I left this comment on a Sultan Knish column, “A Clash of Histories.”
Daniel wrote: “The left rejected commercial progress as capitalist, but continued to embrace technological progress and cultural development. Then it rejected technological progress as destructive, culture as perspective and stated that the highest moral principle was for the West to save the world by destroying itself.”
I think he underestimates the purpose of the left, or the left that is at large in Western society today. The attitude of the left is ostensively paradoxical. But it is not the same left that founded the Soviet Union, Red China, or Cuba. Those leftists, at least on the surface, seem to value and promise human and material progress, and tried to achieve it by enslaving their populations and putting fetters on their slaves’ minds. With every bogus five-year plan and every pseudo-false scientific accomplishment, they fooled their populations and convinced themselves that the collectivist scam was workable and practical – until at some point even the most gullible dolts said, “Account overdrawn.” Communist nations are not naturally creative or innovative; they can only emulate their freer, more prosperous neighbors, or the ones they haven’t invaded and sacked.
Contemporary leftists, however, especially the environmentalists, are fundamentally nihilists. They do not want to preserve or discover new, beneficial values for man. They are against man. So they are against nuclear power, genetically-altered produce and livestock, medical research, housing developments, standard light bulbs, even “wind farms” and solar energy, because none of it is “natural.” It all violates Mother Earth, because man must take from the earth to produce those things. Like Islam, contemporary leftists do not want to “save the West.” They want to see it swamped and drowned by their opposite number, their fellow nihilists of Islam.
They see strength in Islam, which is why they side with it, knowing that should a global caliphate ever be realized, they, they, the leftists, will be the first to be told to convert, or else. And, being nihilists, the leftists do not care. They worship non-existence, and know that their best bet of achieving a living death is to destroy, or help to destroy, those who love existence. In that sense, they share the same end as the Islamists and seekers after that “golden age.”