Bill Maher, Berkeley, And THE BIRTH OF PRUDENCE
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As you may have heard, the forces of tolerance are rallying to cancel Bill Maher’s scheduled December Commencement speech at UC Berkeley. And on the 50th anniversary of that campus’s Free Speech Movement, no less. Maher’s crime is his refusal to submit to the PC lie that Islam is a religion of peace, or that at least it is no worse than any other religion. [Berkeley Students Try To Boot Bill Maher, By Jonathan Topaz, Politico, October 28 2014]

Maher’s critique of Islam is that it is uniquely hostile to Liberal values (duh), and his fellow liberals ought to have the guts to say so. The suppression of free speech from the Left, Left-wing reluctance to call-out anti-liberalism when it is practiced by “the other,” we’ve seen this all before. Why do we keep seeing it though? Left-wing mushiness, combined with their sense of solidarity with “the historically oppressed?” Yes, but these are symptoms, not the root cause.

THE BIRTH OF PRUDENCE—A Novel About The West’s Decline (And Recovery?In my book, The Birth of Prudence [paperback | Kindle] published by earlier this year, I argue that these are manifestations of The Tragedy of the West. In attempting to make its liberal values universal, the West risks abolishing itself altogether. Both the conscious, and the instinctive, compromises made in service to the liberal universalist ideal threaten to fatally undermine it.

I do not mean to suggest that we will become Islamic societies, though that is a possibility in a few European countries; the America of racial diversity and countless genders and sexual orientations may remain in many ways a very progressive society, but by both law and custom, its fundamental values of free speech and equal opportunity (think affirmative action) are being hollowed-out.


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