janan.ganesh@ft.com on the New Democrats and the straw-man of ‘Fringe Leftist’. Old Socialist comments

In the first five paragraphs of his essay Mr. Ganesh reminds me of almost any James Pinkerton column I read, when he was a columnist on the editorial page of the Los Angeles Times! Complete with Mr. Pinkerton’s hysterical obsession with McGovern. Quite a while ago: it only makes it utterly plain that Ganesh is a greenhorn in terms of American Political History and its internecine ideological conflicts.
The Nixon/McCarthy/Mundt /McCarran clique repeated the charge against the New Deal, after the War, of A Generation of Treason against that New Deal, even though Truman dropped the Bomb twice on Japanese Civilians.

I’ll skip to the last two revelatory paragraphs of the Ganesh essay:

Mr Trump’s failure to enact that mandate has given his enemies an opening they are refusing to take. Perhaps, outside the anti-American fringe left, Democrats still cherish the idea of America as a redemptive force in the world, which somehow muddled along in the void before 1776. Even if they were not scarred by past elections, they would regard quietism as simply beneath the nation’s dignity.

The candidates for the 2020 election are facing the future on almost every subject. On the one that counts most, they are stranded in time.

The real question is this: will the New Democrats finally emancipate themselves, from ‘Wilsonian Idealism’, another name for violent American Paternalism, from a leader who segregated Washington D. C. ,in the year of my mother’s birth 1912? Add to this  Mr. Ganesh’s dismissal of  ‘the anti-American fringe left’, his not so sub rosa attack on Sen. Sanders. In the Blarite, Neo-Liberal World View, the ‘Left’ always plays the role of the reviled Other: the perpetually unworthy outsider.  Ganesh unknowingly re-inhabits the journalistic ghost of Pinkerton Past.

Old Socialist writing as ‘Fringe Leftist’



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.' https://www.lrb.co.uk/v15/n20/perry-anderson/diary
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