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Tag Archives: Western Civilization

“Thinkin’ Rots the Mind!” by Butler Shaffer

The money sentence, from the first paragraph: “Civilizations are created by individuals; they are destroyed by collectives.” From Butler Shaffer at lewrockwell.com:

This rare and brief exercise of their free choice, however
important it may be, will not prevent them from gradually
losing the faculties of thinking, feeling and acting for
themselves, and thus gradually falling below the level of
humanity.

– Alexis de Tocqueville

It is not a coincidence that the collapse of Western Civilization is being accompanied by a rampant mindlessness and reptilian reaction to events so contrary to the means by which this culture was created. Civilizations are created by individuals; they are destroyed by collectives. Creative acts do not simply happen, but require energized minds capable of focusing on subject matters often over extended periods of time. The beautiful ancient cathedrals found in Europe – as with the continuing construction of Antoni Gaudi’s Basilica i Temple de la Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, begun in 1882 – are examples of creative undertakings whose completions extend far beyond the lives of both the designers and the workers who participated in bringing them into existence. For creative minds, time preferences matter: the pursuit of a truth may extend not only over one’s life-time, but beyond. Such is the state of mind of those scientists who accept, as part of the learning process, that a theory might, after lengthy research, be disproven.

Whether Western Civilization can be considered extinct, in a terminal state, or simply on a downhill course, is subject to differing interpretations. Suffice it to say that our culture is beset by rigor mortis, including its organizational systems; its creative vibrancy is gone; it no longer produces the values necessary for its survival; nor does it continue to meet the expectations of those who have embraced its qualities or purposes in benefitting human beings. Clarity in thought or vision that drives men and women to discover or create ways in which human well-being can be advanced, is being sacrificed to political or ideological ends. The Animal Farm mantra “four legs good, two legs bad,” has been transformed into divisive slogans such as “black lives matter,” and an insistence upon a multitude of subdivided gender identities.

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Must the West Beg the World for Forgiveness? by Patrick Buchanan

Nobody anywhere should be begging for forgiveness for things that happened befort he or she was born. That the title question is even seriously asked bespeaks how far from logic much of the mainstream has strayed. From Patrick Buchanan at buchanan.org:

As the Democratic Party quarrels over reparations for slavery, a new and related issue has arisen, raised by the president of Mexico.

Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has written Pope Francis I and King Felipe VI to demand their apologies for the Spanish conquest of Mexico that began 500 years ago with the “invasion” of Hernando Cortez.

Arriving on the Gulf Coast in 1519, Cortes marched in two years to what is today’s Mexico City to impose Spanish rule, the Spanish language and culture, and the Catholic faith upon the indigenous peoples.

“One culture, one civilization was imposed upon another,” wrote President Lopez Obrador: “There were massacres and oppression. The so-called conquest was waged with the sword and the cross. They built their churches on top of the temples.”

He demanded that the king and the pope ask for “forgiveness for the abuses inflicted on the indigenous peoples of Mexico.”

Now no one denies that great sins and crimes were committed in that conquest. But are not the Mexican people, 130 million of them, far better off because the Spanish came and overthrew the Aztec Empire?

Did not 300 years of Spanish rule and replacement of Mexico’s pagan cults with the Catholic faith lead to enormous advances for its civilization and human rights?

Or is there never a justification for one nation to invade another, conquer its people, impose its rule, and uproot and replace its culture and civilization? Is “cultural genocide” always a crime against humanity, even if the uprooted culture countenanced human sacrifice?

Did the Aztecs have a right to be left alone by the European world?

If so, whence came that right?

Which leads to another question: Are all civilizations and cultures equal, or are some more equal than others? Are some superior?

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NATO’s Real Existential Threat: The Surrender of Western Values, by William S. Smith

NATO is supposed to defend Western civilization, but Western civilization, especially in Europe, is surrendering that which made it Western civilization. From Willim S. Smith at theamericanconservative.com:

On January 17, Petr Pavel, a Czech army general and NATO’s military committee chairman, led meetings with his counterparts from Ukraine and Georgia, which he tweeted were “Sessions dedicated to Projecting Stability.” Yet while NATO’s collaboration with nations historically intertwined with Russia could lead to a number of possible outcomes, “stability” seems the least likely one. Like so much of what the alliance does, the purpose of these meetings is to push the alliance ever eastward.

That raises a question. Why should Americans participate in an alliance in which a general—from a minuscule military power that spends 1 percent of its GDP on defense—hosts a meeting that is more likely to provoke a catastrophic U.S.-Russia war than to prevent one? As Ted Galen Carpenter recently explained here at TAC, this is the dangerous calculus that results from interlocking the United States with so many NATO nations, including some that Moscow regards as within its sphere of influence.  

Let me offer another reason to be skeptical about the long-term future of U.S. participation in the Western alliance: the West is dying. The historical and cultural legacy that animated Western civilization is atrophying. This is particularly the case in Western Europe, where elites see nothing particularly valuable in their cultural heritage, which will increasingly make them unreliable partners to the United States. How can a Western alliance be maintained when less and less remains of common, distinctly Western values and ideas?

At the end of the Cold War, the late Harvard historian Samuel Huntington pointed out that the world was reorganizing itself along civilizational lines and that cultural commonalities were replacing Cold War alliances. Western European nations signed the Maastricht treaty, Russia rebuilt its Orthodox cathedrals, Islam experienced a historic reawakening, and China rediscovered Confucius. Huntington therefore recommended that NATO serve as “the security organization of Western civilization.”

To continue reading: NATO’s Real Existential Threat: The Surrender of Western Values

He Said That? 7/7/17

From Patrick Buchanan (born 1938), American politician, author, syndicated columnist, and broadcaster, The Death of the West (2002):

The West is dying. Its nations have ceased to reproduce, and their populations have stopped growing and begun to shrink. Not since the Black Death carried off a third of Europe in the fourteenth century has there been a graver threat to the survival of Western civilization.

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