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(The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution (1967) by Bernard Bailyn, and The End of the Modern World (1950) by Romano Guardini.)

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The New York Times recently spoke ex cathedra on the American founding through its “1619 Project.” You probably learned in grade school a cartoonish story about white guys in powdered wigs declaring America’s independence in 1776. The Sulzberger family’s College of Cardinals have declared the nation’s birth year was actually 1619, when the first hapless African slaves landed on North American shores. Renowned historians erupted in heretical protest. Unbowed, the Pulitzer bishopric endorsed The Gray Lady’s woke catechism, bequeathing its 2020 award for commentary to 1619 Project creator Nikole Hannah-Jones.

I wonder how my fourth-grade teacher Mrs. Levin got America’s founding so wrong way back in 1974. Maybe she read The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution (1967) by Bernard Bailyn, the only book I salvaged from my father’s unenlightened collection of military and old-school American history. Leftism’s faithful await MSNBC’s retroactive denunciation of the Pulitzer Committee’s unforgivable sin of bestowing its award on Bailyn in 1968.

Unlike the 1619 Project’s suspect methodology, Bailyn studied history as Leopold von Ranke taught us: intensive archival research to produce an account of the past wie es eigentlich gewesen (“as it actually happened”). To form his conclusions, Bailyn read thousands...

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