18 Iunie 2016 Lasă un comentariu
Throughout the Cold War, conservatives had a certain advantage in the competition of ideas—the battle between the West’s right to pursue happiness and the East’s pursuit of the right to happiness. The USSR—not to mention its despotic affiliates across the globe—was more than a temporal nightmare; it was the actualization of the left’s original sins. Totalitarianism was unavoidable: it was the only end because Marxism, from its start, misread human nature, overestimating the ability of man to master the forces of the universe. Yet the highest ambition of Marxism was a supremely righteous one, or so it seemed, born of the Age of Reason: pure equality.
Norman Podhoretz, the former editor of Commentary who himself had flirted with radicalism in the early 1960s, once explained that communism’s danger—and its appeal to intellectuals—lay in the fact that the creed insisted that it was the ultimate fulfillment of the democratic ethos. To this day, liberals and their other non-revolutionary siblings on the left might disagree with communists over the extent to which the state should engineer “fairness,” yet they still share with them a vision of what constitutes fairness and an image of a properly re-engineered people. For all ideologies of the left are tied to the Enlightenment, with its emphasis upon predetermined progress via reason and the accumulation of quantifiable knowledge.