Late last week, I had a chance to talk with Evan Sayet About his new book “Kindergarden Of Eden: How Modern Liberals Think.” Here’s the slightly edited transcript of our interview.
First question: In the book you say, “When I say the modern liberal is morally and intellectually retarded at the level of a five year old child, it is not hyperbole, it’s a diagnosis.” Explain that.
I was merely saying that the modern liberal is were simply immature in his thinking, I wouldn’t definitely pick the age of five. It sounds so impossible that I’m almost discrediting myself by saying that. But the truth is, it is exactly at the age of five that their thinking is intentionally stopped. And the reason it’s five and not seven and not three, and not ten, is because something happens to every American child when he hits the age of five. He enters the public schools. He enters kindergarten. There he encounters on a full-time basis, for the first time in his life, the leftist education system. It then spends the rest of his “education” trying to reinforce the idea that thinking is an act of bigotry, that only indiscriminateness is not discriminating — and so, if they have a unique thought after that, they’ll be punished for it. Now, they may get more articulate over the years. They learn bigger words. But the basic premise of what it is they believe from that point until they die does not change. In fact, there’s even a book that was written where a leftist educator by the name of Robert Fulghum, where he actually proudly declares that all you ever really need to know I learned in kindergarten. And he instructs his followers in the book, take one of the lessons that you learned in kindergarten and extrapolate it into more sophisticated adult terms, and apply it to your life, to your family, to your community, to your world. So in other words even they admit the ideas that they believe in, do not change after the age of five. All that happens after the age of five is they might become more articulate.
Next question, this quote from your book is absolutely brilliant. “Take a second and try to think of a single argument the modern liberal offers regarding any issue that doesn’t consist in its entirety of, ‘We’re right because our grandiose self esteem tells us we’re morally and intellectually superior and anyone who disagrees with us is A) stupid, B) bigoted, C) phobic or D) greedy.’ The truth is you can’t name one not one.” Expand on that a bit.
It’s true. I want your readers to take a second and name an issue where the Democrat argues in favor of what it is he believes, why his policy is good, why it works, how it will work, how it will be paid for, and where it’s been tried before and succeeded. You never hear that argument. The only argument you ever hear is if you oppose their healthcare scheme, you want to push granny over the cliff. If you support an anti-illegal immigration bill, it’s because you hate Mexicans. If you don’t agree with them on abortion on demand, paid for by the citizens, then you are in a war on women. Name an issue in which the Democrats make an affirmative argument to explain why their position is better. You cannot name a single one, not one.
You have a unified field theory of liberalism and one of the tenets is “indiscriminateness: The total rejection of the intellectual process is an absolute moral imperative.” A lot of liberals would claim that nothing could be more wrong because they’re all about the intellectual process. So explain that one.
Well, first of all, let me address what the Democrats would say — and I do address it in the book, and I do so specifically. But there’s a big difference between the use of one’s intellect and what I call intellectualism. Alright, the difference in the use of one’s intellect is the gathering the facts, the studying of the evidence, the use of the mind to get aligned at the rightful conclusion.
The Left is all about intellectualism — which is having your conclusion before you start and then coming up with the wonderfully brilliant, articulate and academic explanation to defend what it is you already believe and have believed unquestioned since you were five.
Now the reason that the modern liberal believes that indiscriminateness is a moral imperative is twofold by making. I draw distinctions between the true believer who’s an ideologue and he believes that if only we’d all give up all knowledge of right and wrong, we’d end the disagreements that causes the fight. If nobody believed in anything, there wouldn’t be any fighting and there wouldn’t be any disagreements. If there weren’t any disagreements and any fighting, there wouldn’t be war. Without war there’d be no poverty. Without poverty there’d be no crimes. Without crimes there’d be no injustice. So the utopian ideology is entirely predicated on the idea that if nobody tried to figure out what is doing right and better, (then everything would be perfect).
In addition, there are the mindless foot soldiers. They’ve been brainwashed by the true believers that they’re not allowed to think, that thinking is an act of bigotry. Forget anything you and I believe because anything anybody believes is going to be so tainted by our bigotries, bigotries we can’t help but have, just, because it’s part of the human tradition. You know, based on things like the color of our skin, the nation of our ancestry, our height, our weight, our sex and so on — anything the human being believes is going to be so tainted by his bigotries that the only way not to be a bigot is to never think at all. So to the mindless foot soldier, indiscriminateness is a moral imperative because it’s opposite is discrimination..
Liberals have been around for a long, long time. You could find the roots of their way of thinking going way, way back. You can look at Jonah Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism to see the sort of stuff that was going on in the 20s, 30s, and 40s. So it’s not a new thing. However you make an interesting point, one that’s slightly different from what I’ve heard people make about the 60s.
Here’s your quote, “Having come of age in or after the 60s, virtually everything that every other human being and literally every other time in place had to think about it, it’s most basic. How to avoid things like disease, hunger, poverty, and physical pain, had all but been eradicated just prior to the modern liberals entry into the sentient world.”
How much of liberal thought today is shaped by the incredible luck they had of being born in America or coming to America in the 60s when Americans were doing better than 99.9 of humanity ever has …
One of the problems that we’re going to have in my answering this question is that the word liberal has so many different meanings. In fact, I even had a problem coming up with the name I was going to use for this unique ideology that I was describing. I know…
Well, let’s think about it as the Michael Moore, Janeane Garofolo, Randi Rhodes style of liberalization.
Those are the people I call the modern liberals and I think it’s essential because from the dawn of time until literally just before that era, people had to not only worry about disease, hunger, poverty, and pain and they also had to know how to do things. They had to know how to ride a horse. They had to know how to mend their clothing. They had to know how to conserve their food. Suddenly in this era when frozen TV dinners first came out, you did not have to know how to do anything. We’re especially talking about industries where all they do for a living is talk. I’m talking about academia. I’m talking about the journalists. I’m talking about the entertainers and man, do I rip Springsteen apart. Here’s a guy who is singing about working in a factory and having dust in your eyes — and how does he know? Here’s the key: he doesn’t have to know. You see, the factory worker has to be smart because if he’s stupid and he’s wrong, he loses a finger. If Springsteen is wrong, two minutes and 13 seconds later he’s pretending he’s a cop.
Last question Evan, your book has just come out. Tell people a little bit about it, where they can get it, and tell them why they want it.
Well, I think the reason they want it is the same reason that my original talk to the Heritage foundation went viral. I don’t know if that’s the right phraseology, so viral…
It is, by the way. That was everywhere.
Yes, and there was this phenomenon named Andrew Breitbart, who did not want to watch this talk. I barely knew him at the time and he finally called me up and said, “What do you think I can do to help you? You’re a comedian.” Finally, he was forced by how many times he was receiving it to watch it, and he called this afterwards, one of the five most important conservative speeches ever given. The reason for that is twofold.
The first is the most essential. I’m right. I have boiled down the essence of how it is. We try to figure it out and we say, “Well, they’re Marxist.” My cousin is not a Marxist. He has never read Marx. He doesn’t know the Communist manifesto. When we say, “They’re evil,” my cousin is not evil. We say, “They’re stupid.” My cousin is not stupid. My unified view today of liberalism explains them to a T. It explains why Obama would shut down the oil business here in America and the Gulf, but then send money to Brazil so that they can drill. It explains why he would bow down before the Saudi King and the symbol of Japanese Imperialism, but he wouldn’t bow to the Queen of England. I do it in a way that’s accessible, just a little more pop culturish and a little less academic.
Evan, I really appreciate your time. Thank you very much.
Oh, anytime, and John, I appreciate it.