Wednesday, March 12, 2008

David Mamet: Another Jewish Liberal Comes Over to the Dark Side

Recently I enjoyed a new Broadway Comedy, "November," by David Mamet (photo at right). Nathan Lane, one of my favorite performers, plays U.S. President Charles H.P. Smith, a corrupt and venal man, who, one week before Election Day, realizes that he not only has a zero chance of re-election, but also lacks any slush money for his presidential library or for life after eviction from the White House. Laurie Metcalf heads the small but superb supporting cast, as President Smith's lesbian, ultra-liberal, idealistic speech writer. President Smith, needless to say (this is Broadway after all), is portrayed as a conservative politician. (Go here to learn more about this enjoyable comedy.)

Imagine my delighted surprise, then, to come across a column in the Village Voice, by November's playwright, the aforesaid David Mamet, entitled "Why I am No Longer a 'Brain-Dead Liberal.'" It appears that Mr. Mamet, in the course of writing his play, which, as he describes it, is "an argument ... between a president who is self-interested, corrupt, suborned, and realistic, and his leftish, lesbian, utopian-socialist speechwriter," found himself agreeing with the outlook of President Smith. Moreover, under the influence of his wayward muse, Mamet began to read "a host of conservative writers, and found that I agreed with them: a free-market understanding of the world meshes more perfectly with my experience than that idealistic vision I called liberalism."

Read the entire interview. It is not what I would call an inspirational conservative call to arms. I can't even say that it's better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, since it is sort of a poke in the eye with a sharp stick. Nonetheless, I am proud to say, Mr. Mamet, welcome to our encampment of Jewish former liberals. Dennis, move over and make some room for David near the fire.


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