David Frum was complaining about the way conservatives on The Corner were treating Washington Post writer Anne Applebaum after she endorsed Barak Obama. He asked: “What has happened at NR when this generation’s greatest living expert on the crimes of communism can be dismissed as an unserious and dishonorable person?”
I agree with Frum. I think it is juvenile and silly for NR writers to be attacking and howling like feral dogs at every conservative who endorses Obama. In fact, Frum would find a whole lot of allies against such character assassination and purging if it wasn’t for the fact he did the exact same thing to antiwar conservatives and libertarians five years ago with his screed “Unpatriotic Conservatives” Remember how he wanted his fellow conservatives to “turn their backs” on us?
Frum’s memory must only go so far back as maybe, three to four years or so because his sudden changes in direction swing as wide a pendulum. In his 1994 book Dead Right he argued that conservatives needed to take up the anti-government mantle once more, but in his latest book he wants Republicans to become the party of Tom Dewey again. He once considered George Bush II the greatest thing since sliced bread but now doesn’t want to be associated with the man. He complains about how his buddies at The Corner are treating another friend of his, Applebaum, conveniently forgetting he was acting in the same manner towards Robert Novak, Dr. Thomas Fleming, Justin Raimondo, Lew Rockwell, Pat Buchanan, Paul Gottfried etc.
I can understand sticking up for one’s friends and associates, but amazingly Frum doesn’t show one shred of irony or retrospection looking back at previous statements, actions and words and wondering what has changed in him or what he sees and feels to shift so dramatically from one viewpoint to another. It has all the signs of opportunistic behavior, which is more about survivability than anything else. If he felt outrage at what Corner writers were saying about Applebaum, did he ever stop and wonder what the people he slandered and smeared in any number of his past works whether it was Scott McConnell or Sam Francis felt the same way? I guess not.
“What has happened to NR when people like Joe Sobran, Taki, and Chilton Williamson Jr. who all used to write for the publication, can be dismissed as unserious and dishonorable people?”
You see how easy it was to change that question around? Perhaps this will help Frum to ask it.
Tom Piatak, who keeps tabs of what happens at The Corner for Chronicles and Takimag, has similar thoughts about Frum’s latest dime turn.