In a discussion with John J. Pitney, the political scientist at Claremont McKenna, Jay Nordlinger, and Mr. Pitney discuss the late Peter Schramm.
Peter Schramm, another political scientist, was born in Hungary in 1946 and taught at Ashland University, in Ohio. Mr. Nordlinger calls him a “wonderful, invaluable guy.”
As Jay explains, the Schramms escaped Hungary during the 1956 uprising. Peter Schramm’s father, helping his son understand what they were about to do, told him:
“We were born Americans, but in the wrong place.”
Mr. Nordlinger heard Peter relate this story to audiences — conservative audiences — many times. They loved it, he said. Today, however, many on the right want to be in Hungary.
Peter also said, many times, “My mission in life is to teach native-born Americans about the distinctive glories of their country.”
We could use a host of Peter Schramms, now and always.
The Totalitarian Temptation
The great, late Charles Krauthammer wrote a piece before he could write no more. In the summer of 2017, Dr. K. penned “The Authoritarian Temptation,” the title based upon Jean-François Revel’s 1976 book “The Totalitarian Temptation.”
According to Krauthammer, “The slide back away from liberal democracy is well underway,” Krauthammer cited Hungary, among other countries.
In what would have been unimaginable 25 years ago, mature Western democracies are experiencing a surge of ethno-nationalism, a blood-and-soil patriotism tinged with xenophobia, a weariness with parliamentary dysfunction and an attraction — still only an attraction, not yet a commitment — to strongman rule.
Its most conspicuous symptom is a curious and growing affinity for Vladimir Putin, Czar of all the Russias. Remarkably, this tendency is most pronounced on the right. The reversal is head-snapping.
Jay ends his piece by writing that we could use a host of Peter Schramms and Charles Krauthammers, now and always.
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