David Frum is not an ideal exemplar of intelligence, sophistication, or intellectual honesty. But not until Monday night did he appear as a vile bushwhacker. That night, on the Rachel Maddow show, rather than answer her questions he immediately inveighed against the sarcasm and playful comments typical of Ms. Maddow. (I’m not a fan of Maddow’s sarcasm but I do agree with many of her substantive positions.) That said, Frum’s conduct was beyond the pale. He claimed yesterday that he was unprepared for Maddow’s style and so his lack of preparation explains his diatribe. Rubbish! Frum appeared to be an angry, mean-spirited individual that is anathema to democratic deliberation. Rather than answer questions, which is what one does on interview shows, he spat bile in Maddow’s face. Frum needs an inoculation of honesty as well as a capacity for self-reflection. When you’re invited on cable show it’s your intellectual duty to prepare and understand precisely the kind of show it is. Frum is one of the neocons who has participated in orchestrating and implementing the Iraq war. In other words, Frum is among the crew that thinks nothing of lying to the American people on matters of the gravest importance. Yet, sarcasm hurts his feelings. He apparently does not understand that negativity and sarcasm in public discourse are far less dangerous than deceit. But still, he wants to be taken seriously on cable-news. Fat chance!
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