Streams

It Can Be Good to be Stubborn

Monday, June 23, 2014

Flexibility is usually seen as a virtue, and it’s almost always preferred to stubbornness, but constitutional law professor Richard H. Weisberg wants us to reexamine our collective cultural bias toward flexibility, open-mindedness, and compromise. In In Praise of Intransigence: The Perils of Flexibility he argues that flexibility has not fared well over the course of history, and that emergencies both real and imagined have led people to betray their soundest traditions. He illustrates his argument with historical examples from Vichy France and the occupation of the British Channel Islands during World War II as well as post-9/11 betrayals of sound American traditions against torture, eavesdropping, unlimited detention, and drone killings.

Guests:

Richard H. Weisberg

Comments [8]

Galileo recanted, not just to save his own skin, but his daughter who was a nun, had some influence, may have helped save him. He also famously added on to his statement to the Inquisition..."and yet"...

Jun. 24 2014 04:19 PM
IMHO

[[jgarbuz from Queens

The liberals are quite intransigent when it comes to their support for abortion, and against fatherhood, and for Palestinians and for gay marriage, etc. Any opposition is crushed. Liberal intransigence has lead to the tea party and to right wing intransigence in the GOP today. You challenge any liberal dogma and you'll find out what intransigence is really like. Jun. 23 2014 01:56 PM]]

...you sound really, really angry and paranoid.

Jun. 23 2014 08:02 PM
Steven from Brooklyn

Intransigence in opposition to bad things is good; that in opposition to good things is bad.

The professor will decide which is which.

Jun. 23 2014 02:00 PM
khadija Boyd from brooklyn

Pr. Weisberg, and his publishers, in my view, are going to be dismayed at the abysmal sales of said "book". Is he ok?
best, ko

Jun. 23 2014 01:58 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

The liberals are quite intransigent when it comes to their support for abortion, and against fatherhood, and for Palestinians and for gay marriage, etc. Any opposition is crushed. Liberal intransigence has lead to the tea party and to right wing intransigence in the GOP today. You challenge any liberal dogma and you'll find out what intransigence is really like.

Jun. 23 2014 01:56 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

The liberals are quite intransigent when it comes to their support for abortion, and against fatherhood, and for Palestinians and for gay marriage, etc. Any opposition is crushed. Liberal intransigence has lead to the tea party and to right wing intransigence in the GOP today. You challenge any liberal dogma and you'll find out what intransigence is really like.

Jun. 23 2014 01:56 PM
Ken from UWS

Isn't practically all political progress based on incremental gains that would be impossible without a willingness to compromise?

Jun. 23 2014 01:39 PM
imho

[[Richard H. Weisberg wants us to reexamine our collective cultural bias toward flexibility, open-mindedness, and compromise.]]

What?!?!?

Our "cultural bias" is revealed on our roads, where no one gives an inch. Compromise? When I hit my blinker to change lanes, the guy in the next lane speeds up to cut me off.

Jun. 23 2014 12:50 PM

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