Travels in Cultural Nihilism By James Reed
It is hard to find academics willing to have a hit at the tyrannical system, since they are soon removed. Yet, UK academic Stephen Leonard, in Travels in Cultural Nihilism, (Arktos, 2017), seems to have done a good job of slaughtering sacred cows, bolding proclaiming that multiculturalism is a failure. I don’t have the book, but there is a good review of it at another site, whose writers are richer than me, so they will not mind the poor borrowing from the richer poor:
“In ‘Psychological Angst’ Leonard attempts to understand why Western populations remain silent as their access to free speech becomes increasingly restricted. He attributes this silence, in part, to the growth of ‘groupthink,’ a “psychological phenomenon that occurs within a group of people, in which the desire for harmony or conformity in the group results in an irrational or dysfunctional decision-making outcome.” In the context of groupthink, which is increasingly underpinned by hate speech legislation, “the power of peer pressure is such that any dissent is socially unacceptable, and would lead to alienation.”
Groupthink members see themselves as part of an in-group working against an out-group. This leads to a series of broad assumptions about in-group members and out-group members. Using the example of academia, Leonard points out that there is a “false consensus that [other academics] subscribe to a full programme of post-modern liberal views on everything from multiculturalism, the EU, gay marriage, modern art, climate change and Shostakovich.”
Failure to adhere to groupthink on any of these matters results in the offender being categorised with an almost limitless number of negative stereotypes, ranging from the assumption they must be of irrational and therefore somehow not really an academic after all, to accusations of fascism, racism, homophobia and Nazism. The intellectual and ideological narrowing of academic life is illustrated by the growing opinion that “everything that does not look or sound like democratic, globalist liberalism is fascist” while “it is considered normal for all Faculty members in a Humanities department to be liberal, and left of that.”
Since dissent is viewed as inherently offensive, we have witnessed the disappearance of debate from Western political life. Leonard points out that “the shocking thing about gay marriage is simply that legislation was introduced across the West in the almost complete absence of debate.” One could of course say the same about legislation concerning mass immigration, so-called ‘hate speech,’ and foreign aid. Through media and educational indoctrination, these subjects have been intensely imbued with what Leonard terms “coercive psychological barricades.” It therefore takes a tremendous break from established norms even to form oppositional ideas, let alone undertake oppositional action.
Meanwhile cultural Marxists can operate with relative impunity, happy in the knowledge they will encounter little resistance: “The younger generation has unthinkingly incorporated closed thinking into their new cultural grammar as this is now implicit in the education curriculum…Geography students are asked why gay people move from the countryside to the cities. In mathematics, they are taught through census findings about the number of homosexuals in the population. In science, they are told about emperor penguins and sea horses where the males take the role in rearing its young.”
In discussions of ‘diversity,’ pathological groupthink reaches its zenith. In the popular, political, and cultural landscape, “diversity has assumed the mantle of some kind of irrefutable truth, a celebration of tolerance.” Leonard counters that it in fact means “cultural abandonment and ethnic dilution,” with much of the political elite complicit in a project designed to “destroy the notion that a nation represents one culture.” The diversity discourse is inherently intolerant, and seeks “to place every ethnicity and identity into the cauldron of global consumerism.”
Globalisation is “a process which sets out to rule and dictate to a globalised, consumerism mass of people stripped of national identity, but endowed with secularism and a facade, of fake, humanistic, values.” In practical, localised terms, “diversity is played out as a sort of competition to prove who is most opposed to racism, sexism etc.” Diversity is “about bestowing a preferential value on minorities who are assumed to somehow be victims,” the end goal being “to make our nations as ‘multi-ethnic’ (i.e. non-white) as quickly as possible.” In Sweden, the programmatic goal of ethnic dilution has led to the rise of “a militant anti-racist cult.”
Leonard has observed political correctness first hand, and no doubt will in the future. He hopes that European man will wake up in time to prevent the complete slide into chaos and collapse. I do too, but it may not happen. Fear is leading many of even those who once put their heads above the trenches, to retreat to the safer spots down in the dirt of the trench. Meanwhile, time stops for no man.