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Location: LaGrange, Kentucky, United States

The opinions and interests of a husband, analyst and Iraq war veteran.


Monday, November 05, 2007

Slaying the socialist Hydra

A nice companion piece to Eric's excellent essay from a few months ago:


Many have wondered why the socialist dream is impossible to slay, despite its failures in the real world. Communism itself seemed to die ignominiously with the collapse of the Soviet Union, but it survives now in an idealized form, seen almost daily in the NYTimes obituary pages fulsomely describing the death of local old Stalinists. Nostalgia. It lingers on their editorial pages which yearn for an imposible to attain egalitarian state run by liberal empaths, ensuring that everyone with a grievance gets an affirmative action program. More nostalgia.


The engine driving the utopian dream is indeed, fueled by nostalgia, and at the wheel are the wordsmith intellectuals. From philosophers like Rousseau, to Hegel, Marx, Lacan, Derrida, and Herbert Marcuse, intellectuals continue to yearn for a world of perfection—as defined, naturally, by wordsmith themselves. In the sphere of imaginative writing, novels and plays, from H.G. Wells to Norman Mailer, from Arthur Miller to Harold Pinter, these spinners of fantasies cater to the universal human longing for utopia, a prelapsarian time of bliss. They share contempt for the world of capitalist democracy, and scorn for the workers who make it run. Men of letters are of course the preeminent arbiters of the good and true in their own, self-created ideal world.


And from Eric's piece:

I think that those who know socialism doesn't work already know that socialism doesn't work. No lesson is needed. Unless acknowledging a few simple facts of history constitutes cynicism, there's nothing cynical about that.

Rather, my cynicism involves a growing suspicion I harbor. I think that some (not all) of the people who have been confounding me and others for years are running a con game, and it's been successful. We're still reduced to arguing over the ricidulous (and settled) question of whether socialism works, as if people of good faith are trying to convince each other to see the error of their ways. I don't think it's so simple, and I think the good faith opponents of socialism are overlooking a strong possibility that the proponents of socialism are not operating in good faith.

They know socialism does not work!


I've a sneaking suspicion these guys are onto something.

(Via: CraigC writing @ Protein Wisdom)

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