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In the wake of Tuesday’s stunning election outcome, many in the media have called for a reckoning. Matt Taibbi for Rolling Stone bemoaned the coastal media’s “insular arrogance” and the New York Times’s Jim Rutenberg pointed to its ideological narrowness; both calling on journalists and writers to question some of the basic assumptions that drove their reporting. John Harris for the Guardian went further, warning that “making up for that fault will require not just a few more trips out of state and a bit less attention paid to the latest polling, but an entire culture change.”

We agree that now is the time for resisting dogmatism and exploring uncomfortable stances, not at the expense of our convictions but on their behalf. This is, in fact, something we have been trying to do at The Point since its inception. With that in mind, we’d like to suggest a few articles from our archive—now unpaywalled—that have helped us think through what has happened this week.

Mark Lilla on the contemporary Counter-Enlightenment:
[“The Limits of Liberalism,” from Issue 1]
“The legacy of the Enlightenment is fragile; there is no reason to assume that the principles of human autonomy will always be valued, or that the forces of ignorance, cruelty and domination will always be resisted.”

Jonny Thakkar on the contradiction between the Republicans Party’s social conservatism and its support for capitalism:
[“Why Conservatives Should Read Marx,” Issue 3] 
“Today’s conservatives lead a double life, a heavenly one and an earthly one: with one hand they reach for the ideals of stability, virtue and self-restraint; with the other they prop up institutions that make a mockery of those ideals.”

Brickey LeQuire on 9/11 and the Balkanization of blue and red America:
[“Not Even Past,” Issue 5]
“The notion that we live today in ‘two Americas’ is shared by both Right and Left, yet it is hard not to notice which of the Americas has proven willing to send its sons to fight and die for both.”

Jesse McCarthy on America’s moral debts:
[“Who Will Pay Reparations on My Soul?,” web only]
“It is black Americans who time and again have called for ensuring truer and broader justice in the land—for America to live up to the formidable ideals of its charter and not just pay lip service to them.”

Melina Abdullah on the origins of Black Lives Matter:
[“Linked Fate,” Issue 11]
“Like our foremothers, we recognize that we are in the midst of war.”

The Editors on the temptations of ideological purity:
[“On Purity,” Issue 11]
“We are especially likely to build mini-societies—whether philosophical, spiritual or political—when we believe our wider social space to be irredeemably corrupted.”

Jake Bittle on the Trump rally in Chicago:
[“Fear and Loathing,” web only]
“The people at the two poles of this country’s political spectrum stared each other in the face, and one side dumped beer on the other.”

The Editors on the misplaced desire to pick one America over another:
[“On Political Fiction,” Issue 12]
“As Ellison, Faulkner and Twain well knew, a line of pain, humiliation and the fear or fact of invisibility has historically connected the experience of downwardly mobile American whites and that of African-Americans and other racially marginalized groups.”

Kathryn Lofton on charismatic leaders, the “irrationality” of the Trump voter and offense as the beginning of wisdom:
[“Understanding Is Dangerous,” web only]
“Staying shocked at the Donald keeps us all in it, eroticized by our own disgust. What a drag it would be to cease being shocked by his ascendancy, and pursue instead an explanation of how we contributed to it…”

Malloy Owen on why liberals should read Carl Schmitt:
[“Don’t Mourn, Repoliticize!,” web only]
“The Democrats’ withdrawal from the political arena may also be motivated by a sense that some of their opponents are simply too loathsome to engage. American elites have come to regard racism (and attendant evils like fear of Islam) as a sin for which nothing can atone. But their insistence on regarding racist attitudes as outside the sphere of politics has made persuasion impossible.”

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If you, like us, think that some problems will never be solved by political moralizing, better data, or moving to Canada, subscribe now, and stay tuned for our Issue 13 symposium, “What is America for?”—due out this winter.

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