As posted last week, Tom Hanson and I will focus on some of more anti-intellectual moments in American politics, which has led to the demise of politicians in both parties who came across as too scholarly and intellectually aloof. We’ll focus on both history and modern trends. I’ve been accused of picking on the left too much lately, so we’ll pick on the right tonight – as well as the left. In fact, until recently I would say that the right has been producing more intellectual raw material in terms of political thought, although it seems to have degenerated as the Ann Coulters and Michael Hannity’s replace the William Buckleys and Thomas Sowells at the helm of right wing rhetoric. On the other hand, the embracing of emotional appeals to the detriment of critical thinking and reason is also rampant on the left, even when it is right, which is one of the reasons I’m not particularly enamored with most of the programming on Air America nor Pacifica Radio of late. And often, the peace movement in particular has degenerated into borderline anti-semitism (beyond merely criticism of Israel and Zionism) as well as off-the-wall conspiracy theories.

We’re going to be taking a different approach tonight. Tom and I are going to take up the first half sans callers in order to set the subject, so we don’t trail off onto specific topics and lose focus on the topic at hand. I may actually cut callers off who insist on focusing on their pet issues to the detriment of the discussion. I’ll play it by ear.

Calls will be welcome from 7:30 to 8:00, at 923-3911 or 1-800-KMUDRAD. The show is at 7:00 p.m. at 91.1 and of course you can listen in online at KMUD.ORG.

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