Friday, March 07, 2008

It Depends on Where You Stand

The New York Times has an article about Martin Amis's estrangement from the English left, on the issue of Islam:
[Amis's] "slogan on [the] distinction [between Islamophobia and Islamismophobia] is, ‘We respect Muhammad, we do not respect Mohamed Atta.’ ” Jihadism, he said, is “racist, homophobic, totalitarian, genocidal, inquisitorial and imperialistic. Surely there should be no difficulty in announcing one’s hostility to that, but there is.”
Indeed there is if, like Amis, you are out of synch with "England’s left-leaning intellectual culture, [which is] traditionally somewhat hostile toward Israel and the United States." "Somewhat"? Now there's an understatement for you.

In fact, as the article continues, it becomes clear that Amis sees English "intellectualism" for what it is:
“The anti-Americanism is really toxic in this country, and the anti-Zionism,” he said, attributing the sentiments to empire envy. “I think we ceased to be a world power just as America was unignorably taking on that role.” The dominant ideology “told us that we don’t like empires, we’re ashamed of ever having one.” In England, he continued, “we’ve infantilized ourselves, stupefied ourselves, through a kind of sentimental multiculturalism,” Amis said. He called for open discussion “without self-righteous cries of racism. It’s not about race, it’s about ideology.”
What the Times calls a "transAtlantic divide" is really a chasm between the Left (everywhere) and the remnants of minarchist libertarianism-cum-Burkean conservatism. The Left in this country is every bit as toxically anti-American as the Left in England (and elsewhere). Leftists of all nations stand opposed to liberty. Islamism is merely the Left's "poster child" du jour.

For more, see the posts in the category "Leftism - Statism - Democracy."