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The POLITICS OF BAD FAITH: The Radical Assault on America's Future Paperback – March 3, 2000

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Free Press; 1st Touchstone Ed edition (March 3, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684856794
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684856797
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,454,178 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The author of Radical Son returns with a vigorous polemic against the American Left. Showing that liberals and conservatives have sharply contrasting views on the ideas of freedom and equality--and defining these differences in forceful prose--Horowitz goes on to blame the Left for many of what he believes to be America's ills, including multiculturalism, feminism, and economic socialism. "We speak reflexively of leftists as 'progressives,' even though their doctrines are rooted in nineteenth-century prejudice and have been refuted by a historical record of unprecedented bloodshed and oppression," writes Horowitz, an ex-Marxist who is now a staunch right-winger. In an especially controversial chapter, he charges gay-rights activists with creating a political environment that made it almost impossible for the public health community to react effectively to the AIDS crisis. Like the man himself, this book will attract lovers and loathers, depending on their political creed. For conservative readers, he performs the helpful task of clarifying their own convictions; for left-of-center ones, he provides a penetrating glimpse into the conservative mindset. --John J. Miller --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

In his fiesty autobiography, Radical Son (LJ 12/96), Horowitz recounted his heady journey from Socialist Left to free-market Right. His new book is billed as a follow-up but basically revisits the same thesis advanced in the earlier work: that the ideals and values of the American Left are antithetical to the American way of life. Even after the collapse of communism, the Left "refuses to die," writes Horowitz. "Despite its dismal record of collusion and failure, the tradition of the Left is intellectually dominant in the American university today in a way that its disciples would never have dreamed possible 30 years ago." In denouncing the influence of the Left, Horowitz critiques the ideas of Eric Hobsbawm, Noam Chomsky, Isaac Deutscher, and other "anti-American" authors. Horowitz is an energetic polemicist, but his book is marred by careless statements, such as the inaccurate claim that Columbia University's "Great Books" course requires that undergraduates read "the avatars, and the fellow travellers of the discredited Left" such as Jurgen Habermas, John Rawls, and Hannah Arendt. Recommended for libraries with collections in conservative thought.?Kent Worcester, Marymount Manhattan Coll., New York
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

45 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Wesley David Wynne wynne@mail.utexas.edu on December 1, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Observing the catastrophic misdeeds and failures of the revolutionary left from Robespierre's time to the present, former left-wing activist David Horowitz reflects, "One might conclude from these facts that the Left is now no more than a historical curiosity, and the intellectual tradition that sustained it for two hundred years is at an end. But if history were a rational process, mankind would have learned these lessons long ago, and rejected the socialist fallacies that have caused such epic grief." Instead, what exists in many arenas in American life today is the wolf of radical leftism in sheep's clothing, now calling itself "liberal" or "progressive" or "populist" or anything other than what it actually is. Horowitz reveals that in the past twenty years the hard left has come to permeate academia, government bureaucracy, and the Democratic Party. Far from being a "historical curiosity," the radical left is alive and well, travelling incognito.
Horowitz gives a marvelous example of its tenacity in discussing the "liberal" reaction to the recent passage of the California Civil Rights Initiative (CCRI). CCRI officially bars racial discrimination in public employment, education, and contracting. In so doing, it effectively outlaws affirmative action. The ACLU and NAACP went to court to have CCRI declared unconstitutional. Ironically, these groups argued that CCRI - a law banning discrimination - was discriminatory. The paradox begins to make sense once one recognizes that the ACLU, the NAACP, and American "liberals" in general no longer hold that the concept of equality means equality before the law and equality of opportunity.
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56 of 68 people found the following review helpful By J. P. Ledbetter on January 16, 2000
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Among the many dozens of books I have read concerning our founders, their philosophies, their dreams and the various other aspects of our Republic and our Republican Form of Government promised in the Constitution. I find this book by David Horowitz to be perhaps one of the most impressive and educational justifications to abandon the liberal philosophy and move more in line with our founders. It is however, also among the three most difficult I have found to read, comprehend and reach the end of in one-piece. For there is on almost every page some interesting, informative and deep seated principle, piece of knowledge and insight that must be underlined or highlighted, slowing down the process considerably. And one must read with care not to miss the wealth of information in all these words of wisdom. Mr. Horowitz has done a superb job of bringing the reader into a better understanding of the failures of the Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Hitler and other philosophies of the extreme left and many of our left wing representives today. And how anyone who follows these failed policies and ideals must find excuses for the devastation and terrible toll they placed and still inflict upon the community of man. There are three main ideas that I perceived from David. First that the core principles of any political philosophies (in our case the right and left, Republicans and Democrats, conservatives and liberals) of the world, when taken to extremes, all converge at a point resulting in, Tyranny, Despotism, Communism and Slavery. And all these things should be shunned and avoided by Americans. Second that our childhood beliefs, which were to some extent in the past simple brainwashing by listening to our parents could be thrown off, once emancipated, if we chose to.Read more ›
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32 of 39 people found the following review helpful By W. K. Aiken on March 20, 2002
Format: Paperback
Being a staunch Libertarian who holds no truck with bureaucratic social engineering from either the Republican moralists or the Democratic PC crusaders, it is rare that a political screed holds up to the natural cynicism I bring to most reads of this sort. The vast majority are screaming, finger-pointing diatribes extolling the perfection of the authors' POV and the Satanic origin of his opponents'.

That said, I must hand Dr. Horowitz kudos of the grandest nature for his factual analysis of how our two major parties wound up where they are today. Committed Republicans can point to this clear and illustrative history of the Left and discover why they feel like they do; it is difficult to not jerk one's knees in reaction to some of the eyewitness accounts given here.
Committed Democrats can point to this clear and illustrative history of the Left and find their roots; a genaeology of their outlook helps clarify the causes of some of their actions and emotions.
Committed Libertarians, however, will still have a hard time explaining why Republicans are acting more like Democrats and Democrats often pretend to be Republicans; I wonder whether Horowitz is waxing nostalgic or prescient.

In any event, this is history that popular media will not provide. Likewise, I find it noteworthy that academic acquaintences who enjoy Horowitz will also discuss Lerner and Dershowitz equally openly. Not so for the establishment professorials I've known. For those reasons I lean more towards believing the content of this work. If, perhaps, those who disagree would explain their contention with fact and account instead of rhetorical pooh-poohs and the literary equivalent of rolling their eyes, acceptance might still be in question.
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