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Originally published at Rubin Reports.
“He who tells the truth is driven from nine villages.” – Turkish Proverb
A couple of decades ago, I was invited to a conference on the anniversary of the birth of Isaiah Berlin. One of the speakers was the George Orwell professor of a British university.
But his ideas were the opposite of Orwell’s. Orwell was a great patriot. On the contrary, this guy’s definition of a nation was any random lines drawn on a map–no preconditions. He was no patriot. I guess a nation having values is invalid now.
Also, Orwell was an anti-radical socialist, author of the amazing anti-radical Animal-Farm, and a milder, anti-totalitarian socialist who admired the United States. In contrast, the endowed professor had the opposite ideas and real politics of Orwell. After I challenged him on these modern “Progressive” (leftist) points, nobody spoke to me for the rest of the conference, because they just assumed what he said was true.
If you want to know a contemporary story about this, I can refer to an experience at a conference where a professor (George Orwell professor in fact, was a great patriot, though a socialist) made jokes.
But then I thought about Berlin himself. He championed values of pluralism and individual liberty, against political correctness and enforced orthodoxy.
There are two issues at stake. First, the moderate liberal-conservative democratic consensus–Orwell and Berlin–staked out these margins. This was the mainstream of democracy and democratic opinion: The “vital center.” Today, this has been rejected in place of bitter, triumphalist partisanship, a transformation of the system.
Second, scholarship and honest journalism: Go where truth ordains, even if it is not your preference. This is in place of the indoctrination and partisanship, which have turned large tracts of entertainment, journalism, and scholarship into lies.
In other words, people want teaching, journalism, and charity to be credible. But these are caught-up in the partisan culture war- which is in control of the left. The coinage of these matters is debased.
About the Author: Professor Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. See the GLORIA/MERIA site at www.gloria-center.org.
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Obama went to begin the Arab Spring in Egypt which is still his target; Israel is just the lever.
Qatar’s wealth and Turkey’s size should not preclude us from telling it as it is: Qatar and Turkey are among the worst villains in the Gaza tragedy.
New Delhi would do well to remain aware of the predicament of Israel today.
his Tisha B’Av, and this Tu B’Av, remember: Hashem will protect us if we unite and rally around Him
Israel’s morality is underscored by its unprecedented restraint and care for loss of life.
The Gazan octopus arm is a test case, as the rest of the arms are closely watching it.
Obama has chosen shaky ally on the way out over strong ally solidly in the American orbit.
World War I had sown chaos throughout the centuries-old Jewish communities of Eastern Europe.
The IDF pounding continued and it again seemed only a matter of time before Hamas would be forced to accept the Egyptian proposal.
Nothing is ever so clear in the complex and often brutal calculus of urban warfare.
Let me make it plain. There will be mass murder, even genocide in Syria.
A large number of pro-Obama and radical or even anti-Israel cadre are Jews.
Does anyone think the Palestinian Authority will resist daily attacks from Hamas and Fatah radicals?
The Obama Administration plan is very simple, assuming that everything goes smoothly–which of course it will not.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/rubin-reports/culture-war-ruining-journalism-academia-and-charity/2013/12/04/
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