2 readers online now  |  69 million page views

Tyranny's Comfortable Liberal Campuses

Reader comment on item: The Rot in Our [Canadian] Universities

Submitted by Jonathan Pfeffer, Feb 18, 2004 at 11:23

Permit to comment on your lecture at Berkeley and other campus ruckuses against you and against others. I had no place to send my comments on that issue.

The motives of the Islamists is fairly obvious, but what of the intellectual liberals who regularly create the comfortable forums for these people? What the heck is up with them?

Liberalism was founded on the notion of freedom, freedom of worship, freedom of speech and most importantly freedom to choose a responsible government. So in the recent conflicts in the Middle East, where there were, and still are, ongoing battles between liberal democracies and tyranny, the intellectual liberals tendency is to sympathize with tyranny. Yet in both cases, Israel and Iraq, as well as others throughout the world, the intellectual center of what can be thought of as the liberal conscience in America and Europe has opted to comfort the tyranny at the expense of the liberal democracy. This is not new of course. This phenomena has occurred throughout the twentieth century. The liberal intellectual fancies himself allied with the oppressor overseas against the forces of western encroachment.

Perhaps one of liberalism most cherished tenet is that tyranny has a right to a sort of freedom from liberalism. That the forced spread of freedom or even liberal tampering with tyranny, violates the fundamental laws of liberalism. The right to be ruled by a local tyrant, without western interference seems to be another unwritten right. One of my favorite lines was; "Why are they picking on Saddam?, there are worse dictators."

Another peculiarity is this. Why have intellectual liberals in America bonded so well with expatriates from tyranny. Not to push for freedom and encourage liberalization back home, but to halt the encroachment of liberalism to the old country.

Or perhaps another possibility is this. Liberalism really has two faces. One face is the embodiment of our free societies and its central tendency to choose elected leaders who tend to want to drive back tyranny and spread freedom. This I might call the liberalism of the people. And then there is another face of liberalism, the un-elected, self appointed intellectuals. These are the jealous and powerless liberals who lament that they have all the brains, yet the people give all the power to GW Bush liberals. They don't appeal to the people at large, but form a private, jet setting club of intellectuals, hostile to the elected liberal government and always at odds with society's central tendency. These people act as a check on the spread of the people's liberalism through out the world.
Submitting....

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Comment on this item

Mark my comment as a response to Tyranny's Comfortable Liberal Campuses by Jonathan Pfeffer

Email me if someone replies to my comment

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

See recent outstanding comments.

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List
eXTReMe Tracker

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2020 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)