I was saying to a friend of mine just the other day that the moral hysteria of the so called “liberal” Left was getting to the point where some of these people will actually become dangerous. Their catastrophe ridden, dark fantasizing is getting to look like a cartoon scripted by a tweaker, with a copy of The Communist Manifesto as their entire historical compass.
Hitler is coming, fascism is coming, America is now run by white supremacists, and Europe is about to succumb to its own 4th Reich (presumably run by Trump, Putin, or both, in collusion with the KKK), and all this is linked to hate speech, hate crime, and a million little fascist acts of everyday life that Hilary Clinton, or a strong EU, would have saved us from. Our betters have deserted us, deposed by a Cthulhu like body politic, and the only answer is to fight or die, protest or disappear, sloganise and demand. Yaaaar!! They just can’t even.
It’s a familiar mechanism to anyone who remembers the countercultural Left of the 70s. There are “revolutionaries” and “fascists”, and if you are on the side of good then you are a revolutionary, and gotta smash the fascists. The difference is that now the Left has decayed the popular conception of Social Liberalism to the point where it is an illiberal concern with collective identity, entitlement and guilt, fused with Leftism to produce a Frankenstein of socially compulsive agitprop, offence taking and demanded retribution in the name of a greater good.
But the goods were meant to be delivered in this revolution-by-other-means by the bad guys being forced to change everything in accordance with your demanded vision. The prototype of this was probably feminism’s “Patriarchy”, that yet was going to fix it all, just because. I mean, who you gonna call? It was looking like quite a brave new world for a while there, if you focused on the internet especially. This post-modern Leftism, in Liberalism’s gutted sheep skin, had become highly influential in the media and academia, and a good deal of social policy making.
But it all hinged on a few things. Number one was that the bad guys would cave in to your demands and stay on their knees. Closely linked to number two, that some kind of popular mandate, or at least acquiescence, could be secured for carrying this out, if not by sincere agreement, then by shame and invalidation.
And these things haven’t gone as planned in Britain and America (if expressed in somewhat different ways), and don’t look like they are going to last that long in the rest of Europe either. The cult of the “Liberal-Left” did not take account of democracy, and it failed because it actually isn’t that democratic in temperament, and being driven by the Left, it had no intention of being Liberal in the Classical sense of the word (valuing individual liberty, freedom of speech etc). This was a liberalism that sneered at the Enlightenment. The election of Donald Trump as President was it seems the unthinkable refutation of this project.
But this was a failure of the central praxis of this kind of Leftism. Daddy being shamed into remaking the world for you was the key. And now, not only is Daddy not doing it, but he seems to have other children, who moreover don’t hate him. Big trouble up in the tree house.
You can tell how serious this is for the modern Left by the hysterical reaction, first to Brexit, but more especially to the US election. Flailing, largely incoherent protest. Mad predictions of the return of Hitler. The demonization of enormous sections of the voting public. Nazis everywhere!
The media, being so wedded to the “liberal” (cough) project, have largely shown the kind of partiality you would almost expect from a State controlled media. The contempt for those who didn’t vote as they were told to has been sustained and palpable. And it just confirms what those voters knew already. It tells them that for their money, they voted correctly. You can call people fascists, racists, xenophobes and nazis, but when you are talking to the people themselves it doesn’t work, because they know that they aren’t.
Sections of the Left though have reverted to true form, as the sheep skin slips off. In terms of the hard left, and Marxist ideology, violence is inevitable, necessary and more than justified. And the liberal media are scrambling to try and reintegrate this shift into a justifiable narrative, while the ground work has already been laid by the mirage of the “Alt-Right” being banded about. You have a vague, largely misused term like “Alt-Right” to attach to people, or associate them with, and you then associate that with racism, white supremacy, the KKK, Nazism, and with a little zeal and a lot more intellectual slop, the association becomes an equation. Soon, pretty much anyone you can misname Alt-Right is a Nazi, and there’s only one response to Nazis, right?
The latest demonstration of this was at the University of California, Berkeley, where a talk by Milo Yiannopoulos had to be cancelled, and Milo evacuated, after protests turned into a riot with burning and destruction of property, and members of the public physically attacked by masked protesters. The Mayor of Berkley tried to misrepresent Milo as a “white supremacist”, while various media outlets termed the riot a “protest”. The talk was on the subject of “cultural appropriation”. Berkley was the birth place of the campus free speech movement in the 1960s. The irony of using violence to shut down free speech shows how far we have travelled away from those ideals. These are the same kind of people that said they would burn Milo’s book when it was published, because he was a Nazi. Book burners against Nazism. They weren’t even joking.
The thing is, these people can’t accept they have lost, and can’t believe they have lost for any reason other than the mythical forces of oppression. It couldn’t be that enough people are just sick of them. It couldn’t be that they have failed, and lost their way. It couldn’t be their fault. They spend every fibre of their being fighting the gender-binary capitalist patriarchy, the bad man, and everyone knows that it’s all the bad man’s fault. That would be it. Problem solved. Just double down and revert to type. Screaming tantrum or street thug. I hate you dad! They say, with fits of tears, a petition, a pepper spray, a molotov cocktail.
If you’re really upset about Trump or Brexit, or a gay Jewish British provocateur, just do yourself a favour and calm down. The politics of the Left have failed, but that doesn’t mean that all that remains is the Right. Conservatives and Liberals need to talk to each other, because they can learn from each other, and whether people like it or not, conservatives have more respect for real Liberal values than either the Left, or what passes for liberalism is places like Hollywood. It’s just a fact.
I think we need Liberalism to return, but as Classical Liberalism. And we need to have real respect again for ordinary people, as well as all us freaks and weirdos. You can do that, when you deal with individuals rather than collectives and collective identities.
But people are going to have to take a step back from all this Nazi hunting bullshit, because it is just the rotting carcass of failed Leftism. And if people want to drag that around, well guess who’ll still be President in 2021.
And if you’re not going nuts about Trump and Brexit, or Milo, whether you are for or against them, well done. Hang on in there. Just remember, you are actually the vast majority of people in Britain and America, and we still have democracies.