club flag football team. No, I was on that team in 5th grade and we won the city championship (no thanks to me), so I need an even weaker example.Posted by on 02/10 at 11:42 AM
It’s as if the Steelers were matched up against the local Elks’ Club flag football team.
Steelers versus the UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs Ultimate Frisbee team, game to be held the Monday morning after the Phish Concert Weekend Marathon and Hemp Festival.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 11:59 AM
"Prounced”? Pronounced? Pounced? Prancer, Dancer and Vixen?Posted by Bulworth on 02/10 at 12:00 PM
The last time someone told me that “there is no better known critic of the left than myself” I handed him ten bucks and told him to get himself off the crosswalk and into a shelter that has a shower. I’m an easy mark.
I saw the book in my local Barnes and Noble. I found it to be, as I commented here earlier, a bit thrown together. Michael’s surname, for instance, is bereft of acute accents, which makes me think that some professors with even less English-friendly names could could find them horribly mis-spelled. There didn’t seem to be a comprehensive index of the Dangerous 101, as I remember, and certainly no ranking, which is a shame and a lost marketing opportunity when one compares the Dangerous Academic Mob that Crazy Davey has generated to the Dangerous Liberal Hierarchy that Bernie Goldberg ginned up.*
*Why not a Horowitz deck of cards? America’s fifty-two most dangerous professors, one card in each pack of Newport Menthols. Collect them all.Posted by on 02/10 at 12:15 PM
Cheez Louise, Michael, I realize that the reference to your review of T’s Empire was only a side-note, but shouldn’t that review get some discussion in these parts, or is that discussion already old-hat? For instance, here’s a good run of questions:
How can we stave off the routinization of exciting forms of thought? And why is it that some works of literature seem to respond more fully to some approaches than to others? Figuring out why this is so—and why these approaches became routine, as well—requires something very much like a theory.
Don’t have an answer, but I might suggest that some things get stale and there’s nothing we can do about it. The question then becomes how do we make room for new forms of excitement? Or is it excitment that we really want? And so forth and so on.
But I digress. Keep up with the trouncing of DH.Posted by on 02/10 at 12:19 PM
My mom once told me that we weren’t given the gift of language to make fun of people who weren’t as smart as we were. Can’t remember what her point was, though. I’ll stop by with the kids and ask her on Sunday.Posted by on 02/10 at 12:27 PM
I hope Michael *does* review D’Ho’s book because Michael on D’Ho is a pleasure second only to Al Franken on Bill O’Reilly*. A masterful fisking is an art. So go ahead and prounce the guy, I say.
* “A bullet between the head,” snork.Posted by on 02/10 at 12:47 PM
I couldn’t help but yawp “Haazaa!” after that dramatic last sentence!
PS - D’Ho would love this, the word I have to enter below is “French.” What are you up to Berube, don’t you know that the correct passwords are “freedom,” “terror,” and “dirty-rotten liars with shit-eating grins?”Posted by on 02/10 at 01:13 PM
--If you have intellectual fortitude to do this.--
You ended your article with a sentence fragment.Posted by The Eternal Comp Instructor on 02/10 at 01:32 PM
Wow, what a display of towering intellect. Both Bérubé’s blog -sorry man, post (’cause the difference is crucial)</i> and then the sycophantic comments following it display a marked similarity to styles familiar to me in eigth grade (Hi Manny!).
So what’s next for Bérubé? Will he toilet paper Horowitz’ house? Call him a poopyhead? All that collegiate firepower, and yet the blog is just another barren field. Keep studying literature, man, you’ll get it someday, I’m sure.Posted by on 02/10 at 01:43 PM
Thanks, Kevin F! That moves the debate along! Hey, any chance you want to address any assertion Berube makes anywhere in his article?
About how Horowitz signed his letter then disavowed any connection to it? Or how Horowitz claimed that Berube had written a book review? Or the catalogue of Horowitz’s lies that Berube provides at the end of his post?
No?Posted by on 02/10 at 01:56 PM
--If you have intellectual fortitude to do this.--
You ended your article with a sentence fragment.
The horror.Posted by Chris "Professional Editor Guy" Clarke on 02/10 at 01:56 PM
Hi, everyone (even Kevin F)! Just checking in during the lunch break here—I’m at an all-day meeting of the Marxist-Leninist Association of America, and won’t be able to stop by again until this evening. Thanks for the comments, and thanks to Bill (in comment 19) for reading that review of Theory’s Empire. I do still like Lacan and Baudrillard’s early work, by the way—you know, back when they were still funny. But once Jacques started playing with Boy Scout knots and Jean started in with the “there is no longer this” and “there is no longer that” bit after For a Critique of the Political Economy of the Sign, well, it was time for the rest of us to get our things and go home. Which doesn’t mean, of course, that the introductory material to Theory’s Empire isn’t every bit as weak as my review suggests.
And hey, would someone volunteer to watch Horowitz on his week-long Hannity and Colmes gig? Because I can’t do it—I’m planning to spend my time next week dilating.Posted by Michael on 02/10 at 02:13 PM
Hey, Michael, back when I was a graduate student at Buffalo, the graduate students had some organization called the MLA, the Mother Language Association. Was Mother still active when you did your visit, or don’t you know.
If MLA = Marxist Lennist Association of American
Does that imply
ALSC = Association of Lennists, Socialists, and Communists ?
Is The Valve in fact a commie pinko front organization?Posted by on 02/10 at 02:29 PM
Chris, you are depressing me! You’re such a good writer I hate to think of you editing! But I’ve done that too!
Still, I feel outranked! I never knew you were “Professional Editor Guy”!
He was my favorite character on Superteens, or was it Justice League of America.
I loved the costume, especially the green eyeshade!
As I remember Bruce Lee played your buddy on the TV Series? What was Bruce like in person?
David (once helped John Kidd edit *Ulysses* for the Arion Press) McIrvinePosted by david ross mcirvine on 02/10 at 02:36 PM
It wasn’t lengthy, and it wasn’t a “blog.” A “blog” is a web log. On a web log, one writes “posts.” Just saying.
I’m sorry, but this genuinely interests me, because the first bloggers I ever read referred to their posts themselves as “blogs.” I like it; I think it’s kind of potentially retro, if not carrying vague intonations of, oh I don’t know, something that may exist beside the pedigrees and hierarchies of collegial liberal discourse, or something other. It’s tempting to say, I think we should start using it again.
Also, doesn’t anything over two paragraphs qualify as “lengthy” on a blog? Just wonderin’.Posted by Matt on 02/10 at 02:47 PM
I fear a mea culpa is in order…
After reading Michael’s original post on Teh Perfessors and the comment that noted that DHo was having an online hissyfit about negative Amazon.com reviews, I couldn’t help myself, and decided to add my own one-star review to the mix. As you can see if you go over to Amazon, that review consists entirely of the observation that the book is recycled material available for free on the Discover the Network website, an impression I had gotten by reading (or perhaps misreading) Michael’s post.
I find it hilarious that DHo (or one of his minions) saw Michael’s post and my review, and assumed that Michael had gotten his impression of the book’s content from that review. Sorry, DHo, you’ve gotten things wrong again! I would assume, incidentally, that Michael is clever enough not use Amazon.com reviews as a source of information.
So if, in fact, the book is not simply warmed over Discover the Networks content, I suppose I owe an apology to DHo, “DHo,” and/or the DHo-function. The book may in fact be wholly original neo-McCarthyite tripe, not merely recycled neo-McCarthyiste tripe. Hope that makes you feel better.
It’s hard to not conclude that DHo spends most of his $300k/year time frenetically Googling himself to see what others are saying about him.Posted by on 02/10 at 03:16 PM
Where to start? Most of this post is merely juvenile frivolity. It’s fun to read, and uncommonly well-written snarkiness, to be sure. But the text doesn’t really say much. It’s the intellectual version of so’s your mother for the majority of paragraphs. Fun, but not really an argument of any sort, is it?
So Bérubé wrote a post ...er blog ...er post (forgive me, I forget which term is now in) ... a post about an advertisement for a book. I find that odd. Moreover, Bérubé’s post reads very much like he had indeed read the book, at least to my feeble eyes. So I’m glad he cleared that up. Does Bérubé often write reviews of letters he’s received? How strange.
The only substance is in the last paragraph or so. It responds not to the book at all, but rather quantifies how much Bérubé hates Horowitz. Are Bérubé’s arguments sound? Perhaps they are, but there is too little substance to know for sure. Are they related to the topic he raised? Somewhat. They are more along a Tu Quoque fallacy, really.
Your commenters added nothing to the issue, unless one wishes only supportive huzzahs. Bérubé is clearly a smart man, smarter than I, no doubt. I’d love to read an actual critique of Horowitz’s thesis on the illiberalism of the left, but I suspect this method is more fun.
P.S. 1. Writing “D’Ho” is indeed sort of cute. The first time. After six or seven iterations, however, such onanistic repetition exposes a lack of imagination.
2. Criticisms of spelling errors are a little beneath Mr. Bérubé’s acumen.Posted by on 02/10 at 03:33 PM
Aw, shucks, David, thank you.
And it depresses me too. But plans are afoot to move to a full-time writing thing before too many more months go by.Posted by Chris "Professional Editor Guy" Clarke on 02/10 at 03:37 PM
I can’t speak for others, but when I write “DHo” it speaks more of my desire to save numerous keystrokes than anything else. (Whether or not that’s onanistic, I suppose, depends on what I do with the time I save ).Posted by on 02/10 at 03:42 PM
Never, ever...and I mean ever...read Michael Berube while sipping coffee! “Ouch-shit-hot-hot-ouch-hot!”
Thanks for the laughs...seriously.Posted by on 02/10 at 03:47 PM
"Prounce” is definitely a neologism combining “prance” with “flounce.” It’s not far removed from “ponce,” either. Add the “Herr literature professor” part, and it’s clear—as he wrote, Horowitz was thinking of Joel Gray in “Cabaret.”Posted by on 02/10 at 04:03 PM
Re: “but when I write “DHo” it speaks more of my desire to save numerous keystrokes than anything else”
I use CTRL+C, then CTRL+V for the same purpose. D’Ho is certainly an unsubtle and not unfunny reference to Homer Simpson, and it endears one to like-minded readers, so I see the attraction. Mr. Bérubé’s post is similarly but a lighthearted taunt of Mr. Horowitz. Given that level of discourse, to then demand a scholarly response to such remarks approaches parody.Posted by on 02/10 at 04:05 PM
Michael, you have such tech-helpful trolls! I never would have thought of copying and pasting on my own!Posted by on 02/10 at 04:07 PM
I’d love to volunteer to watch DHo and Hannity, but I’ve already made plans to scrape my fingernails on a chalkboard while chewing on tinfoil. Sorry!Posted by on 02/10 at 04:10 PM
If a phantasmagoric “demand” for a “scholarly response” is parody, then I would guess a rebuke embedded into the comments of said parody would qualify as a “waste of time.”Posted by DocMara on 02/10 at 04:14 PM
And Ben, what a command of pop culture references this one has!
Unfortunately, it’s just too bad he got this one wrong - “D’Ho!” - as it’s clearly a sardonic reference to Gloria Estefan. How old are you, Kevin? Forty? Sheesh.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 04:17 PM
Kevin F.--It may be that responding to a substanceless hack with substance is one of the most fruitless endeavors in which one can engage. Much of the point of Berube’s response, as I understand it, is that it is impossible to seriously debate those people because they cherry-pick quotes (see Berube’s post), construct straw-men through said cherry-picking (once again, see Berube’s post) and then admonish individuals for not responding to the dishonesty in a way other than pointing out the dishonesty and rightfully mocking someone who has to engage in such dishonesty to support a clearly unsupportable position (much like your doing right now). When Horowitz backs any of his claims with substance, then I think it would be imperative to respond with substance. Until then, mock him for the worthless fuck he is.Posted by on 02/10 at 04:24 PM
1. Re: “I never would have thought of copying and pasting on my own!”
Of course you would, Ben, hence my sarcasm. It means that your just saving keystrokes defense is a canard, a simple gradeschool dodge.
2. Re: I would guess a rebuke embedded into the comments of said parody would qualify as a “waste of time.”
If you are unable to respond intelligently, yes it would be.
3. Re: “...a sardonic reference to Gloria Estefan”
Well, then the reference is both obscure and unfunny. Well done.Posted by on 02/10 at 04:25 PM
"Aw, shucks, David, thank you.
And it depresses me too. But plans are afoot to move to a full-time writing thing before too many more months go by.”
Okay, but just remember! Homeland Security will be watching your every comma! LOL!Posted by on 02/10 at 04:31 PM
Unfunny to you, perhaps, Kevin.
But a few of the rest of us, at least, are laughing.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 04:31 PM
Nate: I agree; and nice riposte. These are worthy criticisms all. I have read much of Horowitz’s work, and I find it well-researched.
I would be glad to entertain that he might be cherry-picking or creating straw men. He may thus be dishonest. But the manner of attack here is sophomoric (lacking a term equivalent to junior high), and I came here expecting to learn.
I am at heart a skeptic, but Mr. Berube’s post only suggests an ability to snark, a talent for which there is no current shortage on blogs. Talented he is. Is he right? Should I change my mind about Mr. Horowitz? Doubtful, as all I’ve learned so far has been from you, sir.Posted by on 02/10 at 04:32 PM
Re: “But a few of the rest of us, at least, are laughing.”
Wonderful. It is a kindness from God that men find mirth in simple things.Posted by on 02/10 at 04:33 PM
It is a kindness from God that men find mirth in simple things.
OK, Kevin, points to you for the self deprecation. Well done.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 04:38 PM
I see trees of green,
Red roses too.
They always bloom
For me and you...
And I think to myself: Damn, this hilariously sycophantic clusterfunk tips the balance. If not for you, these Internets would surely spur a net gain in blood pressure.
‘witzful thinking thrives on spinning goad into strawmen. Sorry, coudn’t resist.Posted by on 02/10 at 04:43 PM
Kevin F (#32) ”Where to start?”
Personally, I’ve never thought it absolutely necessary to know what I’m talking about when commenting on this blog, but I often start by reading the post, including the associated material “anchored” to it by the “links,” to give me a clue about what Prof. Bérubé thinks is at stake anyway.
Where to start, Kevin F? Go back up to the top of this page. Click on the"links" (they are the emboldened letters) in the “post.” Read the associated material. Click on the “links” found in that material. Repeat as necessary (you have a lot of catching up to do, as it turns out) until you are more familiar with what the Professor is talking about.
Glad I could help.Posted by on 02/10 at 04:53 PM
Unlike the many administrators and professors that he has exposed as frauds, anti-Americans, or abusers of their authority -all the same thing- David Horowitz admits when he gets something wrong and has not been demonstrated to be intentionally deceiving anyone.
I find it interesting that the administration of the University of Norther Colorado was uncooperative with the investigation of these serious charges of political soap-boxing in the classroom when David was investigating it. Quote: ”Until now [Jaschik’s “Tattered Poster Child” piece] the university has denied us all information about the incident, which is why we relied on the student herself.”
David writes: “PROFESSOR Dunkley also claims that I ‘cooked this whole thing up.’ I didn’t cook anything up. I was given this student’s story among many...” Berubee is cool with that
David writes:“The exam question was not ‘Explain Why George Bush Is A War Criminal.’</i> Berubee replies: Aha - Liar, liar!
David also writes: What follows is the actual text of the exam question (which was not supplied to us or the student) as reported by the university official. While reading it, bear in mind that this was not a final exam question in an International Studies course. It was an exam question in a Criminology course. The description of this course in the university catalogue is as follows: ‘Survey criminal behavior generally, including theories of causation, types of crime, extent of crime, law enforcement, criminal justice, punishment and treatment.’
Now read the exam question and see 1) whether it belongs on the final exam of a course of this description, and 2) whether it requires students to argue that the United States and its commander-in-chief are guilty of criminal behavior
What does Berubee say about the question that can be read at the link to “Some of Our Facts Were Wrong; Our Point Was Right”?
Berubee decides to respond by going to a different case, so intelligently linking to a story that explains that the left “scored key points” after dedicating itself as a political body, in this case, to raising doubts about the allegation of a University of Pennsylvania biology professor showing 9-11 while ignoring the fact that on “election eve 2004, the university [Bowling Green State] through its official activities program put on a showing of Fahrenheit 9/11, Michael Moore’s hate film against George Bush and the American liberation of Iraq.” Ah, but we scored ‘points’ because we don’t know for sure whether a biology professor has shown 9-11 in the classroom.. (Very intelligent contributions, Professor lib.)
Obviously we’re dealing with the domestic evil empire of the blue states and the NSDP is its political wing.
David Horowitz and his campaign to fight the iron-fisted control, politicization, and corruption of America’s campuses by LIEberals* is the closest thing that we have to Ronald Reagan and his desire to take down the Berlin Wall.
*http://frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=20816Posted by Sirc_Valence on 02/10 at 04:55 PM
Obviously, Michael can defend himself. But your characterization of his post as little more than snark just isn’t accurate. Among other things, he referred to many factual errors (to use the charitable description) Horowitz has made. I am quite sure you’ve read more of Horowitz’s work than I have; however, the “Discover the Network” is so mind-bogglingly absurd as to pre-emptively call into question anything else Horowitz has done.Posted by on 02/10 at 04:59 PM
How few posts Sirc_Valence took before he got down to Christian eliminationist brass tacks.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 05:04 PM
And I think to myself: Damn, this hilariously sycophantic clusterfunk tips the balance. If not for you, these Internets would surely spur a net gain in blood pressure.
You mis-spelled “fustercluck.”
Fustercluck, noun. The rhetorical condition in which the fustiness or pomposity of polemic or discourse is transformed by the silliness associated with clucks. This combined form of a Shakespearean adjectival compound (see “fusty nut,” Tr. & Cress.) with the American slang term “cluck” (crackpot, crank, silly person) is believed to have been invented by the American writer Washington Irving. It has also been argued to be a back-formation from patroon pidgin associated with the region of Albany, New York, in the early 19th Century. Irving is said to have been referred to by his neighbors as a “fusterclucker.”
See also the verb, “to fustercluck,” as in “McIrvine decided to Totally fustercluck the thread.”Posted by david ross mcirvine on 02/10 at 05:05 PM
But I think we can all agree on a norther Colorado, to make room for an even newer Mexico.Posted by on 02/10 at 05:16 PM
Thanks David, that’s news to me. Ya learn something new with every blog here!Posted by on 02/10 at 05:18 PM
Charles, while you may feel that one piece might “pre-emptively call into question anything else Horowitz has done”, I must assure you that is not the case.
For example, “Left Illusions” contains material that has been corroborated independently by authors unknown to Horowitz. I’ve even researched some of his footnotes intemittently to catch errors or misrepresentations.
I can’t say Ward Churchill can pass muster in this kind of review, however.Posted by on 02/10 at 05:26 PM
Uh, Kevin’s point in 32)
2. Criticisms (or snarky punning) of spelling errors are a little beneath Mr. Bérubé’s acumen
And yours too, I would hope.
Too many take it upon themselves to be part Berube’s kiss ass, wack-pack posse.Posted by on 02/10 at 05:41 PM
For peter ramus:
Well, sir, I did read through them. I was not terribly impressed with much of it. Most of the links are just more entertainment.
But a few paragraphs have well-written criticisms of Horowitz’s habit of blending the far-far left with others on the left. An excellent argument, indeed. It loses some authority by the juvenilia one must slog through in finding such useful prose, but well-argued nevertheless, and where reasonable folk can differ.
They do suggest needed caution here, not to commit an error inappropriate blame. This does not make Horowitz a liar, though, just making an argument that might be false or partly false. Mr. Bérubé should take similar care.Posted by on 02/10 at 05:42 PM
My dad has a signed copy of Horowitz’s “Student: The Political Activities of the Berkeley Students.” The inscription says “Keep up the good fight!” I guess he’d blame that on the “author,” too?Posted by on 02/10 at 05:47 PM
Given that level of discourse, to then demand a scholarly response to such remarks approaches parody.
D’oh, you think???? Or might the expression “duh” be more representative of the parodic nature one seems to have finally discerned within the (it must be hidden) text?
I hate stepping on brass tacks, especially those ones that fall from the back of those big, leather, easy-chairs. One needs to tact more carefully around the faculty lounges, you never know what sort of mine (oops “mind") you might step into.
captcha word: ‘effort’ as in make the “effort” to become more familiar with the underlying “theoretical” (and snarchy parodic) nature of this blog, its various threads, posts, comments, critiques, etc.Posted by on 02/10 at 05:49 PM
Hey Kevin F, how ‘bout “Dee Ho’”? Better?Posted by on 02/10 at 05:49 PM
Kevin refers to “Horowitz’s habit of blending the far-far left with others on the left” But that isn’t what Horowitz does. He blends mildly liberal centrists with murderous bloodthirsty fanatics.Posted by on 02/10 at 05:54 PM
Criticisms (or snarky punning) of spelling errors are a little beneath Mr. Bérubé’s acumen
And yours too, I would hope.
I am not currently suffering from acumen, as you will see if you look a little norther in this thread.Posted by on 02/10 at 06:03 PM
"Criticisms (or snarky punning) of spelling errors are a little beneath Mr. Bérubé’s acumen.”
I believe Michael only uses an acu-men (tm) when he is dilating.Posted by david ross mcirvine on 02/10 at 06:26 PM
Criticisms (or snarky punning) of spelling errors are a little beneath Mr. Bérubé’s acumen.
I believe the (obvious) point is that Mr. Horowitz’s work is sloppy and inaccurate in all respects.Posted by on 02/10 at 06:33 PM
Re: “make the “effort” to become more familiar with the underlying “theoretical” (and snarchy parodic) nature of this blog”
I guess that was my main point. Mr. Bérubé attempts to have it both ways: snarky and informative. But the styles just do not mix; one necessarily detracts from the other. So if he is rejecting debate for a burlesque jitterbug, great. I thought he was going for “illuminating”. Color me corrected.
Re: “mildly liberal centrists”
If you mean Kennedy or Pelosi, we differ markedly where the ‘center’ is drawn, to be sure.
Re: “I believe the (obvious) point is that Mr. Horowitz’s work is sloppy and inaccurate in all respects.”
Since I have had the opportunity to research and verify claims from some of Horowitz’s other works, this claim is false. The attack on spelling is often meant as a proxy for “poor research”, but is itself an example of intellectual laziness.Posted by on 02/10 at 06:37 PM
Since I have had the opportunity to research and verify claims from some of Horowitz’s other works, this claim is false.
Awesome. I’ll alert the media that Horowitz has passed the rigorous process of peer review by the renowned “Kevin F.,” and you can move on to assessing those perplexing Martian carbonaceous chondrites.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 06:43 PM
Re: the rigorous process of peer review by the renowned Kevin F”
Well Chris, you’ve just reached the usual juncture I find at leftist blogs. Intolerance, ridicule, rudeness, and anti-intellectualism. It’s all here, in just a few short paragraphs.
Yes, yes. I know ‘little green footballs’ has its own yobs. I avoid them, too. But Mr. Bérubé claims to be from acedemia, and one might expect higher class material.
Save for a few comments, this site has just the same old drivel. Sort of sad, I might add. Why is it exactly that I would want to rejoin the Democratic party?Posted by on 02/10 at 06:52 PM
Nice job of recasting my comment so you could evade the real point, Kevin. I recall, for instance, that Horowitz lined up Roger Ebert next to Mohammed Atta and put Barbra Streisand on the same page as Zarqawi. It doesn’t really matter how far “left” either Streisand or Ebert is. My point is that calling Atta and Zarqawi “leftists” is—to repeat myself—mind-bogglingly absurd. Worse than that, it’s the tactic of a small-minded, fundamentally dishonest person who trowels thick, nasty smears around for no purpose other than pecuniary gain.Posted by on 02/10 at 06:54 PM
Re: “It doesn’t really matter how far “left” either Streisand or Ebert is. My point is that calling Atta and Zarqawi “leftists” is—to repeat myself—mind-bogglingly absurd.”
I agree. But he is not in fact calling Islamofascists leftists at all. He is pointing out how Western leftists are often apologists or “useful idiots” for authoritarian and totalitarian regimes.
It’s similar to how American leftists like Lillian Hellman supported Stalin before and after his murders were exposed.Posted by on 02/10 at 07:00 PM
But he is not in fact calling Islamofascists leftists at all. He is pointing out how Western leftists are often apologists or “useful idiots” for authoritarian and totalitarian regimes.
KF (saving the keystrokes again...),
This is arguably even more ridiculous than calling “Islamofascists” leftists.
1) What leftist is an apologist for Zarqawi or Atta?
2) What “authoritarian or totalitarian regime” is Zarqawi or Atta a representative of?
(Would it be churlish to point out that DHo himself probably spent for more time apologizing for Stalinism in his youth than all of the readers of this blog combined?)Posted by on 02/10 at 07:10 PM
1) What leftist is an apologist for Zarqawi or Atta?
Example: Those in the EU (Sweden, England, etc.) not actively resisting the violence over the fraudulent cartoons are apologists.
Example: Michael Moore (“The Iraqis who have risen up against the occupation are not “insurgents” or “terrorists” or “The Enemy.” They are the REVOLUTION, the Minutemen, and their numbers will grow—and they will win.”)
Example: France, Russia, China, and leftists such as Galloway implicated in the oil-for-food scandal.
Those not fighting for freedom in Iraq are necessarily aiding our enemies. Apologists all.
2) What “authoritarian or totalitarian regime” is Zarqawi or Atta a representative of?
Islamofascism. According to their own words, they “own” all of Europe as part of their caliphate.
(Would it be churlish to point out that DHo himself probably spent for more time apologizing for Stalinism in his youth than all of the readers of this blog combined?)
Not at all. He freely admits that he did so, and that he was terribly wrong. His efforts are now to remedy that mistake, along the lines of Whittaker Chambers.Posted by on 02/10 at 07:25 PM
Well Chris, you’ve just reached the usual juncture I find at leftist blogs. Intolerance, ridicule, rudeness, and anti-intellectualism. It’s all here, in just a few short paragraphs.
It’s anti-intellectual now to disregard unspecified and undocumented assertions by someone with no apparent credentials?
You don’t need all three, by the way, I have no credentials, so I usually actually tell people which statements I’ve investigated and found true in a work, and provide some documentation as to how I corroborated them. I won’t get published in Social Text, of course, but the standards of discourse on blogs are somewhat less rigorous. Due diligence counts for a lot in the blog world, even for untutored oaves such as yours truly on an academic blog such as this.
And you want us to lower the bar even farther for you? Come now.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 07:27 PM
Hey trolls: The post at the top of this page documents a specific lie which Horowitz has told before and, despite protests, continues to tell. (Possibly, Horowitz doesn’t think his target audience cares about accuracy.) The post at the top of this page documents other lies, demonstrating the larger pattern.
Discuss: What kind of debate is possible with a liar? Under what conditions might ridicule be an appropriate response to a liar, especially a liar with a strong sense of self-importance?
Bonus question: Why do academics take citation seriously?Posted by on 02/10 at 07:28 PM
Romy B said:
“Ya learn something new with every blog here!”
Yes you do, and now that you like our fustercluck blog, try these other fine BLOG products:
“Please, Mr. Blogman"--the classic rock n’ roll song
*The Blogman always Rings Twice*--classic film noir
and of course the theoretical school of
Thank you very much. I shall conclude this blog with a blog script.
B.S.: this may be considered a blogeriori, as opposed to a priori, reasoning.Posted by david ross mcirvine on 02/10 at 07:34 PM
Re: “It’s anti-intellectual now to disregard unspecified and undocumented assertions by someone with no apparent credentials?”
1. You changed the subject again, Chris. I was responding to your post calling something “mind-bogglingly absurd”, and I called that device anti-intellectual.
You’re clearly referring to yet an earlier post (a dishonest technique to be sure).
2. This is of course an ad hominem argument. (Who are you that we should listen to your argument?) And then you suggest all I needed to do all along, even without credentials, was provide you with proof and citations. (Okay, maybe you’re a nobody, so where’s the meat?) That is indeed the only valid question offered here yet. I’ll consider it.
But the veneer of civility you now present is not terribly reassuring that such effort is worth my time. I could provide such citations at length, but it’s clear the blog is tiring of my presence, and wants to dance some more, and call people names, and declare victory. (See? He can’t!!!!! We win!!!!) So have at it.Posted by on 02/10 at 07:38 PM
Can’t… take it… any… more....
Kevin F., why do we nitpicky liberal types take such interest in pointing out typos, misspellings, poor grammar? At a certain point, they tend to indicate sloppy thinking, and sloppy thinking makes for other sloppy things, like sloppy definitions of “apologist” and sloppy voting.
Here: Take “Since I have had the opportunity to research and verify claims from some of Horowitz’s other works, this claim is false”—I think what you meant was “I have had the opportunity to research and verify claims from some of Horowitz’s other works, and when I consider Jacques’ claim in light of that research, I find Jacques’ claim to be inaccurate.” Something like that—Less cause-and-effect ("Kevin F’s word is law,” which you seem not to have intended and which is the reason for Chris’ “intolerance, ridicule, rudeness, and anti-intellectualism") without the original mixed construction problem, no? You see, over here in Moonbatland, we like to say what we mean. Heck, we even like to know what we mean!Posted by on 02/10 at 07:39 PM
What “authoritarian or totalitarian regime” is Zarqawi or Atta a representative of?
Islamofascism. According to their own words, they “own” all of Europe as part of their caliphate.
They do indeed say this. But, ya know, KF, just ‘cause someone says something, doesn’t mean it’s true. And, last I checked, Atta and Zarqawi rule neither Europe nor anywhere else. Though your statement that the EU is run by are pro-Zarqawi leftists (because they don’t print more “fraudulent (sic?) cartoons”? because they don’t bomb the rioters in the Middle East?) suggests that you are the one more likely to agree with Zarqawi and Atta on their claim to a European caliphate.Posted by on 02/10 at 07:42 PM
Who had “Kevin takes his dolly and dishes and goes home in 77 posts?” The pot’s up to 25 bucks now.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 07:43 PM
Catherine, your statement was indeed a very pretty one, and far prettier than mine. I can’t thank you enough for the effort.
Your ideas about sloppiness are less worthy, however. Intellectuals have long overestimated their ability to lead, and fail to understand their own errors. 100 million died in the 20th century due to the unsloppy thinkers.
But at least they got the grammar down cold.Posted by on 02/10 at 07:49 PM
I just thought it was funny that someone attacking academics can’t spell worth a damn, and can’t get his mind around basic sentence structure. Maybe D. Ho should’ve spent more time in Bonehead English class than out proclaiming the glories of Stalinism.Posted by on 02/10 at 07:50 PM
Chris, Re:Kevin takes his dolly and dishes and goes home
You win, man. That was priceless. Less than intellectual than Catherine, sure, but still. Wow. It’s a beautiful thing.
I suppose y’all are tired of hearing this, but for 20 years I voted for Democrats. Hell, I voted for Gore. Why I would ever side with people like you again is beyond me.
Anyway, you got the place back to yourselves, all safe and sound. Nothing to ruffle your worldview. Neat, not sloppy writing. Godspeed.Posted by on 02/10 at 07:54 PM
I suppose y’all are tired of hearing this, but for 20 years I voted for Democrats. Hell, I voted for Gore.
But, let me guess, since 9/11 you can’t get over Chappaquiddick?
Don’t let the door hit you on the way out!Posted by on 02/10 at 07:57 PM
(24) - Kevin F on 02/10 at 12:43 PM.
(83) - Kevin F on 02/10 at 06:54 PM
Fellow sycophant and islamofascist-sympathizing leftists, leave the trolls be. That’s six hours of leaving comments - think of all the discord that could be sowed with that time. By ignoring it I was to advance the cause by suing in a federal court to get a polyamorous pagan forced to be a Cub Scout leader.
The first course of action for Scout pack 2732 will be to write letters of apology to Muslims on behalf of the West for offending them with cartoons.
(83) - “100 million died in the 20th century due to the unsloppy thinkers.”
I’d like to add that 15 million of those are related to cultural studies “intellectuals” taking hold of our literature departments. sayin’.Posted by on 02/10 at 07:58 PM
Kevin F: ”This is of course an ad hominem argument.”
No; it is of course an argument from authority, which form of argument is only invalid in syllogistic logic. Try again.Posted by on 02/10 at 07:59 PM
Kevin, I have a My Pretty Statement with a green mane and another My Pretty Statement with a pink mane, and I love to brush them! Come over and bring your dolly and dishes, and you can brush the My Pretty Statement with the green mane or the My Pretty Statement with the pink mane while I make tea for your dolly and explain why it’s impossible to have a coherent argument with you.Posted by on 02/10 at 08:08 PM
"Who had “Kevin takes his dolly and dishes and goes home in 77 posts?” The pot’s up to 25 bucks now.”
The site went over the 2.5 million mark this morning. Captcha word: “money.”Posted by on 02/10 at 08:09 PM
To be fair, Peter, I was this close to engaging in argumentum ad yourmominum, as Kevin was unfairly giving me credit for Charles’ repeat and dauntingly unantiintellectual “mind bogglingly absurd” comment.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 08:11 PM
It’s obvious these dudes (Berube and Horowitz) need to rumble. I picture it like the great knife fight scene in “West Side Story,” except with pruning knives.Posted by on 02/10 at 08:16 PM
Chris, I’m still chewing on a remark directed at me:
They do suggest needed caution here, not to commit an error inappropriate blame.
I opened up an email by mistake the other day that had the exact same wording.Posted by on 02/10 at 08:20 PM
>>I just thought it was funny that someone attacking academics can’t spell worth a damn, and can’t get his mind around basic sentence structure. Maybe D. Ho should’ve spent more time in Bonehead English class than out proclaiming the glories of Stalinism.
I bet you got the shit smacked out of you along the way.Posted by on 02/10 at 08:26 PM
DH doesn’t need a properly functioning author when he parasitically banks on the higher functioning of your author(ity). I think it’s called critic-baiting these days. Just use the books that DH sends you for door stops—or whatever better function they serve—and that’s the end of it right there.Posted by on 02/10 at 08:50 PM
<styles just do not mix; one necessarily detracts from the other.</i>
Satire would be right out, then. Someone notify Jonathan Swift.
For my part, I hope that Horowitz, like John Partridge, is immortal, because I would be very sorry to lose the brilliance of Michael’s lighthearted taunting.Posted by bitchphd on 02/10 at 09:42 PM
Anyone else around here notice how those Danish cartoon riots are like Magic Trollberries? Ever since the story began, trolls—here and elsewhere in left blogostan—seem to be more numerous and feistier. And no matter what the subject is, those darn cartoons come up (usually in the context of excoriating the supposed non-response to the riots of, the left, Europe, bloggers, etc.).
Or maybe it’s just troll rutting season.Posted by on 02/10 at 09:43 PM
Crap. I fucked up the html. Oh well, I’m sure all the academics here are very accustomed to glossing poor proofreading.Posted by bitchphd on 02/10 at 09:52 PM
I just finished posting my Random 10 over at Norby’s and you gotta go and make me ponder whether Friends of Distinction’s version of Grazin’ in The Grass is better than Hugh Masakela’s instrumental version. Bush is right. This musication stuff is hard work.Posted by on 02/10 at 10:34 PM
Oooh, we are so cool. We showed him, didn’t we; we are soooo much smarter. Oh, just never mind that his arguments are cogent and coherent; we’ll just ridicule simple spelling errors, and very slight semantical and sytactical lapses; boy, he’s be humiliated, won’t show his face around here agains. It’s cool being smart.
Yeah, and THAT’s for you Miss Pesnickety Catherine. Oh, you should hear what the fellas are saying about you.Posted by on 02/10 at 10:39 PM
"Western leftists are often apologists or “useful idiots” for authoritarian and totalitarian regimes. It’s similar to how American leftists like Lillian Hellman supported Stalin before and after his murders were exposed.”
More guilt by association, I guess. But of course two can play that game. How similar is to how Reagan and Rumsfeld supported Saddam as he was gassing Iranians and Kurds?Posted by on 02/10 at 11:10 PM
his arguments are cogent and coherent;
Damn our crippling addictions to reality anyway.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/10 at 11:14 PM
Anyone else around here notice how those Danish cartoon riots are like Magic Trollberries?
Very funny, Mr. Alpers. The truth of the matter, which you lying leftist Islamofascist-enablers refuse to see, is that all blog posts and all comments are now about the cartoons. Anyone not posting about the cartoons and not commenting about the cartoons is complicit with Islamofascism, and people like you who comment about “troll” comments about the cartoons are extra special double complicit.
Also, the cartoons are a potent reminder of what Teddy Kennedy did at Chappaquiddick.Posted by on 02/10 at 11:25 PM
It’s similar to how American leftists like Lillian Hellman supported Stalin before and after his murders were exposed.
Actually, David Horowitz’s parents supported Stalin right through the mid-1950s. And that’s why David is the person best positioned today to uncover the secret connection between Lillian Hellman and Katie Couric.Posted by on 02/10 at 11:28 PM
"Yeah, and THAT’s for you Miss Pesnickety Catherine. Oh, you should hear what the fellas are saying about you.”
A Seies of Unfotunate Events, that’s what this is.
Daniel and Kevin F. combined, I think maybe lots of folks hear what the fellas say about me. I have no land line, and I’m always messing up. Just today I told my boyfriend that dinner would be done at “9:11.” I think after that, he asked, “What’d you do this afternoon?” and I said, “I ran.”Posted by on 02/11 at 12:59 AM
Kevin F is D Ho.
You know like that pseudo economist, Donald Luskin, who used the pseud alter ego, Mary Rosche, to defend himself and to write glowing reviews of his work.
(Unless he’s really K Fed, Britney’s Rapstar hubby.)Posted by on 02/11 at 02:00 AM
Kevin wrote: “Those not fighting for freedom in Iraq are necessarily aiding our enemies. Apologists all.”
Uh....huh? Kevin, are you posting from Iraq? Are you hiding on the outskirts of a terrorist camp and lazing the hearth for an F-18 strike? What the hell are you babbling about here? You actually think that you and the 101st Fighting Keyboarders are fighting for freedom in Iraq? My god, man, are you completely insane?
You seem to believe that speaking in complete sentences is all that is required to make a coherant argument.
You are a tool.
Yours—AllyPosted by on 02/11 at 05:27 AM
like that pseudo economist, Donald Luskin, who used the pseud alter ego, Mary Rosche, to defend himself and to write glowing reviews of his work.
Actually Mary Rosh was my alter ago. I’m not a pseudo economist, but I am a gun nut and an intellectual fraud-at-large. Luskin, by contrast, is the Krugman stalker.Posted by on 02/11 at 08:07 AM
This is just terrific Michael - its really kind of amazing that Horowitz seems unable to resist the slightest taunt, even a light-hearted, good-humored one. Actually, I was so taken aback by his response to your post that I wrote him, and he pointed me this most current entry, presumably as evidence of his own points.
Too TOO funny.
Keep up the great work, and keep the shrubbery under control.Posted by truth4achange on 02/11 at 09:27 AM
James: “Kevin F is D Ho.”
No, James, I really think that you should consider seriously the concept of “Horowitz” as entity composed of more than person. (Let’s not have anyone say that we didn’t learn about the effects of economic transformations here, after all.) In this case, I’m sure that Horowitz himself isn’t trolling this thread; his involvement was limited to “Fly, my pretties! Fly!” and we’re seeing poop left by his monkeys. The “I’ve been a Democrat for 20 years—but because someone on the Internet was mean to me, never never again” is a clear giveaway.Posted by on 02/11 at 09:55 AM
Any of you catch the latest (blog? post?) at FrontPageMag?
Mr. Horowitz provides us with this:
In any case, the professor has evidently learned nothing since from my response to his first post which reminded him that the bien-pensant among us, particularly professors of literature, generally read books before they review them. Here’s how Berube’s response to that idea begins: “Um, no, David, you poor thing. [Oh, did I mention that Michael imagines himself a humorist?] “That’s wasn’t a book review. This is a book review.” (Emphasis Michael’s.) But then he writes: “I got my impression of your ‘book’ … from hearing about my own entry in it.” From “hearing about” his own entry?
OK, so is he seriously so intellectually dishonest that he’s willing to claim that the remainder of the post, rather than the link, constitutes a book review? After reading Sirc_Valence’s comment above, I suppose there’s a reasonable segment of his readership that isn’t likely to double check. Or should I take the more charitable view that maybe he hasn’t quite got the hang of this whole internet thing yet?
Catherine, congratulations on getting an annoyed mention in the post. Charming of Mr. Horowitz to post your e-mail address like that, although I’m sure it was meant completely innocuously. A shame he doesn’t allow comments on his blog, although I suppose allowing people to enter into a dialogue with him in public posts would really hamper his ability to quote them out of context.Posted by on 02/11 at 11:49 AM
Oh, by the way… Mr. Horowitz (shock! horror!) didn’t include the link to the review in his post, he simply bolded the word “This”, in ”This is a book review”. I added the link back in for context (for anyone not inclined to scroll to the top of the page). Just to be clear.
Heh. Captcha word: “change”Posted by on 02/11 at 11:55 AM
I really think that you should consider seriously the concept of “Horowitz” as entity composed of more than person.
When I was young I was much taken by a scifi novel entitled The Man of Many Minds. The eponymous protagonist was able to project his mind into other creatures, often several at a time. At one point he actually projected his entire mind into a swarm of very angry bees. That’s what we’ve got here, Rich, a swarm of busy little d’ho bees.Posted by on 02/11 at 12:04 PM
OK, this is funny.
in DHo’s latest, he says:
You need to stop fantasizing that ‘leftwing fascists’ are attacking you,” says the very professor who calls me a liar without checking the facts.
Is the perception of widespread attacks a fantasy of mine? ... if you Google the words “McCarthy +David Horowitz” you will find over 400,000 references. Not to belabor the point but the most recent issue of the The Chronicle of Higher Education, the principle journal of academic administration, carries as its lead feature, a piece by leftist Ellen Schrecker called “Worse Than McCarthy.” The article purports to be about me and people like me. A version of it was read at the Temple Hearings.) It’s Berube who is the fantasist if he really believes I am not under attack.
For those of you who didn’t follow the link in Michael’s post, he was referring to an exchange I had with Horowitz in which I said:
Hey, maybe you could stage a fake attack on yourself in an airport washroom! That worked for Morton Downey Jr. when HIS fifteen minutes of lukewarm fame was fading.
Oh, wait, I’m wrong. It didn’t.
and Horowitz replied:
Thanks to leftwing fascists like yourself I don’t need to fake attacks on me.
So either DHo really equates criticism in web-based articles with physical assault, or he’s a mendacious O’Reilly wannabe.
Or maybe this confession, also in his latest blog post, explains things:
I have a small staff…
Really, that sort of thing doesn’t matter anymore, but perhaps DHo is just overcompensating.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/11 at 12:06 PM
Marita, I’m not the Catherine in DHo’s “blog.”
One hopes that that Catherine’s parents are litigous.Posted by on 02/11 at 12:17 PM
Oops. Litigious.Posted by on 02/11 at 12:41 PM
Marita, I’m not the Catherine in DHo’s “blog.”
Oops. My mistake. Sorry about that.
But yeah, Catherine (II)’s parents should be just thrilled.Posted by on 02/11 at 12:44 PM
The most recent post by Horowitz
is disappointing, except for the grotesquerie of his puzzling solecism *bien pensant*.
Horowitz deplores the lack of a “worthy opponent.” He might have at least saved his French Phrase of the Day for this point, as he could at least have called Michael *Sans Beouf*.
But that may have been too literary.Posted by david ross mcirvine on 02/11 at 12:57 PM
Ok, “Sans *Boeuf*.” Boeuf Boeuf Boeuf. I spell like a dog before cup of coffee numba 3.Posted by david ross mcirvine on 02/11 at 01:01 PM
Years ago I actually did read one of Horowitz’s books, The Art of Political War. What (it seems) he’s doing to you is what he said should have been done to the Democrats who brought up charges against Newt Gingrich--because many of the Democrats’ charges were baseless, the Republicans should have attacked the Democrats with entirely bogus charges. This act would have, according to him, made points in the court of public opinion. So he attacks you with baseless charges so that his minion readers will sqawk “down with lefty professors” and other nonsense.
I know the last paragraph is stating the obvious, but I wanted to give those who hadn’t read his books some context: these stunts are more calculated than some of us are led to believe.
Now, I have a question I’m sure Professor Berube will be happy to answer: why should an adjunct join the AAUP? At my college, we have a union (I think it’s AFT), and I was thinking of joining them, at least for the months I’m adjuncting. Which organization should I join, if I must only join one?
Tim PeoplesPosted by Tim Peoples on 02/11 at 01:14 PM
Here is Horowitz quoting MB: ““That’s wasn’t a book review. This is a book review.””
The “that’s” in that sentence seemed uncharacteristic for MB. So I looked above at what MB actually wrote. Yes, it was “That wasn’t a book review.”
Now, are we to believe that Horowitz can’t even cut-and-paste correctly when quoting someone? (He should ask Kevin F. for pointers, perhaps.) No, I think that this is the same staffer that failed to cut-and-paste MB’s intereview response correctly. Just as “Horowitz” says that the funding letter is self-evidently not his fault since he didn’t write it, his post in response to MB isn’t by him, either.
Bill Benzon brings up an old SF trope. I think that we’re really seeing here the cyperpunk birth of a new type of entity, a “person” composed of old tag lines, mutant cut-and-paste responses, bromides, and a vaguely organized central narrative (*how* many memoirs?), that makes up for its lack of thought by being functionally immortal as long as money supports it.Posted by on 02/11 at 01:20 PM
“Um, no, David, you poor thing. That wasn’t a book review. THIS is a book review.”
That’s what you wrote. So now you are writing a book review of DH’s book. But THEN you say you haven’t gotten a copy of it yet. No wonder you then go on to talk in your review not about what’s in the book, but about a lot of stuff having to do with DH that isn’t in the book. Well, of course, that’s natural: How can you know what’s in or isn’t in the book if you haven’t read it?
I’m just making a methodological point. Among us professional scholars, writing a book review of a book you haven’t read is a no-no. Why not wait and read it? I’m sure you still won’t like it, but then at least your response would be intellectually defensible.
Art EcksteinPosted by on 02/11 at 01:32 PM
That’s what you wrote. So now you are writing a book review of DH’s book.
Hi, Art! No, I’m still not writing a book review. See today’s post, or the part in yesterday’s post where I write, “about that review you demand. How’s never? Is never good for you?” Thanks!Posted by Michael on 02/11 at 01:43 PM
The fact remains that yesterday in gas-gas-gas, line 5, you asserted that previously you hadn’t written a book review of DH’s book, but that now you WERE writing a book review. You were EMPHATIC: “THIS is the book review.” I don’t see how you can back out of that claim now, except to claim that you were joking then. But few who read the post yesterday would have thought that you were joking in THAT way (though in plenty of other ways).
DH is likely to screw you to wall on this, since you haven’t read the book.
I’m not saying you should read the book, or that should like the book. But you shouldn’t have written what you did, said you were writing a book review (said it emphatically), and then admitted you hadn’t read the book. You’ve left yourself pretty vulnerable to attack. That’s my only point.
ArtPosted by on 02/11 at 02:00 PM
Art: if you click on the bolded word “this”, it takes you to a genuine book review of the anthology “Theory’s Empire”.
I can’t totally blame the wingnutz on this one; because of the formatting here, there’s no way to tell what’s just bold text and what’s a link, other than hovering/clicking on the bold text.Posted by on 02/11 at 02:11 PM
Art you might want to refresh yourself on the difference between “a” and “the.” It’s all about careful reading!
And in the wonderful new e-world, a hyperlink establishes a pronoun’s antecedent.Posted by on 02/11 at 02:16 PM
Oh, I NOW see that the emphatic THIS in “gas-gas-gas” refers to your review of Patai et al. Well: my apologies. Still, what you wrote was certainly pretty unclear, and DH can be forgiven for not catching the subtlety, because it sure looks like what you were saying is that NOW you’re gonna really give a review to The Professors. I missed it.
Regarding Ron Karenga: you know that as a radical in the early 1970s, he was actually convicted in a California court of kidnapping and torturing two women. He served several years in a California prison for the crime. Yet, immediately upon release he was offered a university position. Would you approve of such a hiring practice, among the universe of possible applicants for a position? Doesn’t it make you uneasy?
ArtPosted by on 02/11 at 02:17 PM
Bérubé, if you weren’t already married I’d propose. Your new note did me in.Posted by on 02/11 at 02:21 PM
Still, what you wrote was certainly pretty unclear, and DH can be forgiven for not catching the subtlety, because it sure looks like what you were saying is that NOW you’re gonna really give a review to The Professors. I missed it.
Shorter Eckstein: I don’t know how teh intarwebs work, which is therefore Bérubé’s fault.
Horowitz: send better trolls. Art’s too easy to knock over. He’s no fun.
ironic captcha word: “thinking.”Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/11 at 02:48 PM
And Lauren, since when does a guy being married stop you from proposing?
captcha: “figures.”Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/11 at 02:48 PM
I’m not a troll sent by Horowitz. I entered this blog for my own amusement. I am not hostile to Michael, whose positions I respect even when I don’t completely agree with him. I haven’t engaged in ad hominem attacks upon anymone. And if you look around on the blog, Chris, you’ll see that not everyone agrees with you that my mistake about “THIS is a review” was a stupid one to make. Why not keep the discourse here at a high level?
ArtPosted by on 02/11 at 03:20 PM
Actually Mary Rosh was my alter ago. I’m not a pseudo economist, but I am a gun nut and an intellectual fraud-at-large. Luskin, by contrast, is the Krugman stalker.
(or is it D’ho?)
I get my fakiness writers mixed up.Posted by on 02/11 at 06:01 PM
C, Clarke, et. al.
>>Shorter Eckstein: I don’t know how teh intarwebs work, which is therefore Bérubé’s fault.
>>Art you might want to refresh yourself on the difference between “a” and “the.” It’s all about careful reading!
What the ef’ is with some of you. Is this emotional tenor typical of academia? Sounds like 7th grade to me.
Man comes in fronts his argument, it is pointed out to him that he mis-read the hypertext, he recognizes, apologizes and withdraws his point and the piling on begins, of course ignoring another substantial point he makes, just rivet attention on a spelling mistake, lapse in grammer or just presuppose his intelligence.
Berube should be grateful for Horowitz’s attention-it’s true, there is no bad publicity. Face it, who gives an ef about academia? I’ll tell you, very few. Instead of taking advantage of the publicity that any dust-up with Horowitz affords, an advantage that would allow you to make your point to a wider public - all you have to to is engage him civilly - Berube et. al respond with belittling incivility, not just to Horowitz but anyone who raises any of Horowitz’s arguments. You blew it. That goes for your wack pack to.Posted by on 02/11 at 07:18 PM
Oh, the incivility!
Listen, folks, there’s trolls and then there’s people making honest mistakes, and Art’s one of them latters. Play nice. I’ll see you all on the next thread.
But Daniel, tender plant, please don’t talk to me about incivility. I’ve dealt in good faith, good spirits, and good humor with a man who has treated me quite shabbily indeed. Bring your sermons on civility to FrontPage, won’t you? Thanks.Posted by Michael on 02/11 at 10:44 PM
And speaking of incivility! I didn’t even reply to Lauren’s marriage proposal. Yes, of course yes, though in a completely platonic way that neither threatens the institution of marriage nor opens the door to man-on-dog sex.
But wait—I have a counter-proposal. I’ll marry you if you come back to the blogosphere. I know, you were workin’ it on out for six whole years, long before any of us knew what the Internets were, and I’m still a newbie. But we need you. Your country needs you. Ask not what your blogosphere can do for you, Lauren. . . .Posted by Michael on 02/11 at 10:48 PM
Art, I’m sorry.
As insufficient reparations, you get five free throws at me. My gender, extremist politics, profession, or literacy level are all fair game.
Just please don’t hit me in the face. It’s how I make my living.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/11 at 11:03 PM
I accept your apology, CC--I’ll take my shots but spare your face. Of course, DH himself often gets hit in the face with pies from all those staunch defenders of free speech when he on campuses. However, he’s a big boy, and he knows what he’s getting into.
Now, once more, to substance:
Michael, as this blog has often discussed, you’re chair of a search committee right now. Would a candidate for the position in English at Penn State who had been convicted of kidnapping and torturing women, and had served four years in prison on this felony, and was applying for the position at Penn State immediately upon getting released from prison, and who, moreover, did not have a Ph.D. (i.e., a Ph.D. thesis)--would such a person make your short list? Even your long short list? But Ron Karenga was hired for the Black Studies program at San Diego State under exactly those conditions. Don’t you find that more than a little...odd?
During the 1980s, Karenga actually did gain a legitimate Ph.D., from the University of Southern California. But he also now claims on his website to be a DOUBLE Ph.D., with a Ph.D. in Political Science from “U.S. International University.” This institution no longer exists. And the equally obscure institution into which it was merged does not give Ph.D.’s in political science. Doesn’t that, well, trouble you?
Since 1989, Karenga has been Professor and Chair of the Department of Black Studies at Cal State Long Beach. What actual scholarship--real scholarship--has he produced to justify that status? He is the main figure in the hiring in the Department. Take a look at their course offerings.
Shouldn’t we, as scholars, be concerned about situations such as this?
ArtPosted by on 02/12 at 12:01 PM
No, of course I wouldn’t have hired Karenga under those conditions. And yes, there are a couple of real miscreants in Horowitz’s book, including some of his old comrades. (And we also have some miscreants who are inexplicably not in his book, as I pointed out on Wednesday.) But veteran Horowitz-watchers know what the game is: take a couple of loons like Ward Churchill, and use them to smear everyone to the left of Joe Lieberman. See, e.g., Discover the Networks.
David was hit with a pie precisely once, and not by defenders of free speech. This blog is an observant blog, and often notices when people try to put their thumbs on the scales.Posted by on 02/12 at 02:26 PM
take a couple of loons like Ward Churchill,
I was wondering how soon I’d be able to disprove the recent allegation that we’re all Bérubé sycophants around here. Thanks, Michael!
Of course, I’m totally on board with your “one pie” analysis.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/12 at 03:00 PM
Yes, Michael, the Ron Karenga example is only what they call anecdotal evidence--but the only reason we’re discussing Professor Karenga is because you yourself chose to highlight DH’s discussion of Karenga in “gas-gas-gas” above. Now you appear to be admitting that...well, DH has a point about Karenga. Okay.
ArtPosted by on 02/12 at 03:10 PM
Oh, and as for pies in the face, yes, Michael is technically correct that it was only once (at Butler U), and I apologize for saying “often”, but here’s why I had that impression; there’s a larger story:
Once hit with a pie, Butler University.
Had to terminate a talk prematurely despite the presence of 30 armed police
and 4 bodyguards, once, Berkeley.
Had to be protected by 12 armed police and a German Shepherd, once,
University of Michigan.
Was rushed by a screaming loon and saved only by the intervention of a
bodyguard, twice—MIT and Princeton.
Could not speak or continue to speak until leftwing fascists (usually the disgusting
ISO) were hauled out by police, at least four times: University of Texas (Austin), Indiana University,
University of Hawaii, University of Illinois, Chicago (Dean Stanley Fish was
sitting in the audience and approved of the ejection.)
Was streaked by a protester, once, Purdue University (he got to within a foot of DH before
someone grabbed him.)
Was rushed by two torpedoes from the Revolutionary Communist Party, once at
the Pacific Design Center, LA.
Disruptions and protests: University of North Carolina, University of
Delaware, UC Davis, SF State, Boston U., Harvard, Wisconsin, Arizona State, lots of others.
Had to have campus security present, usually but not always in force (i.e, 5
or more) ever since the first Berkeley speech on reparations in March
2001—i.e., going on five years.
ArtPosted by on 02/12 at 07:39 PM
Well, I wouldn’t hire Karenga, but I don’t think his existence justifies Horowitz’s broad-brush smear campaign, either.Posted by on 02/12 at 08:11 PM
Okay, you admit that DH is right that Karenga is bad. The question is: is Karenga part of a pattern?
One can start by noting the parallels with the fraud Ward Churchill, also a full professor and until recently the chair of a Department. So Karenga’s not a one-shot deal. (I don’t support them going after WC, though--because no matter what they have found on him, it’s only the fruit of a political witch-hunt. The problem is how he GOT to his position in the first place.)
But then, what about: Lionel Jeffries, Molofi Asante, bell hooks, Angela Davis, Bettina Aptheker (all full professors, one the chair of a program); or, at a lower level, Kathleen Cleaver at Emory, or Greg Thomas at Syracuse.
Or Bernadine Dohrn (now a full professor of law at Northwestern) and Bill Ayers (now a distinguished professor of education) at UIChicago Circle. You’re the head of a search committee this year, so do you really mean that when the search committees met on these two positions at these two universities back in the early 1980s they could find no better candidates than two unrepentent terrorists?? (Unrepentent: you’ll remember Ayers’ unfortunate remarks about his continued devotion to the propaganda of explosion--which happened to appear in the NY Times precisely on 9/11.) And what does Ayers’ subsequent work in education consist of but pamphleteering?
Again, I’m glad we agree on Karenga, and I agree that if it was only Karenga that would be one thing. The only reason I brought up Karenga is that you brought him up first. But it isn’t only Karenga.
At my own university this week, a job candidate in Art History presented her job talk: depictions of human-animal intercourse (zoophilia) in Roman art. Very edgy, most def.
She made the short list.
ArtPosted by on 02/12 at 08:53 PM
Oh, Art. There are over one million college professors in the United States. Of course we have a few dozen questionable calls, like the hideous racist Michael Levin at CCNY (unaccountably unmentioned by Horowitz). But you can’t be serious about lumping bell hooks, Molefi Asante, Angela Davis, and Bettina Aptheker in with Leonard (and it is Leonard) Jeffries? Why? What could all those people possibly have in common, I wonder?Posted by Michael on 02/12 at 09:24 PM
You contemptuously refer to a job candidate’s talk on"depictions of human-animal intercourse (zoophilia) in Roman art,” as if the topic is self-evidently unworthy of scholarly attention. But just because it’s not your cup of tea doesn’t mean it may not provide a fascinating window on Roman culture. So please enlighten me--why is this topic not worth art-historical investigation? Would you rather another drab dissertation in which the applicant elucidates the work of a minor artist, previously unstudied because he is so unimportant?
And even more importantly--doesn’t the quality of the applicant’s research, analysis, and writing matter more than the subject?
Moreover, based on the context in which you cite the talk, it appears that you believe there’s some sort of equivalency between the job talk and torture or terrorism. Or something. Really--what’s the link between this talk and Karenga?
Your post is hopelessly muddled, so much so that it’s hard to tell exactly where the whining ends and the smearing begins. So let me ask you something else:
Do you think that personal politics should matter in academic appointments, or not?
You seem to believe that they shouldn’t, but your evidence of some sort of left-wing conspiracy (I think that’s what you’re alleging) in hiring is simply the presence, on faculties of a bunch of left-wingers. Do you think that a similar list couldn’t be compiled of right-wingers?
You cite Bernardine Dohrn--well, the NU Law Faculty also boasts Steven Calabresi, co-founder of the Federalist Society and chief proponent of the “unitary executive” theory that many scholars consider a gussied-up sort of soft monarchism. And if you find Bill Ayers’ lack of remorse about his crimes repugnant--as I do--how do you feel about Berkeley Prof. John Yoo’s continued defense of the memos in which he rationalized torture?
It’s easy to find a pattern when, as here, you cherry-pick the evidence.Posted by on 02/12 at 09:29 PM
What they have in common is sub-standard scholarship in Black Studies, Michael, a sub-standard scholarship that is combined with big jobs at some good or great places (well, Temple ain’t a great place, but it’s in a great city: better than teaching, say, at Arkansas State). You brought up Karenga--well, he’s running a black studies program, but you indicated he was a one-shot deal, so I listed some other people in the field. Or are you calling me a racist? I hope not. It is sub-standard scholarship that’s the issue.
There are whole fields where this sort of rot is going on: how did Ward Churchill’s work get approved by the outside reviewers in his field of ethnic studies when he came up for tenure and again when he came up for full professor, when 10 minutes on the internet reveals his inaccuracies? (Cleaver teaches law at Emory on the basis of her memoirs about the Panthers.)
Ayers holds a very prestigious position at UICC (again, not a great place, but it is in a great city, and his wife’s university IS a great place) on the basis of book after book of radical pamphleteering about education. Pampleteering--just like Karenga.
Again, the connection I’m making between Karenga re the hiring of Ayers and Dohrn is ALSO clear: these people were hired at universities when they’d come up out of the terrorist underground just a few years before. Were there no better candidates available to the search committees than ex-terrorists (and, as we now know, unrepentent ones at that)? I hope you see the parallel with Karenga.
Of course, this is still only a handful. But how many more examples do you need before there is an indication that there’s trouble here in academic city?
ArtPosted by on 02/12 at 09:43 PM
I suppose I shouldn’t have brought up the zoophilia thing, but as a political historian who constantly is faced with job candidates who work on the history of flowers rather than states (I’m not making this up), I find this stuff--or rather,this sort of fluff--sort of irritating. There are many more important topics in ancient art history than this one, and there were 75 applicants for this job. But zoophilia made the short list. I think it made the short list because it was “edgy”, rather than central to the development of ancient art. I hope you see my point. But I was probably wrong to vent, and I won’t bring up this case again.
ArtPosted by on 02/12 at 09:50 PM
job candidates who work on the history of flowers rather than states
And the history of human uses of, interactions with, culture of, or folklore regarding flowering plants is an illegitimate field of study in history because...?
The history I learned back in the 1960s was so divorced from the natural context in which it occurred that it might well have taken place, as described, in a space capsule. I have no idea what your dismissive reference to “the history of flowers” means with regard to the paper to which you’re referring, but I’ll risk saying that the synthetic approach it suggests is one that I find has breathed life into much of historical study of late.
Personally, I’d would leap over a truckload of Boorstin to get to the newest work by Kirlansky. But I’m not only a non-academic but am without a degree, so you may dismiss my argument as untutored if you wish.Posted by Chris Clarke on 02/12 at 10:10 PM
Or are you calling me a racist? I hope not. It is sub-standard scholarship that’s the issue.
I was suggesting that you’re linking people who’ve actually published books (regardless of whether you like those books) with Jeffries, who has done no scholarship at all and whose “ice people/ sun people” schtick is genuinely foul. (For the technique involved here, see Horowitz, “How to Link Bruce Springsteen to Mohammed Atta.") More generally, I think you have a highly selective sense of outrage, though it has more to do with people whose politics you don’t care for than with race.Posted by Michael on 02/12 at 10:55 PM
Michael, you were the one who brought up Ron Karenga as an example of DH being over the top, and then when confronted with facts about Karenga you implied that, yes he’s bad but he is one of a kind. My point was: he isn’t, not in any of his aspects.
All the cases I discussed are famous and obvious,of course--indeed, too famous and obvious. My point was merely to argue, in a very quick manner, against your position that Karenga was one of a kind, and thus totally “cherry-picked.” Surprisingly, he turns out not even to be the only criminal ever chosen by a search committee; and certainly not the only substandard scholar mysteriously promoted to high position, not the only fraud in Black Studies or ethnic studies, not the only left-wing ranter with a distinguished professorship.
Of course, what we have here are still only a handful of cases. But by presenting several examples to you instead of one, I think I’ve raised the question of pattern. How far does this pattern, at least in some fields, reach?
As for my political bias, I don’t think the current American professoriate is filled with substandard scholar right-wingers or fascists. All the now-famous statistics certainly suggest another political leaning, don’t they?
Well, I’m off to watch the half-pipe in the Olympics, guys!
ArtPosted by on 02/13 at 12:12 AM
Michael, you were the one who brought up Ron Karenga as an example of DH being over the top
No. This is a pretty substantial misreading of a pretty obvious point: as I said in this very post, “the phrase ‘torturer and the inventor of Kwanzaa’ is a little like ‘arsonist and the creator of Grandparents’ Day.’ It’s a problem of moral scale, you see.” Nothing about David being over the top. I’m sorry I have to explain this at such length, but I’m not pro-arson, either.
The other black scholars you name are not, in fact, frauds. But then, I don’t believe you know anything about the field, so I see no reason to continue this aspect of the conversation.Posted by Michael on 02/13 at 06:53 AM
"You’re so vain...you prob’ly think this blog is about you, don’t you, don’t you, don’t you...”Posted by belledame222 on 02/13 at 12:55 PM
For the technique involved here, see Horowitz, “How to Link Bruce Springsteen to Mohammed Atta.”
I believe the tools used in this linking attempt are generally known as “cranks.”Posted by david ross mcirvine on 02/13 at 05:03 PM
Sorry to have to do this, everyone, but I’m closing comments on this post. The trolls have been getting increasingly personal and nasty, and are now accusing everyone who uses the common Internet appellation “D’ho” (or one of its cognates) of racism, sexism, dragism, and bagism. So in the future, I suggest we confine ourselves to describing David Horowitz in unflattering terms other than these (I don’t want to impose any Stalinist discipline about this), and find some other term, such as DH, if we want to save valuable keystrokes. Thanks!Posted by on 02/13 at 07:16 PM
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