WHETHER you call it politically correct, progressive or woke, radical ideology has reached revolutionary fervour. Black Lives Matter is merely the latest manifestation of a movement to overturn Western society. Some of us have been warning of the cultural Marxist agenda for years. We were ignored, ridiculed or demonised as right-wing conspiracy theorists. But with BLM urging the fall of capitalism and ‘the patriarchy’, rioters destroying monuments, and online lynch mobbing of any resistance, suddenly nothing is safe. Who would deny the threat of cultural Marxism now?
According to left-wing smears, cultural Marxism is an anti-Semitic trope. That’s what you’ll find foremost in a Google search. Not only is this historically ignorant, it is quite ironic given the hostility to Israel and notions of Jewish world domination that prevail on the hard Left, as exposed by BLM UK with its tweets yesterday arguing that ‘no good Jews support Israel’. With a few exceptions such as James Delingpole, the mainstream media have timidly avoided the term, unwittingly helping cultural Marxism to grow by stealth.
For the uninitiated, the cultural form of Marxism began with the realisation that the established civic democracies of the West were too resistant to a communist revolution as had succeeded in Russia. Nothing would change unless the culture was undermined and reshaped. As Willi Münzenberg reputedly asserted: –
‘We will make the West so corrupt that it stinks’.
This could not be done in a hurry, and radical ideology was dressed in virtuous emancipatory or liberal causes that would build broader support. The long march through the institutions was started by sociologists of the Frankfurt School, who produced an intellectual rationale for cultural Marxism. Fearing persecution by the Nazis when they came to power in 1933, the critical theorists, many of them Jews, fled from Germany. A nucleus formed at Colombia University in New York, where, as Michael Walsh described, they quietly plotted the downfall of Western culture: –
‘They appeared to be relatively harmless, nutty-professor refugees with funny foreign accents who were seeking shelter in America, pleading tolerance for lofty ideals.’
The 1960s gave cultural Marxists their first major opportunity. A restless younger generation, inspired by progressive idealism in university, took to the streets. The popular slogan ‘Make love not war’ was coined by Herbert Marcuse. Feminism, gay rights and black emancipation were widely supported a social advances, but it soon became apparent that activists would not stop at equal rights. Faith, flag and family were targeted, all to be vilified as instruments of oppression. This was a culture war, but only one side was fighting.
Universities were at the vanguard of progressivism, generating a steady flow of ideologically programmed graduates for the institutions. A new establishment gradually emerged, replacing the ancien regime. No violent uprising was necessary. But cultural Marxism faces the same old enemy of the ordinary people, who eschew woke ideas such as gender fluidity, white privilege and systemic racism, and the divisiveness of quotas and reparations for colonialism.
In London last weekend the BLM campaign morphed into something far removed from the initial outrage over a black man killed by a white policeman in Minneapolis. The marchers flew the ‘Progress’ flag, a combination of the gay pride rainbow flag, the transgender pink and blue stripes, and a brown and black arrowpoint (like a young child playing with paint, using every colour in the tray). The demand was for ‘black trans rights’. And the marchers were 95% white middle-class, raising their pale arms in a pathetic imitation of the ‘black power’ fist.
But the force is something to be reckoned with. The radical ideology of identity politics has swept through the middle class, causing a loss of critical thinking, common sense and compassion. Cultural Marxism has been turbocharged by the internet, but memes spread so rapidly on social media that they are difficult to control. Wokeness has escalated into a delusional state, heading towards mass hysteria. Robert Oulds and Niall McCrae describe this as ‘moralitis’, a cultural virus with the symptoms of virtue-signalling, parroting of woke phrases, simplistic dichotomising of debate and people into good or bad, and puritanical denunciation of ‘wrong-thinkers’.
Where does this lead? Perhaps we should not be too pessimistic. Things will probably get much worse before they get better, but the old adage of ‘give em enough rope’ has some merit. Note how Trump has allowed the revolutionary commune in Seattle to do its worst.
But the silent majority must stand up. As vandals run amok, attacking our heritage, identity and freedoms, it is time for a reality check on the cultural Marxism that we naively allowed to fester. We are reaping what was sown.