We live in the age of appetite. Since the clarion call of the 1960s, “If it feels good do it,” the old virtues of restraint and prudence were cast aside in favor of indulging the vices, particularly lust and greed. Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals was once the manual of the community activists who would change the world, that is before they became yuppies and invested with Gordon Gekko. Afterwards, Rules for Radicals came to share a prized place with Machiavelli’s, The Prince on the nightstands and in the hearts of what is the most pathetic and corrupt ruling class Americans have ever endured. Alinsky has made it to the big time, he is established among the Establishment. He is the guru of the politics of vulgarity and personal destruction; denizen of selfish fulfilment of whatever impulse or feeling is directing the will of whomever, whenever, the philosopher of polarization in the public life of what was once a republic.
Alinsky’s rules are well known and on display each day in the public life of the United States. Saul was a “means justifies the ends” thinker, an admirer of Lucifer to whom he penned an acknowledgement in Rules for Radicals, and a practitioner of the art character assassination. One quote will suffice: “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, polarize it.” Other Alinsky tactics which are now du jour for the foreseeable include: ridicule, harassment, projection (accusing one’s opponents of the evil of which one is guilty), and symbol construction. This last is omnipresent in our visually oriented world. How simple it is to use visual media to present the symbols of the tribe, and more importantly the symbols of the enemy who must be reviled. How so much more effective to redefine the symbols of one’s enemy to polarize, “to freeze the target.” How willing are churchmen, academics, entertainers, and other public figures to be co-opted by radicalism so they too can be c'est chic. Any defender of the symbols of the Confederacy, or the symbols and historic statesmen of the American republic for that matter, has most likely been on the receiving end of Alinsky-style political thuggery administered at the hands of fashionable signalers of virtue.
The ascent of a cultural Marxist ethos and eidos in American society is the perfect environment for the eternal revolutionary, ὰ la Alinsky. The cultural Marxist is a parasite without peer. He attaches to a living and vibrant culture, burrows into its institutions, and destroys it from within. The academy, the Democratic party, the education establishment, and religious institutions all are infested. How can we tell? Among a plethora of examples are: the destruction of academic standards and expectations in favor of indoctrination, Democrats embracing the politics or personal destruction and division, the current “Amazon Synod” being held in Rome, it makes one want to hold a sit-in. Of course, one merely looks at the violence done to language to understand how nefarious our eternal revolutionaries are. One example will suffice, the eradication of the distinctions between male and female once expressed by the term “opposite sex.” Cultural Marxists, aided by their dupes and fellow travelers, made war upon this term in favor of the more ambiguous “gender,” a term belonging to the world of grammar. It was a master stroke. Any student of language runs into nouns that are masculine in gender, yet refer to an obviously masculine person, place or thing, and vice versa. Gender, being a grammar term, possesses a certain fluidity. The cultural Marxist argued strongly that differences between the sexes did not have a foundation in biological differences, science be damned. No indeed, such differences are “socially constructed.” Once this violence to the language was accepted, even by conservatives, was it any shock that we have any number of people claiming that there an infinite number of “genders,” each of which carrying their own set of pronouns, each part of an individual’s truth and narrative? After all, didn’t Disney and our third-grade teacher tell us we can be whatever we want to be? Never mind the wake of destruction left in this seismic cultural shift, Americans embraced it. It’s so respectful of individualism, so supportive, so accepting, so welcoming and anyone who rejects the nonsense, who offers facts and truth to counter the revolution is a reprobate. Americans tend to be a naïve lot.
We are still fighting what Pat Buchanan called the “Culture War,” and its origins go back to at least the 1960s. The fatal mistake for men and women of the Right is to believe that these “new barbarians,” who are really the same old barbarians, can be mollified or that negotiations with them can limit the damage they wreak upon society. Those who make war on the language, on the nature of men and women, on the natural law itself are enemies of the truth and they will not be mollified, nor do they sleep. These people can only be resisted. They must be resisted, first and foremost with the truth, lived and expressed in charity. In our fight with the eternal revolutionary we cannot neglect the spiritual weapons including prayer, especially for our enemies, as well as fasting, and penance. God calls us to an eternal victory in the next world, faithfulness in this one. Where the eternal revolutionary seeks to elevate their personal narrative and their truth, we hold them to the evidence and objective universal truth. As an old engineering colleague of mine like to say, “In God we trust, all others bring data.” Most of all, we must never waver. Le Connétable, Charles De Gaulle, irritated and antagonized nearly every American and Briton he met and with whom he worked. He was often arrogant, aloof, insufferable, but in the cause of France he never wavered. We must be as him, whatever our flaws, we too must never waver in the defense of the true, the good and beautiful as it is incarnated in the civilization of the South, and in the actions and lives of our people.
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John Francis Devanny Jr. writes and teaches in Front Royal, Virginia when he is not hunting, fishing, or otherwise messin’ around with his bird dog.