The radical left is an infectious disease

I have just been reading Alan Bloom’s The Closing of the American Mind which I first read when it was published in 1987. It is remarkable for many things, but most incredibly how none of it has aged in the years since it was written. Things are, of course, worse since academics like Bloom have almost completely disappeared, but the cowardice of the academic world seems to have been a constant. This is from the chapter on “The Sixties” an era I know only too well.

To be isolated in the university, to be called foul names by their students or their colleagues, all for the sake of an abstract idea, was too much for them. There were not in general strong men [or women], although their easy rhetoric had persuaded them that they were – that they alone manned [guarded] the walls protecting civilization. Their collapse was merely pitiful, although their feeble attempts at self-justification frequently turned victorious. In Germany the professors who kept quiet had the very good excuse that they could not do otherwise. Speaking up would have meant imprisonment or death. The law not only did not protect them but was their deadly enemy.” (Bloom 1987: 318)

We are not there yet, and there is plenty of reason to hope we might still get past the latest green-socialist disease. But there is also plenty of reason to think we may not. There is also no one else to defend our way of life other than us. I have paid attention to the ongoing discussion about the Kurds and how PDT has given them away and etc etc etc, all with further laments about who will ever again be able to trust the US etc etc etc. This from the people who surrendered in the Vietnam War in 1975, giving up on a won position and thereby causing the horrors of Cambodia. These are the kinds of decisions presidents are asked to make and it may be right and it may be wrong, but none of us is likely to know. Should this decision cause anyone to move even a milli-smidgeon towards not supporting Trump in 2020 would demonstrate only how shallow their understanding of current events is and how vast the dangers we face actually are.

So let me come back to Alan Bloom who is writing about the world we are in today, even though he published the book in 1987. Following the passage above, he discusses a conversation he had had with an academic at Cornell who had been party to surrendering to a violent student uprising in 1969.

The “social contract,” he averred, was about to be broken, and we would have returned to “the state of nature,” the war of all against all, the worst evil, so that anything to keep that from happening was justified. He proved therewith that he had never understood what he had been teaching, for the contract theorists all taught that the law must never be broken, that the strength of the law is the only thing that keeps us away from the state of nature, therefore that risks and dangers must be accepted for the sake of the law. Once the law is broken with impunity, each man regains the right to any means he deems proper and necessary in order to defend himself against the new tyrant, the one who can break the law.” (Bloom 1987: 319)

Despite what these self-important know-nothing demonstrators may think, we are not in Nazi Germany, which they understand perfectly well. None of them really believe that the world will come to an end in twelve years or even in their own lifetimes. None of them believe there is a single thing Australia can do to lower carbon emissions when China is building coal-fired power plants at a prodigious rate.

But what they do not understand is that the West, the only place where democratic, free and prosperous institutions have ever taken root, will disappear if these ignorant youths are able to shift public opinion enough to put the lever of power into the hands of the people who lead them on these demos.

This has happened before. There is no reason to think it cannot happen again, or that it cannot happen here.

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34 Responses to The radical left is an infectious disease

  1. Behind Enemy Lines

    It’s not (just) about misguided students. Thing is, these protests don’t organise themselves and they don’t pay for themselves (one way or another, we pay for them). One would think that the governments responsible for public security would do a little research and put an end to this. So – why not?

  2. Mak Siccar

    But what they do not understand is that the West, the only place where democratic, free and prosperous institutions have ever taken root, will disappear if these ignorant youths are able to shift public opinion enough to put the lever of power into the hands of the people who lead them on these demos.

    This has effectively already happened in Victoria where we suffer the most extreme left-wing grubbermint in the country, and that includes the ACT.

  3. a happy little debunker

    A week of XR protests, nary a child to be seen.

    Prepared to sacrifice their edumcation to save the planet, but not a single day of their holidays.

    Now try and persuade me that this movement is actually supported by the children….

  4. Behind Enemy Lines

    Further to my comment above, here’s a timely observation from the Zman, who was attended a Dissident Right event in Denmark overnight. Despite attempts at secrecy and security, the conference ended up with the predictable and entirely preventable extreme-left rioting:

    As we see in the States, Antifa in Denmark enjoys broad police protection. It is unlawful in Denmark to have a protest without a permit. It’s always unlawful to block the streets and prevent people from going about their business. The cops could have arrested the whole lot of them, it was maybe fifty, and been done with it. Instead, they let them run riot for the most part. The only thing the cops did was keep them from attacking the building in which the conference was held. The cops were there to support Antifa.

    “The cops were there to support Antifa.”

    Sound familiar?

    The Australian authorities accept left-wing street violence, intimidation and economic vandalism.
    They see it coming, they let it happen, and they do nothing meaningful to punish the lawbreakers or discourage them from coming back for more.

    Once the law is broken with impunity, each man regains the right to any means he deems proper and necessary in order to defend himself against the new tyrant, the one who can break the law.” (Bloom 1987: 319)

  5. max

    “The story of the American Constitution, and particularly of the religion clauses, might be viewed as a modern version of the Tower of Babel story.

    According to the dominant story, the American founders achieved religious freedom by undertaking a radical and risky departure from all past political understandings and arrangements. The heroes in this story are bold political visionaries like Jefferson and Madison, and their heroic imagination consisted in daring to challenge the nearly universal wisdom that insisted that a unity of government and religion is essential to a stable political community.

    W. E. Garrison:
    For more than fourteen hundred years … it was a universal assumption that the stability of the social order and the safety of the state demanded the religious solidarity of all the people in one church. Every responsible thinker, every ecclesiastic, every ruler and statesmen who gave the matter any attention, held to this as an axiom. There was no political or social philosophy which did not build upon this assumption …. all, with no exceptions other than certain disreputable and “subversive” heretics, believed firmly that religious solidarity in the one recognized church was essential to social and political stability.

    Robin M. Williams, “Every functioning society, has to an important degree a common religion. The possession of a common set of ideas, rituals, and symbols can supply an overarching sense of unity in a society riddled with conflicts”

    Peter Berger argued that the religion stands in opposition to chaos, to the collapse of social order… serves as a “sacred canopy” that gives meaning, plausibility, and legitimacy to the norms and social arrangements within the society… That is, “the classical task of religion” is to construct “a common world within which all of social life receives ultimate meaning binding everybody”

    …it was obvious from the start that the United States presented a difficult challenge: pluralism. How can a society be morally integrated if population is splintered into many competing faiths with diverse moral vision, and having a long history of mutual antagonism?

    … Berger conclude…and that to survive, modern societies would have to develop new, secular, canopies.

    …Why the rise of compulsory free public education? Must it not be said that prominent among the reasons was a desire to make possible and to guarantee the dissemination and inculcation among the embryo citizens of the beliefs essential to the existence and well-being of the democratic society?

    And who can deny that these beliefs are religious?

    Here are the roots of the dilemma posed by the acceptance of the practise of separation of church and state…

    … the public schools in the United States took over one of the basic responsibilities that traditionally was always assumed by an established church. In this sense the public-school system of the United States is its established church.

    In this context one can understand why it is that the religion of many Americans is democracy — why their real faith is the “democratic faith” — the religion of the public schools.

    J. Paul Williams: … to meat the present crisis “governmental agencies must teach the democratic ideal as religion”
This is essentially an appeal for a State Church…”

  6. Iampeter

    I posted this in another thread but it’s worth repeating here.
    If you agree with this then you are also a radical leftist.

    I think there’s a lot of stuff you need to figure out and get straight with regards to the subject of politics before you post anything about it, Steve.

  7. It’s a pity that this forum doesn’t have an ‘ignore’ option.

  8. jupes

    None of them believe there is a single thing Australia can do to lower carbon emissions when China is building coal-fired power plants at a prodigious rate.

    There are multiple fronts to fight these pricks on Steve. One of them is language. Don’t surrender and use their propaganda terms.

  9. tombell

    time for some passive “direct” action – if these pr*cks want to glue/chain themselves to something, leave them there. Let them soil themselves. Let’s see how long they last without food/water. Trouble is, this ain’t gonna happen. Eventually, some one who’s really late for work/an important meeting is going to run over some dross. Then the extreme violence of the “Alt right” will be a media feature for months. At the very least we need to start quizzing our political candidates. Lower houses seem captive to party politics – and both major parties are broadly contemptible. So, the Senate is where one focuses. Again, I do not hold much hope,but….

  10. Karabar

    Jupes is right.
    We surrender to the idiotic notion that “emissions” are important every time we insist that Australia’s emissions are less than somew2here else or that emissions are increasing or decreasing. (Because when this word is used it is generally take to mean carbon dioxide. There are emissions of other substances that are of course worth y of concern.)
    Get it through your head, Steve.
    CARBON DIOXIDE HAS ABSOLUTELY NO RELATIONSHIP WITH THE WEATHER.
    BY THE SAME TOKEN, THE RATIO OF co2 IN THE ATMOSPHERE AND THAT IN THE SEA HAS ABSOLUTELY NO RELATIONSHIP TO HUMAN ACTIVITIES.

  11. Andre Lewis

    Karabar sets the most fundamental issue over the climate change scam succinctly. According to the woke generations there must be a villain to rail against and CO2 has been chosen. The fact that the so called science of global warming where this nonsense began is based on a relatively small laboratory experiment in a closed system and performed 100 years ago seems to escape the dolts. Human emissions are calculated by spurious estimates and still comprise only a minute fraction of the atmosphere and all CO2 decays over time so any cumulative effect is limited. What on earth do they think governments or anybody can do about a changing climate even assuming it was going to be deleterious to us.

  12. Roger

    XR demonstrators are the spoilt grandchildren of the Generation of ’68.

    We’ll survive this particular iteration of the revolution, but this has been going on for 50 years and we may not survive them getting their hands on power. The state of Victoria, where police now protect the demonstrators but harass citizens going about their lawful business on the streets of Melbourne CBD is a bellweather, I fear.

    There may be a lot of ruin in a civilisation, but in the end they tend to collapse from pressures within, not from without.

  13. Roger

    Also, Steve, I know it is tempting to describe Leftism as a disease or a mental illness because it is otherwise difficult to account for why a political-economic ideology that has been demonstrated repeatedly to deliver only poverty, misery and the depletion of social capital remains popular. But to do so deprives its adherents of moral agency. Their espousal of destructive policies is not a disease, it is a choice for which thy must be held accountable.

  14. Shaun

    Everyone needs to realise the government is part of what is happening. It is in their interest as it promotes big government and control of the population. How do you think you would go if you and your mates/group tried to organise a protest to disrupt citizens going about their lives and block off the streets. You would be shutdown before it even started. These are organised protests going through all the channels. You try and see how difficult the government is to deal with when you try and organise any event using public roads. Yet someone signs off on these protests and allows them to happen and are a big part of it. Many departments all colluding together. Superiors at government level, in the local councils, police department, the education department and affiliated political arms. The government is the enemy of the people. The rules and laws we live by are made and executed by these people. The police is their strong arm of the law. The police will behave as they have been instructed from the powers that be. Your money is being taken from you and used against you as taxpayers are paying for all of this. People need to wake up as gradually bit by bit, everything we have will be eroded.

  15. Dr Fred Lenin

    The solution to socialism is total defunding of all socialists ,no OPM , no socialism .
    They never create wealth for the people ,only themselcves.

  16. Fat Tony

    A critical step was the disarming of Australia in 1996 by the slimy prick Howard.

    Anyone who thinks they will still have their guns when they are really needed is a fool.
    Every legal owner licensed and every gun registered. How long before there are all collected – by state force if necessary?

  17. C.L.

    The radical left is an infectious disease

    That’s an insult to respectable infectious diseases.

  18. Karabar

    Science is a process for seeking Truth.
    Propose an hypothesis, test it, and if it cannot be replicated it fails. If it doesn’t fail, it must be replicable.
    The hypothesis that an increase in atmospheric CO2 produces higher temperatures is demonstrably false.
    The proportion of CO2 to other atmospheric gases has increased from about 200 ppm to over 400 ppm since 1850, but temperatures have not.
    By their own admission, this increase is in the order of 1.8 degrees of which 1.7 degrees is nothing but urban heat island effect. Without the myth of ‘warming’, the entire hypothesis is disproved.
    It doesn’t matter how brilliant your theory is, and it doesn’t matter how smart you are, or how many degrees you have; if it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s WRONG!. …………Richard P. Feynman.

  19. Bruce of Newcastle

    None of them really believe that the world will come to an end in twelve years or even in their own lifetimes.

    I’m not so sure about that. These kids have been indoctrinated from kindergarten. Their leftist authority-figures all spout the same stuff. The invocation that Science is settled and The Science says we’re all going to fry next week is another appeal-to-authority fallacy (since the small-s science they’re invoking is wrong). But education has been so denatured that kids even older than Greta, and even most university graduates except some STEM ones, have now never been equipped with the mental analytic tools to forensically investigate the green-progs’ claims. Which because they’ve been so immersed in green-progness for so long they don’t have much incentive to do anyway.

    It calls to mind an old Harry Harrison SF novel: Captive Universe

    Two Aztec tribes are on either side of a river in a closed valley. There are severe religious restrictions about crossing the river or talking with anyone in the other tribe. But someone sneaks across and one of the women becomes pregnant to the young guy, who is executed horribly.

    The kid grows up, is highly intelligent and questioning. Knowing what happened to his father he is cautious, but after careful exploration he finds the whole valley is artificial. It is a sub-lightspeed spacecraft and the villagers are the colonists – who on interbreeding produce normal intelligent humans rather than unintelligent peasants.

    We now have a situation with a whole tribe of intelligence-suppressed people on the Left who have been indoctrinated in Aztec ways since birth. It is all they have ever known. It is no wonder they believe in Aztec gods of sacrifice, which the Gaia nutters do indeed resemble. But I see no easy way out like breeding with someone not affected. The whole education system is increasingly in their tight grasp.

  20. Fat Tony

    Urban Heat Island Effect – for the last 6 months, I have been driving through Oakey from Toowoomba once a week at 4.30am.
    The temperature sensor in my car generally shows 2C increase in temperature in the middle of downtown Oakey.
    Look up size of Oakey – what would some of the bigger places be?

  21. Dr Faustus

    XR demonstrators are the spoilt grandchildren of the Generation of ’68.

    Indeed; there are a lot of similarities on show.

    What should be of particular concern is that the XR movement will inevitably develop a violent militant tendency along the lines of Baader-Meinhof, Revolutionary Cells, and the Weather Underground. In amongst the thousands of ‘peaceful activists’ there will be a hard core of revolutionaries who, encouraged will leverage off the permissive-state, climate-emergency-trumps-bourgeois-laws zeitgeist – and step out into the world of terrorism.

    The social and political effects of the German Autumn still terrify Western governments.

  22. Chris M

    Never heard of Oakey so I looked it up Tony, it’s quite a small town! But looks like a nice aviation museum, now I want to visit…

    All this leftist nuttery wouldn’t exist without welfare. Governments running out of money will be a real moment for the West.

  23. Shaun

    “None of them really believe that the world will come to an end in twelve years or even in their own lifetimes.”

    These kids do believe this stuff. The curriculum taught to my child is always loaded regarding climate change. They are taught not to think and find the answer as the answer is already set and is always climate change bad. Renewable energy good. Coal bad. Their is no discussion on how things work or if they even work. My child did a project on steam engines and was amazed to find out they run all the caseload power. The teacher just thinks steam engines are old technology on old trains. The teacher had no idea and believes renewables run everything and is the answer for the future. Everything is framed towards activism.

  24. Fat Tony

    Chris M
    #3182930, posted on October 13, 2019 at 2:36 pm
    All this leftist nuttery wouldn’t exist without welfare. Governments running out of money will be a real moment for the West.

    They still have to run out of superannuation money – the next biggie on their agenda.

  25. Chris M

    Yep, seize the superannuation then cream the top off the bank deposits. I wonder if they’ll think about banning quantities of cash first?

  26. Dr Fred Lenin

    If the government re opened the mental institutions they would soon bee full of climate derangedgangrenes and leftish politicians , be barely room for the deranged street dwellers .

  27. Dr Fred Lenin

    The politicians and public servants wont allow the world to end in ten years ,it would bugger up their super payouts ,also soros and co would object , so suck on the greta there is stll money out there to be stolen .
    So suck on that exSTINKsh revolting and the unfortunate greta wossmame .

  28. miltonf

    Everyone needs to realise the government is part of what is happening. It is in their interest as it promotes big government and control of the population. How do you think you would go if you and your mates/group tried to organise a protest to disrupt citizens going about their lives and block off the streets. You would be shutdown before it even started. These are organised protests going through all the channels. You try and see how difficult the government is to deal with when you try and organise any event using public roads. Yet someone signs off on these protests and allows them to happen and are a big part of it. Many departments all colluding together. Superiors at government level, in the local councils, police department, the education department and affiliated political arms. The government is the enemy of the people. The rules and laws we live by are made and executed by these people. The police is their strong arm of the law. The police will behave as they have been instructed from the powers that be. Your money is being taken from you and used against you as taxpayers are paying for all of this. People need to wake up as gradually bit by bit, everything we have will be eroded.

    This is shocking but I believe it’s true- these Marxist street fighters stopped me from parking my car at Melbourne Central a few years back. They blocked the car park entrance and the police waved me away. The police were in their side.

  29. BorisG

    It took three years for DJT to show what complete disaster his zigzag foreign policy is.

    https://www.timesofisrael.com/islamic-state-families-escape-syria-displacement-camp-kurds-say/

  30. BorisG

    Most reports about US withdrawal are about betrayal of the Kurds. Few people realize that turkey as armed and equipped Sunni jihaddi rebels who were will restore jihaddist control over north eastern Syria.

    Let’s not forget that Turkey’s support was instrumental in establishment of ISIS khalifate in the first place. But Trump either does not know or doesn’t care.

  31. Miltonf:

    This is shocking but I believe it’s true- these Marxist street fighters stopped me from parking my car at Melbourne Central a few years back. They blocked the car park entrance and the police waved me away. The police were in their side.

    It’s been this way for several years now. I was pulled up for a breathalyser test a couple of years ago and uncharacteristically, my pule rate went up and got a little nervous. Not because I’d been drinking but because I had two rifles in the car. Both were being carried as per regs – the bolts removed and locked in the glove box, ammo still in the original boxes and no magazines in the weapons.
    For the first time in a long time I felt as if I was guilty of something when I wasn’t.
    I didn’t get the third degree as I suspected, just felt threatened.
    Perhaps my subconscious was letting me be aware my position was precarious.

  32. pressed the submit button too soon:
    Just watching the harassment of Tommy Robinson by the British police has influenced me. The expressions on these young men and womens faces was almost a revelation.
    TR was, in their eyes, the criminal. The people he was protesting about – the rope gangs of Rotherham – were being protected even as they assaulted TR protesters. At a recent demo, the police had a media unit photographing the Britishers, NOT the maslimic rioters.
    I’ve a fair idea what is happening with the political classes in the west, but it’s stunning to watch the police side with them against their own citizens.

  33. bosnich

    Fat Tony at 1.39pm. Oct.13th.
    Ref rise in temperature near Oakey. I often drive from Melbourne to Geelong and have noted a rise in temperature on the car interior temp. gauge of 1 to 2 degrees while passing Avalon Airport.
    Television station weather reports still quote temperatures from RAAF Base Laverton despite the fact that most of the airfield is now housing.

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