Independence Day

A small but still cherished gift to America on her 235th birthday: The Glenn Beck Show is gone. Above is Talking Points Memo’s montage of the derangement of his last show.

Frye on the fundamental difference between Canada and the U.S. in the “Conclusion to the Second Edition of Literary History of Canada“:

As Canada and the United States went their separate ways on the same continent, eventually coming to speak for the most part the same language, their histories took on a strong pattern of contrast. The United States found its identity in the eighteenth century, the age of rationalism and enlightenment. It retains a strong intellectual fascination with the eighteenth century: its founding fathers are still its primary cultural heroes, and the bicentenary celebrations of 1976, from all accounts, will be mainly celebrations of the eighteenth century rather than the present day. The eighteenth-century cultural pattern took on a revolutionary, and therefore deductive, shape, provided with a manifesto of Independence and a written constitution. This in turn developed a rational attitude to the continuity of life in time, and this attitude seems to me the central principle of the American way of life. The best image for it is perhaps that of the express train. It is a conception of progress, but of progress defined by mechanical rather than organic metaphors, and hence the affinity with the eighteenth century is not really historical: it tends in fact to be antihistorical. Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, with their imperturbable common sense, are thought of, in the popular consciousness, more as deceased contemporaries than as ancestors living among different cultural referents. The past is thus assimilated to the present, a series of stations that our express train has stopped at and gone beyond. (CW 12, 453)

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