zman: Morality Over Facts

The zman. An entertaining and often astute writer. I won’t deny, however, that I’ve found many, too many, of his articles to be based on half-baked and/or misunderstood premises which lead to half-baked and malformed conclusions. With this article from the long suffering Takimag tho’; all is forgiven.

The two most important features of the long-running culture war in the United States are that the left has won every fight and the right has never learned from failure.

[...]

As a practical matter, [...] the conservative side comes to every dispute festooned with facts and logical arguments based on those facts. They assume that if they can make their case just the proper way, the left will have no choice but to accept their conclusions. At that point, the left will throw down their weapons, thank the right for enlightening them, and embrace them as brothers.

This never happens because the left is not motivated by facts and reason, at least not the facts and reason so pleasing to the right. Their social and political positions are rooted in the deeply held belief that they are on the side of angels or, as they prefer to put it, the right side of history. For the left, political opinion is a positional good. They hold political and social opinions to signal their moral virtue.

There’s more and it’s good too.

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