For instance, when I state that US foreign policy in the 20th century is historically rooted in post-millennial Protestant theology, I can link directly to my favorite primary source - this TIME Magazine article from 1942.
It is simply a fact that in 1942, TIME's writers and its readers knew what a "super-protestant" foreign policy was, because it is a fact that this article was written, edited, and read. It could have been inserted in the TIME archive by crafty anti-Protestant hackers, or for that matter by aliens, but the student of history need not give these fantasies much weight. And without them, globalist foreign policy is the work of "organized U.S. Protestantism." Believe it or not, the YMCA is an important actor in the period. Now, it might be that some even more sinister group was behind the "Y" - the aliens, the Jews, the Ogpu, etc - but when we write the YMCA out of 20th-century history, we are writing bad history. And I can prove it, because I have that link.
The Mar. 16, 1942 Time article about an American Protestant program for a post-WWII world order will sound very familiar.
These are the high spots of organized U.S. Protestantism's super-protestant new program for a just and durable peace after World War II:
>Ultimately, "a world government of delegated powers."
>Complete abandonment of U.S. isolationism.
>Strong immediate limitations on national sovereignty.
>International control of all armies & navies.
> "A universal system of money ... so planned as to prevent inflation and deflation."
> Worldwide freedom of immigration.
> Progressive elimination of all tariff and quota restrictions on world trade.
Yes, these ideas already had currency during World War II. How many of these ideas will die out with the decline the Protestant Ascendancy and, with some delay, the decline of America?
As an aside, this article undermines the view that these policies originated with Jewish and Catholic immigrants. In 1942 the Protestant establishment was in firm control and these items (and more to follow if you click thru) were what they came up with. Open borders. They wanted open borders. The mind boggles. Were these liberal churches? How representative were they of most Protestant churches in America at that time? I suspect that since most of the issues in the Time 1942 article are about foreign policy they represent an elite Protestant view. One can see where George Bush Sr got his ideas from that article. Daniel Larison points out that elites come up with foreign policy and then sell it to the masses. Unfortunately, our elites come up with a lot of bad foreign policy ideas like open borders and occupation of Middle Eastern countries.
More than almost any other kind of policy, foreign policy is something fashioned at an elite level and then rationalized or justified to the public after the fact. Public opinion on foreign policy issues does not existy fully formed, but it is constantly being shaped by what the political class and media tell the public about these issues. Mead is actively creating the consensus that he pretends has always existed.
In the course of a long essay touching on any figures and developments surrounding WWII Moldbug makes an interesting point: A set of ideas moved between cultures will enter a new culture which lacks the immune response which allows the originating culture to prevent the set of ideas from causing great damage.
The division between Henry Wallace and Joseph Stalin, assuming for purposes of argument its reality, is a classic case of sectarian conflict on the left. Leftism is riddled with sects; Trotskyists versus Stalinists versus Maoists, and the like. There is no denying that American liberalism was broadly allied with Moscow in 1944, and broadly in conflict with Moscow in 1948. This is best seen as a sectarian schism in a single church; the "Cold War" is not an existential conflict of Left and Right, like the war on Hitler, but a fracture in a single global movement. As we speak of the Sino-Soviet split, we might speak of the "Anglo-Soviet split."
This is certainly not a point of view that leads us to agree with Hassell's Osservatore Romano, in its judgment that Bolshevism is "an indigenous European growth which by chance has matured in one country (Russia)." The opposite hypothesis is suggested: that Bolshevism is an exotic, non-European growth. Ie, an American growth. Ie, when America infects Russia with liberalism, the spore (lacking native enemies) grows into its malign form of Bolshevism. Contra Hassell, democracy and communism are two forms of the same disease.
Moldbug's specific way of applying this idea might be erroneous. Whether American liberalism mutated into Russian communism or British Marxism (Marx was in Britain when inventing Marxism) mutated into Russian Marxism one could argue that Russia was ill-equipped to handle this foreign system of beliefs. Ditto for China. Their immune systems lacked the dampening and restraining factors needed to prevent the worst excesses of communism. A society with a history of strong unchecked central rule is at greater risk of turning into a totalitarian Marxist totalitarian dictatorship than a society which has always had widely accepted mechanisms (e.g. independent judiciaries, free presses, and societal institutions that exist independent of government) for restraining the power of central governments.
Another argument can be made as well: Some ideas deliver benefits in their early stages of spread. But the ideas have dangerous flaws and as they spread their costs gradually become greater than their benefits. I think liberalism has mutated into something pathological in the United States. It has pushed its program into areas where it has overstepped its limits and amplified the damaging effects of its errors.
|Share |||By Randall Parker at 2010 October 22 08:08 PM Civilizations Decay|