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John Podhoretz, Shrill and Uninformed? Say It Aint So!

There is something disturbingly Leftist about your [John Podhoretz’s] penchant for shrill, uninformed criticism that scorns the interlocutor rather than dealing in a mature way with the substance of his arguments.

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In place of analysis and evidence, you offer slogans — and you frame those who differ with you as if they were all realpolitic lackies.

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You can keep pretending, if you’d like, that the problem here is “tyranny” and “terrorism” and that things would turn around if only we injected a little freedom into the equation.  But that is not going to deal with the “root cause,” and it is not going to make Muslims like you better (as we are seeing in Iraq on a daily basis).  You insult these millions of Muslims profoundly because the logic of your argument is that no one who was truly free would choose the life they sincerely believe God has commanded.  You are stuck in a pre-1979 mindset which refuses to acknowledge that a religion-based revolution is possible, and that the millions of people are freely choosing a belief system that opposes Western democracy. ~Andy McCarthy

Podhoretz, always appreciative of constructive criticism, suggests that “if you really believe that, you are in need of serious psychiatric medication.”  Advantage McCarthy, I think.

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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