Dinesh D'Souza is one of my favorite wingnuts for several reasons. First of all, his craziness is entertaining as evidenced by the following CPAC appearance. (Watch the CSPAN video-- not embeddable-- it's great.) Second of all, D'Souza entered Dartmouth in 1979, the same class that turned me down after my application and interview. Essentially, I assume that he took my spot, and it's a clear case (in my mind) of affirmative action, the bane of his brand of boot-straps faux meritocratic conservatism; after all, he's darker than I am and certainly added more diversity that I would have, and I guarantee his ACT scores and academic record were not better than mine. Third of all, he is a hypocrite, having left his wife of two decades for a floozy. He represents the trifecta of the wingnut right: unintentional humor, blindness to the social advantages he has benefited from, and, of course, hypocrisy.
Here is his latest entry into the canon of jumbled conservative ideology, from Alternet's "10 craziest things heard at CPAC":
8. Dinesh D'Souza, outsted Christian college president, filmmaker and author: One problem with liberalism is the notion that slavery involved the theft of labor from African Americans. Again with the slavery. Sigh.
Riding high on right-wing acceptance of his theory that Barack Obama's worldview is shaped by Kenyan anticolonial sentiment against Great Britain, D'Souza is expanding his theory to include all of liberal America, which, according to him, imported the anticolonial worldview in the 1960s, and thus came to ostensibly regard all wealth as a form of theft. (This is apparently not to be confused with thegood anticolonial worldview of the founding fathers, who decried, in the Declaration of Independence, how King George "plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.")
Given the success on the right-wing conference circuit of his book about Obama's purported Kenyan resentment, and his movie on the same subject, 2016: Obama's America, D'Souza showed a film clip from a forthcoming picture in which he promises to make "a moral case" for what he calls "the free enterprise system," one that is designed to counter all this theft nonsense. (Apparently, slavery was just an entrepreneurial exercise on the part of the slave-traders.) From D'Souza's remarks, delivered on the main stage at CPAC on Saturday:
It isn’t just some Kenyan thing, isn’t just some foreign thing. Anti-colonialism has come to American in the ‘60s. It’s part of American liberalism. And if you listen to the liberal story of America, it is a story of what? Theft. How did we get America? We stole it from the Indians. Slavery is, in a sense, seen as stealing the free labor of African-Americans. And so the whole story of America is a story of oppression. This is the liberal argument in its broad scale, and it needs to be answered. And in our film, we intend to answer it.Now this is not just, I should say, about the makers and the takers....so the core idea is that free enterprise is a form of theft. We have to make the moral case for free enterprise and for America. A conservatism that did that would be a conservatism that is viable and powerful again.
Watch the C-SPAN video, and you'll also be treated to the metaphor of Barack Obama as a lion-tamer. In that vein, were D'Souza more enchanting, we might view him as a snake-charmer.