Reading Horowitz

David Horowitz was one of the founders of the New Left in the 1960s and an editor of its largest magazine, Ramparts. He is the author, with Peter Collier, of three best selling dynastic biographies: The Rockefellers: An American Dynasty (1976); The Kennedys: An American Dream (1984); and The Fords: An American Epic (1987). Looking back in anger at their days in the New Left, he and Collier wrote Destructive Generation (1989), a chronicle of their second thoughts about the 60s that has been compared to Whittaker Chambers’ Witness and other classic works documenting a break from totalitarianism. Horowitz examined this subject more closely in Radical Son (1996), a memoir tracing his odyssey from “red-diaper baby” to conservative activist that George Gilder described as “the first great autobiography of his generation.” He is author of the newly published book The Great Betrayal (Regnery 2014), which is a chronicle of the Democrats treachery in the war on terror before 9/11 to the death of Osama bin Laden.


While putting together my collected writings, which will be published in 10 volumes starting this spring (Title: The Black Book of the American Left), it occurred to me that I have written so much that readers may have trouble figuring out where to start. So I put together this short list of what I think are the books of mine that will most repay the investment and time. The first four are the books I think of as my best and most rewarding literary efforts along with “Unnecessary Losses,” the autobiographical section of The Politics of Bad Faith. Of course I’ve also written specialized books, e.g., on race, higher education, the war in Iraq, etc. which will be of more interest to readers looking for information and analysis on those subjects. But these are the ones I recommend:

  1. Radical Son
  2. The End of Time
  3. A Point In Time
  4. A Cracking of the Heart
  5. Radicals: Portraits of a Destructive Passion
  6. The Politics of Bad Faith
  7. Unholy Alliance
  8. Reforming Our Universities

I have also published a collection called Left Illusions, which includes writings from every stage of my  intellectual career through 2003 when it was published. It includes a comprehensive bibliography and excellent introductory study of my life and work by Jamie Glazov who edited the book. –DH

  • fanlad

    David I wish you the most success. I hope you make a note to your series, Alinsky, Satan, Beck, and Me. Great read thank you.

  • Chezwick

    As a long-time student of David's work, the only thing I'd change on the list would be to insert 'Unholy Alliance' fourth or at the very least, fifth. Part two of that book is absolutely worthy of multiple re-reads.

    The thing that sets David apart from say a Robert Spencer is that Robert is the scholar, first, foremost and always. The importance of his work is incalculable, but it IS in a manner constrained by the very scholarly methodology that gives it its real-world credibility.

    David, on the other hand, is somehow able to convey his personality, or better put, his humanity, in his work…even his non-biographical efforts. Perhaps it's just a facet of style, but he has the ability to parlay a devastating poignancy in the turning of a given phrase.

    An example of this can be found in (I believe) 'Hating Whitey', where David encapsulates the reason for the anti-Americanism of our school and university curriculum. He refers to it as "[a means to detach our future elite from love of country]"….(the actual sentence may have been phrased slightly differently; this is how I remember it). Another writer might have needed two paragraphs to convey the exact same sentiment….and even then, not nearly so poignantly.

    'Radical Son' is certainly the pinnacle of his work. In it, you discover all the many facets of the man, his obvious brilliance and his humanity, but also his vulnerability, his selfishness, and even his naivety, which seems to be a characteristic common to all leftists (or in this case, former leftist).

    David is a giant…and one reason is that he has willingly shared his human failings with the world. Doing so had to have been humbling….but it was a moral necessity, an expression – in my opinion – born of his feelings of indirect responsibility for the tragic death of Betty Van Patty….and further cultivated as he came to terms with the life and eventual passing of his daughter, Sarah.

    I know one thing for certain: I'm a much better human being for having read David's collective works.
    If only all of us here on planet Earth were as willing to openly acknowledge our failings the way he has….it surely would be a much better world.

    • marsconi

      Radical Son was an important part in the completion of my journey from being a liberal to being a conservative.

      Thank you David!

      • SCREW SOCIALISM

        There is nothing wrong in being a REAL liberal.

        Not the FAKE "liberals", as in the FAKE "anti-war" activists, who never saw an anti western fascist they could not embrace.

      • EarlyBird

        Radical Son, a great book and an excellent personal history of the radical left, just proved to me that Horowitz is motivated by personal anger. He's gone from one extreme to the other, left to right, but still remains a radical, because in his heart he is filled with rage. He's just an angry, bitter man, and he's got to be hell to live with.

        Dennis Prager, a person I used to admire until I saw his stuff on this page, once wisely warned to avoid angry movements because they destroy themselves and hurt their aims, even when those aims are righteous, like many of Horowitz's are. He is a rage-filled man, who enlists other angry people to distort and lie. He is unprincipled and has repeatedly stated that he sees politics as war.

        • SCREW SOCIALISM

          EarlyTurd,

          The people filled with rage are the FAKE "anti-war" cultists, REGRESSIVE "progressives" who side with people who stone women to death and execute gays, kill "infidels" and the wrong kind of Muslim.

          • EarlyBird

            Screw Up, not sure how your response is relevant to me, since I'm none of those things.

          • SCREW SOCIALISM

            EarlyTurd, You are judged by your comments.

            Happy Nakba!

        • Maxie

          Lies, distortions and rage? Written with all the empty insight of someone projecting their own persona. You obviously don't know what you're talking about.

          • EarlyBird

            This entire website is nothing but lies, distortion and rage. Wake up.

          • SCREW SOCIALISM

            Coming from morons like you, who gives a crap.

        • Questions

          I read "Radical Son" when it came out more than 15 years ago and I didn't get the sense that Horowitz was filled with "rage." His dissection of his parents' Communist beliefs were out of regret and sadness, not hate.

          I remember back when the book came out there was a rather nasty Old Right Rothbardian libertarian, Justin Raimondo, who reviewd it. He came to the same conclusion about this book that EarlyBird does — that Horowitz was "bitter" and that he "betrayed" his parents. This was baloney. I guess some people, Right and Left alike, have a problem reading text.

    • David Horowitz

      Thank you for this thoughtful appraisal. Part II of Unholy Alliance (The Mind of the Left) will be included in a revised version in Volume II of my forthcoming collected writings. The Volume will be called "Progressives."

  • Johnconrad

    David,

    I remember standing in a hotel/resort swimming pool in Arizona unable to put Radical Son down.

    It is a magisterial work and it changed my understanding of America forever.

    Thank you.

  • WilliamJamesWard

    In the future historians will view these writings as proof that the necessary and pertinent
    information required for the survival of America existed and the degeneracy of leftist
    subversion could have been averted. If this is true there probably will not be any historians
    so I think the better history will be that these books helped in a big way to guide Americans
    back from the brink of societal failure and David will be know as a National treasure and
    required reading in every University. David Horowitz, a true American and friend of freedom………………….William

  • Tan

    "The Black Book of the American Left."

    Fantastic title David! It's a perfect title. If I didn't know better, I would say you named part of the title after "The Black Book of Communism," but you probably didn't. I hope your new book becomes a important piece of work that will one day be read by the youth, teachers, and historians.

  • Michele

    David, I had the pleasure of meeting you in 2006 at the RJC winter leadership conference in Manalapan, Fl. You signed my copy of Unholy Alliance. As Ralph always said to Alice, Baby you're the greatest. You are one of my heroes.

  • Kieran

    If you trawl through the archives of FrontPageMag you can find excellent essays by David Horowitz. The best ones cover subjects such as:
    Hollywood’s longest blacklist. How the alleged martyrdom of certain pampered elites by McCarthyism had been greatly exaggerated, together with examples of very real discrimination against figures in the film industry for their supposed conservative views.
    The inverse McCarthyism that takes place in academia. The level of discrimination that took place in the film industry is nothing compared to that which goes on in academia. If you are not pro-choice on abortion or think America might have the right to a defence policy, it can ruin your career.
    The Black Panthers, a movement whose methods overlapped with organised crime.
    There are many other essays by Horowitz on contemporary culture wars. This is what Horowitz does best. Many of these essays are too good to be discarded as journalistic ephemera and really should be collected in book form.

  • Kathy Adamski

    I agree with everything praised of David's accomplished writings and he is the one I trust for the truth in daily news. Jamie Glazov is also my hero, as well as Phyllis Schlafly for upholding conservatism and ability to understand and explain the good vs. evil. Jamie Glazov's smile and humor is an antidote to the continuing tragedy of mindset revealed by Frontpage.
    I am afraid this is an announcement of David's preparation for an end to his superb work and who else will rise to his stature to continue the non-stop revelation of Satan's allies's work against conservatives? Who will daily, fearlessly point at the enemy so we can watch their moves?
    I saw David at CPAC years ago defending Tom Delay and announcing their combined effort to counter the collaboration of Soros, Hillary and over 300 far left liberal activist in all sectors of occupations of leadership, supporting each other to destroy the foundational freedom of the U.S. and create an elite power grab mechanism which seem to be functioning well in its objective, and growing in numbers.
    He and Whitaker Chambers have spelled out who the enemy is and how they work and I am frightfully aware of the motivation of each action by government, etc. as I watch the news and read conservative blogs.
    I am confounded at the ignorance of friends, family and the masses when the truth and warnings David presents is so stark. In alternative media, black is presented as white and people absorb it rather than risk fighting it.
    It is my dream to attend David's Restoration weekends or his West Coast Retreat.
    Only my faith in God and hope of eternity in heaven maintain my sanity.

  • SCREW SOCIALISM

    The best way to defeat socialist hijacked Hollywood is not NOT buy tickets to see the crap they are pumping out.

    After enough multi-million dollar films that do ZERO at the box office, that do not earn enough money to recoup production costs, the tide will turn.

    Hollywood is about making money and the more people who don't pay, the sooner Hollywood will change its tune.
    .

    • Questions

      I guess you haven't seen too many movies recently, or you wouldn't be making such an absurd statement that bears no relationship to the way movies get conceived, made or received.

      • SCREW SOCIALISM

        Wow! Hollywood lets people see their latest movies for FREE?

        What part of LaLa Land do you live in?

  • Western Spirit

    Years ago I was given a book you'd co-authored with Peter Collier confirming what I'd been sensing and then some. Later I was introduced to a paper you were publishing and jumped at the chance to learn more from your insight and experiences. Thank you, you're a true patriot who has served this country well and beyond the call of duty.

  • Scott Riyer

    David,

    I have wanted to ask you this for a long time, do you believe it is a correct statement to say that the left rejects the Judeo Christian worldvie, and if so would you consider this foundational?

    • Kathy Adamski

      Whittaker Chambers stated that fact as primary.

  • EarlyBird

    Radical Son, a great book and an excellent personal history of the radical left, just proved to me that Horowitz is motivated by personal anger. He's gone from one extreme to the other, left to right, but still remains a radical, because in his heart he is filled with rage. He's just an angry, bitter man, and he's got to be hell to live with.

    Dennis Prager, a person I used to admire until I saw his stuff on this page, once wisely warned to avoid angry movements because they destroy themselves and hurt their aims, even when those aims are righteous, like many of Horowitz's are. He is a rage-filled man, who enlists other angry people to distort and lie. He is unprincipled and has repeatedly stated that he sees politics as war. He therefore fritters away his brilliant intellect. Sad.

    • reader

      Your bot program got stuck or something? You seem to be pretty cavalier with personal attacks against people you've never met.

    • beez

      You call his book "great" and an excellent personal history of the radical left, but claim that DH is motivated by "personal anger" or "rage"? I read Radical Son and regard it both as DH's confession to the sins of of his youth as a member of the radical left. If he's angry, his anger is justified since he directs it at those who continue to lie, deceive, and hoodwink the American people. It seems to me his motivation is one of the most noble: to reveal the truth as only a truly penitent man can do. You say he's
      unprincipled, but you give no concrete examples, either in his work or in his life. "Politics as war" is an old, old metaphor, which you take as proof that he is unprincipled. You'll pardon us if we don't even remotely understand how that metaphor proves that Horowitz is "unprincipled." You give us no further definition for that term. In my view, Horowitz is one of the most principled and emotionally stable figures in the world today. His motivation is simple: to tell the truth about the Left in all its hideous and monstrous manifestations. Sorry you're too cowardly to face it, EarlyBird.

    • SCREW SOCIALISM

      Angy, bitter, sad EarlyTurd, Projecting again?

  • RAILHEAD

    I just read Radical Son for the first time. What an eye opener. I can see how the Demacrat party is a front for the Marxist left. I been watching America slide down that slippery slope for years. Radical Son is a must read for anyone who cares about America. This country is worth fighting for. There has never been a country like it and when its gone there will never be another Thank You David and keep up the Good work. I'll be reading more of your books. RH

  • Roger Dane

    I have read so many of your books and THANK YOU SINCERELY FOR YOUR EFFORTS and GREAT PATRIOTISM, RATIONAL THINKING… not yelling, just emphasizing.
    Be strong… while you did not write it, I suggest one other book, “The Naked Communist” by Cleon Skousen. I found it melds so very perfectly with David’s work!

  • marios

    DAvid's books as well as this great cites are one of the valuable and trustworthy source of Truth. I learn a lot about Islam, about leftists/neocommies, about Real World. Difficult to overestimate great value of you, Mr. Horovitz job for this country. May G-d bless you and your family. Wish you live up to 120.

  • marios

    EarlyBird is one of with brainwashed progressist as leftists MSM propaganda name by Orwell "war is peace, Truth is Lie…". When normal people, as they name them/us conservatives who are for traditional , Judeo-Christians values express it, progressists libel them " angry, racists, Islamofobes".. I reality it is famous tactic to make normal people to be silent as they afraid TRUTH. (Like Islamists) Immoral Leftists/progressists/soc..lists excelled in treachery.

  • Maxie

    Well David this is a good time to tell you how your work has informed and inspired me in my understanding of how and WHY the Left functions as it does. "The Politics of Bad Faith" has become something of a bible for its insights into the Left's hypocrisy's. I have referenced it often in the work that I do. I look forward to your memoirs but hope you're not pulling down the shade and turning off the lights.

  • atthebeach

    Kudos David; you are a 'freedom fighter'; teacher. . .inspiration. Radical Son, my most 'shared' book ever and multiple purchases for 'replacing' and gifting'. Others followed and included on your list.

    So look forward to taking this work on; revisiting; refreshing memory; and learning more. Look forward as well; to having your special effort per these volumes; sitting; on my bookshelf. (Their presence;will be a comfort; and as well a message – a 'shout out' – in itself; to those who 'look' and can see).

    Bottom line; David; and a most important one; you are a humble, Genius; with 'Soul'; and can only thank you for sharing both, with the world; throughout your incredibly productive, and meaningful lifetime.

  • Barry Cooper

    I like that title. I post often my view that the Black Book of Communism and The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich should be required reading in all classrooms on the planet, certainly American ones.

    You more than virtually anyone must be oppressed by the knowledge that everything we need to know is out there, but the lies continue to win.

    Well, there's no way but forward. When your way is ended, many of us will do our best to continue your work.