At The Financial Times: Philip Stephens on European complacency, a comment by Political Reporter

The fact that Mr. Stephens recites, with attention to a complex  set of ideas, almost all the cliches of the current iteration of bourgeois political orthodoxy, displays an enviable kind of talent, with the proviso that  any absent idea is just an oversight!

‘Europe’s complacency’, ‘corrosive moral relativism’, ‘ the fault of the west in general and the US in particular.’Saddam Hussein as a victim, Hugo Chávez a hero and Russia’s Vladimir Putin as a bulwark against Nato expansionism.’, ‘Listen to Jeremy Corbyn’, ‘Or that the caliphate replaces liberty with theocratic intolerance, subjugates women and murders homosexuals.’, ‘Even Fidel Castro thinks it is time to move on.’, ‘Enlightenment’,’ Mr Putin’, ‘NATO’,’Edward Snowden’s revelations’, ‘The original sin was the assumption that the end of the cold war did indeed mark the end of history.’ (For shame, Mr. Fukuyama!), ‘the financial crash of 2008’, ‘Russia’s revanchism'(one of the cornerstones of The New Cold War), ‘’What is required is a readiness to fight.’

Underlying all this, call it a bellicose polemic,  is the Old Cold War and Huntington’s ‘Clash’, both monuments to Western/US Paranoia wedded to the self-exculpatory: we are innocent of the crimes we have been accused! In fact, like the good Stalinist we are without blame, except we haven’t destroyed the voluminous historical evidence! A proclamation of our political/moral virtue will have to do.

Political Reporter

About stephenkmacksd

Rootless cosmopolitan,down at heels intellectual;would be writer. 'Polemic is a discourse of conflict, whose effect depends on a delicate balance between the requirements of truth and the enticements of anger, the duty to argue and the zest to inflame. Its rhetoric allows, even enforces, a certain figurative licence. Like epitaphs in Johnson’s adage, it is not under oath.'
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