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Love in the Good Old USA
Given the Zinn-Chomsky version of the Good Old USA promulgated throughout academe, who wouldn’t be ashamed to be an American. The Good Old USA is the cause of it all. The “all” being everything from the destruction and exploitation of native cultures and resources by greedy US corporations to the CIA installing corrupt brutal dictators in South America, the Mideast and South East Asia to military invasion and humiliation of the Ummah (Islamic world). The mess the world is in today, even the insane brutality of ISIS, is the result of American self-perceived exceptionalism and superiority and its resultant cultural imperialism.
Here is one thumbnail sketch of the “progressive-PC” version of the Good Old USA being pumped in the nations
re-education camps institutions of higher learning:
Washington, Jefferson, Madison? A bunch of rotten slaveholders, hypocrites, and cowards even when their hearts were in the right places. The Declaration of Independence? A manifesto for the propertied classes. The Constitution? An artifact of sexism and white supremacy. The sacrifices in the great wars of the 20th century? Feeding the poor and the disenfranchised into the meat-grinder of imperialism. The gifts of Carnegie, Rockefeller, Vanderbilt, Morgan, Astor? Blood money from self-aggrandizing robber barons.[Kevin Williamson National Review]
By criticizing the moral failures of one’s own country one is in effect announcing one’s own moral superiority. The lure, or part of the lure at least, is that one thereby, in one’s own mind, has risen above the uneducated bigots that suffer from antediluvian patriotism and that one is a world citizen of superior intellect and moral courage.
But even given this mindset the progressive-PC heads can still profess love of country. Indeed it is a higher form of love than the static love of the unprogressive mind. It is love not of what this country is or has been but of what this country can become. Criticism then is seen as the highest form of patriotism and love. Here is Stephen Goldberg of National Review:
Indeed, for eight years under Bush we heard that “dissent is the highest form of patriotism” — a profoundly stupid and self-serving bumper sticker of a notion. It’s a very strange understanding of love — and that’s all patriotism is; love of country — that its greatest expression is biting criticism, regardless of said criticism’s merit. For eight years, every calumny and slander imaginable was hurled at Bush and the United States, and whenever anyone pushed back on it, we were told that it was patriotic. We just love our country! Dissent is the highest form of patriotism!
The deeper issue is the “can become” part of progressive “love.“ But what exactly is this vision of what America can become? And just how is that to be achieved? And to what extent is forcing one’s vision on the country warranted?
What dumb questions. If we are all purged of our antediluvian identity/loyalty structures and bigotry the world will transform itself. This is essentially the high conceit of the Frankfurt School at the core of Critical Theory. Once man is liberated from the identity structures of God, country, family, sexual restraint and genderism all will be well. Marcuse (“make love not war” - all will be well) represents the culmination the Frankfurt take-down of traditional identity/value structures. What the PC mindset has added is Orwellian-PC mind control which is part and parcel of the progressive-PC package - the right to inculcate through the education system and the workplace the proper attitudes for its citizenry.
And therein lies the great divide between Burkean Conservatism and Orwellian PC-socialism. In the Burkean version of the “Social Contract” citizens can have whatever loathings and hateful feelings they like - just don’t break any laws. If you wish to be an obnoxious bastard full of hate, have a happy but keep you hands off my property and person. In the Orwellian progressive “big brother” contract the citizens must have an attitude adjustment - they must be brought up to have the right feelings and attitudes and if that means revisionist history and mind control by approved fairy tales and narratives and control of media - so be it. The wonderful world where everybody is shaking fair and getting their fair share awaits us.
And just what are these “right” attitudes? It is whatever is left when one eliminates all the “isms” and “phobias” that the high priests of the PC Ministry can dream up - from sexism to climate change denialism and from xenophobia to Islamophobia and all their unlovely allotropes - all enforced by a system of “tribal” taboos. As stated by Dalrymple, one of the great essayists of our time:
Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, nor to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is to co-operate with evil, and in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.
PC-love? The love we don’t need. It is not love for those who accept the challenge of freedom to try to be as they would be but love as our PC overlords would have us be.