He says the conservative movement has an "unhealthy share" of them. So why not call them out?
When conservatives gather at the National Review Institute Summit in Washington, D.C., later this month to discuss "the challenges facing conservatism," I hope attendee Jonah Goldberg, author of Liberal Fascism, repeats the characterization of the conservative movement from his most recent column.
"The movement has an unhealthy share of hucksters eager to make money from stirring rage, paranoia, and an ill-defined sense of betrayal with little concern for the real political success that can come only with persuading the unconverted," he writes. "A conservative journalist or activist can now make a decent living while never once bothering to persuade a liberal. Telling people only what they want to hear has become a vocation. Worse, it's possible to be a rank-and-file conservative without once being exposed to a good liberal argument. Many liberals lived in such an ideological cocoon for decades, which is one reason conservatives won so many arguments early on. Having the right emulate that echo chamber helps no one."
It's great that he wrote the column.
When I wrote that "the civil war the right needs is one waged against the hucksters," and penned an open letter to Jonah Goldberg insisting that "what brought down the right is a corrupt conservative movement, without sufficient capacity for constructive criticism, and beset by heretic hunters who denounced anyone engaged in critical thinking," it didn't reach readers of venues like Townhall, Jewish World Review, the American Enterprise Institute, and National Review. When Julian Sanchez wrote that conservatives have an epistemic closure problem, conservatives like Jonah Goldberg dismissed his concerns, unlike when a columnist like Jonah Goldberg observed that "telling people only what they want to hear has become a vocation" and "it's possible to be a rank-and-file conservative without once being exposed to a good liberal argument."