February 07, 2004

Michael Lind on a Roll I: His (Neoconservative) God That Failed*

Michael Lind's personal God That Failed**: He thought he "had joined an antitotalitarian liberal movement, not an alliance of American Likudniks and born-again Baptist creationists brought together to support the colonization of 'Samaria' and 'Judea' by right-wing Jewish settlers."

A Tragedy of Errors: A related contradiction is the ever-deepening alliance of the neocons with the Likud's major supporters in the American electorate, the Protestant ayatollahs of the Bible Belt, which inspired Irving Kristol, William Kristol and Norman Podhoretz to open their magazines to religious-right tirades against abortion rights, gay rights, gun control and--my personal favorite--"Darwinism." This apertura to Southern Christian fundamentalism--the opposite of everything that neoconservatism defined as "paleoliberalism" once stood for--led to my departure and that of several other former neoconservatives. We thought we had joined an antitotalitarian liberal movement, not an alliance of American Likudniks and born-again Baptist creationists brought together to support the colonization of "Samaria" and "Judea" by right-wing Jewish settlers.

Neoconservatism--that is, hawkish paleoliberalism--was hijacked by elite American supporters of the Likud, both Jewish and non-Jewish, and their Christian allies, long before the neocons, temporarily, perhaps, hijacked US foreign policy under the second Bush. I can attest that there are neoconservatives, including Jewish neoconservatives, who don't share a love affair with the Likud, but if they said so in public their careers in the movement would end.


*Courtesy of the Light of Reason.

**Line stolen from Ken MacLeod. Theft is intellectual property! Or something like that.

Posted by DeLong at February 7, 2004 04:55 PM | TrackBack | | Other weblogs commenting on this post
Comments

Actually, you're stealing the title "The God that Failed" from Arthur Koestler. It's the title of a famous book by ex-communists, explaning why they were drawn to the Party and why they finally rejected it. Ken is deliberately tweaking the neocons by using a phrase with this much history to describe the rejection of neoconservatism.

It's actually a pretty cutting allusion, because I would expect that intelligent and historically aware neoconservatives consider people like Koestler to be their intellectual ancestors. Ken is telling the neocons, indirectly, that in abandoning communism for neoconservatism they haven't made as large an intellectual transition as they want to think they have.

Posted by: Matt Austern on February 7, 2004 11:04 PM

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What do you call an ex neoconservative ? A liberal who was mugged by reality twice ? A recidivism is such a problem.

Actually somehow neoconservativism seems to mean almost the opposite of what it once meant. I mean they are still conservative super hawks. They still present themselves as idealists and lie like dogs. However they are no longer ex Trotskyites mugged by reality (twice already).

The link with the first generation of neoconservatives is often, well, genetic(Kristoll Jr, Podhoretz Jr). These guys have never broken ranks in their lives.

Posted by: robert on February 8, 2004 03:57 AM

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Neo Conservatism: Marxism of the owners

The link between neocons and marxist is essential.
Like Marxists, neocons see democracy as a useful tool and not a principle. What matters is an intellectual elite that knows what is right and what is wrong. This elite is free to use any means to manipulate society towards the goal.

Don't let the fact that there are no neo con guerrillas living in the Appalations calling for the overthrough of the oppresive Washington government fool you. If insurrection was useful they would use it. But when you can control people through their opinions, you don't need to raise an army.

The American people need to be made aware of the neocon menace, in order to marginalise them and drum them out of public life; just like the communists were.
The media needs to see an AEI or Heritage foundation or Cato label as a bage of treason. If a talking head from one of these organiztions presents itself the producer needs to JUST SAY NO. They are bought minds. Little Joseph Gobbels. A perversion of the idea of an academic or an intellectual. A farce.
If you are called to debate one of these guys, keep questioning his impartiality. Never let him make his point. "Who pays your salary" "Which corporations fund you". Ask questions about the founding family fortunes that established these organisations.

Neocons like marxists do not play by the rules. It is time that all humanists see them for the menace they are and act accordingly.
What did Voltaire say?
Ecraser L'Infame

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