Matthew Yglesias protests: Is everyone really an Anti-Semite?
Matthew Yglesias: Everyone an Anti-Semite: For reasons I can't quite comprehend, even some pretty hardened T[he ]N[ew ]R[epublic]-haters seem to see Leon Wieseltier as making a positive contribution to the world. Certainly, some very good stuff appears in the back of the book over there, but the man's own work is a kind of writing-as-thuggery. Anyways, it seems I have to add my colleague Andrew Sullivan to the ever-growing list of people TNR deems motivated by hatred of Jews. The context -- Bill Kristol sitting in his partisan hack armchair and determining that Barack Obama's Christian faith is insincere:
And now for the grossly undialectical bit. The ink on the Times was not yet dry when Andrew Sullivan rushed to the defense of his idol, I mean Obama. When one types all the time, sooner or later everything will be typed, and so Sullivan, in his fury against Kristol, typed this: "A non-Christian manipulator of Christianity is calling a Christian a liar about his faith." Ponder that early adjective. It is Jew baiting. I was not aware that only Christians can judge Christians, or that there are things about which a Jew cannot call a Christian a liar. If Kristol is wrong about Obama, it is not because Kristol is a Jew. So this fills me with a certain paschal wrath. Nice little blog you have there, Obama boy. Pity if frogs or locusts should happen to it. Let my people be!
Um . . . really . . . noting the irony of Kristol's attack is now "Jew-baiting"? We seem to be defining our problems down here. But in Wieseltier's view, this is the equivalent of enslaving the entire people of Israel. And Wieseltier himself is, I guess, Moses? How preposterous. And this isn't a blog post -- Wieseltier has, nominally, an editor who ought to be able to engage in some quality control.
Now Andrew Sullivan is many things, many of them loathsome. But he is not an anti-semite.
The managing editor of the New Republic is Frank Foer, whom I would once have said had a better than even chance of being the first managing editor since Michael Kinsley to leave the job with a reputation.
IMHO, if everyone reading/subscribing to the New Republic were to stop this evening, and start reading/subscribing to some one or more than one of the Nation, the American Prospect, or the Washington Independent, then the world would be a better place and they would be better informed as well. So I encourage everybod to do so.