Saturday 10 November 2018


If there is a class war—and there is—it is important that it should be handled with subtlety and skill. ... it is not freedom that Conservatives want; what they want is the sort of freedom that will maintain existing inequalities or restore lost ones.
Maurice Cowling, "The Present Position," "Conservative Essays" (1978)

Today’s university students have little time for religion and no time at all for exclusive groups. They are particularly insistent that distinctions associated with their inherited culture — between sexes, classes and races, between genders and orientations, between religions and lifestyles — should be rejected, in the interests of an all-comprehending equality that leaves each person to be who she or he really is. “Non-discrimination” is the orthodoxy of our day. Yet this seeming open-mindedness is just as determined to silence
the heretic as any established religion. There may be no knowing in advance how the new heresies could be committed, or what exactly they are, since the ethic of non-discrimination is constantly evolving to undo distinctions that were only yesterday part of the fabric of reality.
Sir Roger Scruton, article in The Times, November 27 2017

[Maurice Cowling] once urged [Enoch] Powell not to raise immigration as an issue because he believed that Wilson would prove more adept at fighting in the gutter; it did not seem to have occurred to Cowling that Powell was more concerned with damaging the interests of Edward Heath than advancing those of the Conservative Party.
Richard Vinen

Our political solar system, in short, has been characterized not by two equally competing suns, but by a sun and a moon. It is within the majority party that the issues of any particular period arc fought out; while the minority party shines in reflected radiance of the beat thus generated .... Each time one majority sun sets and a new sun arises, the drama of American politics is transformed. Figuratively and literally a new political era begins. For each new majority party brings its own orbit of conflict, its own peculiar rhythm of ethnic antagonisms, its own economic equilibrium, its own sectional balance.
Samuel Lubell, "The Future of American Politics" (1952)

“Tổ Quốc Trên Hết” [“Nation Above All”] was a slogan of the defunct and much maligned Republic of South Vietnam, while the Socialist North rallied their populace with “Chống Mỹ Cứu Nước” [“Fight the Americans, Save the Nation”]. During the war, both Vietnamese sides stressed their nationalist credentials while discrediting their opponent as a foreign puppet. The common Vietnamese soldier, then, didn’t fight and die for capitalism, communism, democracy, internationalism, universal brotherhood, America, Russia or China, but only for Vietnam, for only nationalism could justify so much sacrifice, pain and endurance.

Linh Dinh

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