There is a political sensibility—it can be found in the pages of The Nation, though elsewhere too—that might roughly be called “the troubles and confusions of the children of Stalinism.” Children literally, children figuratively.
The writers who cultivate this sensibility are not Communists. They have passed through a time of disillusion or were lucky enough to have escaped it.
But they are not anti-Communists either, and when they hear a speech by Ronald Reagan or read an article in Commentary, they respond to its crudeness with a visceral anger, as if still back in their youth during the McCarthy years, when their parents—literal, figurative—were having a bad time. Their visceral anger is often justified, but with it can follow a relapse into political stances that isn’t.
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