Jon Chait's latest New York Magazine thumbsucker raises some serious questions.
His thesis is that it's illiberal to critique and criticize the speech of others from a liberal perspective.
Did you know that there is no outlet from which Bill Maher can express his viewpoints freely? What's more, it seems that Condoleezza Rice can no longer venture an opinion in polite society, as if she was no better than the many thousands of innocent Iraqis she personally helped to silence permanently.
Have you heard? Christine Lagarde, Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Bob Birgeneau have been forcibly relieved of their tongues and fingers and ability to blink in Morse Code, all by the infernal machinery of disagreement and protest. It's true!
It's a shame that space limitations left Jon unable to recount the gruesome ends of George F. Will, Larry Summers and Bill Cosby, all of whom now lie silent as the grave.
After those preliminary reveals, Chait gets down to most insidious case of all. In the greatest detail, Chait reveals a private Facebook group in which a handful of writerly types got snippy with each other, feelings were hurt, and two victim-members of the group complained to their pal, Chait, who took it upon himself to manplead the victims' case to the world. Because if a members-only group of nameless elites cannot private message each other free from the crushing yoke of liberal piety, Western civilization itself cannot survive.
A cynic might suggest that Chait wrote his piece less out of concern for the fate of modern discourse and more from a desire to experience the same kind of microaggressive hard-on Mickey Kaus experienced when he made public some juicy Journolist threads. But such a critique would be politically -- as well as factually -- correct and therefore must never be spoken, in the name of free speech, amen.