This video is the reading of an excerpt from James Burnham, Suicide of the West (1964; New York: Encounter Books, 2014), pp. 319-40; 345-9.
It is remarkable that Burnham had such foresight into this even at this book's publishing in 1964.
Distortion of Reality in Ideologies
- All ideologies distort reality to some degree
- Major ideologies start off closely connected to the social world they come from and this was true for 19th century liberalism.
- Liberal ideology has become so out of touch with reality that through it's lens on the world it cannot accurately even see reality, much less act on it.
Flight from Reality in Liberalism
- Liberalism has become disconnected from the real world in terms of race realism, sex realism, economic realism, statesmanship, and so many other areas.
- Liberal ideology substitutes a dream world for reality
Present Challenges to Western Civilization
- Liberals will claim to be battling against hunger and poverty (and now "injustice") Burnham sees 3 primary challenges to Western Civilization:
- The Jungle spreading in society, particularly in cities
- Population growth and political activization in backward areas (in the third world and equitorial regions)
- Communist drive for a monopoly on world power (this one didn't age well for our modern day... maybe one could substitute The Progressive Regime instead?)
- Through Liberal glasses, it's impossible to even see these challenges clearly.
Domestic Jungles and Social Horrors
- Liberalism prevents understanding of domestic jungles - increasing savagery and crime in cities (add rising homelessness to modernize the tale.)
- People living in sheltered lives are unaware of social horrors
- There is an ongoing Reign of Terror in Cities
- Examples of crimes and violence in cities are ubiquitous
- Police are helpless and resigned, as are the residents of the city.
- Like real jungles, cities have become a place where "honest men" do not move about at night.
Liberalism's Response to Challenges
- Liberal ideology sees domestic jungles as temporary and solvable
- Yet their policies universally make these issues much worse, not better.
- Backward regions (The Third World, Equatorial regions, etc.) seen as slums that can be fixed with education and aid (see Yarvin's take on this: An Open Letter Chapter 2)
- Liberalism unable to face the reality of the challenges
Logic of Liberalism and Threat to the West
Liberalism is hamstrung by
- Rationalistic Optimism
- Its egalitarianism and democratism
- It's all-pervasive Guilt
- Liberal ideology leads to subjugation of the West
- Economic egalitarianism leads to hunger and poverty in the West (Liberal ideologies don't actually raise the standards of other countries, it just lowers them for the West)
- Liberalism's principles undermine the defense of the West - corrupting the West's will to survive as a distinctive cultural entity.
- Liberalism is specifically not allowed to make the statement that the West is superior in any way, and therefore Liberals are not allowed to fight for survival at all.
Liberalism's Comfort in Defeats
- Mainly a discussion of Liberalism vs the Communist threat.
- Liberalism turns losses and defeats into victories and progress
- Distorted explanations of defeat as victory - typical liberal method of redefining the words after the fact. Very "Orwellian Newspeak"
- Liberal ideology as a spiritual solace in the decline of the West, even as they abandon support for millions of their own people.
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