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A Polemic Regarding the Orwellian Left

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posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 07:51 AM
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

As a capitalist libertarian, I am in total agreement with you polemic. I find myself constantly criticizing both the right and the left for holding policies that reduce personal liberty, and I get the same response; "you are an uneducated bigot who is no better than Hitler/Stalin and needs to learn about history and current events."

I am not a Trump supporter because I am critical of his ideas, nor do I plan on voting for him because he seems to say little about personal liberty, but I will not sit back and allow others to slander him because they just want to win over some more people to their political ideas. Your analytic exposition points out something I have been battling with my work colleagues over:

it must be encouraging to Al-Shabaab that many western intellectuals, progressives and talking-heads, agree with them on nearly every point, and indeed, tend to point out the same unsubstantiated irrational fears in order to bolster their political agenda towards their own recruitment and conversions.

I try to explain to them I am not being a bigot when I criticize radical Islamic terrorism and call Islam a tool for recruitment. I am told I am a fool, and that I am full of hate. Yet I have never called for any violent actions or even denied their right to an extremist view, but I do abhor violence and will lambaste anyone who supports violent actions as a necessary means for change. Someone on the forum once wrote:

We don't need to fear the authoritative right because they are in your face with their extremism, but we should fear the progressive left that tells you it's your friend then stabs you in the back.

Again I have reservation about both the right and left politics in America, but at least, the right-wingers are willing to overcome PC crap and give honest opinions(though I tend to disagree with them) while the left works on PC guidelines that won't allow for a real debate or discussion.

If memory is serving me faithfully, I think it was you that once said America needs to focus its education system on the critical skills of grammar, rhetoric and math/logic and not fact memorization and idea regurgitation. An educated population would be great because it would hopefully put an end to all this power the extremist media has gained over the minds of the masses.

Keep telling the truth, your ideas are most appreciated, and thanks Les for the wonderful post.

P.S. 1984 is on of my favorite books, read it 3 times, but like you, I am a huge fan of Orwell's political writings. Perhaps he was the best political essayist of the early part of the 20th century, just IMHO.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 09:15 AM
a reply to: hubrisinxs

It's not necessarily about right and left anymore; it's about freedom and unfreedom. On this issue, the right is correct. On others, the left is correct. Orwell was a socialist (some have argued he is a conservative), but he had no reservations or restraints in criticizing either side for the sake of truth.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 09:26 AM

originally posted by: skunkape23
I can't help but feel you are over-thinking the situation. The "country boys" and the "idealists on a mission" with guns will eventually tire of fighting at some point. New boundaries may be drawn in the end. It's the same old monkey game that's been going on since the beginning. Meanwhile, I will tend my farm.

Keeping in mind that I despise politics and the politicians behind them

I do not feel he is over thinking it at all

To the contrary I feel that this thread and Orwell's understanding and dissertation on the subject are spot on. Even if one were to leave the politics completely out of this and just observe both ends of the spectrum.

What I do feel instead, are that many on the left side of things either will dismiss this outright without any further introspection, or will not understand it all together

Love love,

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 09:41 AM
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

It's not necessarily about right and left anymore

Again we are in agreement, but I do still find that most people I interact with do not see this or agree with that statement. I try to explain that the issues should rise above partisan politics, and I get berated with pre-programed dismissals from both followers of left and right political philosophies.

Orwell was a socialist (some have argued he is a conservative), but he had no reservations or restraints in criticizing either side for the sake of truth.

I never deny that Orwell was socialist, but my point was that I think he was a great political commentator because he had no reservations, which is something more modern political commentators seem full of, and is something you pointed out in your own OP.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 09:50 AM
a reply to: hubrisinxs

Agreed. It is frustrating to no end that by merely criticizing ones own party, or Islam, or any uniquely preferred group, one can get penalized socially or professionally for it. I gave the example of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who has lived through FGM, civil war, forced marriage in the name of Islam and now advocates reform—a damned hero in my opinion—and she was denied an honorary scholarship for criticizing Islam.

These sorts of things are chilling.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 10:04 AM
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

I was glad you mentioned Hirsi Ali in your OP, and I agree she is a hero to all those who truly advocate a reform of Islam.

I was introduced to her and her ideas through ATS and someone posting a debate where she argued that Islam is not a religion of peace. I will quote my favorite thing she said during the debate:

No religion can be a religion of peace.

I say this to other college professors I work with(some who teach comparative religions) and I get labeled a warmonger who wants a religious war in the middle east. I defend Trump from defamation, I get labeled a fascist and a supremacist. I call Islam in its current state a tool for radical extremism, and I am told that I am not being tolerant and have no understanding of the religion of Islam. Nowhere do I actually find any logically coherent arguments against things I say, just my character being attacked.

These sort of things are chilling being that they are occurring at the centers of our education system.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 11:54 AM
a reply to: hubrisinxs

Do you work in academia?

Yes the sorts of condemnations received for merely pointing out the hypocrisy and inconsistencies, and more, the effect such in insincerity can have on people's livelihood, is nothing short of insane.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 12:21 PM
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

I do work in academia, I teach pre-cal and tutor lower level math classes at a college level. I am still school myself, and I am working on a masters degree in Law and Society through Penn state's online world campus.

After teaching for a while I have decided that this is not for me, so I want to get a solid background in law and sociology in hopes of going on to law school, and then one day becoming a Judge. I have always had a dream of being a Supreme Court Justice.

Also, I can not prove it, but I feel I have been assigned lower level classes because I do not fit the liberal agenda of my school. Just a personal example of how insincerity can effect a livelihood.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 12:30 PM
a reply to: hubrisinxs

Brutal. Let's hope that isn't the case in regards to your assignment to lower-level classes, because that is frightening. I guess all you can do is keep your head down and mouth shut. But of course these stories are becoming all too common. Soon, I bet, it will all fall apart.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 02:02 PM

originally posted by: muse7
Unfortunately your argument is based on a straw man fallacy.

Could you please link some proof that those on the left support radical Islamists and get offended when others criticize jihadist and terrorists?

I think those on the left, myself included, get a bit riled up when the other side starts to spew fascists solutions to the problem of terrorism.

Creating Muslim databases?
How will it be determined who is a Muslim and who is not? Do we create a religious test?
Massive raids of immigrants?

To me that sounds way more Orwellian than the Orwellian left you're trying to portray

Let's see. Al Jazeera reporter getting upset that a picture of the female San Bernadino shooting was posted without her full face veil, trying to prevent us from seeing who actually attacked us. Bowing to radical Islam's demands we don't draw their prophets. Some leftists even blamed the Charlie He do victims for their own fate. The Obama administrations refusal to use the term radical Islam because simply it had "Islam"in it even though what is being described is ISLAMIC terrorism. Samuel Jackson claiming Muslims are the new Black men, even though Jews are twice as likely to be victims of hate crimes. Bringing to light even imagined cases of predjudicr against Muslims (ie the false flag Mosque Burning that was actually done by a Muslim), but with victims of Islamiclly motivated violence (think the cop in Philly), the President is quiet as a Church mouse.

You are right that some of the propositions (ie a Muslim database) are ridiculous and luckily there are checks in place to prevent these sorts of things from happening.

That being said, there are equally and some even more so ridiculous propositions from leftists attacking conservatives. Throwing men into concentration camps? Obama's DOJ SPECIFICALLY TARGETTING WHITE CHRISTIAN GUN OWNING CO SERVATIVES as a supposedly credible threat to national security. Forget the fact the FBI has ISLAMIC Terrorism cases open in literally every state, me, The White Gun Owning Veteran (I'm not religious) just going to school on the GI Bill is just as big a threat as the Muslim who is watching ISIS propaganda videos every night and planning a car bombing in times square.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 02:46 PM
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

I feel I must defend my department head a little from my own dissatisfaction. I wanted to take over the Calculus 2 classes this semester, but they hired a new person to take the position. I was so mad I stormed in and asked what that was all about, and why I was not considered for the position.

He told me I had been, but due to such a high passing rate for my pre-Cal and Developmental Math classes, he could not justify moving me. To me, hard work done well should be grounds for promotion(though I would not get more money, just personal satisfaction), but I guess not.

I do have a hard time keeping my opinions to myself, and I have made a few of the other professors quite upset(one does not even acknowledge my existence anymore) but like I said, I have no proof that this has caused my stagnation in my employment, just a gut feeling.

I, too, see things falling apart soon.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 02:48 PM

originally posted by: woodwardjnr
a reply to: muse7 the debate is now being framed that if you don't want to ban all immigration you are Isis hugging sexual assault enablers. Orwell would have been seen as a traitor by many on ATS for fighting against Francos facist forces in the Spanish civil war.

If you can't see that that's how the debate is being framed by the rhetoric of your own side, then I can't help you.

The left is enabling this by doing what it likes to do: Namely, taking part of a quote out of context and ascribing the very worst possible motives to it to create the most damning impression possible.

Trump couldn't possible have called for a temporary ban to clear up security risks ... oh, no! He had to have done it out of hidden, deep-seated hatred and bigotry. These are things all of the left says but none of them could know unless they read minds. And yet you see it and hear it in the opinion press all over everywhere and parroted across social media.

Groups like al-Shabab and ISIS may live in third world hell holes, but they're media savvy too, and every meme you put out, every opinion piece adds fuel to their fire.

You have framed that debate off a fragment of what Trump really said.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 03:15 PM
a reply to: hubrisinxs

"I, too, see things falling apart soon. "

How do you see things falling apart?

I tend to agree, but....I don't quite see the catalyst. It may be this summer however.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 03:37 PM
a reply to: TonyS

By 'things' I mean the current partisan political structure in America. The catalyst will be hard to point out, but I have a feeling the fallout after the Republican primaries are over might just be the allegorical straw on the camels back.

But, I do want to make clear that I do not see the American government or the USA coming to an end, just politics as Americans' know them.

Hopefully, more people wake up and listen to folks like Les who are talking about issues on an individual level, and less to talking head political leaders who group all issues into catch-all fixes based on selfishness and partisan politics.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 05:03 PM
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

If we look extreme right and extreme left; both end in totalitarian ideological nightmares... however, Orwellian comes from the right side extreme and Huxlian comes from the left side extreme.

The issue with both is that at extremes; their ideologies remove individual choice... aka freedom, hence totalitarianism at the end of all ideological ropes. There is of course that maxim of "the sacrifice of a few for the many" is the go to rationalization for the injustice of loose interpretations of and removal of rights guaranteed by the constitution.

As someone that lives in a harmonic balance; I understand those with no chosen faith and those with a chosen faith, rue the idea of living under moral codes of any faith or lack thereof other than their own. This is why things need to change from what they politically are.

Morals have absolutely zero place in politics... as they typically hold a bias from the religion from they were extracted from. Governments in benefit of all people, not just a majority should only go by ethics. I know many equate morals and ethics to be synominious or the same thing, when they are absolutely not the same.

Fortunately, there has been a push in the US to get back to what the forefathers intended... a government for the people, of the people, and by the people. Not the agendas of a select few so that America works for just them... this goes for either side of the red or blue side of the isle. When the status quo is mostly religious, it will influence wars and force puritanical laws not good for all of its members of society(just look at both prohibition failures)... even if we(in the US) and everyone else stayed out of the middle Easts business? Their own religious plague, would still have it divided and at war within itself from its various sects. It wasn't that Mohommed was a great moral spiritual leader as exampled by his own life(look it up) but that he united all of the various sects together, into one accord of peace... of course over time; as all is apt to? It degraded.

When ideologies enter politics everyone loses and the government will inevitably fail... simply from forcing morals based on belief on to the masses through legislation. Ethics however, looks at the individual situation and judges it accordingly... if it werent for the ethics found in the constitution? No legislation based on religious moral grounds(sexual for the most part) would ever be over turned. People would have to continue to hide, and feel guilty for who they are and be driscriminated against as an outcast of society instead of a part of it.

Sure, the snap judgement is "great!!! no one wants them in society anyway" as most general statements go from unoffical represenatives of some belief typically do. The irony of course; is when it becomes their turn to get some of that tastee discrimination themself... not too happy to be on the receiving end are they? One would think logically and rationally, getting a taste of the medicine one dishes out to others would make them stop in their tracks and say wait a minute... this is what ive been doing to other people all this time? Ive been such an asshole... and the wisdom of tolerance would be born then and there on the spot.

Unfortunately; narcissists never question themselves. Even more unfortunate for humanity? Is when narcissism froms around a group. This is the soil from which; most every tyrant and extremist, finds their root for feeling wholly justified in any and all injustices upon all of humanity... all organizations and groups are tainted by tyrants and extremists over time; degrading their mission. This change to extremisim over time, is hard to perceive... especially by those more apt to follow others(98%) than lead others(2%). Narcissists are usually very charismatic from having to constantly convience others they are right...

So basically, as long as there are narcissists found in society filling its many groups... no mater how unbiased a group may have started out as? The organization will eventually become the quite opposite... and no matter how plain the bias is to see by an outsider? Cognitive dissonance is as dark as welding goggles in a coal mine, for any light of truth to bring about any change or hope thereof within that group... when bias equates to belief instead of ethics based on known facts... real to someone and real to whatever group one associates with is still not factual if belief based.

Humanity is every human being this is fact... bias comes from belief taken as fact not actual fact. The extreme right wants to cut off the left wing and the extreme left wants to cut off the right wing... do the same to a bird and you end up with a bird that cannot fly free at all. The problem with both sides; is the extremism found within both their ideologies. The middle shouldnt be a dividing line, nor should it be an ever changing line of scrimmage as it has been for decade upon decade.

This of course may sound ideological, but arguing for a middle to achieve balance is truer to the melting pot than either right extreme or left extreme care to acknowledge... as both extremes are narcissistic in nature.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 06:28 PM
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

Whenever anyone mentions the "Orwellian left", you know they haven't read 1984.

Orwell was a socialist who, like many socialists of his time, distrusted Stalin's corrupted version of Marxism. In the US, you have neither on a national level.

Airstrip One is not aligned with communist nations - it's allied to the USA.

Big Brother doesn't watch over the ordinary man in the street. A cultural diet of bad TV keeps them in their place.

And so on...

If you want a better analogy, try Brave New World. Mind you, that would still involve reading.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 06:31 PM

originally posted by: LesMisanthrope
a reply to: hubrisinxs

Orwell was a socialist (some have argued he is a conservative).

"Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936 has been written, directly or indirectly, against totalitarianism and for democratic Socialism, as I understand it. It seems to me nonsense, in a period like our own, to think that one can avoid writing of such subjects."

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 06:49 PM

edit on 12-1-2016 by nwtrucker because: (no reason given)

edit on 12-1-2016 by nwtrucker because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 06:50 PM

originally posted by: LesMisanthrope
a reply to: hubrisinxs

Do you work in academia?

Yes the sorts of condemnations received for merely pointing out the hypocrisy and inconsistencies, and more, the effect such in insincerity can have on people's livelihood, is nothing short of insane.

It is the same in my profession, so steeped in a way of thinking that ANY deviation from accepted dogma is labeled Racist, "right winger!" or worse. If you speak up, you are ostracized. In conferences there are less than half a dozen of us who go off alone to the dark corners and speak in whispers.

Thank you, Les Mes, for a cogent treatment of the subject.

posted on Jan, 12 2016 @ 07:02 PM

originally posted by: LesMisanthrope

Recently that orange media-circus Donald Trump was used as a propaganda piece in an Al-Shabaab recruitment video, and as is protocol with anything Trump, this was all the left-wing media needed to vilify him some more. Hilary Clinton went so far as to call Trump “ISIS’s best recruiter”. The implication is that his remarks—and according to Obama, any criticism of Islam in general—is recruitment propaganda for ISIS. Oh, and also fascist.

But as is visible to anyone with a pair of ears and a set of eyes, the recruitment video was echoing the exact same rhetoric and sentiments of the left-wing media and its credulous parrots. Yes; according to both Al-Shabaab and the left-wing media (within which I would also place social media), Trump is some fascist monster akin to Hitler who is destined to enslave Muslims, toss them into concentration camps, and undoubtedly commit future holocausts. Of course, none of this has yet happened, and nothing shows that it might, but we can vilify him for thinking and saying some certain things which we would deem thought and speech crimes. And even though he explicitly expressed the exact reasons for wanting to halt Muslim immigration—to figure out what was going on, a declaration of ignorance and stupidity on his part (all the more reason not to vote for him)—many attributed his remarks to some specious form of bigotry or racism that would surely lead to atrocity if carried out. Besides refuting him we should ruin him. It makes for good entertainment. None of this according to any facts, mind you, but according to consumer demand.

You seem to be trying to make a link between America's Left wing and a Radical Jihadi group simply because both denounce the rhetoric used by Donald Trump. The fact is, Donald Trump does engage in prejudicial rhetoric every time he fails to distinguish between extreme Islam and the vast majority muslim people who are just as human and humane as any American. IT is Donald Trump's fault that his campaign approach and perspective sounds fascist and authoritarian, it is simply because he does indeed express rhetoric that is fear based and used to pit the majority against smaller minorities. He employed similar rhetoric towards Mexicans and hispanics, once again, like a fascist, attempting to capitalize on the fear and loathing towards that particular group. As a public figure, he should be educated enough, and thoughtful enough to speak in a way that does not sound bigoted, racist or fascist. He can make a point without resulting to generalizations and he should be sophisticated enough to understand the history of this brand of political speech.

I have a hard time with you painting Donald Trump as a victim, he is a political figure and more importantly, he insults people outright.

The one thing I can agree with is I am not sure if Donald Trump would govern as a fascist, but again, his rhetoric does
follow in the footsteps of fascists and people are wise to take heed.

As far as generalizations, Donald Trump himself has continued to perpetuate the notion that Obama was not born in America even though over 50 alleged birth certificates of this sort have now been debunked. In this, it is just a hard fact that there is a demand for partisan innuendo, regardless of truth or other facts.

This absurdity has even been promoted by many good members here at ATS, doing something less than denying ignorance. In regards to Trump’s immigration proposal, there were posts such as “this is America’s Reichstag moment”, or in another, comparing such a proposal without restraint to the atrocities at Kristallnackt. One can go on Twitter and find the exact same thing. The emotional content of these kinds of statements are hard to deny. But comparing Trump with Hitler, and at the same time, 2015 America to 1930’s Nazi Germany has no sincere merit, obviously, but most definitely a political one. When in doubt and in lack of a better argument, make your political enemies out to be evil, and those who support them, guilty by association. That doesn’t sound like such good faith in themselves and their fellow countrymen, if you dare request my opinion, but it works perfectly well on an exceedingly diminished attention span.

When Hitler came to power, it was not clear that he was going to start WWII, take over Europe and parts of Asia, or
EXECUTE THE PEOPLE HE RAILED AGAINST DURING EARLIER POLITICAL SPEECHES. There is merit in comparing similar political speech because history has documented past speech, and many of us can see the similarities in rhetoric, but more importantly, in strategy. In the case of Hitler and Trump, both are appealing to homogenous population that feel that their national identity is being eroded by left-wing,commies,Mexicans or Jews or Muslims or Faggots or whom ever else you would like to fear today, in what ever country you happen to be in. You are not being intellectually honest if you deny the common vein that streams through this manner of politicks. I will also remind you that there are still hate groups in America who find this manner of rhetoric invigorating, there is a market for Trump, and some of that market share are KKK, The American Nazi Party and other, white based hate groups. Why? Because he speaks to their fears -

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