If the generation since the fall of the USSR has been a tale of the unfitness of the USA for leadership, then Trump is pure continuity.
Every other re-othered, just like we like it.
(Excerpt of a comment at Crooked Timber, from that extended Schmitt discussion of a few months ago, dug up now for purposes of continued discussion with Faheem Hussain, because helpful on a point I frequently return to – in short:…
Tweets of 2014.07.16
As for Heidegger, Schmitt, their defenders, and all those suspected of actual or parallel “sympathies,” they will, of course, be denied the protection we extend to the last great and very German, very Jewish philosopher-theologians of the pre-Zionist or Diasporetic Age. The thought of identifying oneself with the Nazis and fellow travelers will be the thought of leaving normal life in liberal-democratic societies behind. We remain defined morally – to ourselves, concretely – by the justice of the physical and ideological destruction of the perverted culture-state that Heidegger and Schmitt literally stood up for in public, and that privately they supported more in spirit than post-war apologetic exercises led some to hope.
1. Intro by way of a response to Mr. Halasz at the Crooked Timber thread: @239: The Wikipedia entry on Kahn is a good capsule summary. I often wonder why, given that he’s a distinguished professor at Yale (not some…
“The Temporary Name” points1 to a few of a series of embedded presumptions in a comment by “Anarcissie,”2 and, naturally, responds on the basis of a few of his or her own, but, rather than try to establish some sort…
“…the odd paradox whereby Bakunin, the greatest anarchist of the nineteenth century, had to become in theory the theologian of the anti-theological and in practice the dictator of an anti-dictatorship.”
…why Schmitt arguably does qualify as Hegelian, and why his two main practical-political projects, synthesis of his theological conservatism with ideological liberalism, and then with Nazism, were, despite superficial dissimilarities, versions of the same “political theological” project, which had to fail, as a committed opportunism lacking opportunity: He was a statist-conservative in an epoch of the (self-)destruction of the nation-state, a believer in “concrete order” whose own position was built on quicksand. Or you could say simply that he identified as an individual with a society bent on collective suicide. For Heidegger, it was something similar. For Brooks and contemporary Americanists of his broad type, there are distinct parallels, but on a different order of orders.
The early modern political philosophers… did rather exhaustively examine these questions and the related ones on the nature of power or the origins of authority. They did provide answers. They knew we wouldn’t all like them or fully understand them. Indeed, to a very significant degree the early modern philosophers not only acknowledged, but rather depended on the latter – on general incapacities of understanding. They hoped and trusted that enough of us would accept and implement their proposals under well-considered modifications. If we are in fact still living with those answers, showing no sign of succesfully implementing alternative ones, then Hegel was right, as far as we can say, to claim that in his time humanity had reached the end of history in principle.