In deference to board members who find these posts difficult to read, here is the Cliff Notes version: the Left in America is the step child of Neo-Marxism by way of the Frankfurt School. Its campaign is based on the idea that socialism/communism is the natural and correct goal of society, and it is to be accomplished by the destruction of Judeo-Christian values and morality, and instituting a central government which decides what, if any, rights an individual will have. Many have signed on to this view because they are unaware of the larger design. 1. The French Revolution, mutated quickly into several cults of death and mayhem. No matter the particular movement, there were two key conditions in all: I. it was based on a submission to a central authority, the total state, and II. it was based on the idea of the collective, not the individual. a. However, there were also elements of Enlightenment thought that led to the radicalism of the French Revolution, and later inspired Marxism and ideas about materialism, historical determinism and utopianism. There was in some observers a tendency to view religion in exclusively negative terms, and to put all emphasis on ideas about human perfection. Gates of Vienna: Multiculturalism and the Enlightenment 2. The Constitution memorialized the view of the Founders that: human nature is variable, and beyond perfection here on earth; if a government has too much power the people that make up that government will use it in the worst possible ways; and individual freedom, when used within the boundaries of morality, is the highest good. a. Opposing views are found in those of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Georges Sorel, and Karl Marx. Rousseau saw people as being naturally good, and any corruption was due to society itself. (Rousseau, btw, had five out-or-wedlock children, abandoning them to orphanages.) So, according to Rousseau, evil society was developed to protect rights such as private property and this in contravention to the natural communism that prevailed before the advent of civilization. 3. Karl Marx was in favor of destroying society in order to change any innate nature man possessed. Georg Friedrich Hegel provided the dialectic theory that backed up Marxs utopianism. Hegel believed that the highest state of mankind can only be attained through constant ideological conflict and resolution, usually described as the stages of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis. Marx wedded this idea to materialism, For Marx, it was economic relationships to the methods of production, rather than the power of the idea. a. Engels pointed out that Hegels thought was critical for providing an evolutionary perspective that reconciled conflict in a transforming dialectic. opencopy.org » 06. The Return to Reality - Marx, Engels and Dialectical Materialism b. Capitalism produces poverty(thesis), and would be confronted by the poverty of workers (antithesis) which would be solved by the eventual dominance of socialism/communism (synthesis). This is the class struggle. 4. Progressivism was the American version of Hegelian dialectic with Marxism and a Rousseauian vision of humanity, and the general will. Sort of Marxism sans class struggle. But- in America, the ideology faced an overwhelming problem that didnt exist in Germany or Britain: they didnt have a written Constitution that protects individual liberty. a. Well known is TR's outburst, when told the Constitution did not permit the confiscation of private property: "To hell with the Constitution when the people want coal!" Less well known is that at one point TR summoned General John M. Schofield, instructing him: "I bid you pay no heed to any other authority, no heed to a writ from a judge, or anything else except my commands." 33 Questions About American History You're Not Supposed to Ask. By Thomas E. Woods, Jr. (p. 139) see also The Mises Review: 33 Questions About American History You're Not Supposed to Ask by Thomas E. Woods, Jr. b. Wilson: "Since the Constitution could not officially be "stripped off and thrown aside," Wilson endorsed the emerging, Darwinian-inspired theory of a "living Constitution." For Wilson, this did not mean creatively applying original principles to situations the Framers had not imagined: It meant negating those principles whenever they stood in the way of the march of History, as manifested in the latest promising idea." From Hegel to Wilson to Breyer | The Weekly Standard 5. Antonio Gramsci believed that it was necessary first to delegitimize the dominant belief systems of the predominant groups and to create a "counter-hegemony" (i.e., a new system of values for the subordinate groups) before the marginalized could be empowered: [destroying] civil society itself, the schools, churches, media, he argued, is the great battleground in the struggle. John Fonte -- Why There Is A Culture War: Gramsci and Tocqueville in America a. Gramschis motto is that of liberals today: that all life is "political." 6. For Gramsci, there are no eternal morals, values, truths, standards or human nature, and given the right stimulation, the New Soviet man or New Soviet person (Russian: новый советский человек could be produced. Gramsci said it this way: Man is above all else, consciousness That is, he is a product of history, not nature. There is no other way of explaining why socialism has not come into existence already. Christopher Lasch, Heaven in a Heartless World, p. 86. 7. Following Gramsci, Gyorgy Lukacs promoted the idea that while Marxs Dialectic Materialism may not have been predictive, it hinted at the real necessity: destroying the status quo would bring Marxism. This could be done through breaking down traditional Judeo-Christian morality and discrediting and undermining the established institutions from within. a. The new emphasis would be on liberating all men and women from the evil repression and tyrannical values of Judeo-Christian civilization. To bring this about, they designed numerous strategies to discredit and smear the values that had forged and sustained the West for 2,000 years. Political Correctness Exposed | Amos 3:7 8. In 1923 Georg Lukacs helped establish a Marxist research center at the University of Frankfurt under the sponsorship of Felix Weil, who funded the Institute for Social Research, best known as the institutional home of the Frankfurt School and criticaltheory. http://www.lust-for-life.org/Lust-F...turalMarxismAndPoliticalCorrectness-part2.pdf a. The Critical Theorists held a common commitment to Neo-Marxism and the belief that Western civilization has been an imperialistic and repressive force in human history especially, Western Christianity. In their view, Western civilization was built on aggression, oppression, racism, slavery, classism and sexual repression. b. Thus, there is a straight line from the Frankfurt School to the formation in many colleges and universities of programs, and departments of African-American Studies, Ethnic Studies, Feminist Studies, Peace Studies, and LGBT (Lesbian/Gay/Bi-sexual/Transgender) Studies.