Jewish World Review March 1, 2002 / 17 Adar, 5762

Lewis A. Fein

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Consumer Reports

America's new digital patriot -- America has a new patriot for the digital age, a man with a symbolic connection between the quill pen and computer modem. Roger Sause, author of the politically explosive book "Left for Dead: A Digital Manifesto," breaks apart the economic and cultural chains (presumably shattered by communism, yet cruelly tightened by Marx's very own words) responsible for America's current chaos: a nation traversing two incompatible worlds, between the monochromatic conformity of the political Left, where individualism is taboo and choice unpopular; and the Technicolor wonder of technological advancement and collective emancipation.

Sause persuasively outlines the Left's behavior, detailing its reliance upon industrialism - and the attendant control attached therein - that treats individuals as mere statistics. He uncovers the conflict between industrialism and the Information Age, a battle that also concerns big government and republican (small "r") democracy. In short, a digital economy cannot coexist with an excessively large federal government - a government dedicated to the proposition that all programs, no matter how antiquated or ancillary, deserve eternal protection.

Yet, Sause is no mere academic. He is an iconoclastic thinker, albeit one shocked by his own former flirtation with liberal dogma. He traces his personal odyssey from unequivocal acceptance of Leftist ideology, which classifies opposition as heresy and independence as insurrection, to healthy skepticism: a raised eyebrow against the racist policies that simultaneously enslave countless blacks, and the economic policies that hinder all Americans.

Nowhere is this acute analysis more powerful than in Sause's own experiences during the 1992 Los Angeles riots. For the riots, and the revisionist interpretations that now characterize the events as a "rebellion," dispel popular Leftist beliefs about race and innocence. In fact, Sause documents his own initial sympathy for the Leftist cause - alternating between outrage and shouting, a form of Leftist breathing technique.

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He soon realizes an unsettling truth: criminals merely use race as an excuse for criminal profit. The real crime, in Sause's opinion, is the wholesale destruction of community (by knife, fire and bullet) among a collection of local thugs. Indeed, the real story about the riots - one Sause retells with chilling accuracy - is not about racial discrimination. The real story is about the absence of personal responsibility and individual restraint.

But Sause also realizes that truth is simply another subjective term among Leftist agitators. And, no matter how persuasively he shatters Leftist explanations concerning racism and poverty, his political opponents will deny the implications of their own moral abandonment. For it is the total abdication of responsibility that largely explains the difference between prosperity and pathology - between the skills necessary for success and the sins responsible for criminal behavior.

Again, Sause envisions an America that is technologically agile and politically relevant. He wants to harness the Internet's freedom alongside an individual summons for greatness. He describes a world that will soon arrive, providing consumers with extensive choices and citizens with numerous liberties.

Sause's dream will, indeed, become a welcome political reality. But Leftist critics will temporarily forestall the Information Age's principal benefits with accusatory language and inflammatory complaints about racism or sexism. These tactics, though inherently counterproductive, also signify the Left's final political breath - a last gasp before the dawn of a new political paradigm.

Thus, Roger Sause is the Information Age's version of Paul Revere. He is a man with a warning (that the Left is intellectually irrelevant), containing a fundamentally positive message (that freedom and individual choice will govern the twenty-first century). He is a political sage, aware that the Left is dead.

JWR contributor Lewis A. Fein is a writer and Internet entrepreneur in Los Angeles.Comment by clicking here.


© 2002, Lewis A. Fein