Principalities & Powers

Not What People Expect

Lamar Alexander is not what most people expect to emerge from the hills of Tennessee, but in the New World Order, the state that produced Sergeant York, Jack Daniels, the Grand Ole Opry, and the Great Dayton Monkey Trial retains about as much cultural singularity as an enterprise zone in Detroit. Indeed, that's pretty much what Mr. Alexander, now President Bush's education secretary, helped turn his state into.

It was he, as Tennessee's governor from 1979 to 1987, who struck the deals and baited the traps that lured Nissan and General Motors from the foreign climes of Japan and Michigan to the bucolic meadows of the Volunteer State. Mr. Alexander may have been born on a mountaintop in Tennessee, but he never kilt a bar when he was only three. He's a dressed-for-success Rockefeller Republican who marches to globalist music, and he sees nothing wrong and everything right with the home state of Allen Tate and Andrew Lytic being ingested into the maw of planet-spanning bureaucracies that promise Progress through Universal Affluence.

But materialism is by no means the only tune Mr. Alexander likes to hum. One of his favorite stories relates how, soon after the hordes of Michiganders began to descend on the Tennessee backwaters, a union official told him that one of the main questions with which his serfs always quizzed him was, "Where can I get good schools for my children?" The learning that produced...

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