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December 7, 2011

"Crankery, in short, became respectable."

In 1972, Sir John Maddox, editor of the British journal Nature, noted that though it had once been usual to see maniacs wearing sandwich boards that proclaimed the imminent end of the Earth,
they had been replaced by a growing number of frenzied activists and politicized scientists making precisely the same claim. In the years since then, liberalism has seen recurring waves of such end-of-days hysteria. These waves have shared not only a common pattern but often the same cast of characters. Strangely, the promised despoliations are most likely to be presented as imminent when Republicans are in the White House. In each case, liberals have argued that the threat of catastrophe can be averted only through drastic actions in which the ordinary political mechanisms of democracy are suspended and power is turned over to a body of experts and supermen. -- Progressives Against Progress by Fred Siegel, City Journal Summer 2010

Posted by gerardvanderleun at December 7, 2011 8:00 AM. This is an entry on the sideblog of American Digest: Check it out.

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