Friday, January 17, 2014

National Review's Jay Nordlinger has a terrific three-part piece documenting the life and times of David Horowitz.

Part 1, his 25 years as a Communist from 1948 to 1974.

He continued to participate in the anti-war movement, but that’s a misnomer, really: It may have been an anti-war movement for some, but certainly not for all. “Let me make this perfectly clear,” said David in 1985: “Those of us who inspired and then led the anti-war movement did not want just to stop the killing as so many veterans of those domestic battles now claim. We wanted the Communists to win.”

Part 2, his 10 years of dismay at the left's failure and lies from 1975 to 1985.

A switch from left to right is not necessarily a bright career move. You give up a lot: including entrée to the most respected publications. David found doors shutting in his face — not just at Left publications, but at “mainstream” publications, particularly the New York Times. In going from left to right, you go from the Kingdom of the Cool to the Kingdom of the Much Less Cool, at least. The New Leftists, David’s old comrades, found homes in all the respected publications. They prettied up, airbrushed, and prospered.

Part 3, his 35 years as a conservative.

If you want to classify David politically, you can call him a conservative — with a healthy dose of Hayek in him. “My life experience had led me to conclude that not only was changing the world an impossible dream, but the refusal to recognize it as such was the source of innumerable individual tragedies and of epic miseries that human beings had inflicted on each other in my lifetime through the failed utopias of Nazism and Communism.” Seldom will you read a more conservative sentence. And you will read many more like it, in David’s collected writings. He is constantly inveighing against ideologies, party lines, rigidities.


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