Friday, November 8, 2013

Dr. Who Liberalism

"You act like such a radical, but all you really want to do is preserve the status quo."

--An alien to Dr. Who in an early episode

This, from Jill Lepore's piece in the current New Yorker marking the show's 50th anniversary, seems to me to capture perfectly the paradox of the left in both America and Britain. Democrats and the Labor Party may seek change on some peripheral issues like gay marriage, but what they really want is to recapture the middle class economy and optimistic mood of the 1960s. These days real radicalism is found mainly on the right, where lots of people are seeking a sort of high-tech Gilded Age of spacefaring billionaires, others want a theocracy, and still others want empire and constant war.

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