Great Stuff From Jonah Goldberg..................
blueoval at 1SMARTISP.NET
Sun May 22 22:42:33 MDT 2005
Jonah Goldberg (archive)
May 18, 2005
Huge chunks of the American population have been body-snatched by
zomboid creatures from Canada, or possibly - shudder - Europe.
That's the only conclusion one can draw from the latest monumental
study from the Pew Center for the People and the Press. OK, it's
not the only conclusion you can draw, but it's the one I'm going
I remember being horrified by when I first saw the remake of
"Invasion of the Body Snatchers." In the final scene, one of the
last remaining normal humans in the city runs up to Donald
Sutherland, thinking he's completely normal, too. When she gets
close, Sutherland slowly raises his finger to point at her, and
begins his alien shriek, sounding like someone had dropped a
hungry piranha down the front of his wide-wale corduroys.
Well, if you look very closely and study body language and speech,
you may just discover that the liberals screeching at
conservatives aren't in fact Americans at all. They are Europeans
taking on the form of Americans.
According to the Pew Center, the less you like to fly the American
flag, the more likely it is you are Democrat. The more you think
hard work and personal initiative aren't the ticket to the good
life, the more likely you are to be a Democrat. The more you
believe the United Nations is a better steward of international
relations, while America is a negative actor on the world stage,
the more likely you are to be a Democrat. The more you believe
that the government is there to help, the more likely it is you
are Democrat. The less seriously you take religion, the more
likely you are to be a Democrat. Flip all of these values around
and the more likely it is you are a Republican - or that you vote
Of course, I'm speaking in terms of statistical generalities.
Obviously, there are a great many flag-waving, God-fearing,
government-mistrusting, U.N.-hating Democrats out there. But they
are the exceptions to the rule.
Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this study is what it says
about class and ideology in America. And what it says is that they
don't have that much to do with each other, which runs contrary to
generations of leftish stereotypes. Poor Americans who believe in
the American ideal of by-your-bootstraps success are likely to
vote Republican. And rich Americans who cringe at the idea of
hanging a flag from their porch vote Democrat. Wealth has become a
poor predictor of political affiliation. The richest blocs in the
GOP and Democratic Parties - Pew calls them "Enterprisers" and
"Liberals" - are roughly equally affluent. Forty-one percent of
both groups make more than $75,000 per year (though there are
nearly twice as many "Liberals" as there are "Enterprisers"). The
largest segment of the Republican base - "Social Conservatives" -
make less than Liberals.
So what does all of this have to do with body-snatching
Europhiles? Well, basically, everything. The ideas, assumptions
and prejudices held by the statistically typical Democratic voter,
according to the Pew study, are quite simply, European. Europeans
believe in a strong social welfare state, for rich and poor alike.
Europeans are cynical. They look askance - these days - on
patriotic sentiment (hence the rush to form a new European
nation). The church pews of Europe would make a great hideout for
bank robbers since they're always empty. The United Nations is, in
the typical European's worldview, the last best hope for mankind.
>From the death penalty to gay marriage, the more similar you are
to a typical European in your political and social outlook, the
more likely you are to be a Democrat.
We've seen this before. At the time of our nation's founding,
there were a bunch of Americans who clung to European values.
Today we call their descendants "Canadians." Up north, the
government isn't something to be distrusted so much as something
to be obeyed. For example, when the government told the people to
switch to the metric system, they did. Our government told us to
do the same thing at about the same time, and America barely even
For many generations after the American Revolution, the idea of
emulating European politics was nigh upon heresy. It wasn't until
Woodrow Wilson, who encouraged Americans to see themselves as
citizens of the world, that borrowing ideas from the continent
became fully politically acceptable. Prior to Wilson, writes
Richard Hofstadter, Americans considered the United States to be
the "anti-Europe." But it was FDR's New Deal which helped
"assimilate the American into the 'European' political
experience," in the words of Daniel Boorstin. George Kennan's
childhood reminiscence illustrates the typical American frame of
mind prior to the New Deal. When "times were hard," he wrote, "as
they often were, groans and lamentations went up to God, but never
So, if you're worried about the Europeanization of America, let me
quote from the original "Body Snatchers": "They're here already!
You're next! You're next! You're next.."
Jonah Goldberg is editor-at-large of National Review Online, a
Townhall.com member group.
©2005 Tribune Media Services
Contact Jonah Goldberg | Read Goldberg's biography
More information about the Rushtalk