One of the most common of political tactics is to pin a derogatory label on your adversaries, smear their backers, and then declare victory. Zealots on both sides of the spectrum do it.

Critics of our higher education system get that treatment often. In this excellent Minding the Campus essay history professor KC Johnson tears apart the scurrilous effort of another historian, Ellen Schrecker, to paint those who call for serious reform in higher education as near-McCarthyites.

Johnson, incidentally, is a political centrist who supported Obama in 2008. He doesn’t abide bad logic and intellectual dishonesty.