Paul Eisen

Paul Eisen

Monday, 10 December 2012

Happy To Be on The Wrong Side of History by Jim Goad

I found this is in 'Taki's Magazine which describes itself thus:
We at Taki’s Magazine take our politics like we take life—lightly. We believe political labels such as conservative and liberal are as outdated as flared trousers and Nazis. Ideology is a false god, a secular religion that seeks vainly to create a paradise on Earth. Our only ideology is to be against the junk culture foisted upon us and mirages of a new world order. Think of us what you will, but read us. Our writers are never boring.
Well, a lot of that strikes quite a chord in me. I'm no fan of ideology which seems to be usually one person telling another what he or she ought to think.

But what I really wonder is, why is it that when I was a boy and young man in the sixties and seventies, everything sharp and cool seemed to come out of the 'left', now it seems to come out of the 'right'.

Have I changed, or is it the world?


As the leftist juggernaut blithely steamrollers its way over what’s left of this country, its blinkered acolytes have smugly convinced themselves that they are on “the right side of history” and that any dissenters are troglodytic throwbacks to a less moral and less enlightened era. They freely smear, degrade, disgrace, tut-tut, pooh-pooh, pee-pee, and skeet-skeet anyone who questions whether their shallow tokens of “cultural progress” might be nothing more than cynical window dressing that obscures an increasingly “empowered” governmental behemoth.

Although their chapped and cracked lips speak of “equality,” they truly see nothing as equal and can’t help but view all of history in terms of skin color, gender, sexuality, and especially ideology. Anyone who disagrees with their resolutely intolerant collectivist notions is far less than equal and is viewed instead as a soon-to-be-obsolete subhuman fossil. They can never get over their oft-despised cultural “other,” and the other is never their brother.

“History is cyclical rather than linear, and there’s no ‘right side’ of a circle.”

Despite the historical record, a peskily persistent fallacy is argumentum ad populum, the idea that the majority is right. The mob, no matter where it’s headed, whom it’s beheading, or what it’s burning down, has always deemed itself to be on the right side of history. So whenever I hear some smug, smirking, smarm-coated snarkmonster bleating that they are on “the right side of history,” what I hear is, “I feel safe within the crowd.” I don’t sense that they fear being on the “wrong” side of history so much as they’re afraid of being on the “losing” side. They don’t want to be on the wrong side of superior force. Many of them exhibit the shallow and neurotic herd-animal fear of being deemed uncool or out of step. In far too many cases, being “on the right side of history” amounts to nothing more than being trendy. Many of these types used to ally themselves with alleged “oppressed minorities,” but now that they appear to be on the “right side of history,” they openly mock the newly marginalized minorities. Once the victims of bullying, they now fear being on the wrong side of peer pressure and are the world’s neo-bullies. Others are the type who wait until there’s critical mass behind any social movement before joining it. Many of them have no core and will fellate power wherever it leads them and consider themselves bold for doing so. And at least as it concerns liberal white males, I’ve never seen people so eager to surrender to the very historical forces that seem destined to march right over their necks.

Modern triumphalist progressives share a common delusion that history is a linear process wherein societies continually perfect themselves morally. Yet I doubt many of them, if given access to a time machine, would be bold enough to travel back and lecture their now-cherished “Native Americans” that they were on the wrong side of history as the white man was rolling westward over them. I don’t think they’d have the chutzpah to stroll onto a slave ship during the Middle Passage from Africa and tell the shivering, huddled, shackled slaves-to-be that they were on the wrong side of history. I don’t think they’re toting sufficiently sized cojones to have accompanied the conquistadores as they slew the Aztecs. Compared to the Dark Ages, the Roman Empire was on the wrong side of history, but I’d bet that most modern progtards would have opted for the safety of togas and aqueducts over the grim barbarism that succeeded it.

These days, anyone who opposes the idea of state-sanctioned gay marriage is deemed to be on “the wrong side of history.” But what if one day the whole idea of marriage is considered primitive and gay marriage is therefore viewed as nothing more than gay slavery?

Too often the progression of time and technology get conflated with moral and cultural progress. Civilizations rise and fall. History is cyclical rather than linear, and there’s no “right side” of a circle. The world’s Marxists and Hegelians have always deluded themselves that they can know the unknowable, that history’s trajectory is predestined, and that they’ve capably mapped it all out before it even happens.

A war’s victors rarely prove the righteousness of their cause, but they always prove that superior firepower rather than morality is what guides history. Who can honestly look at history (or nature) without concluding that it is amoral? Moral conclusions are things that humans impose on historical events. In the end, a stray asteroid may be the only thing that’s truly on the “right” side of global history, and it will have nothing to do with morality.

Tell someone who’s just been diagnosed with cancer that all change is good.

The next time you wish to conflate “new” with “good,” consider that the proliferation of AIDS among humans is relatively new.

Is it wrong to try and “turn back the clock” on a ticking time bomb?

In ever increasing measures, I see much more of value in the past than in the present or the future. It’s not due to some stubborn fealty to “my generation”—I’m more fixated on the generations that preceded mine. I was afflicted with the Retro Impulse even before adolescence. In the early 1970s, my mind was lost amid the Marx Brothers’ films of the 1930s. In the early 1980s, I’m reasonably sure I was the only male in Delaware County, PA, who wore a greasy pompadour and listened to Eddie Cochran and Gene Vincent. I stopped paying attention to Hollywood movies at some point in my mid-teens and can’t think of anyone in modern American cinema who’s within a thousand light years of Buster Keaton’s genius. And at every turn, I try and consciously cocoon myself from the toxic fast food that is modern American pop culture.

Being on the wrong side of history these days seems to mean “not being a one-worlder communist transgendered mulatto lesbian,” and I’m fine with that. The “advanced” areas are the ones with high taxes, high congestion, and high crime, so I find myself creeping out toward rural climes, where everyone is supposedly “backward.” I want no part of the dysgenic, doped-up anomie of our emergent dystopia filled with TV-addled sweatpants-swaddled creatures of inarticulation, where shortened attention spans and blunted analytical skills are somehow seen as signs of progress. History seems headed in the wrong direction, so I’m happy to be on the wrong side of it.