Never Stop Running: Allard Lowenstein and the Struggle to Save American Liberalism

Never Stop Running: Allard Lowenstein and the Struggle to Save American Liberalism

Never Stop Running: Allard Lowenstein and the Struggle to Save American Liberalism

Never Stop Running: Allard Lowenstein and the Struggle to Save American Liberalism

Excerpt

Allard Lowenstein was one of the pivotal figures who shaped American political culture during the post—World War II era. Although neither a chief executive nor a cabinet member, he touched the lives of thousands of people who became active in running America's public business. Many of his disciples have continued to play major roles in American politics— Senators Bob Kerrey, Tom Harkin, Paul Wellstone, and Bill Bradley, to name just a few. For at least two generations of Americans born before 1960, Allard Lowenstein was a name synonymous with engagement, political commitment, and the transformative belief that young people, infused with idealism, could help America become as close to a perfect democracy as possible.

In large part, Lowenstein's influence reflected the degree to which he embodied and exemplified the tradition of liberal activism in postwar America. Franklin Roosevelt was his first political hero, and much of Lowenstein's own political credo went back to the social democratic policies of the 1930s—a belief in a humane and compassionate government that has a moral responsibility to provide shelter, food, and clothing where necessary and to promote a mutual regard among American citizens for each others' rights and well-being. But Lowenstein also played a major role in supporting the second part of what the journalist Godfrey Hodgson has called America's "liberal consensus"—a vigilant anticommunism that . . .

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