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December 06, 2004

Introducing Left2Right

Left2Right is a new blog spearheaded by the ethicist David Velleman.

The Left2Right masthead also includes such notable philosophers as Kwame Anthony Appiah, Elizabeth Anderson, Peter Railton, Richard Rorty, and Stephen Darwall.

Left2Right's mandate, from the blog's "About" page:

In the aftermath of the 2004 Presidential election, many of us have come to believe that the Left must learn how to speak more effectively to ears attuned to the Right.  How can we better express our values?  Can we learn from conservative critiques of those values?  Are there conservative values that we should be more forthright about sharing?  "Left2Right" will be a discussion of these and related questions.

Although we have chosen the subtitle "How can the Left get through to the Right?", our view is that the way to get through to people is to listen to them and be willing to learn from them.  Many of us identify ourselves with the Left, but others are moderates or independents.  What we share is an interest in exploring how American political discourse can get beyond the usual talking points.

It's exciting see major academics taking on this important work.

Visit Left2Right.

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Thanks for letting me know. It should work now.

It's too fucking late.

Isn't the term "useful idiots" reserved for people like these? Listen and learn? why not just bend over? And my answer is no, there are no conservative "values" I care to share.

I had just updated myself on what the wonderful James Wolcott had been saying the past few days before I paid a visit here. It was interesting to read his recent post about Mark Luther's "Dittohead" segment on Al Franken's show right before this post.

We seem to be splitting into two factions on the Left, as far as communication is concerned; there are those who are just fucking done with trying to be reasonable, and those who feel there is still a way to try to communicate logically and calmly with those on the Right. (I suppose there are also some in-betweeners who are looking for a compromise between reason and full-out war, which is probably where we need to be.)

It strikes me that perhaps good old Marshall was right, and the medium really is the message; those who still seek discourse are hopeful that hearts and minds can be changed, and those who are just fucking done are the same ones who seem to view this culture war for what it ultimately may be--a cold civil war. I fear the latter may be more accurate than we're ready for.

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