edward.luce@ft.com on ‘Competence’. Old Socialist comments

Neo-Liberals, your ersatz Utopianism is not just in decline, but is on the Critical List! The Pandemic signals the revival of the long dormant notion, that the Nation State, as conceived in the Age of Enlightenment, and its sine qua non of the shared destiny of its citizens, now asserts itself in the face of catastrophe?

The first rescue package, a gift to the Plutocrats, with the ‘Lower Orders’ getting a pittance, will soon be followed by more of the same? Will The Property Party be more generous in the coming months of a crisis, as it deepens and the body count rises, not to speak of an utterly faltering, perhaps even collapsing Capitalism? The questions abound! 

Take credit where credit is due. you’ve had a long a prosperous run, but it has come to screeching halt, as The Pandemic wreaks its havoc across to globe! Your maladroit project of Social Engineering was the precursor to the political villain you so despise, President Trump. Will Thatcher’s notorious sloganeering of ‘TINA’ be redefined in the face of catastrophe? 

Mr. Luce paraphrases Neo-Con Francis Fukuyama:

 The real division, as Francis Fukuyama has argued in The Atlantic magazine, is between competent and incompetent states. Freedom-loving America was as late in waking up to the threat as repressive China. By contrast, liberal democratic Germany and authoritarian Singapore reacted early and well. What divides success from failure, argues Fukuyama, is “trust in government”.  

‘Trust in government’ is quite a leap from Mr. Fukuyama’s 2013 essay titled ‘The Decay of American Political Institutions’:

The Decay of American Political Institutions

In which he attacks the very history of American social/economic/political reform from Teddy Roosevelt onward.  Self-Serving mendacity defines Neo-Conservatism, the natural inheritance from Philosophical Fiction writer Leo Strauss. 

Old Socialist 




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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