There Is Nothing As Bourgeois As An American Leftist
“You know, ever since we started this Archie Bunker thing in the early ’70s, making fun of white working people, we kissed them goodbye. You make fun of people, you look down on them? They get the message. You call them deplorables? They hear it. You bet they hear it. You say they cling to their guns and their religion? Oh yeah, I cling to my religion. OK. I’m a little person, and you’re a big person. Thank you, I’ll be voting for the other guy this time.” – Chris Matthews
“So now identitarian liberalism is taking fire from two directions. From the center-left, it’s critiqued as an illiberal and balkanizing force, which drives whit-cis-het people of good will rightward and prevents liberalism from speaking a language of the common good. From the left, it’s critiqued as an expression of class privilege, which cares little for economic justice so long as black lesbian Sufis are represented in the latest Netflix superhero show.
Both of these critiques make reasonable points. But I’m not sure they fully grasp the pull of an identitarian politics, the energy that has elevated it above class-based and procedural visions of liberalism.
It’s true that identity politics is often illiberal, both in its emphasis on group experience over individualism and, in the web of moral absolutes — taboo words, sacred speakers, forbidden arguments — that it seeks to weave around left-liberal discourse. It’s also true that it privileges the metaphysical over the material, recognition over redistribution.” – Ross Douthat
It is amusing to watch the Left try to self-diagnose itself.
What is that old saying? ‘The man who represents himself has a fool for a client’?
There are not even words for how obtuse the belief is that moving to a ‘material redistribution’ over ‘metaphysical recognition’ would revive the Left. Identity politics is rooted in supremacy. Period. Beyond that the model adopted by the Left is one of implying the majority of American voters are inferior. Somehow the Left become so enamored of their own propaganda that they came to believe that, in a white majority country, labeling whites as racist, privileged, homophobic, evil and all around inferior would result in electoral victory.
Yes, it is that dumb and that intellectually and morally vapid. The gist of Leftist arguments as to how to win elections going forward is around how to convince more people to be as dumb and intellectually and morally vapid as they are. Is that not exactly what the argument on the table is?
A major component of the ‘material redistribution’ argument boils down to requiring blue collar whites to absorb the cost of living for college educated liberals who obtained worthless degrees but mountains of college debt and are now working three part time jobs because there simply are no positions available in the ‘Women’s Studies’ profession – because these people are entitled to your money regardless of their life choices.
The ‘material redistribution’ also requires people who will never be able to retire to pay for the extraordinary retirement packages of government workers. I could go on and on with the examples of the absurdity of the Left – absurdities that they are apparently immune to recognizing. In fact, the Left does not find it absurd at all that people without a college degree should have to subsidize the lives of those with a college degree, or that people who will never be able to afford to retire should pay the retirement cost of those who will retire in grand style. They sincerely believe that is how the world is ordered.
After all, those paying the bills are racist, privileged, homophobic, evil and all around inferior – so why not soak them to enhance the lives of Leftist? Calling them names makes it all okay, doesn’t it? In the echo chamber of the Left this passes for logic.
That the Left will not see anything wrong with that picture is why the self-diagnosis fails. It fails because the Left cannot come to grips with the heart of its’ ideology – that people who adhere to its’ belief system believe they are superior and hence entitled to other peoples stuff and to tell other people what to do, say and believe. The sheer arrogance of believing that your retirement should be funded off of the backs of people who will never retire, that people who never had a chance to go to college should pay for your lifestyle after you squandered your educational opportunity is beyond words – but beliefs such as that are at the heart of Leftism.
Leftism is failing because the ’help the poor’ mantra no longer mask the greed and transfers of wealth executed on a purely ideological basis.
What the Left can no longer hide is the simple truth that there is nothing as bourgeois as an American Leftist.