Hostile Review: George Soros’ Shadow Party and the “Paranoid Style”

by Richard Poe
Sunday, August 6, 2006

3:53 pm Eastern Time

“I often think that if Richard Hofstadter were still alive, he would never stop throwing up,” declares Scott McLemee at Cliopatria, thus concluding a lean and artless rant against our forthcoming book The Shadow Party. (1)

Why “lean” and “artless”?

Mr. McLemee’s polemic is necessarily lean, inasmuch as it draws its nourishment from such meager fare as two reader reviews and a by-the-numbers hatchet job from the paid propagandists at (2) McLemee, of course, did not bother reading our book before publishing his opinion.

More distressingly, Mr. McLemee’s tirade is artless, relying for its rhetorical force on such sophomoric imagery as McLemee’s evocation of the late Richard Hofstadter siezed by fits of intractable vomiting.

If Mr. McLemee wishes to ridicule our book as exemplary of the “paranoid style,” let him first examine Hofstadter’s premises, to see if the insult holds weight. (3) Don’t just parrot Hofstadter as if he were God! Brandishing famous names in support of easily-debunked clichés is a sure sign of an insular and incurious mind.

Oh, for an articulate and erudite critic!

P.S. Regarding the Media Matters piece which Mr. McLemee recommends so uncritically to his readers, here are some preliminary rebuttals from the very authors it defames, David Horowitz (4) and your faithful correspondent. (5)

by Richard Poe
August 6, 2006 03:53 PM ET

Cross-posted from 08.06.06

1. Scott McLemee, “There Plans are Fasinating! [sic]”, Cliopatria, 4 August 2006

2. 1. D.B. & S.S.M., “Echoing Lyndon LaRouche, Horowitz and Poe smear 14-year-old George Soros as Nazi `collaborator’; new book features doctored quotes, factual errors“,, 2 August 2006

3. Richard Hofstadter, “The Paranoid Style in American Politics“, Harper’s Magazine, November 1964, 77-86

4. David Horowitz, “Soros’ Team Steps Up to the Plate“, David’s Blog /, 4 August 2006

5. Richard Poe, “Soros and the Nazis: The Whole Truth, In His Own Words“,, 2 August 2006

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