Moving The Center

Matt Steinglass parses CNN's hiring of extreme partisan and RedState.com headliner Erick Erickson:

The Overton window represents a strategy of pushing the political centre in a desired ideological direction by introducing wildly extremist, unacceptable policy positions and hammering away at them until other ideas that once seemed extremist come to seem reasonable by comparison. The commenting policies at RedState worked the same way: by allowing conservative extremism while tightly restricting liberal discourse, the site tried to redefine the right as the centre.

And again, this is where the post-modern left and the Rovian left overlap: it's about creating reality out of ideology. Because there is no reality that isn't created.

But there is. And the insistence on reality, on assessing problems empirically, and in proposing solutions is what we all need to get better at. In this, Obama really is leading. But the MSM chases its own tail - or, in the words of that ultimate post-modernist, Roger Ailes, it's only about ratings. There is no reality but ratings.

2006-2011 archives for The Daily Dish, featuring Andrew Sullivan

What LBJ Really Said About Selma

"It's outrageous what's on TV. It looks like that man is in charge of the country."

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

What LBJ Really Said About Selma

"It's going to go from bad to worse."

Video

Does This Child Need Marijuana?

Inside a family's fight to use marijuana oils to treat epilepsy

Video

A Miniature 1950s Utopia

A reclusive artist built this idealized suburb to grapple with his painful childhood memories.

Video

Why Principals Matter

Nadia Lopez didn't think anybody cared about her school. Then the Internet heard her story.

Just In