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What Does It Mean To Be A Liberal?

Jon Sanders has a column at FrontPage Mag in which he responds to an essay about what it supposedly means to be a liberal. I say supposedly because Sanders points out what others like Tammy Bruce and Christopher Hitchens have, that the actions of today's liberals do not match their rhetoric.

Just in time for the frenzied last month of an election season, the Chicago Tribune on Tuesday published an essay by University of Chicago law professor Geoffrey Stone entitled "What it means to be a liberal." In it, Stone, the author of Perilous Times: Free Speech in Wartime, posits 10 propositions that to him "define 'liberal' today."

Stone's essay would have been more convincing if it had been titled: "What it should mean to be a liberal." For example, Stone's first two propositions include such corkers as "Liberals are skeptical of censorship and celebrate free and open debate" and "Liberals believe individuals should be tolerant and respectful of difference." One wonders if Stone has in mind the same "liberals" who championed academic speech codes, cheered the flouting of the First Amendment under the rubric of "campaign-finance reform," and spent the last six years demonizing President Bush as a Nazi or worse.

Sanders then addresses each of Stone's 10 propositions.

Comments (9)

Well I got as far as all l... (Below threshold)

Well I got as far as all liberals are leftists implying of course something such as communists. That's as much credibility as that piece of tripe has.

All righties are fascists. I say that only following Sanders logic.

fascism is not right or lef... (Below threshold)

fascism is not right or left DUmmy unlike Communism, its typically left though historically(Lennin, Stalin, Hitler, Mao, Castro...),

jp:Try this moron ... (Below threshold)


Try this moron rather than complicating your simple mind with scolarly information.


It's in simple language for simpletons like you.

Of course you also missed ther point of my post - no surprise that.

Hugh,I'm sure that... (Below threshold)
Sheik Yur Bouty:


I'm sure that link is simplistic enough for you to understand. Especially since it reinforces your preconception.

It's still wrong though.

Fascism has plenty in common with Communism, Socialism, and Authoritarianism.

jp is right. It neither right nor left in our modern uses of those terms.

Whatever you want to call i... (Below threshold)

Whatever you want to call it, Hugh, it ain't "liberal" to cut off debate and try to intimidate others--for instance, gay "outing" lists, the crowd at Columbia.

Tell us the last time a group of conservative college kids shouted a liberal speaker down?


Shiek and JP. It is pointl... (Below threshold)
Zelsdorf Ragshaft III:

Shiek and JP. It is pointless to try to reason with someone like Hugh. He is an uneducated lout who gets all of his information off the internet. His lack of formal education has left him susceptable to misinformation which he repeats as fact inspite of its origin. He accepts as truth, anything that fits his preconceived notions about whatever the topic is. Barking Moonbats is a good name for people like him.

Zelsdorf,I agree t... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:


I agree that it's pointless to argue with the lefties that comment on these threads, yet it's so hard to resist the urge to correct the false information and disingenuous points they try to make.

I never refer to them as liberals though, as that would be an outright lie. Being a liberal is a good thing in my opinion, unlike being a modern "democrat" which is essentially a secular socialist.

I know the term "secular socialist" is redundant, but I love the illiteration and it the the best term I've ever heard to describe the modern American "democrat". Anti-democrat would probably be a good term too.

<a href="http://www.william... (Below threshold)


FASCISM is not a bad thing. The root of the word comes from fasces, which is the symbol of the Roman Empire - a bundle of sticks surrounding an axe. There is no evil connotation to the word. Fascism can be applied to almost any government, but almost always liberal. Fascism is nothing more than a strong state with power residing in one individual. Stalin was a fascist communist. Hitler was a fascist socialist. Mussolini was a fascist centrist - not exactly liberal and not exactly conservative, but more right wing than not. Nothing about fascism speaks of racism, murder, or evil. It is a description of governmental power. It is neither liberal nor conservative.


scroll to bottom of that linke and look at Hitlers party flyer and the quote of hitler...sounds like howard dean

What does it mean to be ... (Below threshold)

What does it mean to be a liberal?

You'll have to ask Hugh.






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