Ben Domenech on Michael Lind’s Revisionist Libertarian Smear
Ben Domenech utterly destroys Michael Lind over at Real Clear Politics today: Michael Lind’s Revisionist Libertarian Smear.
In any case, Lind has now responded by yelling about racism at the top of his lungs through a cardboard tube contraption of his own devising. The bulk of the piece is not worth reading, but I would draw your attention to the very last portion, in which Lind attacks Calvin Coolidge, about whom many libertarians have very positive feelings, cherrypicking a quote to transform Coolidge into an early stage Pat Buchanan.
This goes beyond the offensively stupid, which is Lind’s typical oeuvre, and enters the realm of sheer revisionist fantasy. Considering the world it operated in, the record of the Harding-Coolidge administrations is one of the most racially progressive in the 20th Century. Harding opened his presidency with a clarion call for anti-lynching bills, giving speeches in the Deep South criticizing the rise of the Ku Klux Klan. Coolidge continued the practice, again and again raising anti-lynching laws which were repeatedly filibustered by Southern Democrats (in 1922, 1923, and 1924). Both men appointed African Americans to senior positions and ran segregationists left over from the Wilson administration out of power.
Please read the whole thing, but I just love the first sentences of those two paragraphs. Snark and invective is overused these days, but if you can use it with scalpel like precision and back it up with data, as Ben does here, it works.
Interestingly enough, I took on Lind a decade ago over conservatism and his use of history.