The Warrior’s Webb

by | Jun 30, 2007

Rolling Stone is running a feature on the new Senator from Virginia, Jim Webb. The story paints him as an indignant populist in the grand tradition.

Just a few years ago, Webb described America’s elites in terms that might be familiar to the fans of Fox News. Liberals were “cultural Marxists,” and “the upper crust of academia and the pampered salons of Hollywood” were a fifth column waging war on American traditions. But Iraq has refocused his views. Now when he speaks of the elites he more often means “the military-industrial complex,” and “the Cheney factor,” the corporate chieftains he describes as the new robber barons. The war and the crimes of class — sending Americans to Iraq and their jobs to China — are becoming interwoven in his mind.

The story shows Webb’s transformation from Ronald Reagan’s Secretary of the Navy to an advocate for the rural coal miners of southwest Virginia. “Captain Webb is marching leftward, and he’s taking many of his old views with him,” writes Jeff Sharlet. Sharlet also points out that Webb is an historian and author.

Publishers Weekly describes Webb’s latest offering, Born Fighting: How the Scots-Irish Shaped America:

As Webb relates, the Scots-Irish first emigrated to the U.S., 200,000 to 400,000 strong, in four waves during the 18th century, settling primarily in Appalachia before spreading west and south. Webb’s thesis is that the Scots-Irish, with their rugged individualism, warrior culture built on extended familial groups and an instinctive mistrust of authority, created an American culture that mirrors these traits.

Sounds like an interesting read, and it’s good to know at least one Democrat Senator is constitutionally ready for the fight it’s going to take to win our country back.