The New Revolution?

No, I’ve not stopped blogging again but I have done lots of other things (including moving house) that have kept me busy.

Anyway, |’m back now. Sort of. And I have a new design. I ain’t ‘alf tired of the stock of wordpress designs. They do add new designs often but none of them do quite what I would like. (I’m not sure what that is but I would know it if I saw it.)

The world seems to have been taking some very funny turns recently. I still can’t fathom what happened in Norway (though I’m not entirely surprised by it either). Breivik appeared to despise anyone who wasn’t white, western and male, and it’s always disconcerting to hear about those sorts of views. He’s not the only one, of course, but most anti-“other”s don’t go shooting up whole islands of young people. Most of the coverage of Breivik’s atrocities have, thus far, been predictable (the war on terrorism, a [re]new[ed] white-supremacy, a growing xenophobia towards the east) but I was intrigued by Anne Applebaum’s slate piece this morning which compared Breivik’s beliefs with those of the birthers in the US. Applebaum argues that Breivik’s main objection is to his government’s legitimacy (or lack of) in the same way that the birthers question the legitimacy of Obama’s presidency. Such views are conspiratorial at best, and ridiculously paranoid at worst. But they’re still having their day.

In any case, while I think that Applebaum is not correct in dismissing Breivik’s racism (and sexism and homophobia etc.), she does make a good point about a growing (though disorganised) trend in these sorts of revolutionary movements.  She mentions Marx, too, but seems to be dismissing him as a nonsense. As I read about her thoughts on these new rebellions, however, I started to feel unnerved that The Revolution, when it’s arrived, has not been that advocated by Dear Old Karl, even though that’s the one that we’ve all been told to wait for.

Let’s face it, many of us would be quite happy with the overthrow of capitalism (at least those of us who have old socialist souls), but at the same time we can all be secure in the knowledge that it’s not likely to happen any time soon so we don’t have to worry about imminent mess and inconvenience. One can’t be so sure with these illegitimists.

3 responses to “The New Revolution?

  1. Welcome back.

    One thing I’ve noticed about the press and reports of government responses to Breivik’s violence is that they must put steps in place to ensure that it doesn’t happen again. Really that sounds nice but how are you supposed to stop one man from buying legal weapons (in his country) and legal fertiliser and using them to do something vile? Isn’t it better to try to address the underlying issues in society than try to put in place controls that will only limit freedoms and cause discontent? You aren’t going to fix the problems of everyone but you can give them a voice so that their concerns are heard.

    Breivik appears to have gone on a rampage because a) he was a nutter and b) because he could not see another way to get his message across. I expect that we’ll hear an awful lot about his message for some time to come but very little about hearing what the “man on the street” has to say.

    • Hover, agreed (and see yesterday’s entry). If Norway goes the same way as here in limiting personal freedom bit my bit, nothing will be achieved. But I think Norway is much less reactionary than the UK.

      And, yes, we’re hearing an awful lot about what he had to say, aren’t we!

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