May 12th, 2017 – Fort Russ News –
– Analysis by Joaquin Flores for FRN –
Liberalism and Communitarianism are polar opposites on both axes – the economic and cultural. Soviet and Pan-Arab socialism represent, in an imperfect way, the communitarian – and the politics of West Hollywood (a micro-city inside of Los Angeles), represents its opposite – the liberal.
The first world media spectacle presents liberal populism as genuine populism, because of its commitment to individual liberties, personal freedoms, and …. ‘democracy’.
But it is difficult to consider Liberal populism as a genuine populism, because there is no single thread that unites the majority of the people. Rather, it connects a series of generally unrelated individualist concerns, to bring about the spectacle of a mass movement – but this mass is not committed to itself or to each other – rather to each atomized concern, each individual identity where thousands, even millions of identities, are possible.
Communitarian populism is genuine populism, it brings together the majority of people around the Social, the concerns which unite the majority of people and relate to concerns of the vast majority, both class and familial issues.
One powerful way of looking at today’s social contradictions under the conditions of late capitalism, is through the Heideggerian lens of Dasein, a Hegelian concept which was built upon. In short, thousands of years ago, philosophy made a slight error in understanding the point of focus of the political and social sciences (philosophy), placing ‘society’ as the subject rather than ‘the people’. This problem was hardly noticable – advances in society generally accompanied advances in the condition of people. It is when we approach the industrial age when this minor difference becomes major – the contradiction, the cleavage, grew as the means of production and reproduction were further automated. It is now at this critical juncture that we are able to pose a previously impossible to imagine postulate – the advances in society come at the expense of the people.
Liberalism has developed into invidualism and hedonism, the essence of the personal as defined through the lens of the anti-social.
In the east, for several reasons including the actually protective shell which are familial relations which lay at the core of the spiritual self – the self as part of a collective social identity and inseparable from it – were protected under nominally atheist ‘socialism’. Russia and the countries of the former USSR are an excellent example of this. Nevertheless, Russian society struggles to reverse the corrosion and destruction it experienced in the 1990’s under the U.S puppet Yeltsin.
In the west, particularly the U.S, late capitalism has committed to two processes – atomization and generalization. Consumer needs and wants are simplified and generalized, cultures are made into a global monoculture through a process called Globalization which destroys diversity under the banner of celebrating it. At the same time, it separates people into anti-social individuals, based on countless possible constructed identities, such as ‘trans x’ and even through legitimizing misanthropic activities as diverse as the promotion of pedophilia and the sanctioning of death squads (e.g in Ukraine or Central America).
Thus genuine populist movements in the west are at a disadvantage in that the struggle for a truly social society is overwhelmed by a seemingly unbeatable behemoth of narcissistic liberalism. These movements have something to learn from the east, even while in the east it enjoys the advantage of being representative of the openly acknowledged and promoted, i.e. official discourse.
However, in the west, there is a silent majority – the majority of people hold generally communitarian views. But the mass media and a range of social constructions ranging from academia to work-place laws and even social etiquette, are designed by the ruling class – who project their own hedonistic narcissism and atomized individualism upon society – to mute, silence, and confuse this silent majority.
Communitarian populism is gaining ground in the west because the ‘Old Left’ which was communitarian (old communist) in nature, has been replaced, or rather subverted by, the ‘New Left’ which places identity politics which divide the people and set them against each other, as the central focus. The ‘progressive’ economic platform had become an increasingly marginalized issue – even though this at one time was the common denominator which brought people together.
Likewise, ‘conservative’, politics featuring a reactionary idealization of ‘nuclear’ family life has since been tethered to reactionary, liberal, economic policy – frustrating since this neo-liberal, late capitalist economic policy is the driving force of destroying the traditional extended family. The championing of the ‘nuclear’ family – in reality a brief chapter in the development of industrial society within the context of mass production of cheap housing and the creation of jobs based new towns which fueled the separation of the traditional extended family – has been wrongheaded. To wit, the so-called ‘patriarchal nuclear family’ was just a brief passing phase in the destruction of the millennia old traditional extended family (which was as much ‘matriarchal’ as ‘patriarchal’).
Therefore, it is the communitarian vector which represents a coherent approach to the social and personal, and this is what we have seen fueling the recent rise of so-called populist demagoguery, whether as Brexit, Trump, or Le Pen. The intentions of this or that leader or misleader to be are less important at this time than what they, at their core, represent. It is something which neither the left nor the right has been able to thoroughly understand. The violent rejection of this political vector by the left in particular only points to the fact that it is the left – which historically had a pro-social view on economics – has abandoned the vast majority of people and replaced it with the sexual and lifestyle proclivities, masquerading as politics, of the now ruling bourgeoisie who were born post WWII and lived through the 1960’s and 70’s.
Liberal populism, on the other hand, with its focus on the atomizing principle, places the lifestyle choices and needs of what is realistically a small minority, uses this to justify imperialism under the rubric of ‘human rights’. The post 1960’s rejection of leadership as a principle, a projection of the hedonism and politics of personal gratification of the first world liberal elite onto the leaders of countries undergoing development, has led to a political discourse based in pink-washing – one which justifies imperialism provided that it introduces a radical liberal agenda that mirrors that social proclivities of this first world narcissist/hedonist minority.
It is no wonder then that among the first world left, those who are truly anti-imperialist are tagged as ‘tankies’ by the pink-washing liberals and anarcho-trots of various stripes. Those on the right still struggle with defining and understanding what capitalism is as opposed to what they imagine it ought to be. This leads to a never ending debate on taxonomy.
But what the emergent populist, that is, communitarian silent majority understands is that, regardless of terminology, it is the globalists using the twin weapons of financial imperialism and exported social liberalism that are the primary problem both in local political and geopolitical matters. This is why the political discourse that has moved beyond the narrow language of ‘left’ and ‘right’ is growing day by day.