(K. Brent Tomer),
AMERICAN politics reached one of its quadrennial high points this month, as the two major parties met to nominate their candidates for president. Amid the hoo-hah, one word was curiously in abeyance. “Liberalism” is disappearing in America—and elsewhere.
Once “liberalism” was the proud banner of the Democrats—and the bogeyman of Republicans. Pat Buchanan, an insurgent Republican conservative, declared a “cultural war” against “liberals and radicals” in a rousing convention speech in 1992. Frank Luntz, a Republican consultant, advised Republicans to use words like “liberal”, “sick”, “corrupt” and “traitors” together, to tarnish the Democrats.
Older liberals still embrace the term: Paul Krugman, an economist, blogs for the New York Times under the banner “The Conscience of a Liberal”, and Thomas Frank has written a book called “Listen, Liberal” chiding Democrats for losing sight of the working class. But the young American left increasingly prefers a different label. When Hillary Clinton introduced Tim Kaine, her choice for vice-president, in an e-mail, she knew the word eager…Continue reading