Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Palin's Conservative Critics

Many conservative intellectuals don’t much care for Sarah Palin.

Among these are: David Brooks, Christopher Buckley, David Frum, and Peggy Noonan.

On the other hand, some conservative intellectuals don’t seem to have a problem with her at all.

This group includes: Joseph Epstein, Victor Davis Hanson, Roger Kimball, and Thomas Sowell.

I think I discern a pattern here.

For Epstein, Hanson, Kimball, and Sowell, have credentials and expertise independent of their punditry. They are not considered to be intellectuals because of their political views or activities, rather they are intellectuals with non political bona fides, who also comment on political matters.

You could learn something from each one of them, without ever getting into politics.

For instance, Joseph Epstein could teach you about literature and about the history and theory of literary criticism; Victor Davis Hanson could teach you about philology, about Greek and Latin grammar and literature, and about ancient history and philosophy; Roger Kimball could teach you about the history of art and the theory of art criticism; and Thomas Sowell could teach you about the history of economics, and the theory and praxis of various economics models and philosophies.

All of the above have written scholarly books in their fields whose worth transcends politics or fashion.

David Brooks, Christopher Buckley, David Frum, and Peggy Noonan, on the other hand, can only really tell you about themselves: how they feel and what they think about current trends and events.

They are considered to be “intellectuals” not because of their knowledge or their accomplishments, but because of their style.

They share an intellectual patois, a sesquipedalian vocabulary, an impressive academic pedigree, a snobbish and pretentious demeanor, an impressive roster of friends and acquaintances, and an overwhelming sense of their own importance.

Sarah Palin, who does not share any of these traits, and yet whose actual accomplishments far exceeds any of their own, seems to horrify them to no end.

I wonder why?

1 comment:

  1. I wanted to give props for a beautifully stated blog post. I can't stand Brooks, Noonan nor the others. I find something far more human in Hanson, Sowell, Epstein and Kimball. True education trumps pretentious political blabbering any day of the week.