caitlin johnstone is so much always correct it’s almost irritating, but not quite

Why Liberals Hate Leftists
Caitlin Johnstone, Sep 27 2020

Liberals hate leftists. Hate them, hate them, hate them. They don’t often admit it of course. Admitting you hate those to your left at least as much as you hate those to your right would cause a lot of cognitive dissonance for those who think of themselves as being on the left, and it would weaken their arguments considerably. But they do. Liberals hate leftists, for a number of reasons. Liberals hate leftists because there is a night-and-day difference between a capitalist, imperialist establishment and an ideology which wants to tear down that establishment and replace it with peace and socialism. There’s more of a difference between true leftists and establishment liberals than there is between the far right and establishment liberals. Liberals hate leftists because the psychological discomfort known as cognitive dissonance actually hurts, so those who provoke it can often be perceived as the cause of that pain. Liberals hate leftists because they’ve spent their whole lives building and reinforcing a worldview which validates war, oligarchy and exploitation while thinking of themselves as defenders of equality and sanity, so when someone comes in promoting an ideology which highlights the discrepancy between those two points the cognitive dissonance which sets in makes them feel like the leftist just slapped them in the face. Liberals hate leftists because while both purport to support the working class and disempowered groups, only one of them actually does so. Liberals hate leftists for the same reason someone telling a bogus self-aggrandizing story at a party would hate somebody who caught them in one of their lies in front of everyone. Liberals hate leftists because leftists are a constant reminder that liberals are not the thing they pretend to be. Liberals hate leftists for the same reason you’d hate someone who keeps yelling out “This is all fake! Those are actors!” at a theater: they disrupt a pleasant illusion the liberals are trying to enjoy about villains being fought by heroic protagonists. Liberals hate leftists for the same reason a wife who is informed that her husband is cheating on her will often turn her anger upon the person who told her: they made it hard to hold onto the delusion that their setup is working out fine. Liberals hate leftists because a worldview that is based on lies will always necessarily be opposed to a worldview that is based on truth. Liberals hate leftists because your worldview feels like a part of who you are, so people who expose the hypocrisy, ineffectiveness, illegitimacy and untruthfulness of your worldview will often be perceived as if they are attacking you personally. Liberals hate leftists because they are surrounded by screens telling them all day every day that their ideology is the only correct position, so people who come in pointing out the flaws in their ideology will be perceived not as individuals with whom they disagree, but as liars. Liberals hate leftists because they’ve been trained by the mass media over the last few years to view any disagreement with the imperialist beltway consensus on foreign policy as Russian and therefore sinister. Liberals hate leftists because change is scary, and status quo bias is a thing. Liberals hate leftists because if the leftists are right, then everyone who taught them everything they know in life is wrong. Liberals hate leftists because it’s easier than tearing down your entire world-view and rebuilding it piece by piece from the perspective that everything you’ve been told about the world and the way it works is a lie. Liberals hate leftists because, despite whatever stories they might believe about themselves, liberals are opposed to everything leftists stand for in every meaningful way. The more real leftists are with themselves about this, the more effective they will be.

3 Comments

  1. lobro
    Posted September 29, 2020 at 1:39 am | Permalink

    indeed, just about all true. Just about (see below).
    need i ask just who are these mysterious liberals, what self-organizing principle binds them into such a coherent group and what if any dividing line separates them from slightly less mysterious imperialists.
    hint of confusion:

    Liberals hate leftists because they’ve been trained by the mass media

    so where does the mass media land when the cookie crumbles, to presume to train the liberals—are they not liberals themselves?

    Caitlin is great but zeno’s paradox seems to bar her from definitively arriving at the truth, halving the remaining distance forever, never quite getting there.

  2. niqnaq
    Posted September 29, 2020 at 3:06 am | Permalink

    Yeah, I see what you mean: she doesn’t want to say that the liberals are programmed directly by the BANKERS, who are using quantitative analysis to determine maximum profits; usuallly this means maximum turnover via maximum commercial activity, of all sorts, indiscriminately.

  3. Paul
    Posted September 30, 2020 at 2:52 am | Permalink

    Maybe she makes practical choices in order to preserve her public platforms, knowing the message still gets out in other ways.

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