Famed playwright and screenwriter David Mamet came out of the ideological closet three years ago as a newly minted conservative.
The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture lets Mamet smash the liberal groupthink he blindly called his own for too long.
The book, a scattershot series of essays unified by Mamet’s striking prose, doesn’t read like a typical conservative manifesto. Would Sean Hannity or Ann Coulter expound on the id, the ego, and the superego in explaining how liberals brush aside inconvenient facts?
There’s plenty of red meat for right thinkers, but the Pulitzer Prize winner concerns himself with the bigger picture, the cultural struggle for a nation’s soul. Liberal dogma is decimating the economy, the family unit, and the culture at large, he argues.
The book feels like the rebirth of an intellectual, a man whose mind is now in the service of an entirely new paradigm. And he can’t wait to share what he’s learned with the masses.
This former “brain-dead liberal” admits he had never spoken with a conservative or read a conservative’s work until roughly eight years ago. But The Secret Knowledge reveals he’s been catching up with alacrity.
Those looking to read Mamet smite his smug celebrity peers in casual debate will be disappointed. Who wouldn’t want to drop in on Mamet at a celebrity gathering, waiting for him to pounce after listening to yet another tired rant against the GOP?
Then again, that may be a good thing. Mamet appears incapable of pulling his punches.
He isn’t the first to call the Left’s embrace of socialism its own brand of religion, but his muscular wordplay brings home the point in intense fashion.
He dubs socialism “the largest myth of modern times and the most easily debunked,” and says those on the Left who demand Israel make all manner of concessions in the name of peace should be called out for who they are.
“Is this desire anti-Semitism? You bet your life it is,” says Mamet, who is Jewish.
You can almost hear Alec Baldwin snapping off such a line on the big screen like he did so memorably in Glengarry Glen Ross, the film version of Mamet‘s celebrated play.
And Mamet goes further a few pages later, declaring that Western liberals enjoy the “contemplation of the suffering of the Palestinians” in the endless Middle East debate.
“Actual information about the Middle East conflict is considered an intrusion and a distraction from the spectacle,” he writes.