The Mouse’ Bite

Recently, the search for a tool failed to produce the hunted object but it led to a batch of forgotten articles written in German. In such cases curiosity kicks in. How wrong or right was one in 1978?

One of the essays grappled with the causes of the US’ rather ineffective policies in Africa. Cuba, Moscow’s remote-controlled tool, scored repeatedly at little risk or cost to the Kremlin. In the piece the writer found a long-forgotten sentence. It opined that “If the Cuban mouse devours the American puma then, to explain that, it is futile to discuss the mouse’ sharp teeth”. It seems that this concept is applicable regarding the West’s present-day inability to cope with its foes.

Discussing the mouse’ teeth is dangerous because the pursuit of the false riddle leads astray and nets meaningless conclusions. Relying on a defective compass will make the ship proceed into the ocean’s empty space until the fuel runs out.

It has been reassuring that with the arrival of the sitting President, the ship of the allegory has stopped its drift. Obviously, the strategy of waiting for a wind that makes maneuvering superfluous has also been jettisoned. Luckily, if globally viewed, the “trend” appears to represent a favorable tide. Mr. Trump is not so much the one that unleashed the trend but an expression of it. Therefore, at least in part, he will be judged by his ability to give support to the “zeitgeist” (the spirit of the age) and whether he will make good use of it.

In developed societies, the “people” is growing restless. The impression of misgovernment spreads and so is the realization that the politics of marching in the direction of the least resistance is more than ineffective; at the end of the docilely followed path ultimate disaster waits. Certain enemies, some challenges, cannot be overcome with a policy that responds by giving away the family silver for a liar’s promise to desist. Extortion is an endless process with diverse consequences. Saving your skin is not among them.

This habit of compromising with unyielding foes expresses a reluctance to defend a successful culture. It begins with the denial that a threat could exist. It continues by denying its worth and legitimacy. On the material level, this civilization has not only overcome poverty for all, it even made available the good life for most. On the level of the community, freedom has become a component of a system that provides equality, co-determination and room for those that deserve to be rewarded. That in time this has become self-evident is proven by the fact that bringing it up might bore the reader. Even so, whatever represents an achievement can also be lost if not nurtured; even the best car needs care and service.

If there is reason for a proud assertion of achievement, then the opposite attitude’s popularity among the elites can astonish. The dissidents of the political class negate the legitimacy of their civilization’s accomplishments. In doing so, they credit what is undeniably positive to the exploitation of other (idealized) cultures and dismiss the laudable record of modern democracy. Furthermore, conveniently, the coming collapse of the system is “scientifically” proven by either invoking Marx about the destruction of capitalism through its “contradictions”, or by referring to the Green’s predicted, self-induced, collapse of the ecological system. This amounts to the death-wish of a civilization whose leaders see only the short-comings of western culture and that uncritically emphasize the romanticized glory of foreign ways of life.

Supposedly, the doom forecast is caused by what appears to be success to the “unknowing” common people and is seen as deserved. Western society’s model is said to be iniquitous. It sets individuals against each other, and it distributes the wealth created by competition and innovation without moral sensitivity.

The alleged state of things warrants a sense of guilt within the “chattering class”. In another form, the old slogan, that “property is theft”, is resurrected among those “opinion makers” licensed to pass moral judgments.

Opportunistically defined, colonialism becomes in this rendition an aspect of the past that supports the thesis of culpability and the need for restitution. In reality, the exploitation of defenseless societies does not conform to the modern East-West or North-South divide. Europeans have been subjugated by countries that now enjoy the moral superiority that comes from third world status. (The Ottoman Empire in the Balkans.) Non-European have also colonized their own kind (the Mongol Empire) and Europeans, such as Russia in Poland’s case, have subjugated other Europeans.

Regardless of the confusing facts, “colonialism” is an effective moralizing instrument to club lamed successful societies by the claim that their success is the fruit of a crime. By invoking a sense of guilt among the innocent, the amplified message of the political class’ “liberal” branch is that what the man on the street experiences is not the real reality. Fact is rather what they claim to be the case as it conforms their theory. The general awareness of the discrepancy grows between what is lived and what “should be” – pandered as the correct perception. The result is a political crisis caused by the masses that run away from their elites, traditional parties, and that assess their condition disregarding PC.

The establishment’s response is voluminous, loud but increasingly ineffective. As a starter, there is an attempt to prevent the unfitting facts from becoming public. A classical subject of censorship by silence is the treatment of crimes committed by migrants. For the growing quire of critics there is the old and trusted response of spewing unfitting accusations. Anyone out of tune with the officially approved liberal mainstream is a “right-wing extremist”. Anything that mentions taboo words such as “nation”, “interest”, “religion”, “identity”, ”patriot”, is a “fascist”. Discussing migrant crimes bestows upon the culprit membership in a “racist” crowd. Revealingly, the regurgitation of Soviet and Marxist claims and “solutions” may not be tied to their origin without risking condemnation for intolerance, libel, and worse.

A cute case of unequally applied unfitting standards is the label of “anti-Semitism”. Disapproving of Soros -his background has no bearing on his public role- even without referring to his Jewish origins, makes one an anti-Semite. This is the case of Hungary’s Orbán with a close relationship to Israel. The circles that invoke this charge are the ones that boycott Israel because of its hard stance against those that admit to wanting to destroy her. Bringing this up confers on the sinner the label of “racist”.

One more bit about self-defeat, which is the precondition for the mouse to devour the dozy cat. Degenerated liberalism tends to stymy itself. Liberalism has been a precondition of the West’s rise and global success; it furthered the political, social, and economic pre-requisites of democratic modernization. Present day liberalism, as a creed and movement, has departed from its valuable roots. The discrepancy is so significant that one may talk about the term’s shanghaiing.

Yes, liberalism put semphasis on the open discourse between reasonable men who pursue their rational interests within the realm of the possible. Assuming that the adjectives fit the participants, the expectation is that compromises can be achieved by balancing mutual interests. Given this context, “compromise” is neither a sign of weakness nor one of cowardice. It merely means a solution devoid of violence that endures because of the consent of all involved parties.

The bite of the attacking mouse gets its venom because a salient fact upon which the validity of the foregoing depends is ignored. It is that not all movements are of good will, and not all leaders are reasonable. Handling fanatics as though they would be rational in the pursuit of limited goals, amounts to a debility in the face of a foe whose power grows when self-deceit weakens the intended victim.

Liberalism is a deserving philosophy. Once misapplied to justify morally unwarranted surrender, the resulting sham becomes an instrument of self-annihilation. Orbán’s programmatic term of forging an “illiberal democracy” refers to the perceived negative effects of abused liberalism. True liberalism contains no obligation to cave in to extremists by seeking atonement. The democratic order has enemies, defending it is not only “allowed” but also a moral obligation and no principle makes submission into a duty. Therefore, refusing to negotiate whether your execution is to be by hanging or beheading, is not intolerance but common sense.
Especially the mismanagement of the migration crisis by the hither political class is proving to be a turning point. It has injected a calamity and insecurity into common peoples’ daily life. Generally shared experiences are created that unwrap the governing class’ claims about multi-cultural bliss as phantasies. The elections that renewed the European parliament on the 26th, reflect this sobering clash of reality with the abstract postulates of an “ersatz religion”. The general success of right-of-center parties sends a signal. Apparently hurt, the big cat is wakening up and so, the mouse needs to scurry to its hole while the earlier “mainstream” is shrinking to a rivulet.

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