The Left Rejecting Patriotism/Nationalism

  • jaroslav123

    Posts: 600

    Sep 20, 2014 12:02 PM GMT
    http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/nick-cohen/2014/09/the-left-cannot-be-an-anti-english-movement/

    This is an interesting and well-observed article.

    It does seem rather odd for Lefties (cultural, not economic) to be celebrating Scottish patriotism (when they're not even Scottish) and because there has been a tradition on the left of being "internationalist" as opposed to nationalist...thus the concept of being proud of another country seems antithetical, perhaps.

    I'm not sure.

    Thoughts?

    (Keep it civil and please restrain yourself from bashing lefties and bashing right-wingers for god-sake).
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 21, 2014 1:37 AM GMT
    Not being from your particular political sphere, I am having a hard time following the argument. Perhaps that's because I don't identify with the use of "left" pertaining to culture; if I may accuse you of the same mistake you've recently posted about:

    "Left" and "right" are purely political constructs. They refer to the side of the aisle as a metaphor for political alliances, and ONLY indirectly to the ideals embraced by the political forces involved. "Cultural leftism" refers specifically to the philosophy of embracing the cultural policies of the political left, whatever that may be at a given time and place.

    So while I can see some contradictions between economic liberalism and some of the more obvious logistic perils of Scottish nationalism, there is a *lot* left unsaid about the British Left in the article that makes it difficult for a non-Briton to parse precisely.
  • 24hourguy

    Posts: 364

    Sep 21, 2014 5:49 PM GMT
    Oh thank God this is about the UK & Scotland! whew!
  • waccamatt

    Posts: 1918

    Sep 21, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
    You can't compare the left and the right in the U.K. with the U.S. Things are less clearcut there.
  • jaroslav123

    Posts: 600

    Sep 22, 2014 10:48 AM GMT
    waccamatt saidYou can't compare the left and the right in the U.K. with the U.S. Things are less clearcut there.


    That's because of that famous phrase:
    "In America you have the economic-right, than everything else is more to the right of it".

    The constructs of left/right & liberalism/Marxism still exist, but to use another phrase "the goal posts have moved".
  • jaroslav123

    Posts: 600

    Sep 22, 2014 10:56 AM GMT
    yetanotherphil saidNot being from your particular political sphere, I am having a hard time following the argument. Perhaps that's because I don't identify with the use of "left" pertaining to culture; if I may accuse you of the same mistake you've recently posted about:

    "Left" and "right" are purely political constructs. They refer to the side of the aisle as a metaphor for political alliances, and ONLY indirectly to the ideals embraced by the political forces involved. "Cultural leftism" refers specifically to the philosophy of embracing the cultural policies of the political left, whatever that may be at a given time and place.

    So while I can see some contradictions between economic liberalism and some of the more obvious logistic perils of Scottish nationalism, there is a *lot* left unsaid about the British Left in the article that makes it difficult for a non-Briton to parse precisely.


    1. "Left" and "right" are purely political constructs.
    True. You could argue that the left and the right are actually the same as they both want the same goal (freedom) but go about it in differing ways. All ideologies are constructs, ultimately. You can't "touch" an ideology...they're just dichotomies, structures and collection of concepts conjoined together to allow us to understand how the world "works".

    2. "Cultural leftism" refers specifically to the philosophy of embracing the cultural policies of the political left, whatever that may be at a given time and place.

    Actually cultural Marxism, in my view, is more rigid. All ideologies will change and adapt to the time, but cultural leftism has always been about: rejecting the concepts of national borders, blurring gender/sex-roles, and equality and basic human rights for minority ethnic groups/women/disabled/LGBTQIA...etcetc...

    3. So while I can see some contradictions between economic liberalism and some of the more obvious logistic perils of Scottish nationalism, there is a *lot* left unsaid about the British Left in the article that makes it difficult for a non-Briton to parse precisely

    I think this was because the article was trying to be holistic and paint "broad brush strokes" of the Left's "personality" in relation to a specific issue - thus, the article is perhaps crude due to it's linking of left-wing thinking and a specific political issue affecting us currently. Although, it does touch on the clear Marxist points about class, welfare, cost of living etc...and then brings in the more abstract notions of cultural Marxism like rejecting patriotism/nationalism and so forth.

    Personally, I liked the article. Then again, I just like The Spectator as a right-wing magazine (if you can even crudely label it as that).
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 23, 2014 12:03 AM GMT
    Big clue: The Spectator is a conservative publication and is broadly supportive of the Conservative Party. Many of its former editors have gone on to hold high office in the Conservative Party and in Conservative governments.

    So a couple of English left-wing commentators express their support for Scottish independence, ergo (according to the author) 'the Left hates England'. Utter nonsense.