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I worked with Max Boot at Commentary Magazine for a few years, not in the office and not directly, but I would promote his work when it appeared on our blog. I would always joke (but not really joke) that there was never a war that Max Boot didn’t want to start. Boot’s work was the only material on the blog I consistently disagreed with and disliked, in large part because it was so trigger-happy.
It’s been strange watching Boot’s evolution into just another “woke” newspaper columnist; his shtick is so tired by now, what exactly does he offer?
The cadre of “woke” former “conservatives” is growing larger, and each has less and less intellectual honesty than the last.
.@MaxBoot: "With its long-standing opposition to immigration…National Review has found common ground with the far right. Like many conservative media outlets, it has flirted with the “great replacement” theory espoused by the El Paso gunman." https://t.co/tmnJnPv8Oz
— Evan McMullin (@EvanMcMullin) August 14, 2019
It’s so profoundly dishonest, it’s still somewhat surprising to see a newspaper as large and as storied as the Washington Post would run such a screed by a man who clearly didn’t read the entire column he’s responding to,
I grew up reading National Review in the 1980s, @MaxBoot writes. Its founder, William F. Buckley Jr., was a childhood hero.
"So it was a shock on Monday afternoon to see myself attacked in National Review as, essentially, a traitor to the white race." https://t.co/jq9tIDJXxO
— Washington Post Opinions (@PostOpinions) August 14, 2019
And not only did the Post run Boot’s piece, but CNN’s Anderson Cooper even had him on his show to whine about it too,
.@MaxBoot responds to the National Review article attacking him, saying "it's incredibly shocking and offensive to me."
"Sadly, I think it's a reflection of how even mainstream conservative publications are being Trumpified and are going down the same road [of] Fox News." pic.twitter.com/ZRdWUbR9QW
— Anderson Cooper 360° (@AC360) August 14, 2019
National Review’s editor Rich Lowry responded,
One sentence from the piece: “We see that in the tone of hysteria that creeps into immigration conversations: not just traditional fears of crime and ghettos or clashes of language or culture, but screeds about ‘invasion’ or, worse, ‘white genocide.’”
— Rich Lowry (@RichLowry) August 14, 2019
My husband commented:
Btw the response from those at NR has been admirably restrained in the face of lunatic attacks.
— Seth Mandel (@SethAMandel) August 14, 2019
And on this, I’m going to have to disagree.
Proof that National Review hasn’t been “Trumpified” is evidenced by NR’s response to what amounts to Boot’s slander; if it had been truly “Trumpified” NR would be hitting back. Hard. And they should. Trump’s election for many on the Right was proof that the base is sick of being abused by those in the mainstream media and left (but I repeat myself). And we should be sick of it. Being polite in the face of being called white supremacists is how we got Trump, and on this front, maybe we needed him. It’s time to stop being polite.
The left calls the President a white supremacist until they’re blue in the face, and they are astounded that the accusations don’t resonate with a majority of Americans. If they had learned any lessons from Trump’s election, Boot wouldn’t be smearing National Review and John Hirschauer and Dan McLaughlin (the authors of the pieces Boot is criticizing).