We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
We who try to be reasonable are befuddled by why the American and European Left have a reflex to defend the Jihadists, and to oppose combating them. The fact that they do so is amply demonstrated, endlessly, by the Great Horowitz, among others.
My theory is that the Left is nihilistic at heart. For whatever reasons, they have passed criticism and have come to hate their own civilization, which is admittedly imperfect but which, at the same time, cannot be matched anywhere, anytime, in history in its freedom, opportunity, safety, stability, and idealism. (Yale's famous rejection of the Bass donation was a high-water mark of this self-hating trend.) The consequence is an anti-Western bias, but they refuse to offer an alternative, either because they do not have one, or because any offered would be rejected by voters. My belief is that our civilization is a fragile sculpture, a rare and precious thing, and that our Western Civilization is one of the most amazing things that humans have created, with, at its core, the idea that every individual human matters, as a child of God. That’s the core of it all, and it is at the core of Western medical practice and medical ethics too, since Hippocrates. We care for their injured in our hospitals, and they behead their prisoners. That is a big difference, one which relegates them to the barbarian category. “All men are created equal…”
It is not my brief on Maggie’s to get into politics, but I cannot ignore this one. What is behind the Left’s apologizing for Jihadists? Why does England welcome them? Why does the US welcome them? Why France and Germany and Sweden? Why does Canada welcome them? Why welcome your destroyers into your home?
I wrote a piece on Evil several months ago, but it had no political content. Hatred and destructiveness can derive from hundreds of sources, but most of the time social norms and rules prevent us from acting on such impulses. They are very human evils, or sins, if you will. If you live in a culture, or subculture, which endorses them, many will be pleased to follow – see Nazi Germany, the Mafia, the Weathermen, or any number of murderous, sadistic civilizations and cultures and subcultures throughout history - and relieved to be given a sanctioned outlet for such emotions. Humans are natural-born killers, after all, just like chimps, and it takes a heck of a lot of civilization to keep us on the right side of the road.
It’s clear to me from all that I have read that the Jihadists have long identified Jews and Christians as the “other” – sub-humans occupying potentially Islamic space. We do not do the same to them – on the contrary, we in the West bend over backwards to make them welcome and to accommodate their ways. Their denial of our humanity is their evil, even if it is endorsed by their culture and their religion, and their using our generosity and tolerance for their own purposes is evil as well, though they see it as justified by Mohammed. Fooling an Infidel is not a sin, and we "nice" infidels are too eager to be fooled.
So we quickly arrive at the religious core of morals and ethics, from whence they derive. The Jihadist believes that war on the West is demanded of him by God. I refuse to get morally relativistic and multicultural about that about that - leave that to the anthropologists. To me that is evil. Why does the Western Left like to ally themselves with this? One might imagine that woman-hating, fascistic, anti-human rights, primitively-capitalistic, oil and opium-dependent, hyper-religious movements would be anathema to them.
But no. They are apologists. And I do not think it is as simple as the anti-Semitism of the Left, although that does exist, I believe.
My take on it all is that the Left longs for chaos, for trouble, for failure and failure of confidence, for cultural breakdown, to undermine the fabric of our culture. Thus the Left has a reflex to be contrary to all tradition, including moral, religious and patriotic traditions - and including the tradition of self-defense. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”I suspect that they imagine that with adequate turmoil, they will prevail and create our socialist heaven on earth with them, of course, in control. However, they would create a nightmare – whether their own statist vision, or the Jihadist theocracy, where their women would be the first to be stoned to death in the stadium, and the men would be next in line. Jihad does not tolerate free-thinkers.
Thus hatred of their own civilization, and contempt for its defenders, seems to have become the hallmark of the Left. I view it as a cultural death-wish. I can understand the Jihadists – their individual evil impulses are culturally- and religiously-endorsed, promoted and rewarded, from childhood, thanks to the Saudi-supported Wahabist schools.But whence the West's cultural-suicide wish from within?
There are only two possibilities: they either believe the illusion that they might prevail following social catastrophe, or they operate in a near-insane denial of the capacity for evil and destructiveness in mankind – the wishful, childish notion that everyone is “nice underneath,” which is psychological nonsense, as reality and honest introspection reveal to us daily. I suspect mostly the former, since the Left has no trouble attributing evil to the defenders of our civilization, and virtue to themselves.
It's rare that I read a piece I agree with 100%. This is a fantastic analysis that incorporates all of the contradictions that the left doesn't see as well as their attitudes toward the civilization that has nurtured them.
In answer to one of your main questions, I believe that the most destructive influence on western civilization over the last 50 years has been deconstructionism and its misuse as a social critique of the west. From this philosphy flows cultural relativism, the blurring or destruction of moral boundries, and a host of other evils that has transformed the left from a defender of the best liberal values of the west into apologists for terrorists and tyrants around the world.
This is a catastrophe. We need a rational left as a counterweight to extremists on the right and a bastion of enlightened reason against the forces of darkness arrayed against us.
Unfortunately, I see now possibility for change anytime soon which makes me tremble in fear for the future of what an ever shrinking number of us refer to as Western Civilization.
A more contrived and subliminal reason for opposing things West (including The God) is because they reject faith as the ultimate path to truth and reality. They are thus, in ignorance, obliged to continually test its basics and assertions for weakness and invaldity.
Their premise, in materialism and the flesh, are doomed to error and destruction, but, lacking faith, they see no reason to forsake their own human opinion. Locked in an ego-centric predicament, they are the on-going "slow learners" of human history for having no alternative to fill the universe-sized ignorance humans possess. (Human knowledge may fill a shoe-box on one end of a coffee- table.)
"Got Criteria?" See Psalm 119:1-176 selah
James Fletcher Baxter