How to write against the Left

Debunk the claim of Leftists that their worldview is scientific. Remind them that they don’t have a monopoly of truth and that grand narratives in the social sciences are no longer fashionable. Replace the tired jargons of the Left with post-political, post-ideological categories such as multiculturalism, civil society, and tripartism. It’s already suffocating and boring if we continue to talk about Leftist themes such as alienation, surplus value, and collectivization. Too Western, male-centric, logo-centric, passe. Time to move on by tackling marginal topics such as sexuality, gender roles, and exotic cultures.

The big themes should be replaced by micro politics; and language games rather than social commitment should be the priority of a true scholar.

During debates, it is useful to raise the specter of dead communist leaders like Stalin and Mao. Repeat the standard depiction of these leaders in the bourgeois press as superbads and villains of modern history. Even if the debate is about education reform or labor rights, always try to redirect the discussion towards the crimes against humanity purportedly committed by Stalin, Mao, and the Khmer Rouge. If the Leftist counters by reciting the horrific sins of capitalist regimes, denounce him for deliberately obfuscating the issue.

Remind the Leftist that Marx is a thinker whose ideas are applicable only in the mid-1850s. Ridicule his decision to read a philosopher who wrote the Communist Manifesto in the 19th century. Ignore the Leftist who will argue that if Marx is already irrelevant in the 21st century, then what do you call the teachings of Adam Smith who died in 1790? Should we then stop reading the Greek classics and stick to modern fiction like Twilight? Ignore all these and insist that Marx, and only Marx, has nothing insightful to offer to our students today other than discredited concepts like class struggle.

Hit hard and proudly assert that socialism clearly didn’t work as proven by the demise of Soviet Russia. Instead of socialism, why not embrace the infinite possibilities offered by capitalism? Indeed, why turn our backs on a system that gave us world wars, mass hunger in the age of plenty, wage slavery amid the creepy accumulation of fictitious capital, and totalitarian regimes disguised as liberal democracies?

Mong Palatino,
“How To Write Against the Left”


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