In my opinion what we're seeing is the practical and intellectual death of Liberalism. The Liberal intelligentsia has been scratching their heads and fretting at cafes for about a decade now, chronicling the far right's dismantling of the American dream while offering no solutions whatsoever. Probably because real solutions would involve words like "socializing" and "wealth reduction" so that might hurt their book sales.
http://exiledonline.com/conscience-of-a-radical-corey-robin%E2%80%99s-the-reactionary-mind/ "The first rule of debate: Never accept your opponent’s characterization of his own position." But for decades, liberals–in their perpetual Nerf-war against conservatives–have done just the opposite. While conservatives bloviate about traditionalism (Buckley), skepticism (Burke), sobriety (Taft), and order (Mill), liberals are the first to bobblehead in agreement. “Yes,” they say over paté and pinot at Davos, “That’s you.”
Yet no matter how many laws they break or billions they loot, how many phantoms they conjure, how many social ties they sever, how many innocents they imprison, torture & execute, no matter how many foreign monsters they champion, no matter how much they scream that two-plus-two equals five, and no matter how much they double-down on crazed schemes while swearing it’ll all be different this time, the liberal–dutiful little poodle that he is–still wags his head. “Yes, yes. Calm, measured, skeptical conservatism.” “Calm, measured, skeptical.” Who does that sound more like to you: Barry Goldwater or Noam Chomsky?
So it’s no great surprise that the New York Times–that great bastion of spineless bourgeois liberalism–hates Corey Robin’s book The Reactionary Mind. So much so that the reviewer, Sheri Berman, dubs Robin the left-wing Ann Coulter. But we can forgive Berman. If her Liberal crowd was to actually accept Robin’s arguments, they’d be faced with two options: 1. accept that they are little more than chumps basking in the same cushy privileges forged by the long conservative counterrevolution or 2. tip over the dinner table and drive a salad fork into David Brooks’s eye-socket.
That's honestly what I feel is the most significant problem with liberals today, they've been swimming around in Scrooge McDuck's vault while feigning concern for the little people and hungry black children starving in Mississippi, simultaneously despising said poor black people in secret for being superstitiously religious.
Living in a "flyover state" gives me quite a bit of perspective on the nature of America's coastal elitism, and it sickens me every goddamn time somebody asks me "what are you doing in Oklahoma? Hello, asshole! I've lived here since I was in the sixth grade, not a whole lot of options when you're stuck in a Red State. It's not as if I could hop a tram and end up in The Big Apple to rub elbows with smugly self-assured hipsters, humorously deriding the social dissolution of American society while they do nothing to stop it. I've seen plenty of young college people here talking glibly about a looming civil war, so why the Hell would I want to engage in the same conversations with a hint of urbanite elitism?
I guess what I'm saying is that people generally think in binary because of the particular circumstances that have shaped the United States. The Occupy Movement was the first real challenge to the political and intellectual status quo, so what we're really seeing here is the reaction from our entrenched elites attempting to maintain their privilege, both "liberal" and conservative. The truth is that "social" issues never mattered, and that we all should have been concerned about the quality of each others' lives, instead of whether or not gays can get married or kill brown people for the US military.