- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 1, 2005

The archetype

“Anti-Americanism is a phenomenon which, though common and ubiquitous, is difficult to explain because it is illogical, irrational, contradictory, and mysteriously primitive. …

“The people among whom anti-Americanism is most rife, who articulate it and set the tone of the venom, are the intellectuals. … [I]ntellectuals are fundamentally and incorrigibly antinomian. To them, authority, especially if legitimate and benign, is the enemy-in-chief, to be resisted instinctively as a threat to their ‘freedom,’ even if such authority ultimately makes it possible. …

“In this confused spasm of irrationality which is anti-Americanism, there is a process of personification which has currently settled on the necessarily lonely figure of George W. Bush. … And the reason for this is simple, and much to Mr. Bush’s credit: To an anti-American, he is the archetype, the quintessential American. … He is good-looking, upright, a Texan, a man of wealth and self-assurance. … He does not dance effortlessly on the sacramental turf of the campus, or fit into the smoke-filled culture of the basement cafe, or find books axiomatically preferable to the saddle. Does he read poetry to relax, or study philosophy as a hobby, or worship Picasso? No. All this adds up to a terrible indictment.”

Paul Johnson, writing on “Hating America, Hating Humanity,” in the Sept. 12 issue of National Review

Hef’s heart

“Karen Covell, director of the Hollywood Prayer Network — which consists of some 3,500 Christians in the industry who pray for each other and for their non-Christian colleagues — finally got her big break in Hollywood: a job as associate producer on ‘Headliners and Legends’ with Matt Lauer. She was thrilled. But then came her first assignment: a one-hour profile of Playboy mogul Hugh Hefner.

“As a Christian who opposed everything Mr. Hefner stood for, Ms. Covell was appalled. …

“To her surprise, she discovered that [her producer] was a Christian who did not want to do this story and had talked to his pastor about it. ‘His pastor told him he couldn’t turn down this assignment,’ Ms. Covell said. … ‘This was an opportunity to really dig deeper into why Hugh Hefner became the man he is.’

“The story delved into Mr. Hefner’s early life and spiritual background. … In the opulent Playboy Mansion … the interviewers brought Mr. Hefner … to confess that ‘he’s still just a little boy trying to find love.’ They exposed his futile attempt to substitute sex for love and the pain behind the Playboy facade, the God-shaped vacuum in Mr. Hefner’s heart.”

— Gene Edward Veith, writing on “Salting Hollywood,” in the Sept. 3 issue of World

War of words

“In a recent article … in The Washington Post … the author was surprised that the esteemed and careful [Judge John G.] Roberts employed the archaic expression ‘War Between the States.’ …

“What is hysterical about all of this is that it’s supposed to be such an anachronism (at best) to use ‘War Between the States.’ The article misses the historical point: It doesn’t have a thing to do with one’s sympathy, but rather very simple objective historical analysis. The war in question shouldn’t be called ‘The Civil War’ because it wasn’t a civil war, but rather a war of secession, or independence — two completely different, and one might say opposite, things.”

Brian Dunaway, writing on “War and Secession,” Wednesday at www.lewrockwell.com

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