In Jim Cook's Archive


In 1984 my first book was published and I went to New York to do some TV shows that my public relations firm had arranged. I also met with the executive editor of a well-known national magazine. My wife and I joined her and an assistant at a fashionable New York eatery. Over lunch I was to give her a rundown on why my book would appeal to readers of her magazine. We never got that far.

Almost immediately she began to talk about Nicaragua and the revolutionary Sandinistas who had recently overthrown the government down there. She championed their cause to me and heaped praise on Danny Ortega, their Marxist leader. Then she began to inquire about my views on the matter. I was in an awkward spot. I despised these revolutionary leftists, but if I mentioned my true sentiments, the book review was going out the window. I professed to be not paying much attention to what was happening in Central America. Immediately her assistant sized me up as one of those Midwest hicks who needed a lesson in liberalism. Clearly courting the favor of her superior, she gave me a brief history lesson on Nicaragua and lectured my wife and I on why we should sympathize with the revolutionaries.

We could easily have had a fierce argument, but I held my tongue. Nevertheless, they didn’t write a single paragraph about my book. I always felt that it was because I didn’t show enough enthusiasm over their cherished Sandinistas. I did learn, however, how passionate about left-wing causes New York magazine publishers could be, and I saw how assistant editors who shared this view were far more likely to get promoted than others. To this day I know in my heart that in music, the arts, book reviews and entertainment, those who get featured in the press and other media share liberal political views with those who dispense the publicity. It explains why the modern art movement of the twentieth century (centered in New York) mostly emanates from artists who are radicals, socialists and Marxists. These artists whose paintings sell for millions today were denizens of the far left. That might explain why modern art fails to register with most Americans. They don’t like it.

It’s no wonder. A recent article about the highly important opening of the renovated Museum of Modern Art in New York said this. “Chris Ofili, who generated a firestorm of controversy at the Brooklyn Museum of Art in 1999 with his painting of a dung-dusted Madonna, is also on view with another portrait, this one sans Mary, but still with the dung, coated with glitter so it catches the light.” How nice.

Sadly, it may not be possible to make it big in the arts today unless you’re a darling of the left wing New York media. But more and more people are catching on to them. Their incessant manipulation of the news has become obvious and transparent. They’ve been found out and, instead of just listening to the news, many of us now monitor it for liberal bias. They never disappoint, it’s always there and, no matter how subtle their spin, we can see through it. Currently, they report the war in Iraq as if we’re losing every battle. Secretly they may even want us to lose as punishment for not voting for a leftist.

Yes, these are the same people who loved Danny Ortega in Nicaragua. Before that, it was the New York Times praising Stalin and his new paradigm in Russia. Then it was Castro, the “agrarian reformer”, who impressed the liberals at the Times. Years ago conservatives warned of falling dominos in Southeast Asia and the left heaped scorn on that view. Eventually countries did fall like dominos and the communists butchered two million innocents in Cambodia. Then it was the Marxist thugs in Grenada who had the sympathy of the left and more recently it was the socialists who were run out of Haiti.

I’ll say it again, “the liberal agenda is the blueprint for national ruin.” It is their policies that spawned the runaway social programs that have helped wreck the budget. Their expensive programs brought on the great burst of inflating that imperils the dollar. Liberals fostered the subsidies that have converted so many citizens to helplessness. They have made high taxes and big government a way of life. They have corrupted the politicians into believing that in order to be elected to office you must dispense benefits.

Worst of all, they are at heart anti-capitalists. They do not see the creative genius in entrepreneurship, but rather, they see luck. They don’t believe in free markets. They advocate policies that destroy capital and hurt business. They initiate slander of great enterprises like Wal-Mart. They prefer writing about business misdeeds rather than business heroes. They would have the government limit incomes and profits to further their social goals. They refuse to understand that “the greater the profits, the better the needs of the consumer are supplied.” They are harbingers of economic decay and social disintegration.

As the economist Mises pointed out, “A society arranged according to their precepts may appeal to some people as fair from the point of view of an arbitrary standard of social justice. But it will certainly be a society of progressing poverty for all its members.”

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