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Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

The Red Century

It’s the sad destiny of all progressive movements that gangs of wily opportunists easily master the progressive lingo of the day and begin to destroy the movement from within under the guise of fighting for purity among the ranks. 

The first to fall are always the most earnest believers because they genuinely care for the cause and can be easily convinced that they are the source of all sorts of harm. First, they engage in public acts of renunciation and self-shaming. But that’s never enough, so they always get destroyed or expelled. 

The last left standing are the coldest, most cynical bastards who believe in nothing but their own advancement. They terrorize the less cynical members of the movement into compliance, and gradually the movement becomes its own exact opposite. Champions of the working class turn into rich exploitative bastards. The defenders of the indigenous burn indigenous villages. Feminists cheer the subjection of women. 

Progressive movements are almost never defeated by outside enemies. They are destroyed from within because of their peculiar nature of dependence on words. 

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8 thoughts on “The Red Century

  1. Pingback: The Mind of True Believers | The Worked Shoot

  2. “they genuinely care for the cause and can be easily convinced that they are the source of all sorts of harm”

    Yes. The more earnestly they believe the easier they are to manipulate…

    https://cliffarroyo.wordpress.com/2017/08/27/the-mind-of-true-believers/

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  3. Alex the Physicist on said:

    Just a few days ago the most cynically self-serving guy in my department sent out an unprompted email (with administrators copied) encouraging everyone to examine their unconscious biases. The earnest will be pushed into submission and anyone who lacks self-control and objects will be punished for heresy.

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  4. Very true, though in our case those who still believe in the cause are pretty critical of those who hijacked it.

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  5. Also progressive movements tend to reach cringe-inducing levels of proscribed speech (other political movements have the same problem but not to the same degree AFAICT).

    Reading the comments to the comments to the article about too many girls with cooties in schools makes me want to shower with chlorox.

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    • There’s now going to be a competition as to who’s worse, “white men” or “white women.”

      The counterpart to these evildoers is, of course, the saintly category of “women of color” modeled on the equally hilarious concept of “la resufrida mujer mexicana” (a long-suffering Mexican woman, which is an ancient sexist srereotype). What’s curious, is that there are no “men or color” as an equally popular category. “Women of color” probably procreate through parthenogenesis.

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      • Alex the Physicist on said:

        My male friends of color want no part of this drama. They are willing to let white men, white women, and women of color fight this out amongst themselves.

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