18
Mar
12

lamb-banned

I saw the headline on the progressive review’s feed on netvibes about brian lamb retiring from c-span, which I’ve followed over the years and thought was a valuable resource until it got swept up in the post-9/11 brain-locked hysteria; but the link was to an excerpt from sam smith’s memoirs which was far more interesting

I realized that I had stumbled upon the outlines of a new American political fault line. It was so new that it lacked a name, stereotypes, cliches, experts and prophets. In many ways it seemed more a refugee camp than a voluntary assembly, yet, as I thought about it, the more its logic seemed only concealed rather than lacking.

On one side were libertarians, blacks, greens, populists, free thinkers, the alienated apathetic, the rural abandoned, the apolitical young, as well as others convinced America was losing its democracy, its sovereignty and its decency. On the other side was a technocratic, media, legal, business and cultural elite centered in New York and Washington. At times it felt as if all of America outside of these two centers had turned into a gigantic, chaotic salon des refusés.

Another thing I noticed was that this was about far more than politics. A cultural and class coup was underway, of which the Clinton administration was a part, one that was creating a gated economy and transforming those outside the barriers into pliant, homogenized, multi-nationalized consumers for whom freedom, choice and democracy would atrophy into symbols of only virtual meaning. People like me were traitors to the cause.

For me Smith is the most important political writer in post-1960 America.

If anyone has issue with that statement, please comment freely.

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