Living With The Dialectic

Posted on Fri 09/16/2016 by

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20090526_Herb_LondonBy Herbert London ~

For devotees of Marxist-Leninist dialectical materialism the world is in motion and “progress” occurs through struggles. It follows the Hegelian principle that an evolving thesis morphs into anti-thesis resulting in synthesis. Thus history is not the unfolding of spirit or individual intervention, but of class struggle through violent revolution which is inexorable. Since all things contain within themselves internal contradictions, which are the primary cause of motion, they ipso facto possess the seeds of their own destruction. Hence the strategy for historical evolution is using the existing methods of free will to undermine freedom. For example, applying the freedom of expression guaranteed by the First Amendment allows for the expression of a theory on which free speech is not permitted.

20080721_freespeechIt is noteworthy that Black Lives Matter has been united with the Muslim Brotherhood in attacking the state of Israel since both of these organizations, intolerant of oppositional positions, employ the Constitution to brow-beat the American public, an almost classic use of the dialectic.

Recently George Soros’ Open Society Justice Initiative called for international regulation of private decisions on what information should be taken off the internet and what should remain. It is ironic – in an Orwellian sense – that an “open society” is calling for a closed society. Presumably there are those in Washington or perhaps in George Soros’ circle who are best prepared to tell us what should be on the internet.

At many American universities including Princeton, student groups have organized a campaign against free speech because it can be “insensitive”. These children of privilege might be offended by words even tasteless words that are used in texts and classroom discussions. What these students are really saying is we want to control the words and curriculum we study. The net result would be a narrowly defined curriculum by a minority of students imposed on an unwary majority.

Then there is the Colin Kaepernick imbroglio in which the San Francisco 49 quarterback insists on sitting for the national anthem as a protest; here too irony abounds. He claimed to be protesting oppression of blacks and people of color. What he ignores is that the economic strides made by blacks in the U.S. since the 1970’s are unprecedented. He ignores as well that most victims of crimes involve people of color harming people of color. Of course the First Amendment gives him the right to take a stand, but context is useful. Free speech allows the stupid to express an opinion, but in Kaepernick’s case the hypocrisy is palpable. This man of color was adopted by white parents and raised in a middle class home. Moreover, this “oppressed” black man earns 19 million dollars a year in a country where another black man is president. Here, too, this is not merely hypocrisy, but the unknowing application of the dialectic to unsettle the status quo.

By any measure, Marx would understand the revolution is here. When the government would use tax payer funds as rent subsidies so that poor Americans can move into tony neighborhoods, the promotion of class conflict has become part of the national agenda.

Class conflict has been made the theme of the presidential campaign even as both parties contend we must unify the country. In fact, the backdrop for class conflict is kulturkampf or the culture war in which deep hostility is uncovered and victims abound. For a nation that has given so much to so many, it is astonishing that victimhood is a growing American culture industry – almost everyone has a gripe including those who want an equal opportunity to use a toilet of their choice.

Seen through the narrative of dialectical materialism and imposed class struggle, these ideas – however bizarre on their face – make sense. They are driving America little by little into a “new nation” in which: sharing of assets replaces private property; only certain points of view are permitted in public, the constitution is rendered meaningless; identity politics pits one race against another; the notion of freedom is redefined as de facto slavery, and foreign policy becomes a manifestation of preemptive surrender to our enemies abroad.

FamilySecurityMatters.org Contributing Editor Herbert London is a Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and the President of the London Center for Policy Research. He is the author of the book The Transformational Decade (University Press of America).

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