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Tenured Radicals

Several blogs, including Powerline have linked to material about William Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn, noting that Dohrn and Ayers helped Obama start his political career in the 1990s.

The focus on Obama, and whether there is any significance to his connection (whatever it is) with Ayers, has obscured the real scandal here. Both Ayers and Dohrn are now faculty members in good standing at Universities in the Chicago area. Their views are virtually unchanged from those they held in their younger days. Moreover, their views are probably hard to distinguish from those held by a significant number of their colleagues. The scandal, in other words, is that no one has asked why that is the case, and how we might change it. Are our colleges and universities damaged beyond repair.

Discussions - 10 Comments

Are they "damaged"? Yes.

"Beyond repair"? No.

One of the greatest scandals of our time, a time rent with such things unfortunately, is the state of lefty propaganda throughout our educational establishment. From the time a kid is drilled in kindergarten, to the time he completes the Marxist finishing academies in his early 20s, he is subjected to an unrelenting ideological attack, all meant to suit him for nothing more than assessing every single situation through the creepy prism of race/class/gender.

There are exceptions to be sure, but their number is so small as not to warrant mentioning.

Homeschooling is the wave of the future.

How do we account then for the significant amount of conservatives/Republicans?

I grew up in a liberal family.

Today, I am conservative and almost always vote Republican.

With me, college was transformative -- liberal to conservative.

Am I unique?

Richard: I think that it would be useful to have a discussion about Ayers and the Weather Underground, but I doubt that the folks at Powerline are the ones to initiate it. Unless you still think that Bilal Hussein is a terrorist, the Schiavo memo was a fake, or Iraq really had WMDs. I think that the gentlemen pictured in your sidebar to the left would laugh at those jokers.

The sixties are a strange place. Folks who supported dropping napalm, carpet bombing, and agent orange were mainstream hawks. Lots of folks were happy that Martin Luther King was shot. The state of Virginia still defended its ban in interracial marriage. And some students thought they were marxist revolutionaries. Folks from all of these areas of life didn't just die off - they got old, become professionals and politicians of one sort or another, and reacted in various ways to the next thirty or forty years of their lives.

Given that McCain didn't exactly acquit himself in a personally honorable fashion after his experience in Vietnam, I don't know how deeply rooted the urge for the discussion will be (i.e., McCain the wounded warrior, still ambitious, ditches his loyal wartime wife for a wealthy heiress, at the precise time when his first wife needed him most - perhaps understandable, and probably a recognizable after-effect of war, but not exactly heroic).

The ghosts of the sixties may haunt both campaigns this season. I doubt it will be very enlightening. But is any of this really a scandal? I doubt it.

Funny, but Ayers and Dohrn don't seem to have learned much if anything over the last thirty or forty years:

Dale, the exceptions to which I referred weren't individuals, but rather places of education.

But the number of American Conservatives is dwindling, and what is defined as Conservativism too has undergone such a transformation that it bears little resemblance to what our forefathers would have recognized.

For a candidate to be associated with scum like Ayers and Dohrn (and Wright) is damaging. This is even more damaging when the candidate is clearly a pencil-necked wimp, led on a leash by his noxious, radical wife. And, as Karl Rove accurately calls Obama in tomorrow's Wall Street Journal: "a whiner."

">">"> This from Sol Stern may be of interest.

Am I unique?

No (but not common, but it is also despite your "education", not because of it...

Ayers and Dohrn are indeed evildoers. But are there enough Americans who can recall who they were, what they did, what they represented, what their message was? I don't think so. This issue has to be woven into a larger theme, the Barack Hussein Obama theme, the multicultural theme, the guy who can't be bothered to wear a flag on his lapel, the guy who wants to talk to the Iranians, the guy who seems to imply that America had it coming, though he wouldn't do something so crass as to come out there and blurt it like that.

It will be a factor in the case in chief against him, but it isn't a smoking gun. Wright is much closer to a smoking gun.

Weren't the Loyalists (American Revolution) conservative?

Weren't the Democrats like Bull Conner who fought against civil rights conservative?

Also, isn't classical liberalism more akin to modern conservatism than its modern day namesake?

Where is the defining line of conservatism you speak of that has changed soo much and why is that change bad?

Note, I am not trying to trick you, I am truly interesting where you are coming from.

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