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#14999605
Antisemitic ‘Cultural Marxist’ tropes have infected mainstream conservatism thanks to boomers using the internet.

In the 1960s the Frankfurt School of sociology bridged a gap between the works of Freud and Marx, describing a psychological class struggle which stretches beyond crude economics to manifest through culture and consumption habits. It was the class war of the classroom, its lens set on formulated artistic taste rather than economic waste. This ‘Cultural Marxism’ – a term never used by its alleged architects Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer – became an antisemitic conspiracy theory about left-wing Jews wishing to subvert the white race: a new age Judeo-Bolshevism.

This myth metastasised so widely that in 1991 a former MI6 officer accused Theodor Adorno of creating and directing the rise of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones in conjunction with the social science think-tank the Tavistock Institute. His aim, according to the conspiracy theory, was to provoke a sexual and cultural revolution to undermine the traditions of western civilisation, which as a Jew and a leftist Adorno must despise according to hard-right gospel. Adorno never actually worked with the Tavistock Institute, and of the Beatles he remarked, in his trademark vitriolic fashion, that their music is ‘something that is retarded in terms of its own objective content’.

Cultural Marxism’s re-emergence into the lexicon of the internet-plagued 21st century was inevitable. From the darkest alt-right forums it permeated the mainstream after Anders Breivik made a central theme of his manifesto. Just 8 years after the event – an attack so vast that one in four Norwegians know someone involved personally – its vocabulary has managed to sneak into the governments of both Britain and Australia.

In March, the British MP Suella Braverman told a Westminster conservative conference that ‘as Conservatives, we are engaged in a battle against cultural Marxism’. This incident was conceivably a mistake: Braverman is a woman of colour and a former HuffPo columnist – hardly a prime suspect for far-right radicalisation. Damningly, however, it came at the end of a year when both Roger Scruton and Toby Young were both expelled from the party after their obsession with the conspiracy theory was revealed.

In October 2018 the Australian Senator Fraser Anning posted on Facebook that ‘Cultural Marxism and communism is [sic]being peddled in our universities’. It was shared by over 12,000 people. Less than 6 months later an Australian man slaughtered 50 Muslims in Christchurch, citing both ‘Cultural Marxism’ and ‘White Genocide’ in South Africa – another myth which Anning preached to a crowd of over 1,000 people in Brisbane in March 2018. He later claimed that Muslim immigration into Oceania was actually responsible for the atrocity in Christchurch and remains in the Australian Senate to this day.

In the US two quite separate branches of the right have fallen down this antisemitic rabbit hole. The libertarian and former Republican nominee Ron Paul posted an image straight from 4Chan in his blog post ‘You’ve probably heard of ‘Cultural Marxism,’ but do you know what it means?’ Anyone who is unfortunate enough to have spent an afternoon browsing the recesses of any Chan image board immediately recognises the images of each racial stereotype: a hooked-nose Jewish man and a large-lipped, ape-faced African man punch Uncle Sam with an arm which bears the hammer and sickle.

In August 2017 a group of high-level national security advisors were sacked for co-authoring a memo which claimed that President Trump is facing adversity for providing ‘an existential threat to cultural Marxist memes that dominate the prevailing cultural narrative’. The Gab posts of Robert Bowers, an-alt rightist who committed the deadliest attack on Jews in American history in the Pittsburgh Tree of Life Synagogue, echo these same concerns about a Cultural Marxist infestation of American culture which aims to replace the white race by promoting mass-migration and ‘degeneracy’ in place of traditional family values.

In the case of Braverman, it’s quite likely that she accidentally landed on tropes by combining two words and expressing something completely unintentional. One cannot deny, however, that we are witnessing an unprecedented adoption of 4Chan ‘memes’ about cultural subversion into the lexicon of mainstream conservatism across the Anglosphere, which disturbingly feeds into or at the very least parrots the rhetoric of white supremacist terrorists.

It doesn’t help that the curators of this new discourse in the right-wing press remain both employed and ,in most cases, more successful than ever. The columnist Melanie Phillips still writes for the Daily Mail and still appears on primetime BBC political programming despite her work being cited several times in Anders Breivik’s ‘A European Declaration of Independence’. The Spectator has hit record subscribers in reward for them publishing their golden boy Douglas Murray every week, whose ‘The Strange Death of Europe’ is like the Moby Dick of the alt-right.

You’d be forgiven for thinking that nobody is taking this seriously as we drift from one Christchurch to another.



Has anyone come across this term in real life or browsing online?
#14999687
Cultural Marxism is a pretty good term as terms go. Its a pretty good handle, a pretty good starting point for describing a relatively complex phenomena. Cultural Marxism is at its simplest a confluence of three things:

1 A strategy of conventional Marxists that focuses on culture. Gramsci's long war of position.

2 A group of ideologies that while inspired or related to Marxism have replaced the focus on class with a focus on race, gender, sexuality, Islam etc.

3 An organic mass phenomenon growing out of the mass expansions of further and higher education in the arts and social sciences. These people naturally want their studies to be part of some noble moral struggle.

The first rule of Cultural Marxism is, there is no such thing as Cultural Marxism. Recognition of Cultural Marxism has nothing absolutely nothing to do with a conspiracy theory. Cultural Marxists are quite open about what they are doing. They are generally quite open about their goals and agenda. The only thing they deny is that they are Cultural Marxists.
#14999719
Thatsnumberwang wrote:Has anyone come across this term in real life or browsing online?

You can't move in this forum, or the UK version, without some far right person blaming something on "Cultural Marxism". For example, a certain poster blamed a graph showing wider acceptance of same sex relations on "the Cultural Marxist school of falsification". Read on from there to enjoy the full rant.
#14999938
Rich wrote:2 A group of ideologies that while inspired or related to Marxism have replaced the focus on class with a focus on race, gender, sexuality, Islam etc.

The unifying Marxist element is that everyone's identity and position in life are determined by their group membership rather than their individual choices, and by how much power the groups they belong to wield. There is also no such thing as a struggle for liberty, justice, or truth, only for group power. Thus, being anti-white is not racist because whites as a group have more power than non-whites. Being anti-male is not sexist because males as a group have more power than females. As the article in the OP observed, when lone loonies carry out terror attacks incomprehensibly citing right wing ideas or intellectuals as their inspiration, that is somehow a reflection of those ideas and intellectuals; but when Muslim or leftist governments carry out genocidal or economically and socially catastrophic policies logically citing Muslim or leftist ideas as their inspiration, that is somehow not a reflection of Muslim or leftist ideas.
#14999971
Cultural Marxism and the Frankfurt School

Is there such a thing as "cultural Marxism"? If so, what is it? And what was the Frankfurt School, and what was it trying to accomplish? Paul Gottfried, who holds a Ph.D. in history from Yale and has written extensively on these subjects, joins me to get to the bottom of it all.
#14999979
Yes Virginia [Dare], There Is A “Cultural Marxism”

In other words, we are to believe that people who speak about “cultural Marxism” are bigots trying to turn the clock back to the 1930s and 1940s, when generic fascists and European nationalists were free to kill Jews and other marginalized groups.

What is under attack, we are told, is the attempt by truly democratic governments and enlightened political elites to accommodate diverse cultures and lifestyles. This humane effort is being smeared as “cultural Marxism”—particularly when those engaged in this activity present a properly critical view of the racist, homophobic bourgeois societies that existed before the present reforms.

Those on the other side of this question are equally engaged. But, unlike their opponents, they don’t enjoy the effusive support of public administrators, educators, and the media.

The critics of “cultural Marxism” are targeting what they see as the intellectual roots of the cultural pollution that has overwhelmed their civilization and onetime-intact communities. The roots of this force, these critics argue, go back to the Frankfurt Institute for Social Research, which was organized in interwar Germany, and to the influence its adherents exercised, especially in exile in the US after 1935.

Exponents of what the Frankfurt School called “critical theory”— like Herbert Marcuse, Theodor Adorno, and Erich Fromm—were considered by orthodox Marxists to be fake or ersatz Marxists.

[...]

Still and all, the Frankfurt School, and especially its second generation as represented by the fervent “anti-fascist” Jürgen Habermas, has been far more interested in social engineering than in government ownership of the means of production distribution and exchange—the classic definition of socialism. From The Authoritarian Personality, edited by Adorno and his collaborator Max Horkheimer and brought out in 1950 by the American Jewish Committee (then and now funders of Commentary), to the repeated attempts by Habermas and his fervent followers to make German education politically useful to the anti-national Left, the Frankfurt School has focused on “anti-fascist” attitudes and behavioral patterns. Whether this can be extracted from Communist practice, or from Marx’s materialist view of class and history, are open questions.

But whatever the case, Frankfurt School-intellectuals rallied to Lenin’s Russia and later sympathized variously with the Communist DDR , were close to, if not always members of, the German Communist Party, and traced their work back to Marxist concepts. In short, they were social reformers in a hurry who also claimed to be Marxists.

I would however note that we’ve allowed things to happen that go well beyond anything that the founding generation of the Frankfurt School might have wanted. To my knowledge the original members never called for gay marriage or for handing over Western countries to hostile non-Westerners. Nor did they exhibit the loathing for ethnic national identities that has become characteristic of the multicultural Left (and the Respectable Right).

In my memoirs Encounters: My Life with Nixon, Marcuse, and Other Friends and Teachers, I recall Herbert Marcuse’s perplexed reaction to ardent feminists in his class as they expounded their sexual liberationist views. He may have been a Stalinist but he was not a total maniac. Although chaos had to be unleashed to destroy a repressive capitalist society, Marcuse thought (at least before he went out to California and became dotty) that something would have to be put in the place of what had been subverted, and that something would require social order.

There was also a right wing of the Frankfurt School, with which I once identified myself. Those who stood within that tradition were anything but “cultural Marxists,” for example Max Horkheimer, one of the cofounders of the Frankfurt School, who later in life became a staunch anti-Communist and anti-egalitarian. Whereas the mainstream Frankfurt School critics fired away at repressive bourgeois institutions like the nuclear family, the mavericks on the right attacked Enlightenment rationalism and impersonal bureaucracies—what I have called “the managerial state.”

There were furthermore sources that could be located in the masters which served to justify this deviation from the beaten track. In Dialektik der Aufklärung (1943) [PDF] Horkheimer and Adorno call attention to the bridge leading from rationalist reforms and system-building to the modern total state. Adorno comes back to this theme in Minima Moralia (1974), a work in which he levels a critique against totalizing visions of the modern world.

[...]


Is it possible, however, to talk about “cultural Marxism” as a purely descriptive term? Does “cultural Marxism” describe in a neutral enough fashion the movement of ideas that came out of the Frankfurt School and which has gained a powerful hold on Western countries?

In my book, The Strange Death of Marxism, I argued that these ideas established themselves as leftist programs and progressive rhetoric throughout Western Europe, Canada, and the US before the fall of the Soviet empire. They evolved into a form of leftist radicalism that could coexist with consumer societies and mixed economies, because they focused on culture and society much more than they did the economy. Frankfurt School ideas have encouraged a war without quarter against bourgeois institutions and national identities—but that war does not necessarily require far-reaching change in the structure of the economy.

Thus the GOP complaint against Obama, that he’s really a “socialist,” misses a larger point. His administrative and judicial appointments strongly suggest this black leftist president has allied himself with social radicals who can fairly be described as “cultural Marxists”.

[...]

Ironically, the term “cultural Marxist” had served the same function of abuse much earlier. As I noted above, in the interwar period, the Communists went after the Frankfurt School mercilessly for their lifestyle radicalism and avant-garde fashions, denouncing them (not without reason) as bourgeois decadents. The Communists insisted that these “critical theorists”, whatever they were doing, were not teaching Marx’s scientific theory of socialism.

Little did either group of critics suspect how successful the object of their attacks would soon become in taking over Western societies, through educational, social and political institutions

[...]

It is hard for me to imagine that the founders of the Institute, when they began their enterprise in 1923, would have objected to being called “cultural Marxists”. They defined themselves as social-cultural critics and theorists who had been influenced by Marxism. Why would “cultural Marxist” be an inaccurate way of characterizing their identity or vocation—before that term acquired a pejorative sense?

Similarly, it seems to me that we entirely justified in describing leftist vigilante groups like the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC—$PLC to VDARE.com) as “cultural Marxist”. They may or not have views on government control of the economy, but they are unmistakably totalitarian in their drive to suppress and destroy deviationists from the party line on race, gender, “discrimination” etc.

Paul Gottfried is an American paleoconservative philosopher, historian, and columnist. He is a former Horace Raffensperger Professor of Humanities at Elizabethtown College in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania, as well as a Guggenheim recipient. He is currently H. L. Mencken Club President.

http://www.unz.com/pgottfried/yes-virgi ... l-marxism/
#14999982
Red_Army wrote:The thing is anyone can use dialectics. Marx himself took it from Hegel, but calling it Marxism makes it sound scarier and is easier to demonize I guess.



It is something of a misnomer but the term does refer to a real movement, it's not just a "conspiracy theory". And it is scary how a relatively small clique of intellectual elites can manipulate culture on such a grand scale, that is reminiscent of the cultural engineering undertaken in totalitarian societies.

What the wingnuts should be focusing on are the power structures that allow for this kind of thing to happen, that's the real problem here. But we all know the wingnuts are just lamenting their loss of control over those structures, they don't want to get rid of them, they just want to retake power.
#14999989
Sivad wrote:It is something of a misnomer but the term does refer to a real movement, it's not just a "conspiracy theory". And it is scary how a relatively small clique of intellectual elites can manipulate culture on such a grand scale, that is reminiscent of the cultural engineering undertaken in totalitarian societies.

What the wingnuts should be focusing on are the power structures that allow for this kind of thing to happen, that's the real problem here. But we all know the wingnuts are just lamenting their loss of control over those structures, they don't want to get rid of them, they just want to retake power.

It is a real movement but I wouldn't overestimate its power. Arguably everybody with an opinion and an agenda is a social engineer. It isn't really a new thing or exclusive to crazy totalitarians.

In perspective probably the most successful social engineers on the face of the planet were / are the Christians. Even today in this "godless age" a full quarter of the world, over 2 billion people, call themselves Christian. That is some epic pull which utterly dwarfs that of a handful of crazy marxoids. The christians have been doing it for 2000 years and I reckon they'll, like it or not, get another 2000 years. The marxoids are about done, I don't see them getting even another decade before they go the way of the dodo.
Last edited by SolarCross on 19 Apr 2019 12:12, edited 1 time in total.
#15000001
SolarCross wrote:It is a real movement but I wouldn't overestimate its power.


That would be hard to do considering that it has radically transformed Western society over the brief span of a few generations. The speed and scale of the revolution is unprecedented in human history. That's why all the older wingnuts are freaking out, the change really has been just that drastic. That's not to say that it's all bad, I'm happy with a lot of it, but the institutional power that has been displayed through the process is something that none of us should really be comfortable with.


Arguably everybody with an opinion and an agenda is a social engineer.


Not even remotely, this was done on an industrial scale and the techniques employed were highly sophisticated. Public relations and culture creation have been developed into a science that the average person can barely understand let alone conduct.

In perspective probably the most successful social engineers on the face of the planet were / are the Christians.


The Christians didn't upend the fundamental roles and values of society, they just overlaid their mythology while keeping the core roles and values intact.
#15000020
Herbert Marcuse was a German-American philosopher, sociologist, and political theorist, associated with the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory.

In the 1960s and the 1970s he became known as the preeminent theorist of the New Left and the student movements of West Germany, France, and the United States; some consider him the "father of the New Left".

Between 1943 and 1950, Marcuse worked in US government service for the Office of Strategic Services (predecessor of the Central Intelligence Agency) where he criticized the ideology of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in the book Soviet Marxism: A Critical Analysis (1958). After his studies, in the 1960s and the 1970s he became known as the preeminent theorist of the New Left and the student movements of West Germany, France, and the United States; some consider him the "father of the New Left".

During World War II, Marcuse first worked for the US Office of War Information (OWI) on anti-Nazi propaganda projects. In 1943, he transferred to the Research and Analysis Branch of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the precursor to the Central Intelligence Agency.

Directed by the Harvard historian William L. Langer, the Research and Analysis Branch was in fact the biggest American research institution in the first half of the twentieth century. At its zenith between 1943 and 1945, it comprised over twelve hundred employees, four hundred of whom were stationed abroad. In many respects, it was the site where post–World War II American social science was born, with protégés of some of the most esteemed American university professors, as well as a large contingent of European intellectual émigrés, in its ranks.

These men comprised the "theoretical brain trust" of the American war machine, which, according to its founder, William J. Donovan, would function as a "final clearinghouse" for the secret services—that is, as a structure that, although not engaged in determining war strategy or tactics, would be able to assemble, organize, analyze, and filter the immense flow of military information directed toward Washington, thanks to the unique capacity of the specialists on hand to interpret the relevant sources.[11]

In March 1943, Marcuse joined his fellow Frankfurt School scholar Franz Neumann in R & A's Central European Section as senior analyst and rapidly established himself as "the leading analyst on Germany.[12]

After the dissolution of the OSS in 1945, Marcuse was employed by the US Department of State as head of the Central European section, retiring after the death of his first wife in 1951.

In the post-war period, Marcuse rejected the theory of class struggle and the Marxist concern with labor, instead claiming, according to Leszek Kołakowski, that since "all questions of material existence have been solved, moral commands and prohibitions are no longer relevant." He regarded the realization of man's erotic nature as the true liberation of humanity, which inspired the utopias of Jerry Rubin and others.[15]

Marcuse's critiques of capitalist society (especially his 1955 synthesis of Marx and Sigmund Freud, Eros and Civilization, and his 1964 book One-Dimensional Man) resonated with the concerns of the student movement in the 1960s. Because of his willingness to speak at student protests and his essay Repressive Tolerance (1965),[9] Marcuse soon became known in the media as "Father of the New Left."[9][16] Contending that the students of the sixties were not waiting for the publication of his work to act,[16] Marcuse brushed the media's branding of him as "Father of the New Left" aside lightly,[16] saying "It would have been better to call me not the father, but the grandfather, of the New Left."[16] His work heavily influenced intellectual discourse on popular culture and scholarly popular culture studies. He had many speaking engagements in the US and Western Bloc in the late 1960s and 1970s.

Marcuse's 1965 essay "Repressive Tolerance", in which he claimed capitalist democracies can have totalitarian aspects, has been criticized by conservatives.[21] Marcuse argues that genuine tolerance does not permit support for "repression", since doing so ensures that marginalized voices will remain unheard. He characterizes tolerance of repressive speech as "inauthentic". Instead, he advocates a form of tolerance that is intolerant of repressive (namely right-wing) political movements:

Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left.

Surely, no government can be expected to foster its own subversion, but in a democracy such a right is vested in the people (i.e. in the majority of the people). This means that the ways should not be blocked on which a subversive majority could develop, and if they are blocked by organized repression and indoctrination, their reopening may require apparently undemocratic means. They would include the withdrawal of toleration of speech and assembly from groups and movements that promote aggressive policies, armament, chauvinism, discrimination on the grounds of race and religion, or that oppose the extension of public services, social security, medical care, etc.


Herbert Marcuse and the Frankfurt School (1977)

In this program with world-renowned author and professor Bryan Magee, the late philosopher and radical political theorist Herbert Marcuse explains how the so-called Frankfurt School reevaluated Marxism when world economic crisis failed to destroy capitalism as predicted by Marx. He also analyzes the philosophical roots of the student rebellions of the sixties.
#15000033
Sivad wrote:That would be hard to do considering that it has radically transformed Western society over the brief span of a few generations. The speed and scale of the revolution is unprecedented in human history. That's why all the older wingnuts are freaking out, the change really has been just that drastic. That's not to say that it's all bad, I'm happy with a lot of it, but the institutional power that has been displayed through the process is something that none of us should really be comfortable with.

There has been a lot of change but the marxbots were not the cause of hardly any of them. The marxoids are given credit for the sex lib, but that started happening on the back of more reliable contraceptions and the invention of penicilin. Marxists had nothing to do with that. They opportunistically ride on trends, they don't cause them. You are giving the flea the credit for being a mighty bear on the basis of a proboscis full of bear blood.

Sivad wrote:Not even remotely, this was done on an industrial scale and the techniques employed were highly sophisticated. Public relations and culture creation have been developed into a science that the average person can barely understand let alone conduct.

PR lol. :lol: That's their great power? :lol: That would explain how trivial they are if that is all they got.

Sivad wrote:The Christians didn't upend the fundamental roles and values of society, they just overlaid their mythology while keeping the core roles and values intact.

The core roles and values were upended, it is just that after 2000 years of pervasive Christianity those core values have seeped so deep we have them all internalised. The core values of pagans before Christianity was the worship of power and prowess. Pride and greed are virtues! Christianity rotted that all away and made them vices. For the northern pagans being a priest was a woman's job, too girly for men, but Christianity made it a man's job for which women were too dirty to perform.

You aren't aware just how much the slant of your own world view rests on 2000 years of Christianity. The whole of socialism is just an unthinking atavism of Christian values.
#15000106
@Red_Army, The term "Marxism" is a right wing social construct created by capitalists to make any stance of true progress look bad. The term "Marxism" also makes a supporter of Marx look like a worshiper of him, and no human should be worshiped. The term "Marxism" shows favouritism to Marx himself, which alone promotes a social hierarchy.

A true socialist does not call himself a "Marxist." A true socialist may or may not claim that they can use the education and the advanced knowledge of Marx as a tool closer to true liberation of the masses.

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