attempt to defend them are “modernnstate-worshippers.” If states are so bad,nwhy demand one for PalestiniannArabs? Would the PLO’s compactionnof Islam and Marxism ever yield somenform of anarcho-syndicalism thatnChomsky might favor?nThe title of his concluding chapter,n”The Road to Armageddon,” suggestsna certain pessimism about all this.nIsrael “drift[s] towards internal, social,nmoral, and political degeneration”n— that is, toward religion. Israelin”Khomeinism” swells daily, as rabbisnquote from “the genocidal texts” of thenTorah, Chomsky expresses disgust atnIsraeli political scientist MordechainNisan, who, in Chomsky’s words,nwould “put aside” the “Western Enlightenment”nas a “heresy” against thenTorah. Scriptural texts authorizing ancientnIsrael to enslave, exterminate, orndrive out whole nations because ofntheir idolatry are evidently a mysterynand an offense to Chomsky, who advocatesnthe modern doctrine of “humannrights, equal rights.” Such a doctrinengives Israeli Jews and Palestinian Arabsn”essentially equal rights within the territorynof the former Palestine.”nWhile the Enlightenment derivesn”rights” from what all men are, thenBible judges men by what it says Codnwants them to do. The egalitarianismnand toleration of the Enlightenmentnquells religious warfare by denyingnthat religion is worth fighting for. Butnit also tends toward denying that anythingnat all is worth fighting for, ornliving for, except comfortable selfpreservation.nIts reductionist materialismntends to undermine the foundationsnof its own doctrine of “humannrights,” except as that may be definednin the least “righteous” terms. Thisncan do Chomsky’s formidable selfrighteousnessnno good. Evidently,nthere are at least two roads to thisnArmageddon without revelation, andnone of them passes very close to nihilismnon the way.nSam B. Cirgus describes the journeynof certain Jewish writers in Americanwhereby “Jewish history was transformednby the idea of America.”n”America” is a compound idea consistingnof “freedom, democracy, equality,nand republicanism”; “in turn, Jewishnwriters, artists, and public figuresnhelped to sustain and modernize thisnidea.” This two-sided metamorphosisnamounts to a “new covenant,” onenwith rather less divine authority thannthe old one, but welcomed by a scatterednand persecuted nation. Thenquestion one asks such writers mustnbe, “Emancipation for what?” Unfortunately,nCirgus can discover only thenmost general answers: “moral elevation”nin “a competitive and brutalnworld,” egalitarianism, “consciousness.”nHis ideological hero is Brandeis,nwhich explains some of the muddle.nMixing in sexual “liberation,”nfeminism, and “identity”-assertionnthickens matters shll more.nThough Cirgus’ allegiances are tanglednand misplaced, occasionallynthings come into focus, as when hensees that the Rosenbergs, as E.L. Doctorowndepicted them in The Book of thenDaniel, “let their belief . . . become annew kind of orthodoxy that inflatesntheir importance, disguises their vulnerability,nand encourages a kind ofnmoral myopia, which confuses immediatenself-interest, personal status, andnconvenience with universal truth andnjustice,” leading to “self-destruction,nparfly through self-delusion.” To put itnmore harshly than Cirgus does, thenRosenbergs, as Doctorow picturesnthem, are not martyrs at all. Their sonnDaniel achieves a “fusion” of Jewishnessnand Americanness, finding annequilibrium in legal and parental responsibility.nBut because they definenauthority, neither fatherhood nor lawnBOOKS IN BRIEFncomport easily with liberty and equality.nCirgus sees this and worries. In hisnpostscript, he finds both power andndanger in Jewish “moral authority.”n”Jews embody patriarchy,” and patriarchynis resented, according to EllennWillis, one of the scholarly hens ofnfeminism that peck Cirgus’ deferentialnskull.nHowever much one may deride hisnmale feminism, a sort of uxoriousnessnout-of-wedlock, Cirgus does uncovernsomething important here. Libertynand equality want no authority, butnmean nothing without it. That is, afternan individual achieves liberty andnequality, he has nothing left to do butndefend them, and if he knows of nothingnbeyond them, he may doubt themnworth defending. Liberty and equalitynresent, but need, some authority.nBrandeis and the other pragmatist/nprogressive intellectuals tried to solventhis problem with the doctrine of pluralism.nIt proved unstable. Insofar asnpluralism is coherent, it is no longernpluralist, and insofar as it is pluralist itncannot cohere. America’s left, whethernpluralist, Marxist, or merely indignant,ncannot decide what it thinks ofnJews because it cannot decide what itnthinks of authority and liberty. In lessnabstract language, it cannot decidenwhat it thinks of Cod and His relationnto His most problematic creature. Or itndecides, with Marx, not to think, notnto ask. ccnThe Soul of Indonesia: A Cultural Journey by Umar Kayam; Photographs by HaninPeccinotti; Louisiana State University Press; Baton Rouge, LA; $22.50. A fascinating andncolorful examination of hidonesian traditions, custom, and art. in hue and scent, the flowersnof Indonesian culture are unlike any found in the West, yet the human roots of family,ncommunity, and ritual seem as familiar as Iowa.nThe Emperor’s New Clothes: The Naked Truth About the New Psychology by William KirknKilpatrick; Crossway; Westchester, IL; $6.95. A critique of the antitraditional and antireligiousnbias of popular psychology and an indictment of the foolish clerics who have surrenderedntheir faith to the “shrinks.”nPrivatizing Federal Spending: A Strategy to Ehminate the Deficit by Stuart M. Butler;nUniverse; New York. A senior Heritage analyst explains how America could save billions bynturning postal service, wildlife protection, and even Social Security over to privatenadministration.nThe Terrors of Justice: The Untold Side of Watergate by Maurice H. Stans; Regnery;nChicago; $5.95. A much-needed revisionist account of Watergate, dedicated to “thoseninnocents who were trampled in the rush to judgment by the media, the politicians, and anscandalized public.”nKeep Off the Grass by Gabriel G. Nahas; Paul S. Eriksson; Middlebury, VT; $8.95. Anphysician assesses the perils of marijuana and indicts those spineless intellectuals who havencondoned its use.nnnDECEMBER 1985 / 13n