Why is Jack Kerwick’s review of “Into the Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America from Post-Apartheid South Africa,” at Townhall.com, so extraordinary? Here’s why (excerpted from the book under review):
South Africa was just one more issue on which Republicans had slipped between the sheets with the fashionable left. Members of America’s delinquent duopoly stood against the gradualism of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, vis-à-vis South Africa. Pushing revolutionary radicalism on the Old South Africa was the goal not only in high diplomatic circles, but among most Republicans. With a few exceptions. As is documented in “Into the Cannibal’s Pot”:
“For advocating ‘constructive engagement’ with South Africa, members of his Republican Party issued a coruscating attack on Ronald Reagan. … Senator Lowell P. Weicker Jr., in particular, stated: ‘For this moment, at least, President Reagan has become an irrelevancy to the ideals, heartfelt and spoken, of America.’”
AND, who other than the extraordinary Jack Kerwick could pull off such a review? Jack is not only brilliant; he actually cares—this deep thinker cares deeply about the fate of the imperiled minority of South Africa and about the implications for his country and countrymen. Writes Dr. Kerwick:
“… But it would be a grave mistake to think that Cannibal is only about South Africa. It is not. As its author describes it, and as its subtitle makes clear, it is a ‘labor of love’ to her homelands old and new. Mercer is determined to spare America the same fate that befell South Africa. Furthermore, it would be as equally egregious a mistake to think that Cannibal is only, or even primarily, about race. There are larger issues to which Mercer speaks, issues with which conservatives have grappled from at least the time that their ‘patron saint,’ Edmund Burke, first articulated them.
“Though Mercer insists that she is no conservative, there are similarities, striking similarities, between her and Burke. The latter made an impassioned defense of his 18th century England against the radicalism of the French Revolution that he feared would soon enough ravage his country. It was in response to these ideological excesses that conservatism first emerged as a distinctive tradition of thought. Mercer carries on this estimable tradition inasmuch as she seeks to defend her new country, America, against the ravenous radicalisms that threaten it.”
“The forces that imperiled France and England in Burke’s day are the same forces that consumed South Africa and that imperil America in our own. These forces boil down to a lust, an insatiable lust, for revolutionary change and the ideological abstractions that inspire it. …”
“… However, it isn’t just the usual suspects—leftists or Democrats—who have an ardent affection for radical change and abstract ideals. The GOP and ‘the conservative press’ have had more than their share of true believers as well.”
“It was, after all, ‘conservatives’—or, more accurately, neoconservatives—that most rigorously supported George W. Bush’s campaign to ‘fundamentally transform’ the Middle East into an oasis of ‘Democracy.’ Noting that abstract ideals like Democracy are not timeless principles written in ‘human nature’ but the hard-earned gains of a civilization that has been millennia in the making, Mercer was among those who argued mightily against this fool’s errand from the outset. Though she fell out of favor with some notable ‘conservative’ media personalities for doing so, time has vindicated her while indicting her critics.”
“Like Burke’s Reflections on the Revolution in France, Ilana Mercer’s “Into the Cannibal’s Pot” is at once timeless and all so timely. …”
Read on. “The Future of the Conservative Movement” is on Townhall.com.
(“The Cannibal” is available from Amazon. More editorial reviews are here. Please Like “The Cannibal”—and further its cause—on Facebook.)