Sunday, November 20, 2016

Review: The Betrayal of Liberalism: How the Disciples of Freedom and Equality Helped Foster the Illiberal Politics of Coercion and Control

The Betrayal of Liberalism: How the Disciples of Freedom and Equality Helped Foster the Illiberal Politics of Coercion and Control The Betrayal of Liberalism: How the Disciples of Freedom and Equality Helped Foster the Illiberal Politics of Coercion and Control by Hilton Kramer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

While this is not a perfectly even collection of essays, in terms of argumentative force, this is worthwhile for anyone seeking examination of modern social liberalism and its roots in Rousseau and Mill. These essays taken from the journal New Criterion "seek to disentangle what is beneficent from what is destructive" and are worth the time if you are at all interested in prevailing ideas and how they came to be, and how assumptions motivate policymakers and 'thought leaders'. To echo Richard Weaver, ideas have consequences.

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Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Artificial distinction

INTERVIEWER
One critic has said, “The novel is only half secretly about art, the great subject of modern artists.” How do you feel about that?

DURRELL
The theme of art is the theme of life itself. This artificial distinction between artists and human beings is precisely what we are all suffering from. An artist is only someone unrolling and digging out and excavating the areas normally accessible to normal people everywhere, and exhibiting them as a sort of scarecrow to show people what can be done with themselves.