In his latest contribution to New English Review Dalrymple devises a test to determine which distastes reveal everyone’s – note: everyone’s – inner authoritarian.
Read the piece here, take the test yourself, and submit your answers in the comments section.
In the course of explaining the principles involved, he offers this (to my mind accurate and insightful) description of the current ideological warfare that marks the present moment:
With the cacophony of opinion that now seems to envelop us every minute of the day, thanks to the media of mass communication, virtue has become the expression of the right ideas, which is to say of ideas that coincide with one’s own. In the beginning was the Word, but the word is now the beginning, the middle and the end. In a logocracy such as ours, he is best whose words are best; and those who say things that differ from our opinion not merely think differently, but are bad people. Those who merely behave badly are not bad, provided they believe the right things; while even the best, kindest or most considerate of personal conduct will not save the reputation of someone who expresses incorrect ideas.