ZNet: David Horowitz Debates

Debates between people who hold extreme polar opposite views can be interesting and educational. One right-wing commentator whose views are the polar opposite of numerous ZNet commentators on a whole host of issues is David Horowitz. Several ZNet commentators have had the patience to engage Horowitz in debate. Here is a good place to see left-thinking and right-wing thinking, and see how arguments hold up in debate.

Michael Albert debates David Horowitz about Socialism

The question: ‘Is Socialism Still on the Agenda?’ was put by the New Left Review in 2001. Michael Albert wrote an essay, and a debate ensued between Albert and some other left commentators on the subject. Months later, Horowitz discovered the essay and wrote a brief note to Albert. An extended many-part email debate ensued, that ended up being about participatory economics. What follows below is that exchange…

Horowitz’s Initial Comment

“But to measure the colossal ignorance of this movement, as a way of understanding that it is a religious and not a political phenomenon…”

Albert’s First Reply

“So, David, how about if we debate the above enumerated desires. You can start off by pointing out which you reject, or which you think are unattainable, much less which reveal to you my `colossal ignorance’.”

Horowitz replies to Albert

“All of your goals Michael are quite noble — and quite impossible — and the effort to achieve them is quite destructive.”

Albert’s Second Reply

“Where we profoundly disagree, which we could usefully debate, is whether folks should accept that capitalism is the best economic system that humanity can aspire too.”

Horowitz Rejoins

“Do we like the happy ending put together by the fairy godmother? Of course we do. Should we act in our lives as though the fairy godmother is really out there? I don’t think so.”

Albert’s Third Responce

“I promised a brief summary of participatory economics. Here we go…”

Horowitz Rejoins Again

“Your response overwhelms me, literally.”

Albert’s Fourth Responce

“Suppose you were stranded on an island tomorrow, with a thousand other folks, from a big shipwreck.”



Race and Racism: Tim Wise debates David Horowitz

Tim Wise, in 2000, wrote a piece called Gore-Vey about Lieberman’s Vice-Presidential Candidacy with Al Gore and the Democratic Party. Some time afterwards, David Horowitz found it and wrote to Tim: ‘You’re a patronizing racist who thinks American blacks are inferior and can’t live by the same standards as everyone else. What would you think of Jews who blamed every community and individual failing on 2,000 years of persecution by Christians? You would probably understand conservative arguments better if you took time to listen instead of knee-jerk name-calling.’ Tim Wise replied, and an interesting debate ensued, about race and white privilege:

The Wise/Horowitz Debate on Racism

Gore-Vey: The original Wise Commentary

Racism and Reparations: Various Commentators respond to Horowitz’s anti-reparations ad campaign

In 2001, Horowitz prepared an ad against reparations for slavery and tried to run it in campus newspapers. When some papers refused to publish it, he accused them of violations of free speech. Several ZNet Commentators discussed both the merits of Horowitz’s ad, and the case in general.

Racism and Reparations 1:

Chrisman and Allan answer Horowitz

Racism and Reparations 2:

Ed Herman: Horowtiz and Reparations

Racism and Reparations 3:

Albert: Not Free Speech

Racism and Reparations 4:

Hutchinson: 10 Reasons for Reparations


All the latest from Z, directly to your inbox.

Institute for Social and Cultural Communications, Inc. is a 501(c)3 non-profit.

Our EIN# is #22-2959506. Your donation is tax-deductible to the extent allowable by law.

We do not accept funding from advertising or corporate sponsors.  We rely on donors like you to do our work.

ZNetwork: Left News, Analysis, Vision & Strategy


All the latest from Z, directly to your inbox.