This is a very unusual, and though-provoking, op-ed piece that was shared by Ms. K.F., and I want to discuss a few of its salient points. First, the article:
The premise of the article is that basically the institutions of the European Union itself, as those of many of its member governments, are now thoroughly dominated by the political(and, I would aver, more importantly, the cultural left), and that as such, Europe is emerging as a primary ideological opponent of the USSA:
Not anymore. In a sense, Europe looks like a continent where American Democrats have been in power for 30 years, not only in the European states, but also at the level of the European Union.
In the US, the political spectrum still spans a vast range of views between Democrats and Republicans, globalists and nationalists, pro-lifers and pro-choicers, pro-government control and pro-individuals' control, and pro-whatever. Even today with a president and a Supreme Court clearly on the political "Right" these divisions, and the all-important separation of powers, allow for and encourage vigorous debate. By contrast, in Europe, at the "official" level, such a spectrum of views no longer exists.
In Western Europe, politically speaking, in the press and in universities, either you are on the "Left," or you are a pariah. If you are a pariah, you are most likely to be prosecuted for "Islamophobia", "racism", discrimination or some other "trumped up" charge.
Now, this premise intrigues me, and I have to confess at the outset of my daily high octane speculation, I'm at rather a loss, simply for the reason that many of the regular readers of this website are not only Americans, but Canadians, Mexicans, Australians, Chinese(!), Estonians, Poles, Germans, Italians (or, at least, Americans living in Italy), Greeks, Croatians, Spaniards, Belgians, Dutch, French, British, Norwegians, Austrians, and Swedes. So we are pretty well scattered across the board at this website.
My distinct impression from interacting with all these people is (1) Europeans are anything but monolithic in their commitments to the political-cultural left, and (2) Americans on the other hand, while very diverse in the political-cultural commitments, are no better off than Europeans, for the institutions of the American government and culture are no less dominated by the left than the article alleges Europe's are. Indeed, from years of interacting with all these people, one thing seems unusually clear to me about Europeans, namely, they are no only conscious of a uniquely "European" culture and how that culture forms the bedrock of what we call "Western" culture, but they are not ignorant, by any stretch of the imagination, of the uniqueness of their own national culture and its contributions to that overall "Western" or "European" culture. How could they be? If one pauses to reflect on the enormous influences of Italy, Spain, Germany, France, and Britain on this culture, one would be hard pressed to ignore it.
As I have mentioned before on this website, if anything, the USSA's actions since 9/11 in the unipolar pursuit of a pax Americana have have provoked a worldwide backlash against America, as long and staunch allies are reconsidering the stability of that alliance system. This will only continue, so long as American policy is focused on the same old paradigm (which, given my recent blog on the recent Pentagon assessment, it appears to be).
Every now and then, in these blogs, I "throw things open" because I really want to know what people think about an article, and this is one such case. Am I wrong, or is this article painting a picture of Europe and Europeans that simply is not true? And by the same token, is it painting an accurate picture of America, or one that is simply untrue? I suspect the latter, but I am not sure. By the same token, speaking as an American, I can say that the final paragraph in my citation above, reads a bit like make believe: "In Western Europe, politically speaking, in the press and in universities, either you are on the 'Left' or you are a pariah,"as if the same phenomenon is not in abundance in this country. Speaking only for myself, this is the way I've increasingly felt in America ever since my days teaching in college.
But more importantly, what is to be done about it? The author of this article, Dr. Drieu Godefridi, takes note of a frustration that many Europeans feel with the institutions of the E.U.: they are all centralizing, one-size-fits-all, and trample on the wishes of local and national populations and their institutions:
While Italy is "drowning" in refugees, Austria has deployed armored vehicles close to its border with Italy, to stop more migrants from coming north.
The vast majority of these European courts -- whether the ECHR or the CJEU -- in their attempt to be moral and just, have dismissed the sovereign laws of Italy as irrelevant, and trampled the rights of the Italian state and ordinary Italians to approve who enters their country.
I thought as I read this that there's little difference between Europe and the USSA, as the following "creative substitutions" in the quotation - I hope - will make clear:
"While California is drowning in refugees, Arizona has deployed armored vehicles to close its border with California, to stop more migrants from coming north.
"The vast majority of these American Courts - whether the Ninth Circuit or the Supremes - in their attempt to be moral and just, have dismissed the sovereign laws of Texas and Arizona as irrelevant, trampled on the rights of American states and ordinary Americans to approve who enters their country."
Far from seeing the differences between Europe and the USSA, at least as Dr. Godefridi paints them, I'm seeing much more the similarities. So, I want to know, what do you think, not only of the article and analysis, but much more importantly, what is to be done? Is it merely a matter of being able to "discuss" things or, to use that hated term, "dialogue" with "the other side", or is something else going on that really, ultimately, precludes it?
See you on the flip side...