"Whatever Happened to That Larry Summers Fellow"
Jonah Goldberg is really a remarkably stupid person:
Noah Millman has a long post in response to Sanchez as well. He has many interesting insights and hypotheses in it about why the American right is close-minded today compared to the left. But as near as I can tell, Noah simply asserts that this is so. Where is the data to back this up? Maybe my experience is far, far more of an exception to the rule than I can imagine, but it still seems to me that liberalism is far more shot through with political correctness and intellectual taboos than the right. I’m really trying to let David Frum’s self-serving version of events fade away, but even if his biggest defenders are right, is he really the only data point so many smart people need to support the closed-conservative-mind thesis? I mean because of this anecdote we have to hear about the right’s “epistemic closure”? Does the Frumian defenestration (and it wasn’t a defenestration — he jumped) really outweigh the Larry Summer’s fiasco at Harvard? Or the absurdity of the Skip Gates nonsense, also at Harvard? Or the riot of hatred aimed at Joe Lieberman?
Say what you will about Larry Summers’ tumultuous turn as President of Harvard but it seems to me that the last time I saw the guy on television he was serving as Assistant to the President and Director of the National Economic Council. Joe Lieberman is a member in good standing of the Democratic caucus of the United States Senate. These anecdotes illustrate the reverse of what Goldberg thinks. You can get drummed out of your prominent job in part because of left-wing opposition, and wind up in a new, more important, more political job in a Democratic administration. You can lose a Democratic Senate primary and endorse the GOP presidential candidate and stay in the caucus.
Conversely on the right a guy like Jonah Goldberg with no discernable mental functioning whatsoever, whose signature work is privately regarded with contempt by many of his ideological fellow travelers, can have a long and successful career based purely on rigid adherence to ideological orthodoxy.