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David Mamet, the reformed “brain-dead liberal,” on how the Left is dismantling American culture

Jun 30, 2011
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David Mamet, the famous playwriter and director, whose works include films The Untouchables, The Verdict, and Wag the Dog and plays American Buffalo and Pulitzer-prize winning Glengarry Glen Ross, is a self-proclaimed “reformed liberal.” For the past thirty years, Mamet depicted the rationale behind liberal thought in his plays and movies as his underdog characters battled against the ruthless forces of a free market economy. But in 2008, he shocked his fans with his hugely controversial op-ed in the Village Voice titled “Why I am No Longer a ‘Brain-Dead’ Liberal.” In this article and now in his new book, The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture, Mamet says he was living in a bubble in which he allowed the biased media sources he followed to keep him from seeing reason. He claims that Leftist thought is a “devolution from reason to belief”—a belief, that is, in government. He goes as far as to say, “The Left, in addition to its embrace of the false (higher taxes mean increased prosperity for all), and its acceptance of the moot as incontrovertible (global warming), must account for the incidental effect of the sum of these decisions. This effect is the destruction of our culture.” Mamet is here with Patt to take her questions and yours.

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