…he liberal intellectuals are always in the minority. See Clay Shirky’s Twitter Storm on this point. The people who see that open societies, being nice to other people, not being racist, not fighting wars, is a better way to live, they generally end up losing these fights. They don’t fight dirty. They are terrible at appealing to the populace. They are less violent, so end up in prisons, camps, and graves. We need to beware not to become divided (see: Labour party), we need to avoid getting lost in argui…
This is so true! I often wonder if they only language most people understand is violence and fear! I like reading stuff like this because I hate feeling like I am the only one who ever gets it. Most people cannot grasp the big picture, and I am baffled at how it is so out of reach for most of them. But I am encouraged by the fact that many more seem to be getting at least a piece of the big picture.
I’m an American and I feel like these Trump/Brexit political movements are political temper tantrums (thrown for good reason), but do nothing to fix any actual problems and probably make things extraordinarily worse leading to domino effects like the ones that you have described.
When you point these things out - people do recognize the glimmer of truth in it. But rather than deal with an extraordinarily inconvenient truth, they become defensive and try to dismiss you because they are (understandably) terrified about facing horrific consequences for rash actions, and worse yet, having played a role in it.
Germany is still pretending like the whole holocaust Hitler thing never happened. Meanwhile, in America we have a number of holocausts that we have never truly reckoned with - slavery, destruction of Native American land and way of life, WWII Japanese internment camps, not to mention what was done to the Irish when they first ended up over here. (And there’s more…Italians, Germans, Jehova’s Witnesses- all these groups have had their fair share of run ins with the mob mentality.)
Very few Americans know any of this history, it has been written out of standard American History taught in the public schools, but you can find this stuff out pretty easily if you want to, simply by reading literature. By and large, the basic American narrative that is told, is it’s a wonderful cheery place, liberty and justice for all! But that is not the historic truth — at all.
So here is what it seems to be, people (in groups, tribes or nations) have to lie to themselves about the horrible situations and circumstances that they create and participate within. (The dictator that everyone loves, until there are rivers of blood on the street and the country is in ruins.)
Subsequently, when all of that dies down, in retrospect these same people will deny these horrors ever existed. (I don’t know what that is about, stubborn ridiculous pride…not wanting to admit that they were wrong, by being stupid enough to go along with a dictator, I guess. It really sucks to say, Oh yeah, I was wrong and as a result, my house got burned down, with my family inside. I was dragged out and shot in the head in the middle of the night, but survived, barely. All that happened because of a vote I cast. No one wants to won that so denial is the only other option.
But this denial, allows for this eternal amnesia that allows us to do the same things over and over and over again.
Here’s what I can offer, maybe people are finally waking up to the stupidity of these endless self-destructive cycles…because with each one we learn a little more, and say things like, hey remember when Hitler was doing this thing? It ended badly! My God! The whole world was toast, except America.
We can’t expect to receive such an exemption this time, sadly. With WWII we entered the fray, and as a result some 60 years later our chickens from that are coming home to roost.
The literate ones recognize the signs of the brink of a potential WWIII. I really hope it doesn’t come to pass but, it no longer seems like if but when. I was hoping to God I could get through my lifetime without experiencing war here at home, but it kinda feels like we’re already in the early stages. This country is so divided. It has been for the past 16 years. As the 2016 election has shown, this is only getting worse, not better.
The world abroad does not like us much, and to be fair, outside of a few allies, we don’t seem to like or respect the rest of the world. (I’m speaking of Americans collectively, not me personally.) I honestly wonder, how long before these countries hit back? How long? How long?
Maybe, just maybe, things will be different. Maybe we will turn it around get it right, do something different and new. This dialogue right here, it could be a new beginning. If we just keep at it, maybe these ideas will spread and we can create a new kind of history.