History

reason vs. Rolling Stone

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Rolling Stone continues its four-part celebration of its 40th anniversary year with a special issue dedicated to exploring every facet of 1967, its birth year.

It features an article by progressive-hero historian Sean Wilentz that is eerily similar in many ways to Brink Lindsey's July reason cover story (which is an excerpt from his fab new book, The Age of Abundance: How Prosperity Transformed America's Politics and Culture.)

Both examine '67 as the year in which both the counterculture and what might be called modern religious right conservatism began to take flight. Brink took a more nuanced and sanguine view about what that culture clash has meant for America, seeing that elements of both have helped create an America that is richer, stronger, and freer in many respects than the world that those movements changed.

Wilentz is more predictably a partisan for the counterculture and sees only a necessary war between the two tendencies that ought to continue until the hippies celebratorily drape themselves in the bloody suits of the Reaganites and Falwellians. Brink himself assesses the similarities and differences between his and Wilentz's take on the legacy of '67 over at his blog,