Phony Virtue is Ruining Western Society | The American Conservative

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From Hollywood to our foreign policy, Rousseau’s joke is on us.

Source: Phony Virtue is Ruining Western Society | The American Conservative

“What counts as virtue among Western elites? As Aristotle teaches, if you can identify what a society considers to be virtuous or good, you can understand the moral outlook of that society’s institutions, from its schools to its foreign policy. One needs only to study any gathering of American elite culture to see that virtue, traditionally centered in personal character, has become redefined as public sympathy for humanitarian causes… This moral preening has become so commonplace that a term has developed to characterize it: “virtue signaling.”

“The West’s moral outlook is now animated by the widespread belief that virtue is measured by one’s professed sympathy for causes such as combatting homelessness, extending civil rights for various protected groups, and decrying poverty in far-off places. The more publicly ostentatious one is in attaching oneself to these causes, the more virtue one is assigned by our elite culture.

“Yet the continuing sex scandals of our elites are (pardon the phrase) laying bare the inadequacy of this definition of virtue. In Hollywood and other elite institutions, puffed-up paragons of “virtue” reign, but backstage are characters… wholly lacking self-control, decency, moderation, temperance, and civility… [This] glib dismissal of personal probity and the substitution of a moralistic public commitment to ‘society’ and ‘the world’ has corroded our understanding of morality.

“We might simply chalk this up to the everlasting tendency of human beings toward hypocrisy. Yet something more insidious is at work…”

Read on, for further understanding…

N.B. This issue arose for me back in the mid-90s, in divinity school, when I became aware of the decline and fall of personal morality – or at least, of concern for personal morality, unless in the context of socially acceptable (“politically correct”) causes – and the significance of individual sinfulness, and the rise to prominence of “systemic” sin, evil, and immorality… as defined, of course, by the socio-politically “aware” (read: left-wing / P.C.) “elite.” Needless to say, the situation has not improved in the last twenty years or so………

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Psychologist on the Breakdown of Discourse: ‘I’m a Liberal Professor and My Liberal Students Scare Me’ | Intellectual Takeout

“People born after 1980 are much more likely to be in a state of moral dependency,” he said. “If somebody has done something to me, I won’t deal with it myself. I will get an adult authority, a bureaucratic authority, a diversity a department, something to punish the person who did this to me.”

Source: Psychologist on the Breakdown of Discourse: ‘I’m a Liberal Professor and My Liberal Students Scare Me’ | Intellectual Takeout

“American campuses are now overwhelmingly made up of students born after 1980, many of whom are incapable resolving conflict on their own.

“The result?

“A process Haidt calls erasure, in which universities and educators strip away anything that could possibly be construed as unsettling or offensive. Eventually, ideological conformity (on campuses that implies progressivism) replaces original thought.

“’This makes it impossible to teach. This makes it impossible to have an intellectual community,’ he said. ‘I’m a liberal Professor and my liberal students scare me.’”

I saw the beginnings of this in the late ’80s and, especially, mid-’90s, in my own undergraduate and graduate institutions – the latter in particular. The speed and intensity at which the process has proceeded is indeed frightening. The result is a dumbing-down of students and graduates of our mainstream academic institutions – both in terms of knowledge itself, and the process of learning. And the implications of that are indeed frightening.

I will never forget one of my favorite undergrad professors, a man both liberal and progressive, assert that the primary purpose of a college education is to develop a “good crap detector.” Students today do not, by and large, have good crap detectors. They have ideologies, and fear and hatred for anything outside of them. This is not the way you get productive and intelligent public discourse! It is also not the way you develop intelligent and productive citizens, post-academia.

Just one of many reasons I fear for our future.

How Political Correctness Is Driving the Breakdown of Society | Intellectual Takeout

It’s a great thing to encourage diversity, but in doing so we should ask ourselves if that diversity encourages or discourages a common culture amongst the nation. If it does the latter, then perhaps it’s time we ask whether a doctrine of political correctness is truly healthy for the country.

Source: How Political Correctness Is Driving the Breakdown of Society | Intellectual Takeout

Very gently phrased, but very accurate! I have argued for a long time and in a variety of fora, including this one, that there are a limited number of common norms that serve as support pillars for a culture, a society, and a nation. Among these are common ethnicity, common language, common religion, common ethical and moral standards, a common history, and respect for common institutions (both political and social), customs, and traditions.

Like a well-made building, a society – or a nation – can survive one or more of its support pillars getting a little shaky, but if too many of them begin to experience breakdown, the stability and integrity of the culture, like the building, is at risk. That, unfortunately, is the break-point I see us moving towards with increasing velocity, if current trends continue.

GAH!!! The stupid – it burrrrrns!

Source: Idiot Liberal Proves She Knows NOTHING About US History In Embarrassing Post

This is the level of arrogance and idiocy we’re dealing with, folks. In case you hadn’t already realized it, we have an uphill battle to fight. I’m reminded of the late Supreme Court nominee Judge Robert Bork’s phrase: the “vertical invasion of the barbarians” – meaning that the worst “invasion” we have to face is not external, but from arrogant idiots and ignoramuses from without our own nation(s) and culture(s). Sadly, that invasion is not only underway, but well-advanced…

Conservative Violence: The Horror | Stately McDaniel Manor

The latest offering by Mike McDaniel of the Stately McDaniel Manor blog, a somewhat light-hearted essay – definitely a satirical one – which nonetheless, as satire generally does, makes some excellent points:

Source: Conservative Violence: The Horror | Stately McDaniel Manor

The latest offering by Mike McDaniel of the Stately McDaniel Manor blog, a somewhat light-hearted essay – definitely a satirical one – which nonetheless, as satire generally does, makes some excellent points.

It is an article of faith among the forces of the Left, and of course, the media must be included in this, that Donald Trump has unleashed right wing hell on Earth. White supremacists, haters of Jews, racists, misogynists, haters of the LGBTQWERTY community (whatever it might be or demand to be called at the moment), kickers of puppies, and people who help little old ladies across the street — into traffic — are not only the blood kin of Donald Trump and every American who voted for such a loathsome creature, but have been given presidential leave to rampage across America attacking the righteous. Republicans and conservatives — they’re all too often not the same thing as the Republican Obamacare repeal bill that isn’t a repeal bill has demonstrated — must also be included in any list of deplorables. Yet, as nunnyadayambiddness notes, this sort of crime and social breakdown tends to be concentrated in deep blue portions of the nation.

Unfortunately for the left, Mr. Trump is not cooperating. He has done nothing any reasonable person could mistake for prejudice toward anyone. True, he has honored his campaign promises, and very confused men can no longer go pee pee in women’s restrooms with impunity. This, to the left, is unmistakable evidence that Trump hates all LGBTQWERTY — or whichever pronoun or acronym they prefer today — people. To rational human beings, this engenders (pun) only a sigh of relief, particularly among men, who won’t have to worry about strange (another pun) men showing up in the restrooms frequented by their wives, mothers and daughters. In addition, Mr. Trump’s new immigration executive order creates an honor killing database for the first time in American — probably world — history. That is exclusively a women’s issue, but the Left cares not, because it is Muslims who do the killing, and they apparently can do no wrong to women. The enemy of my enemy and all that.

Read on, gentle readers, for more excellent commentary by Mr. McDaniel!

What is cultural Marxism?

As a blog devoted to the defense and promotion of the traditional, the classical, and the enduring – or to put it another way, “the good, the true, and the beautiful” – The Anglophilic Anglican is obviously on the polar-opposite end of the spectrum from that pervasive and pernicious metapolitical phenomenon often known as “cultural Marxism.” But what is cultural Marxism, anyway?

The precise definition can vary with the individual or entity doing the defining, but it is fair to say that cultural Marxism includes at least these elements:

  1. Globalist and internationalist in scope and ethos, cultural Marxism opposes national or regional loyalty, pride, and patriotism, supporting instead transnational structures like the UN and EU.
  2. Cultural Marxism typically supports “open borders” and “liberal” (e.g., lax or nonexistence) immigration policies, employing euphemisms (such as “undocumented” instead of the factual illegal, and “refugees” rather than the more accurate “migrants”) to mask or justify its intentions.
  3. Deeply anti-traditional, cultural Marxism sees (rightly!) traditional cultural, spiritual / religious, and even political norms and values as antithetical, indeed hostile, to its goal of transforming society in its own image.
  4. Highly secular, even atheistic, cultural Marxism is opposed to traditional religious and moral values, particularly those rooted in the Christian faith, although it is willing to use quasi-religious rhetoric and the idea of interfaith “coexistence” to advance its agenda.
  5. Aggressively “multi-cultural,” cultural Marxism claims to champion “diversity,” but appears to fail to realize that making every place demographically identical is not in fact diversity, but homogeneity. Or perhaps it does realize this, and that’s part of the agenda…
  6. While claiming “individual rights” as the justification for much of its raison d’être, cultural Marxism paradoxically adopts strong-arm, authoritarian tactics – from shaming campaigns (accusing opponents of “racism,” “sexism,” “xenophobia,” etc.) to violent protests / riots – for squashing dissent and imposing its view of the world, in the process trampling the individual rights of those who do not agree with its ideology.
  7. Despite its antipathy to traditional moral standards, cultural Marxism is quite willing to use traditional terminology and concepts, such as “compassion” and “fairness,” to justify its attempts to overthrow traditional social and political structures and moral values.
  8. Cultural Marxism is methodical and gradual in its methods, and takes the long view of history, knowing that every moral or social innovation accepted makes it that much more difficult to justify opposition to the next step; it counts on its opponents becoming fatigued, and giving up the fight.

“The Revolution won’t happen with guns, rather it will happen incrementally, year by year, generation by generation. We will gradually infiltrate their educational institutions and their political offices, transforming them slowly into Marxist entities as we move towards universal egalitarianism.” – Max Horkheimer, leader of the “Frankfurt School”

Not coincidentally, the importation and juxtaposition in close proximity of people with widely (even wildly) varied cultural, political, social, and religious backgrounds (*), coupled with the deconstruction of traditional mediating institutions such as traditional families and churches, and traditional social, moral, and political norms and understandings, provides fertile ground for the imposition of radically innovative ideas and ideologies – such as cultural Marxism itself. This is a truth which is not lost on cultural Marxists.

(* On this subject, I wish I could find the account I read, several years ago, about a cruise company which proudly advertised the multicultural nature of its crews. The dark secret that “selling point” hid, as recounted by the author of the article, is that having a crew made up of people of  a wide range of ethnicities, cultures, national origins, languages, etc., meant that it was almost impossible for them to come together and organize for collective bargaining. As a result, the company was able to exploit them more-or-less with impunity! This is a lesson which should be recalled, when considering the ostensible “benefits” of aggressive multiculturalism and immigration.)

Nota Bene: Franklin Einspruch, at The Federalist, makes a good case that what are most commonly known, these days, as cultural Marxists are actually what he refers to as “pomofascists,” short for “postmodern fascists.” As Einspruch notes,

“The main impulse at work here is not Marxism, but megalomania. The pomofascist sees himself as the embodiment of good and worthy causes. The less everyone else supports those causes, the less human they are, and therefore deserving fewer rights and less entitlement to their own views. Lying to them or about them is of no consequence. Beyond a not-so-far-off point of disagreement, it is acceptable to attack them, rhetorically or bodily. In this context, Marxism is merely an exculpatory device.”

While I don’t disagree with the point, I think we can’t totally discredit or ignore the Leftist / Marxist attitudes and ideology espoused by most of these people, either (see Horkheimer quote, above). Also, I think he’s fighting an uphill battle if he seriously wants to change the designation: “cultural Marxism” has acquired a certain currency, despite repeated (and somewhat hysterical) attempts by its proponents to discredit both the term and those who use it.

But then, I have always argued that the political spectrum is less a straight line than a horseshoe: go far enough to either the Left or the Right, and you end in totalitarianism.

QOTD from “Throne, Altar, Liberty,” with commentary

“We live in an age of idolatry, in which false gods have been substituted for the true God, and counterfeit goods for true goods. Our age has substituted human rights for natural law, equality for justice, and democracy for constitutional government, and we are the worse for each of these substitutions.”

Only one of several gems among this collection of “brief thoughts on assorted matters” from the author of “Throne, Altar, Liberty,” a self-described “Protestant Christian, patriotic Canadian, and a reactionary High Tory.”

red ensign

Here’s another:

“Political correctness has so rotted the minds of our politicians that Parliament is seriously considering condemning as an irrational fear and prejudice the concerns of those who consider it imprudent to admit large numbers of immigrants or asylum-seekers who adhere to the religion that converted the Arabic peoples at sword point during the life of its founder, conquered the rest of the Middle East within twenty-five years of his death, was invading Christian Europe from both sides by the end of its first century, and has behaved in the exact same way towards Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs and anyone else who had the misfortune to live in proximity to it ever since.”

And one more:

Isn’t it interesting how those who decry the mixing of religion and politics whenever a conservative evangelical, fundamentalist or traditionalist Catholic or Orthodox leader calls for pornography to be restricted, abortion to be banned, and public morality to be restored to what it was sixty years ago or otherwise expresses a right-of-centre view of public policy seem to have no objections to those wolves in shepherds’ clothing who devote all of their pulpit time to preaching the gospel of environmentalism, denouncing the evils of various sorts of prejudice and discrimination, and calling for more immigration and diversity.

And, I would add, seem to have no objection to the importation and accommodation of members of a “religion” — Islam — which is in fact an all-embracing ideology: one which makes explicit its claim to absolute dominance in every sphere of human existence, including not only religion and morality but governance, jurisprudence, military affairs, and even economics.

There is no separation of Church (mosque) and State in Islam, no “render unto Caesar,” no “my Kingdom is not of this world.” Yet anyone who raises questions about this is “racist,” “xenophobic,” “Islamophobic.” Another dangerously ironic example of the inconsistency, hypocrisy, and irrationality of the current “liberal” Left.

But as the author of “Throne, Altar, Liberty” also points out,

“Liberals, socialists, and neoconservatives are all in favour of high levels of immigration and a lackadaisical approach to border security and the enforcement of immigration law. This is because each sees the immigrants as the means to some selfish end of their own. [Liberals — in the U.S., Democrats] see a voting base that will keep them in power perpetually, [socialists] see a pathway to power in potential voters they can lure away from the [liberals] by offering more government benefits, and the neoconservatives see a supply of cheap labour. All three condemn as ‘racist’ those who want lower levels of immigration, stricter enforcement of border security and immigration laws, and an immigration policy that is based upon our own country’s needs and interests and does not seek to radically transform our country.”

It’d almost be funny, if it wasn’t so sad.