Thursday, July 10, 2008

Ethnic observations
Writes Matt K. of Undegaussable answering Arturo:
Don’t curse us for clinging to what little scraps of traditional culture we have remaining. We don’t want to just be “American” because there’s really no identity in that, save for hyper-consumption and possibly belligerent hypocrisy. When white people brag about being half-Irish (I myself am 3/8ths, I’ll have you know!) or whatever, it’s not to be looked down upon, it’s a sign of longing for how things used to (and ought to) be!
Many palæoconservatives (at Chronicles for example) would disagree that there’s no such thing as an American culture, pointing out with healthy cultural and, yes, ethnic pride that it’s a variant of English culture (a mix of Puritanism and the mild English version of the ‘Enlightenment’, the Burkean continuation of the European great tradition not its destruction like in 1700s France), obviously different from England thanks to about 400 years of separate development an ocean away including lots of non-English immigration. (Pond differences in the language are fun, as any Brit who’s complimented an American as homely or an American woman who’s asked a British hairdresser for bangs knows, but what’s really amazing is after centuries the two families of English are still mutually intelligible.) Fellow non-Protestant Joe Sobran appreciates its Protestantism, really the best aspects of the mix I just named. That said liberal pols like Barack Obama have a point that the country is largely an abstraction, a set of principles, not a racial/ethnic group, something open to all (Sobran agrees). Ron Paul would say that. The liberals including the neocons and I disagree on what those principles are: peaceful republic or world crusader?

Talking about this stuff to Huw (who agrees with me that belief in a fallible church — that is, unlimited power to change things — is the centrepiece of Protestantism).

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