Monday, May 7, 2012

Another Fatuous Neil Reynolds Column

Despite the fact that I hold The Globe and Mail in very low esteem, I do periodically check its website to find out the latest in right-wing thinking. Such was the case today when I read Neil Reynolds' latest, entitled, Why the ‘sacred’ still matters to voters.

Like his colleague Margaret Wente, Reynolds rarely seems to be visited by an original thought, content instead to rely on the scribblings of others to form the basis of his own pieces. In his latest effort, drawing extensively upon the work of University of Virginia psychologist Jonathan Haidt, Reynolds echoes his thesis that conservatives possess “a broader set of moral tastes” and that liberals are embarrassed by talk of sacred things – such as Ronald Reagan’s patriotic reverence for God and country.

Nowhere in his 'analysis'/summary does Reynolds attempt to explore the implications of that alleged disdain for the sacred. Nowhere does he attempt to understand why a progressive thinker, as opposed to a conservative one, feels impelled to question the objects and traditions that are frequently simply a means to extort mindless and widespread obeseisance to authority. Indeed, in the same vein as Reagan we can see the Harper regime trying to cultivate a more complacent populace as it elevates the prominence of certain symbols heavy with mythological import: the military, the monarchy, sports, the North and Diefenbaker.

And of course we already know that to question the actions of something as 'sacred' as the military is to invite denunciation from the Harper crowd. So While Mr. Reynolds may be happy to imply the superiority of an unquestioning acceptance of things, I and countless others will continue to think for ourselves.

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