A muddled cry from the political right warns of a new brand of holy warriors dead set on “disuniting” our fair nation.
Some saw the 1960s as a time of free love, social action and hope. Norac (An Alarm Went Off When I Heard “G.D. America,” 2011)—a pseudonym for a husband-and-wife author team—writes that the ’60s gave rise to an “intellectual elite” which cultivated a “hatred for the United States.” Today, this same elite make up what Norac calls a new “jihad,” comprised not of Muslims but “social radicals.” Although Norac accuses them of sundry offenses—backing bad taxes, supporting socialism, promoting fiscal stimulus—the authors assert that their prime sin is twofold: First, they exaggerate American racism and foment hatred by preaching that “white people are evil”; second, and more pressingly, they use bad science to advance the theory that human-generated carbon emissions contribute to global warming. For Norac, global warming theory is patently, obviously false, and the authors cite a simple ninth-grade science experiment, involving a red pen and a few big bags of rice, in an effort to expose its flaws. This book will likely be red meat for a certain brand of American conservative; readers will hear many of the same ideas circulating on Fox News, and, indeed, Norac cites regular Fox contributors and alums such as John Stossel, Dennis Miller and Glenn Beck. Of course, some readers may repeat standard replies to Norac’s critiques: Although the successes of the civil rights movement helped weed out overt racism, prejudice lives on in many attitudes and policies; further, the work of a precocious high schooler notwithstanding, the vast majority of researchers agree that global warming is both real and partially the result of human emissions. Further, some may find it in bad taste to call modern-day civil rights leaders and climate scientists “jihadists.” However, the main problem with Norac’s project is its rough organization; the authors simply have too many beefs for one book, and this surfeit of ambition results in a messy volume that jumps, seemingly at random, from topic to topic.
A particularly jumbled effort to preach to the conservative choir.