Michael Barone wrote a wonderful piece today which describes the other front in our war against terrorism. That front is against those liberal elites who teach, write, and speak about their moral relativism and the hatred they have for this country: (h/t Bookworm Room)
[…]Our covert enemies are harder to identify, for they live in large numbers within our midst. And in terms of intentions, they are not enemies in the sense that they consciously wish to destroy our society. On the contrary, they enjoy our freedoms and often call for their expansion. But they have also been working, over many years, to undermine faith in our society and confidence in its goodness. These covert enemies are those among our elites who have promoted the ideas labeled as multiculturalism, moral relativism and (the term is Professor Samuel Huntington’s) transnationalism.
At the center of their thinking is a notion of moral relativism. No idea is morally superior to another. Hitler had his way, we have ours — who’s to say who is right? No ideas should be “privileged,” especially those that have been the guiding forces in the development and improvement of Western civilization. Rich white men have imposed their ideas because of their wealth and through the use of force. Rich white nations imposed their rule on benighted people of color around the world. For this sin of imperialism they must forever be regarded as morally stained and presumptively wrong. Our covert enemies go quickly from the notion that all societies are morally equal to the notion that all societies are morally equal except ours, which is worse.
These are the ideas that have been transmitted over a long generation by the elites who run our universities and our schools, and who dominate our mainstream media. They teach an American history with the good parts left out and the bad parts emphasized. We are taught that some of the Founding Fathers were slaveholders — and are left ignorant of their proclamations of universal liberties and human rights. We are taught that Japanese-Americans were interned in World War II — and not that American military forces liberated millions from tyranny. To be sure, the great mass of Americans tend to resist these teachings. By the millions they buy and read serious biographies of the Founders and accounts of the Greatest Generation. But the teachings of our covert enemies have their effect.
Nevertheless, the default assumption of our covert enemies is that in any conflict between the West and the Rest, the West is wrong. That assumption can be rebutted by overwhelming fact: Few argued for the Taliban after Sept. 11. But in our continuing struggles, our covert enemies portray our work in Iraq through the lens of Abu Ghraib and consider Israel’s self-defense against Hezbollah as the oppression of virtuous victims by evil men. In World War II, our elites understood that we were the forces of good and that victory was essential. Today, many of our elites subject our military and intelligence actions to fine-tooth-comb analysis and find that they are morally repugnant.[…]Our covert enemies don’t want the Islamo-fascists to win. But in some corner of their hearts, they would like us to lose.
Barone usually uses a silk glove in his pieces, today he used a sledge hammer. Good job Michael.
These covert enemies have been hiding amongst us for over a generation now and have taken root in every segment of society. They teach our kids who then grow up with this warped sense of reality and go on to teach others. They are the dummies that populate their tenured positions in our universities. They are the mindless drones that choose journalism so they can “change” our evil country by printing and photographing propaganda. They are the political leaders who would sacrifice our country’s security to gain political advantage and in so doing…power.
Sadly this is not a new phenomen. George Orwell wrote this in 1940:
During the past twenty years the negative, FAINÃ‰ANT outlook which has been fashionable among English left-wingers, the sniggering of the intellectuals at patriotism and physical courage, the persistent effort to chip away English morale and spread a hedonistic, what-do-I-get-out-of-it attitude to life, has done nothing but harm. It would have been harmful even if we had been living in the squashy League of Nations universe that these people imagined. In an age of Fuehrers and bombing planes it was a disaster. However little we may like it, toughness is the price of survival.[…]Up to 1935 virtually all English left-wingers were vaguely pacifist. After 1935 the more vocal of them flung themselves eagerly into the Popular Front movement, which was simply an evasion of the whole problem posed by Fascism. It set out to be “anti-Fascist” in a purely negative way–“against” Fascism without being “for” any discoverable policy-and underneath it lay the flabby idea that when the time came the Russians would do our fighting for us. It is astonishing how this illusion fails to die.
66 years later and it is still not dead yet.
Dr. Sanity also wrote a great post dissecting this culture of moral relativism:
Barone is speaking, of course, about the postmodern philosophical ideas that have permeated all aspects and levels of western culture. Looking back, it is hard to know when this nonsense became so egregious, but I first began to notice it in the early 90’s; and when my daughter started school, I became mildly concerned because it already seemed to be established and entrenched in the elementary school curriculum.
In order to have achieved that coup, these ideas must have been around for at least a generation; and absorbed by key people who would later be in positions of educational, artistic and political power and able to multiply the vector of its transmission and inculcation into a new generation.
Ideas are a powerful force in the world. Those who doubt that statement have never studied philosophy and the history of ideas.
Bad ideas are like a potent stench that try as you might with perfumes and deodorizers, you cannot eliminate until you finally break down and take out the trash. Of course, humans can function somewhat with the pervasive smell; but the only reason they survive when bad ideas are driving their actions is because the idea(s) are never applied consistently. If they were to apply the ideas consistently, then they would simply be overcome from the toxic fumes.[…]If you wonder why our nation seems so divided and why there is so much animosity and emotional hysteria directed against traditional values and ideas upon which this country was founded, you need look no further than the pervasive and unrelenting trickle down of postmodern theories and thinking in education, art, politics and all the social areas of life. Even science has not been immune from the nihilism and anti-reason, anti-reality agenda of the postmodernists.
Nothing has been spared from the idiocy in the left and if we don’t fight it everyday it threatens to destroy this country bit by bit.
They are the dummies that populate their tenured positions in our universities. They are the mindless drones that choose journalism so they can “change” our evil country by printing and photographing propaganda. They are the political leaders who would sacrifice our country’s security to gain political advantage and in so doingâ€¦power.