debate? Could I be called a “professionalnanti-Marxist”? Is Kenneth Minogue,nin light of his book Alien Powers:nThe Pure Theory of Ideology a professionalnanti-Communist or a professionalnanti-Marxist? Or both?n9. Is the expletive “professional anti-nCommunist” intended to weaken anynopinion of mine critical of the USSR,nhowever informed, logical, ornthoughtful it might be? After all, youndidn’t intend the use of the wordn”professional” as a compliment.nTherefore, whatever I might say aboutnthe USSR need not be given credencensince what I am saying is only what isnto be expected from a professionalnanti-Communist. But, then, isn’t yournresponse to be expected from a professionalnanti-anh-Communist?n10. Is the phrase “professional anti-nCommunist” intended as a politicalncategory, or is it really a categorynwhich grows out of the left-liberal culturenfathered so successfully by Jean-nPaul Sartre? The phrase “anti-anti-nCommunist intellectual” is certainly ancategory in culture, although those sondenominated (by professional anti-nCommunists?) are usually involved innpolitics, too.n11. Anyway, what’s wrong withnbeing a professional anti-Communist?nIf that category includes as role modelnJoe McCarthy, then we have the oldnproblem — an example, a “for instance”nis not a definition.nAre you sure you mean, as younwrote in the Atlantic: “Better that thenworld be wrongly intelligible than notnintelligible at all”? That statement, Inwould say, clearly leads to concentrationncamps and even death camps. Inagree with Bertrand Russell: “It is betternto be clearly wrong than vaguelynright.” As you can see, you’ve set thengray cells churning, and I hope thisnletter will start yours churning, too.nSincerely,nArnold Beichman,nResearch FellownP.S. As I was rereading the letter, Inwondered why, in the 30’s, one nevernheard the phrase “oh, he’s a professionalnanti-Nazi.” The phrasenwouldn’t have made any sense. If anwere getting a salary, tant mieux.nSomehow, the word “professional” hasnbecome a limpet adjective in liberalnculture, attachable only to “anti-nCommunism” but never to other intellectualnpolitics. Imagine a putdownnof Ralph Nader as “a professional consumerist.”nSuch a phrase might evennbe regarded as a compliment. It’s likenthe cant phrase “Red-baiting.” (I havenalso been called “a professional Redbaiter.”)nFascist-baiting, Pretoriabaiting,nPinochet-baiting — nonsensicalnphrases. The word “professional”ncan be very flattering when it isnused without a noun—as in, “he’s anreal pro,” “he is every inch a professional,”nin reference to a doctor or anlawyer. There’s nothing necessarilynderogatory about calling someone anprofessional politician. Yet you and Inknow that to call someone a professionalnanti-Communist would hardlynbe regarded as a desirable encomium.nHow is it possible that a “halo word,”nin Harold Lasswell’s phrase, like “professional”nbecomes a “boo-word”nwhen it prefixes the category “anti-nCommunist”?nLetter From thenHeartlandnby Jane GreernGay ViolencenBOOKS IN BRIEFnIt was Homecoming 1986 at JamestownnCollege in southeastern NorthnDakota. Scott Westcott, 19, was at thendance. So was Shaun Erickson, 28, ansenior who lectures and writes widelynabout his homosexuality.nThe room was crowded, and, accordingnto Westcott, his eyes keptnmeeting Erickson’s across it. YoungnWestcott didn’t like that one bit.nWhen Erickson tried to make his waynthrough the crowd and “touched”nWestcott on the shoulder in passing,nWestcott ordered him to leave thendance and hit him in the face threentimes. Then he followed Ericksonnacross the room and gave him one fornthe road. Erickson, who suffered facialnbruises, didn’t put up a fight, but hendid file charges.nAt the trial before a Jamestown municipalnjudge, Westcott’s lawyer saidnA Study in Thinking by Jerome S. Bruner, Jacqueline Goodnow, and George A. Austin,nNew Brunswick: Transaction Books; $19.95;and Actual Minds, Possible Worlds by JeromenBiunei, Cambridge: Harvard University Press; $15.00. Jerome Bruner is a pioneering forcenin cognitive psychology, and these two books—the first a reprint of the 1956 classic—make itnpossible to appreciate the scope of his contribution. In his latest book, Bruner points out thatncognitive science has concentrated too much on the easy part of cognition, logic, andnproblem solving, at the expense of the creative imagination. He draws particular attention tonthe role of storytelling even in supposedly scientific disciplines like economics. In a highlynliterate afterword, Bruner takes up literary interpretation in its various (equally repellent)nforms. If, as Bruner insists, the function of art is “to open us to dilemmas, to the hypothetical,nto the range of possible worlds that a text can refer to,” then the real enemies are notndeconstructionism or Marxism per se but the boredom-inducing egalitarianism produced bynempty ideas. A remarkably good book and a “must read” for aspiring critics.nReligion, Economics, and Social Thought, edited by Walter Block and Irving Hexhan: ThenFraser Institute. Conference proceedings rarely make for lively reading, but the variety ofnparticipants in this international symposium makes for more than a few lively exchanges. Innmany ways the most interesting contribution is John Yoder’s radical rejection of “thenproclaimed beneficent intentions and systematic wisdom of our latest Constantines on bothnthe Right and the Left.” Participants include Martin Marty, Michael Novak, StephennTonsor, Arthur Shenfield, and Richard Neuhaus.nWhy We Lost the ERA by Jane J. Mansbridge, Chicago: University of Chicago Press; $9.95.nThe author oi Beyond Adversary Democracy demonstrates again that a radical and a feministnis capable of writing solid books. Mansbridge’s critical and lucid discussion of the ERA hasnbeen applauded by both sides—evidence of a remarkable accomplishment.nUnions in Transition: Entering the Second Century, edited by Seymour Martin Lipset, SannFrancisco: Institute for Contemporary Studies; $29.95. Lipset is one of the best politicalnsociologists in the U.S., and this intelligendy edited volume frankly confronts the unions’nproblems in a series of readable articles written from a variety of perspectives. A book thatnshould be read seriously by every businessman with a union contract.nnnJUNE 1987/37n