Coulter's new book describes 'The mob mongering left'

Richard Butrick

rbutrick@columbus.rr.com 

6/11/11

 

Coulter links the left to Robespierre and mob mongering.

 

From M&M to RR&M

 

The ideological axis of leftist ideas and ideals is generally taken to be the M&M team of Marx and Mao. What is  intriguing about Coulter's new book Demonic is precisely that it takes the French Revolution as the seed bed of leftist nirvana mongers.

Like any historical hypothesis it is a question of how well the general category of core events and memetic themes cluster to the hypothesis. It seems to drill right through the seminal leftist works of The Frankfurt School all the way to the pious Marxism of the Dali Lama. To use an overworked concept, Coulter's work constitutes of a paradigm shift from M&M to R&R - Rousseau and Robespierre. Intriguingly, this is themed in with the psychology of mob behavior. This RR&M hypothesis works very well, as it tests out against the Kuhnian analysis of scientific paradigm shifts and his linking of science and the humanities.

Crucial to her foundational shift is her account of the French Revolution. This is not the "glorious" French Revolution account generally given in high school and even college texts. This is the French Revolution  of the blood-lust of the French street mobs seeking revenge and egged on by Robespierre. In a breathtaking Orwellian twist Robespierre launched his rhetoric as head of the Committee of Public Safety:

If virtue be the spring of a popular government in times of peace, the spring of that government during a revolution is virtue combined with terror: virtue, without which terror is destructive; terror, without which virtue is impotent. Terror is only justice prompt, severe and inflexible; it is then an emanation of virtue; it is less a distinct principle than a natural consequence of the general principle of democracy, applied to the most pressing wants of the country. ... The government in a revolution is the despotism of liberty against tyranny.

Terror = virtue? The result? Mass executions, political purges, priests imprisoned or executed. It is the Maoist, Leninist, Pol Pot urge to eliminate opposing ideas by eliminating those who hold them - the ultimate leftist deconstruction.

It is hard not to get a "that's it" moment when Coulter links core leftist power to rhetoric that creates and inspires  a mob mentality. From Makay's account of the madness of crowds to Gustave LeBon's ground breaking study of crowds to Freud's study of group psychology, Coulter's current account of the mob menatality is compellingly adroit. Her account:

an irrational, childlike, often violent organism that derives its energy from the group. Intoxicated by messianic goals, the promise of instant gratification, and adrenaline-pumping exhortations, mobs create mayhem, chaos, and destruction, leaving a smoldering heap of wreckage for their leaders to climb to power.

It links. It coalesces. It breaches the façade of intellectual pretension. It even explains the work of community organizers "the Democratic Party is the party of the mob . . . Indeed, the very idea of a 'community organizer' is to stir up a mob for some political purpose." It even presages the mob mongering going on now in Wisconsin.

The Party of the Mob. The mob mongering left. That nails it.

 

 

Richard Butrick

rbutrick@columbus.rr.com 

6/11/11

 

Coulter links the left to Robespierre and mob mongering.

 

From M&M to RR&M

 

The ideological axis of leftist ideas and ideals is generally taken to be the M&M team of Marx and Mao. What is  intriguing about Coulter's new book Demonic is precisely that it takes the French Revolution as the seed bed of leftist nirvana mongers.

Like any historical hypothesis it is a question of how well the general category of core events and memetic themes cluster to the hypothesis. It seems to drill right through the seminal leftist works of The Frankfurt School all the way to the pious Marxism of the Dali Lama. To use an overworked concept, Coulter's work constitutes of a paradigm shift from M&M to R&R - Rousseau and Robespierre. Intriguingly, this is themed in with the psychology of mob behavior. This RR&M hypothesis works very well, as it tests out against the Kuhnian analysis of scientific paradigm shifts and his linking of science and the humanities.

Crucial to her foundational shift is her account of the French Revolution. This is not the "glorious" French Revolution account generally given in high school and even college texts. This is the French Revolution  of the blood-lust of the French street mobs seeking revenge and egged on by Robespierre. In a breathtaking Orwellian twist Robespierre launched his rhetoric as head of the Committee of Public Safety:

If virtue be the spring of a popular government in times of peace, the spring of that government during a revolution is virtue combined with terror: virtue, without which terror is destructive; terror, without which virtue is impotent. Terror is only justice prompt, severe and inflexible; it is then an emanation of virtue; it is less a distinct principle than a natural consequence of the general principle of democracy, applied to the most pressing wants of the country. ... The government in a revolution is the despotism of liberty against tyranny.

Terror = virtue? The result? Mass executions, political purges, priests imprisoned or executed. It is the Maoist, Leninist, Pol Pot urge to eliminate opposing ideas by eliminating those who hold them - the ultimate leftist deconstruction.

It is hard not to get a "that's it" moment when Coulter links core leftist power to rhetoric that creates and inspires  a mob mentality. From Makay's account of the madness of crowds to Gustave LeBon's ground breaking study of crowds to Freud's study of group psychology, Coulter's current account of the mob menatality is compellingly adroit. Her account:

an irrational, childlike, often violent organism that derives its energy from the group. Intoxicated by messianic goals, the promise of instant gratification, and adrenaline-pumping exhortations, mobs create mayhem, chaos, and destruction, leaving a smoldering heap of wreckage for their leaders to climb to power.

It links. It coalesces. It breaches the façade of intellectual pretension. It even explains the work of community organizers "the Democratic Party is the party of the mob . . . Indeed, the very idea of a 'community organizer' is to stir up a mob for some political purpose." It even presages the mob mongering going on now in Wisconsin.

The Party of the Mob. The mob mongering left. That nails it.

 

 

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