Yesterday’s Giants, Today’s Dwarves

The Left’s highly selective application of today’s standards to yesterday’s heroes.

By Victor Davis Hanson // National Review Online
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15 thoughts on “Yesterday’s Giants, Today’s Dwarves”

  1. This first generation of the 21st century may well wish they had learned some self preservation traits when the U.S.A. crashes into another depression that will make the depression of 1929 look like child’s play. They may look back at all of the useful things they could have educated themselves about instead of the mind numbing garbage they so enjoy today. They may also learn to pay more attention to what new on the scene candidates are saying. Such as “fundamentally transforming the U.S.A. etc. The Germans have a saying that I was taught at a young age—“too soon old too late smart.”

  2. …..epidemic factual ignorance, inability to speak and write coherently, and the loss of inductive reasoning….
    one still hopes for (1) growth in strength where the opposite of these factors is fostered, valued and required; and (2) a weariness in the general population that makes it unreceptive to such ignorance.

  3. I am always amazed at the left’s ability to maintain their delusions. Why would they not venerate Woodrow Wilson as one of their most significant enablers? It was old white guys like Wilson and Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Roosevelt (to name only a few) who made it possible for them to tear down all that is of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. One of their most admired old white guys was V. I. Lenin. It seems that they have conveniently forgotten him.

    I also wonder at their lack of vision of what they are bringing about.

  4. Mr. Hanson,

    As a former high school history teacher I think this column is right on the mark. My own children are very familiar with the phrase,” judge people by the times in which they lived, not the times in which we live”. Our current times will not be considered the high point of American history, and our reaction to human caused global warming alone will lower the estimation of civilization in our time.

    The greatest threat to society is ignorance, and the triad of the media, academia and popular culture will most likely prevent a reversal of that situation. As you are all too aware, it is difficult to observe the current state of affairs, and know there isn’t much hope for improvement. We are entering a very perilous time and our only consolation is that at least some of us are aware of the potential hazards we face. However, some could make the argument that ignorance is bliss, until reality intervenes.

    In my opinion, you are currently the best objective historical analyst of our times and their relationship to our past, and our future. Thank you for your clear headed analysis and historical perspective.

    Lance Wilson

  5. Yep.

    “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof, Ever learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth,

    From such turn away.”

    Keep up the good fight, professor!!!

  6. sir:

    points supremely well taken. socrates/plato noted that morality was a luxury of wealth. it is not to difficult to understand how great wealth adds a measure of self indulgence to the mix.

    aldo leopold was a great bird hunter: he anticipated the fuss this might cause among the “supercilious” moralists who were not of the land. someone will always be “more moral” than you or i, and, always at absolutely no real cost. assertion of morality is easy. living it, a bit more difficult.

    as winnie the pooh was fond of noting, ” oh, bother.”

    john jay

  7. Hans Blaylock_Billings MT

    You’ve literally created a_ silencing pause analogous to Israel’s PM during his speech before the United Nations Security Counsel this year in response to the US-Iran Nuclear Arms (Treaty(?)

    1. Hans Blaylock_Billings MT

      The more I read of your commentary the more inherently polarizing. This calls for nothing short of a complete audit of the entire historical record relating to American Iconography_ and should include calendar observances and holidays.

  8. VDH,
    Woodrow Wilson was a southern racist as he saw Jefferson Davis in chains when he was a small boy. I am an unemployed history professor turned admissions advisor, specializing always in helping my students admitting them to a private college and a teacher of military students and raisin farmer who can hardly compare to your intellect. Wilson showed Birth of a Nation in the White House also showing his racist tendencies…In today’s world Giants and Dwarfs are among the nations stupids in fact…On the farm we have a saying. To do something once and do it wrong is stupid. Two do the same thing wrong twice is ignorant. This applies to your thesis statement… Dark ages befall only those who wish to dwell in them. If you go looking for witches or for classics professors you will find them. Hobbits and Wizards make more sense in the mind of a WWI vet, JR Tolkien frolicked in the mustard gas in World War I and created a world of Hobbits and Dwarfs….Christmas time is better served with hard working elves…go looking for them and you might find them on top of you tractor or pruning your vineyard. Correction those are farm laborers…The demographics of Mexifornia 2 a CFPI presentation..Despite the darkness Santa is still on his way and I wish you A Merry Christmas and Happy New Year…when he lands at the Selma Ranch…
    JW Carter
    Caruthers, CA

  9. Sadly History or social development or enlightenment is not linear. Nothing
    says that tomorrow is going to be better than today and in general
    culture seems to mostly take four steps forward and three steps backward.
    You VDH know all these things that you write about so well and these young
    people are ignorant, uneducated and arrogant and know none of these things.
    It seems like young people have always thought they knew everything about
    I think that baby boomers were lucky in a way in that our main issue was with
    the Viet Nam war and it just so happens that we
    were mostly right about how that stupid war was being fought and how we
    draftees were being used as cannon fodder
    Mostly, I think young people (being ignorant) get it wrong.
    The current ideas about the United States being founded as a slaving country
    is an example of leaving context and normative culture out of the equation.
    Even with all the Spartacus reruns blacks today feel picked on because their ancestors
    were slaves and they’re mostly unaware that most peoples no matter their
    ethnicity, skin tone or geographical origin have been enslaved at one time or
    another in history.
    Yes it’s ignorance and arrogance.
    I do have to quibble with one point: Inductive reasoning in this case is the
    problem. (Garbage in garbage out) If deductive reasoning was being used by
    these young people then they might understand a little more about what they

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