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Contentions

She’s Growing In Office, Alas

Condoleezza Rice has been rewarded for her decision to  reinvigorate the “peace process” with a worshipful piece in today’s New York Times that charts her evolution from skeptic to architect in seven years. This is a standard-issue “growing in office” article, according to which a person considered a conservative ideologue has his or her eyes opened to the Truth — and suddenly seems wise and noble and brave where before she seemed unyielding, dogmatic and cowed by dark forces of the Right. The other term of art for these articles is “strange new respect,” according to which the officials in question are winning unexpected plaudits from politicians and thinkers who previously criticized or reviled them. And it is, of course, extremely seductive to receive praise for bravery and wisdom, especially when the official in question knows full well that one of the results of taking the new position is precisely that he or she will receive this kind of Establishment feedback.


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