September 12, 2008

The Word According to Andrew Klavan

On of the most consistently excellent and yet strangely underpromoted shows** to be found on the web is Peter Robinson's Uncommon Knowledge. This week he completes a fascinating and thought-provoking interview with Andrew Klavan, author of the novel Empire of Lies.

In this segment

Andrew Klavan says the Left has long argued that Western civilization — from its embrace of capitalism to its foundations in Judeo-Christian doctrine to its traditions of personal liberty — is in error and needs to go. But Klavan says “that argument has failed spectacularly, in every way,” and that when you do not relinquish a failed argument all you have left is insult and ridicule.

An articulate and responsive guest, Klavan offers an arresting description of the insidiousness of political correctness towards the end of this portion of the interview:

"You have to create a world of illusion in which what you are saying makes some kind of sense. And that is what political correctness is. And that's why I think political correctness is so offensive. If there's one thing that is urgently important in the world where individuals are respected its a respect for authenticity, that a man should be what he seems to be. Political correctness has come very close to legislating inauthentic behavior. 'I shall tell you what you must think and must say to be good.' And that is essentially telling people to lie because if we can't explore our thoughts if we can't speak our feelings without being completely ostraciszed how can we ever reach that place of authenticity. I do believe that the left and the media has attached a sort of virtue to being inauthentic through political correctness. And that is deeply offensive and destructive.

In segment four Klavan defines where the real battle for the country is taking place, Hollywood:

"Hollywood is a lagging indicator because they are straitjacketed by their ideology. But we conservatives have let them get away with it. If you lose the culture you will lose the country. If you let them drip their poison into the consciousness of America forever they will win. I think it is going to require an effort to take the culture back from these people who are conformist, backward, and living in the ideology of a generation ago."

There are five segments to this interview and all are well worth your time.

**Uncommon Knowledge -- Great interviewees, great interviewer, but a classic example of "If you hide your light under a basket, nobody can see it." A bit of promo on the National Review home page, a touch of this or that on the Hoover Institute page, and after that, as far as I can see, nothing much.

I'm very disappointed about this since Peter Robinson is easily the equal of Charlie Rose. Is this yet another example of conservatives being smart on the issues and smart about discussion, but hopelessly unclued about marketing? I fear it is. I have even written to the show about this but have never even received so much as the courtesy of an answer. What gives?

Posted by Vanderleun at September 12, 2008 10:37 AM | TrackBack
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

I agree completely. I discovered "Uncommon Knowledge" several months ago and now never miss an episode. These episodes should be syndicated on cable, where they would find an eager and much larger audience.

BTW, past episodes of "Uncommon Knowledge" are available as video and audio podcasts on the ForaTV website, in the Hoover Institution tab.

Posted by: Jonathan at September 12, 2008 1:25 PM

ForaTV? Great. Good information although why they can't get a cable slot is mysterious to me.

Posted by: vanderleun at September 12, 2008 2:32 PM

Thanks very much for this link. It was exciting to hear two men intelligently discuss the underlying treacherousness of liberalism on camera. This sort of dialogue really should be on cable, it would give folks a desperately needed dose of reality.

Posted by: Hannon at September 12, 2008 5:12 PM

These interviews would probably circulate more widely if they were available as downloadable mp3s.

The video is nice, but not vital, and any subscription--including RSS--just means more of the info deluge.

I listen to many podcasts, but not in a chair tied to my computer, which is the only way these interviews are available right now.

Please take your lead from Glenn and Helen.

Posted by: well-wisher at September 14, 2008 8:12 AM

Agreed. Great segments, but also an illustration of why conservatives keep having to fight the same battles over and over again, never making a lot of headway: They can't quite master spreading the meme. Sure, the internet is big now, but broadcast is still more populous, and COMMON, which is where this simple and powerful type message needs to be: in the hands of the common man.

Posted by: Sam_S at September 16, 2008 11:06 PM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated to combat spam and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

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