Suicide of the West

Suicide of the West

How the Rebirth of Tribalism, Populism, Nationalism, and Identity Politics Is Destroying American Democracy

Book - 2018
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"With his trademark blend of political history, social science, economics, and pop culture ... Jonah Goldberg makes the timely case that America and other democracies are in peril as they lose the will to defend the values and institutions that sustain freedom and prosperity. Instead we are surrendering to populism, nationalism and other forms of tribalism."--Amazon.com summary.
Publisher: New York : Crown Forum, [2018]
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ℗♭2018
ISBN: 9781101904930
1101904933
Branch Call Number: 320.520973 GOLD
Characteristics: 453 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm

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tjdickey
May 09, 2019

Interesting argument, critical of "tribal" and emotion-based politics on both sides of the political spectrum, to the detriment of civil discourse, and ultimately, he concludes, to the detriment of liberal democracy.

l
lukasevansherman
Oct 06, 2018

"The rust of human nature is eating away at the Miracle of Western civilization and the American experiment. . .the corruption can only succeed when we willfully, and ungratefully, turn our backs on the principles that brought us out of the muck of human history in the first place."
Long enough subtitle for your? If you don't like it, you probably hate America and puppies. Jonah Goldberg, of the National Review and American Enterprise Institute, is familiar to listeners of NPR as the conservative who dislikes Trump and seems like a thoughtful, rational, moderate person. You know, one liberals can actually stand. His writing is a different matter though. His previous book was hilariously titled (Although he's not joking.) "Liberal Fascism." While I do think it's important to engage intellectually with those you disagree with, it can be hard to read a book in which your basic ideology is antithetical to the writer. Goldberg takes aim at liberals and all their evils (multiculturalism, identity politics, socialism, feminism, academia) without really giving credence to their arguments. I mean, attacking Marx is a little passe. As with "Fascism," his main idea is clear but his attempt to carve about an intellectual conservative tradition is uneven, unconvincing, and all over the map. Sigh. There's no point in critiquing something that conservatives will love and liberals will hate. A more rigorous look at the conservative tradition can be found in "The Reactionary Mind."

d
DavidSpencer99
Jul 17, 2018

I read this book because I heard Goldberg on NPR and thought he sounded like a reasonable spokesperson for the conservative viewpoint. I agreed with many of the general points about tribalism etc. damaging our incredibly lucky and privileged way of life. I found Chapter 4 on the “Birth of Capitalism” interesting. But some of his cheerleading goes way too far. How could anyone other than a partisan accept a statement like this one? “The free market is the greatest anti-poverty program in all of human history…the only anti-poverty program in all of human history.” [p. 161] I have to agree with Park MacDougald’s NY Magazine review that this is a “book that can only be taken seriously by people for whom ideas matter less than the idea of ideas mattering; that is, for whom intellectualism is an exercise in branding and PR.”

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