Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Missus and I went to see bestselling author Jonah Goldberg at Emory last night (10/22/2008). White Hall, room 208. It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience.

Jonah gave his standard "Liberal Fascism" speech, laying out the history that shows fascism to be a wholly-owned creature of the left. He was in a much better state than when I saw him at Oglethorpe. Then he was suffering from a bad head cold, and wasn't terribly coherent. This time, he was in fine form. I particularly enjoyed his examples of leftist "courage on the cheap." Naomi Wolf, for example, prancing around and likening the US to the Third Reich, without bothering to reflect on the actual fate of actual political dissidents in Hitler's Germany. Oh, it was fine stuff.

After the speech, there was a Q&A session. He took questions from a few Obama supporters. There were two major themes. One was along the lines of "Obama may have Bill Ayers, but you've got Timothy McVeigh and Eric Rudolph. What do you think of that?" Another was, "Why do you stoop to name-calling? Aren't you afraid that you might inspire some conservative kook to violence?"

To the first, Jonah answered that the left has a much closer connection to violence, citing Ayers, the Black Panthers, hell, Mao, Stalin, Hitler, and Pol Pot, to name a few. To the latter question, he gave example after example of conservatives portrayed as actual Nazis, and turned the question on its head, asking why leftists aren't concerned about inspiring violence against conservatives. (Standard leftist answer: They don't have to be, they're the good guys, and anyway, conservatives deserve what they get, good and hard.)

There were a number of other questions. Let's see. One was about the hagiography that surrounds Obama. Jonah commented that he didn't know how much of that was sponsored by Obama, versus how much was imposed on him by adoring fans. Another was about Laura Ingraham's proposal for a website "Intellectuals For Palin". While making clear his respect for Laura Ingraham, Jonah had a hilarious response to that, centering on the notion that Sarah Palin's not an intellectual, but so what? She's a genuine reformer, and is to be loved for her enemies.

There was much else. Unfortunately I was having too much fun to take many notes.

Afterward I took the time to shake his hand, compliment him on his book, and wish him the best.

As I said, a fine evening.

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