Nooks and crannies of the Ivy League
By Michael Moriarty
Peter Robinson's Uncommon Knowledge interviews have become a regular habit of mine. Until today, however, I had little notion that Mr. Robinson graduated from my own alma mater, Dartmouth.
Mr. Robinson's normal array of guests have rarely spent time in Hanover, New Hampshire because … well … Hanover is not Cambridge, Massachusetts, nor New Haven, Connecticut, nor the upper West Side of Manhattan.
Though Dartmouth is still considered a member of the Ivy League, it is not Harvard nor Yale nor even Columbia for that matter.
Such distinctions are ominously important when one's nose is automatically bred in the Ivy League to look down on almost everything.
How edifying it was then to encounter Harvard's Harvey Mansfield: a Harvard undergraduate, class of '49, Harvard graduate school as well; and, if only in the name of simple consistency, a tenured Harvard professor.
Professor Mansfield is now almost his own, Harvard institution.
The Professor's Harvard is, without question, an older and possibly more antiquated Harvard than we've become accustomed to with the Progressive likes of President Barack Obama and Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr..
One must recall that Henry Kissinger was a legendary member of the Harvard faculty and the "Harvard Defense Studies" – for which there is no detectable link in the internet despite its being mentioned in Kissinger's Wikipedia biography.
Kissinger was a Cambridge common-place when the conservative likes of Harvey Mansfield was changing his political vision in the wake of the Sixties/Lyndon Johnson generation of war protestors.
How often the paths of Kissinger and Mansfield might have crossed would be an interesting bit of background information.
The most interesting subject for debate would be Prof. Mansfield's favorite distinction regarding despotism.
With a nod to Alexis de Tocqueville, Professor Mansfield offers "soft despotism" as his footnoted translation for the manipulative weight of "political correctness".
Not that many decades before de Tocqueville visited America, Robespierre had labeled his own, rather revolutionary colleagues as "enlightened despots".
In terms of "soft" or "enlightened" despotism, I really don't see much difference between the behavior of President Obama and his friend Prof. Henry Louis Gates and several policies of President Richard Nixon and his friend Prof. Henry Kissinger.
Despotism, "soft" or "enlightened", particularly when it comes to the use of either "drones" or "carpet bombing", is despotism.
With Afghanistan representing President Obama's very own Vietnam – since America's main target, Osama bin Laden, is most likely being protected in and by Pakistan – "soft" or "enlightened" despotism is a very Harvard and extremely "in-house" dispute.
Is this Harvard/Dartmouth rivalry?
I doubt it, given Peter Robinson's graciously Hanoverian hospitality.
My problem is the entire Ivy League's not-so-benign neglect of the Roe v Wade decision.
The Supreme Court's virtual legalization of murder is not merely a politely debatable issue of separation between church and state.
In this instance, it is the massive gulf that exists between simple common sense and the products of America's halls of higher learning.
Once murder is made legal, there really is no "Western Civilization" for Prof. Mansfield to speak of.
Or for anyone else to hold forth on, for that matter.
There is certainly no civilized future which a reasonable man might expect.
But a reasonable man and an Ivy League graduate, and/or Professor, are hardly one and the same thing.
From 1973's Roe v Wade on, it has been not merely downhill but an undeniably bipartisan plummet, mostly engineered by Ivy League graduates and professors of Harvard and Yale law schools and "government" departments: i.e. Dr. Kissinger, the Bushes, the Clintons and the Obamas.
Prof. Mansfield's minority status at Harvard as a "conservative" and his obvious enjoyment of that exclusivity may offer entertainment for Uncommon Knowledge and its audience.
However, the vicissitudes of college life merely seem another diversion from the repetitive realities of enlightened despotism, soft or otherwise, arising from every nook and cranny of the Ivy League.
Must one be a Catholic before the suicidal fate of pro-abortion humanity be acknowledged?
Catholics, well-known ones for that matter, can be particularly stupid as well.
Both Vice-President Biden and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi are pro-abortion Catholics … uh … Progressive Catholics in the same way the Clintons have been Progressive Protestants.
They are all quite comfortable with legalized murder.
I call them the Progressive Mafia.
It is therefore no wonder that the infamous Mafia hangout, Chicago, is now playing such a central role in the fate of our entire nation. Chicago is either less tactful or merely more honest than the Progressive likes of Bill Clinton's Arkansas or Hillary Clinton's New York.
Then again, one must remember that Hillary was, indeed, a product of what one might call "Greater Chicago".
Whether Kissinger and Obama are "soft" or "enlightened" despots carries no weight with this Ivy League graduate whose four years at Dartmouth offered me the "up close" opportunity to "know the enemy".
These "enlightened despots" or "soft tyrants" now feel the ground rise beneath their feet. The "Tea Partiers" – many of whom are the very lucky drop-outs from halls of higher learning – are making their presence known.
The Golden Rule of "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" is accessible to a five year old.
It is even understood by most of the Tea Partiers.
"Doing unto gestating infants what you would not want done to your own gestating infancy" is a concept only capable of being understood in the hallowed halls of "higher comprehension" such as Harvard or Yale.
Now one can, with the help of a good airplane, defy the law of gravity.
But defying the laws of common sense?
You must go to some university to become that stupid or that evil.
Preferably an expensive university.
The Ivy League and similar halls of "soft or hard enlightenment" have made several American generations just too smart for their own or anyone else's good for that matter.
Those men and women who would be gods?!
May our Almighty God have mercy on most of us and may the Progressive geniuses suffer the worst consequences of their own perversely enlightened despotism.
Michael Moriarty is a Golden Globe and Emmy Award-winning actor who starred in the landmark television series Law and Order from 1990 to 1994. His recent film and TV credits include The Yellow Wallpaper, 12 Hours to Live, Santa Baby and Deadly Skies. Contact Michael at firstname.lastname@example.org.