- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 6, 2001

Summit of cool
"I was surprised to read in the newspaper the other day that the movie star Russell Crowe has just concluded a month-long tour with his rock 'n' roll band. … I didn't know Russell Crowe had a band. I wouldn't have thought it necessary for him to have a band. …
"He earns more money in a month than you or I will earn in a lifetime. … He enjoys the adulation of millions of strangers, the respect of his peers, and the awed deference of the creepy media moguls who would technically be considered his bosses if they weren't so afraid of ticking him off. … Cars, houses, boats, power tools — he has everything a man could want. He has Meg Ryan's phone number.
"He has everything, apparently, but the essential thing: He isn't a rock star. Clearly this is a source of some annoyance for him, as it is for most men. Crowe's aspiration … reflects the general consensus among men that being a rock star is more than a job, more than a career, more indeed than a way of life. Being a rock star is the summit of cool, a kind of apotheosis."
—Andrew Ferguson, writing on "Counting Crowes," in the Sept. 10 issue of the Weekly Standard

Without moderation
"Whatever gave people the notion that feminism has a moderate side? Whenever you probe what is called 'liberal' or 'moderate' feminism, you almost inevitably find a vein of pure radicalism. Betty Friedan, for example, has often been cited as a reasonable sort of feminist. Yet her landmark book 'The Feminine Mystique' (1963), which launched the contemporary women's movement, is marked by radical assertions, as when she compares 1950s housewives to the zombified inmates of a concentration camp and demands that American women be collectively educated out of any desire to devote themselves to family life.
"Contrary to their protestation that the women's movement is only about giving women 'choice,' mainstream feminists clearly aim, in totalitarian fashion, to create total parity between men and women in every sphere of life, an agenda that includes driving as many women as possible into the workplace. Partly as a result, we are becoming a nation of one-child and no-child families."
—Carol Iannone, writing on "Seneca Falls," in the Aug. 29 issue of New York Press

Western rot
"The Nuremberg Rally at Durban, South Africa marvelously dramatizes the rot that has taken hold of the Western world. Back in the '80s, when the Lebanese Christians were under armed assault from their Muslim compatriots, their leader … stood up in his foxhole and said, 'the Western world should either defend us, or change its name.' It didn't defend them … it didn't change its name, and it hasn't learned a thing.
"[The U.N. conference at] Durban was to have been a celebration of goodness, a condemnation of our worst practices (from racism to xenophobia), and a call to arms to the entire world. In practice, it is the very opposite: a celebration of hatred, an embrace of racism, an orgy of xenophobia, with the Western world as the prime object of xenophobic and racist hatred. …
"This is what happens to the Western world after years of political correctness and idiotic revisionism, blaming us for all the sins of the others. …
"Jesse Jackson has not one harsh word for the Durban xenophobic anti-Semites. … Entire gaggles of self-proclaimed black 'leaders' embrace Durban, and insist on reparations for American slavery.
"Their aggressive self-confidence reflects the timorous self-doubt of the West, brainwashed by a generation of cultural relativism, multiculturism, structural deconstructionism, and simple hatred of whitey, into paying hush money and hoping the whole bad dream will go away."
—Michael Ledeen, writing on "The New Nazis," Tuesday in National Review Online at www.nationalreview.com

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