What’s the Alternative to the Left’s Program?

LeftProgramby Enza Ferreri   8/17/14
I was reading the blog of Daniel Greenfield, undoubtedly a great writer and an acute analyst of what is wrong in today’s world. But, the more I was reading, the more I felt a sense of dissatisfaction, as you may have when drinking doesn’t quench your thirst but paradoxically increases it.

Then I discovered what it was. There was something missing: a conclusion.

We — the counterjihadists, the “Islamophobes,” the conservatives, the “Right wing” — have many excellent thinkers and commentators (of whom Greenfield is an example) who are good in the pars destruens, the critical, negative part, of our arguments; but not enough who develop a pars construens, the constructive part that builds the positive alternative to what we are criticising.

This dearth of a firm propositive aspect in our positions is common to all Western countries.

The reason, I dare say, is simple. There is among us a widespread fear or unease in proposing a kind of society espousing ideas and values (some of which from the past) that have been ruthlessly, thoroughly mauled and massacred by the Left.[pullquote]There is among us a widespread fear or unease in proposing a kind of society espousing ideas and values (some of which from the past) that have been ruthlessly, thoroughly mauled and massacred by the Left.[/pullquote]

We are, probably without realising, the first victims of Leftist indoctrination. We may reject those ideas rationally, but deep down, emotionally, we have doubts. The Left’s are the views we grew up with, they permeated our culture, were ideologically dominant when we were teenagers and young adults. Our favourite bands endorsed them and were selling them with their records and their lives: sex, drugs and rock’n’roll.

At university, both professors and students were full of them; who thought differently was a pariah.

The most fashionable authors were Marxists of various kinds, from Freudian Marxists to the Frankfurt School.

It would be totally unrealistic to think that an individual can go through all that brainwashing, peer pressure and gentle persuasion by his pop idols without taking with him a persistent scar, a lifelong influence on his mind.

So, when we slowly — it took a very long, long time — realised that those ideas (that for want of a better word I’ll shorthandedly call “Leftist”) were simply wrong, that they didn’t correspond to reality — didn’t “save the phenomena” as an obscure scientist named Sir Isaac Newton, among others, put it — and their acceptance and practical application were destroying both individuals and societies, we found our voice in denouncing them and their manfestations.

What we didn’t find in equal measure was the audacity, the resolve to recover and re-propose the beliefs and principles that preceded the Leftist ones, and which the Left with its atheism and political correctness had demolished in our eyes.

No matter how much the world around us – in our surroundings, streets and urban ghettos as well as in faraway lands – was collapsing, there were words like “defending family values” or “sexual morality” or “not all religions are the same/religion can be a force for good” we just couldn’t bring ourselves to utter.

We need to reclaim the convictions supplanted by Leftist barbarism. We mustn’t be afraid to say that the alternative to Islam is Christianity, the answer to sexual relativism, pansexualism, radical feminism and homosexualism is in the Judaeo-Christian civilisation, and that the West can survive only if it reasserts its identity as Christendom.

This is the constructive, propositive part that at the moment is largely missing from the anti-jihad and conservative public discourse.

It’s not enough to correctly identify what’s wrong. If we don’t have a positive recipe on how to fix it, we’ll lose to those who have a proposal, however abysmal.


EnzaEnza Ferreri is an Italian-born, London-based Philosophy graduate, author, and journalist. She has been a London correspondent for several Italian magazines and newspapers, including Panorama, L’Espresso, La Repubblica. She is in the Executive Council of the UK’s party Liberty GB. • (1190 views)

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11 Responses to What’s the Alternative to the Left’s Program?

  1. Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

    I am glad Miss Ferreri allowed you to publish this ST. She appears to be a young lady so perhaps there is still hope for this generation.

    sex, drugs and rock’n’roll.

    She has recognized the formula for the destruction of our civilization. This is very impressive in one so young. To hate Christianity, the family and authority is one thing. How to weaken all three at once is quite another.

    Simply use a formula which will loosen all morals between the sexes, present deviancy, of any kind, as praiseworthy, addle the already mushy brains of the young with mind altering chemicals and you are well on the way to the collapse of the West.

    By the way, I believe ST is doing something positive. But each of us is responsible for our own actions and educating others. Bitching may be fun in the short term, but it isn’t a plan.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Yes, that was kind of Enza (what a great name) to share it with us. It’s a subject that I know is close to your heart, Mr. Kung. We need to all DO something substantive to turn the tide.

      Talk is fine too. In fact, it’s highly necessary. It’s important that conservatives get their own philosophical acts together before going out into the world. (By the way, I advise them to come here often in order to do so.) 🙂

      And the fellowship between like-minded people is important as well. Given how thick the Kultursmog is, we are like the 4th century Christians who draw half of a fish in the sand and wait for the other to complete the drawing in order to confirm the other is an actual Christian. The Progressive Kultursmog is so pervasive that we are becoming foreigners in our own land. We need each other first, and then we can branch out from there. And my hope is to facilitate this network while pumping some hardcore 100% conservatism into it. 😉

      • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

        Enza (what a great name)

        Yeah, sounds like she ought to design and build race cars.

        • Timothy Lane says:

          I’ve occasionally encountered the male name Enzo, so this is obviously the female version (which, interestingly, I don’t recall ever seeing previously).

          • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

            Yes, look at the similarity of her name with a very famous automobile engineer and producer, famous for red race cars. Only two letters are different.

  2. Glenn Fairman says:

    Here’s my plan for society: Do the opposite of what I am bitching about…….

  3. Timothy Lane says:

    There is a story about a Jewish scholar who died and was brought to God (Yahweh, of course) for judging. When he mentioned that he had devoted his life to studying the Law, God asked him to expound on it. Thinking for a moment, he suggested that God expound — and he would then critique it. I think of myself like that — not so great at coming up with new ideas, but reasonably good at analyzing them (and at analyzing other people’s analyses).

    One might also note that many of our prescriptions are negative, in the sense that we favor NO “fat taxes” or other restrictions on food, NO carbon taxes or other energy limitations, etc. How to get back from where we are (e.g., Obamacare) to something more reasonable (e.g., a healthcare system based on medical savings accounts) is much more difficult. The Overton window is hard to shift rapidly, especially for those who face a hostile communication environment.

  4. Jerry Richardson says:

    It is certainly refreshing to read a young scholarly writer who is not afraid to state that the answer for many of our most pressing social issues is Christianity. I applaud that.

    However, it is not clear to me, from the article, what exactly Enza means when she says:
    “… the conservatives, the “Right wing” …not enough who develop a pars construens, the constructive part that builds the positive alternative to what we are criticising.”
    And

    “It’s not enough to correctly identify what’s wrong. If we don’t have a positive recipe on how to fix it, we’ll lose to those who have a proposal, however abysmal.”

    Much of modern conservative thought is, of course, concerned with politics and government. A long-standing major-bone of contention between Conservatives and Progressives is the issue of “negative rights” versus “positive rights.”

    “Negative rights” are rights to certain inactions; “positive rights” are rights to certain actions. A “negative right” (as in “Congress shall make no law…” and “…shall not be infringed”) is better understood as a “liberty right” —following Wesley Hohfeld’s conceptual scheme for “rights.” A “liberty right” means that no other person has a right to deny that “liberty right” —and yes, I know there are qualifications—no one has a free-speech right to shout fire in a crowded theater.

    In addition, a “liberty right” does not create a “duty” for anyone else, other than the non-invasive “duty” of non-interference in someone’s “liberty right.”

    On the other hand, and this is an important other hand, a “positive right” is a “claim right” (as opposed to a “liberty right”) and being a “claim right” it creates a “duty” on someone else or some group (very often the taxpayer) to see that the claim is fulfilled.

    Many conservatives argue, correctly I believe, that the US Constitution, as given to us by the founders, concerns itself primarily with “negative rights,” i.e., “liberty rights.” Progressives, as exemplified by FDR’s and his efforts to create a “second bill of rights” have pushed often and hard for “positive rights,” i.e., “claim rights,” e.g., everybody has a “right” to a job; everybody has a “right” to healthcare; everybody has a “right” to an education; Etc…

    Now, out of all of this background, the question that is pertinent to Enza’s article is “how do you build “the positive alternative” to “claim rights” that we Conservatives so often criticize?

    There seems to me to be very limited options; two that I know about: Prevention and/or removal; both of which are “negative” tactics. These options are not about building; they are about avoiding or getting rid-of politically unwise policy. I argue that getting rid of a mess is a very “positive recipe” for how to fix it. If fact, even if you absolutely have some really excellent replacement plan in mind (as all elite thinkers always do), getting rid of the mess is a necessary first step.

    I think it is instructive that when Jesus chased the money-changers out of the temple, he didn’t offer a “positive alternative” to what he was critical-of, he just got rid of the mess. What was already there was good and worthwhile—if only what was foul was removed. Jesus removed it. OMG, what a very negative solution.

    I agree with the thesis of Glen Fairman’s candid suggestion:
    “Here’s my plan for society: Do the opposite of what I am bitching about…….”

    I believe an acceptable opposite of a “claim right” is the absence of that “claim right.”

    Some of the social maladies that Enza mentions: such as “homosexualism” have been railroaded to the forefront in American political life via progressive drives for “claim rights.” Prime example: homosexuals claim that they have a “right” to “gay marriage.” How so? There is no historical, Constitutional, or legal precedent for such a claim. It is plainly a “claim right” and it entails a “duty” on someone else. What is that duty? It is the trumpeted necessity for opponents of “gay marriage” to “get on the right-side of history” and give-up the traditional definition of marriage (one man, one woman). I say that is a high price to be paid by the rest of society.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      Jerry, I interpreted Enza’s article as the need to present a positive conservative vision. (As George H.W. Bush referred to it: “the vision thing.”)

      Let’s recap the Left’s vision (which will be a blend of upper tier and lower tier stuff, and leaving out most of the villainy that is inherent): They want a utopia born of perfect equality. Government caretaking will primarily transcend the need for spouses or even family. Whatever sexual conduct (and, later, drugs) you want to engage in is your business and your pleasure. And instead of being a cog in the drudgery of capitalism, we are all to be artists where we can sip tea in the sunshine and write poetry all day before the afternoon orgie. And Mother Gaia shall be protected and worshipped as a god.

      Or something like that. You get the picture. Sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll, for the most part. The libertarian “vision” isn’t much different other than they expect this social utopia to come via an atomized population (with little or, preferably no government). Both libertarians and the Left believe that the nature of man is basically good and is bent only because of outside influences (capitalism, for the Left, and the state, for libertarians).

      What is the conservative vision of society? First off, let me say that sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll (all embedded in an environmental and social utopia) is a tough act to follow. Conservatives offer none of that in their vision. Society is considered to be the necessary construct to set us out of and above “nature, red in tooth and claw.” Man is considered to be a Fallen creature in need of moral instruction. Honest work is a part of that instruction. Mooching is considered a cancer to a man’s character. Freedom and the various necessary “oughts” of society are his avenue to living his life, being productive, raising a family with good children, and giving something back to his community in various private forms of involvement. He is grateful for what he has, strives to improve himself and his lot, and never expects anything out of life but a struggle. And in this struggle he develops a character and a soul that makes of him a good and true man or woman. He is fair in his dealings, charitable in his private giving, temperate in his emotions and conduct, and strives to be informed and thus to gain wisdom.

      The governmental structure for that vision is limited government combined with the idea of unalienable rights, among other things.

      • Jerry Richardson says:

        You write good stuff Brad. I like the almost poetic effect of one of you characterizations of liberalism:

        “And instead of being a cog in the drudgery of capitalism, we are all to be artists where we can sip tea in the sunshine and write poetry all day before the afternoon orgie. And Mother Gaia shall be protected and worshipped as a god.”

  5. Glenn Fairman says:

    a very good explication of the nature of the “right.” What also may be of interest is that, with some qualifications, liberal and the libertarian hold that “the right has primacy over the good.”

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