Monday, March 12, 2018

Apropos of Nothing...

but patriotism and nationalism are pretty much mutually exclusive categories.  Orwell has a lyric definition of patriotism that I like very much, a patriot is in Orwell's view is one who likes their particular way of life and has no wish to impose it upon others.
Nationalists so far as I can tell, are haters, they want to conquer, repress, expunge or avenge real and intangible wrongs...not only are they haters but much of their nationalism comes out of fear...status anxiety writ large in other words.
Keep in mind, very few patriots ever call themselves nationalists & their rhetoric really never reflects the twitchy nationalist agenda, but most nationalists inevitably identify themselves as patriots. Nonetheless as their subsequent rhetoric unspools, their gruesome intentions are exposed well & thoroughly, nationalists are in the end pseudo patriots in the words of Richard Hofstadter.
So using these categories, Winston Churchill was a Patriot, Adolf Hitler, a Nationalist.  As far as life in the USA is concerned, I actually expect patriots to have the last laugh on the current nationalist spasm in public life....but for now we need to keep the distinction clear in our minds.

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