Sunday, January 23, 2005
Pop Hegemony And The Democratization Of Food, Entertainment, And Technology
Many on the left are disappointed that the socialist “experiment” in Russia failed, that a free economy (e.g. capitalism) won its battle with collectivist tyranny. Such authoritarians make no secret of their disdain for Coke, McDonald’s, Starbucks, or Microsoft. One could speculate that, if they could, they’d close down a kid’s lemonade stand to honor their hatred for free commerce. Remember, their ultimate hatred is for self-striving and human nature itself. Hatred of a free-market is virtually indistinguishable from a hatred of freedom in general (as economist Milton Friedman so insightfully observed).
The left’s polemic crusade against capitalism and America of course defaults to a bitter hatred for globalization – seen by them as nothing more than ‘cultural imperialism.”
America does, indeed, play a dominant role in spreading the attributes of open society – a widening diversity and availability of products, services, ideas, and cultural / artistic expression.
Decrying the supposed horrors of, “cultural hegemony” and “McWorld,” is an attempt to conjure a fictional crisis that isn’t there. While screeching the standard socialist whine that bland uniformity is engulfing the world, quite the opposite is actually taking place. (Remember, such criticisms are coming from the same clowns who actually believe “diversity” is something fostered from the imposed edicts of government clerks).
Go to any major world-city today and you will find a surging dynamism unseen in human history. The lights, colors, shapes, and sounds being mere symbols of the underlying energy of human creativity unleashed; beautiful architecture, products, ideas, and aesthetics from around the world, low cost food, transportation, and entertainment. While some note the signs that say McDonald’s, they seem to miss the one’s that say Toshiba or Renault. While some see, The Gap, they miss the fact that everyone around them is wearing a variety of garb in a variety of styles from different times and places. Look around you – poor, rich, and middle class, all alive in a way unseen before our time. As you watch people walking about with cell phones, digital cameras, and I-pods, you may realize that those old comic book sci-fi images of an imaginary future have actually fully materialized, cars looking more like space ships, gliding on delicate ribbons of modern engineering design. Did this all come about from some unseen vibrancy in the plans of socialist bureaucrats? – Hardly. The US and the system which honors the creativity of free society has been the prime catalyst to this new world. If all this is “hegemony” then hegemony is hardly a just target for complaint.
One of the big news items last week was The President’s inauguration. While it would be an accurate observation to note the higher level of security, there was nothing particularly noteworthy about the ceremony itself. There’s usually plenty of festive events and pomp at these things (Clinton's inaugurations were hardly mere dinner parties). Bush’s big day was little different in style or substance except…he was George Bush, the dreaded spokesperson for freedom.
The ridiculous rants thrown at him regarding the cost or extravagance of the ceremony are put in perspective by Ann Coulter and The Washington Times’Joseph Curl.
As in inaugurations past, there were various communist, socialist, and "anarchist" (socialists who pretend to be opposed to government authority) forces out demanding that they and their ideals be put in charge (of course they never present the issue in such terms).
And, what of the President’s speech itself? (Which should be read in its entirety).
Only in our unique times, when the left-wing worldview has come to dominate the ideals of many citizens, could the concept of freedom be held up as an object of criticism and, in some cases, scorn. Of course, Bush mentioned “God” a few too many times for the tastes of some (people who perhaps haven’t read most of the important speeches of by US presidents through history). The sneering snobs of the Left’s intelligentsia no doubt were appalled by this speech and the values articulated in it.
Bush is, of course, known for being rather inept when putting word and phrase together. We can, however, recognize his approval and articulation of the words and noble ideals he expressed – can’t we?
Excerpts in many newspapers, and other news sources, have directed their attention – out of context, of course – to Bush’s reference to our mission being directed from “beyond the stars,” a statement bordering on the cheesy, and one of the more awkward parts of what is otherwise an excellent speech with a topic few should take issue with – the spread of human liberty. Like similar speeches made last year, the very issue of freedom has been met by many with mocking disdain. The other way to get a jab at Bush is to just claim, “he really doesn’t mean that stuff” (impressive argument).
“…This is not primarily the task of arms, though we will defend ourselves and our friends by force of arms when necessary. Freedom, by its nature, must be chosen, and defended by citizens, and sustained by the rule of law and the protection of minorities. And when the soul of a nation finally speaks, the institutions that arise may reflect customs and traditions very different from our own. America will not impose our own style of government on the unwilling. Our goal instead is to help others find their own voice, attain their own freedom, and make their own way.
The great objective of ending tyranny is the concentrated work of generations. The difficulty of the task is no excuse for avoiding it. America's influence is not unlimited, but fortunately for the oppressed, America's influence is considerable, and we will use it confidently in freedom's cause.
My most solemn duty is to protect this nation and its people from further attacks and emerging threats. Some have unwisely chosen to test America's resolve, and have found it firm.
We will persistently clarify the choice before every ruler and every nation: The moral choice between oppression, which is always wrong, and freedom, which is eternally right. America will not pretend that jailed dissidents prefer their chains, or that women welcome humiliation and servitude, or that any human being aspires to live at the mercy of bullies…
…That edifice of character is built in families, supported by communities with standards, and sustained in our national life by the truths of Sinai, the Sermon on the Mount, the words of the Koran, and the varied faiths of our people. Americans move forward in every generation by reaffirming all that is good and true that came before ideals of justice and conduct that are the same yesterday, today, and forever…
…We go forward with complete confidence in the eventual triumph of freedom. Not because history runs on the wheels of inevitability; it is human choices that move events. Not because we consider ourselves a chosen nation; God moves and chooses as He wills. We have confidence because freedom is the permanent hope of mankind, the hunger in dark places, the longing of the soul. When our Founders declared a new order of the ages; when soldiers died in wave upon wave for a union based on liberty; when citizens marched in peaceful outrage under the banner ``Freedom Now'' they were acting on an ancient hope that is meant to be fulfilled. History has an ebb and flow of justice, but history also has a visible direction, set by liberty and the author of Liberty…”
Clearly there is plenty here to piss off a leftist.
Memory Lane; Throwing stones in glass houses
Where does a inept criminal like Ted Kennedy get off directing criticisms of any kind to anyone? The senior senator from Massachusetts once drove off a bridge while drunk. He left his secretary in the car to drown and didn’t report it till the next day – no jail time. This is the type of crime that Democrats call “issues regarding one’s personal sex life.” I beg to differ. If I were Ted, I’d be in a permanent state of shamed withdrawal from public life.
There are no media in Germany that could be even vaguely called “pro-American.” So, where does a Euro-Ubermensch get a fair and balanced exposure to issues (“both sides”)? Aside from the internet, nowhere. Examples of this nonsense can always be found at Davids Medienkritik.
More from the leftist academy
This should piss you off. Another example of leftist concern for issues of “injustice?”
Talk about media bias…
“After perusing the year-end (Dec. 27/Jan. 3) issue of Newsweek, I defy any editor there to deny this magazine is a mouthpiece for the political left. Their cover boy was Senator-Elect Barack Obama of Illinois, the "rising star," as the Democrats and so many admirers in the press have dubbed him.”
…“Start with the headlines. Obama’s profile was headlined "The Audacity of Hope." Santorum’s was "Mister Right." One represented hope, while the other typified firm ideology. While Obama would "help his party relocate its moral core," Santorum was "hard at work spreading the GOP gospel," and his "crusades" might make him a White House contender. The divergent themes were already obvious: Obama would bring moderation and yet "spirituality" to the Democrats, while Santorum threatened the GOP and the country with religiously fervent right-wing dogma.”…
The Plot Thickens... See you next week perhaps...