The Economist

The Economist Interview: Six questions for John Avlon

IN TODAY’S polarised political environment John Avlon has carved out a useful niche, exposing extremists on both the left and right. He says these partisans are more dangerous than ever, in part because they obscure the growing power of independents. Mr Avlon is a columnist for the Daily Beast and a regular contributor on CNN. His most recent book is ” Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe is Hijacking America”. This week we asked him some questions about those hyperpartisans and their effect on America’s political system.

Democracy in America: First off, what is a wingnut?

Mr Avlon: A wingnut is someone on the far-right wing or far-left wing of the political spectrum—the professional partisans, the unhinged activists and the paranoid conspiracy theorists. They’re the people who always try to divide rather than unite us. One tell-tale sign of a Wingnut: they always confuse partisanship with patriotism. Read More…