Treason, Ann Coulter

Ann Coulter is always an entertaining writer but at times she does perhaps allow her considerable gifts for invective to get the upper hand. This is not the case in her 2003 bookTreason.

This is by far her best book, because it’s her most focused and most disciplined book. She has a coherent argument and she sticks to it.

Her thesis is that whenever liberals have controlled American foreign policy the results have been disastrous, not because they’re incompetent or woolly-minded but because they have pursued policies that are actively and consciously hostile to the interests of the United States and of the free world in general. It’s not that they didn’t know what they were doing. They knew exactly what they were doing.

Of course in making such claims she leaves herself wide open to attack if she can’t back them up but she’s done her research and her arguments stand up.

She sees (quite correctly) that the roots of American foreign policy failure go right back to the beginnings of New Deal socialism. The betrayal started with the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt. As a result the US found itself fighting a successful war only to lose the peace. This was not ineptitude. It was a direct result of a massive penetration of American government and bureaucracy by Soviet agents, communists and fellow travellers.

The loss of China to communism did not come about because of mistakes – it happened because the US government was acting on the advice of people in the State Department who wanted China to be taken over by the Communists. It wasn’t incompetence. It was treason.

The only mistake Senator Joe McCarthy made was that he underestimated the extent of communist influence within the State Department.

Subsequent policy failures can be traced to similar causes – those responsible for failure wanted US foreign policy to fail.

One of the strengths of the book is that she mostly isn’t dealing with contemporary issues or personalities. She’s dealing with events in the past where the consequences of those events are a matter of historical record.

This was her attempt to establish herself as a serious systematic conservative thinker, and it succeeds admirably. An excellent eye-opening book.