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The "nation" and the "country" are not quite the same, although nationalists have been doing their best to conflate the difference.

You can be a nationalist without being a patriot, and a patriot without being a nationalist. In point of fact, I would argue that the two are mutually exclusive: Nationalism is inherently a movement that seeks to fracture the state into numerous sub-groups, each of which aggressively defends its own privilege. Viewed in that light, it becomes hard to see how a good nationalist can also be a good patriot.

Of course, with that definition of patriotism, a jingoist cannot be a patriot either, because jingoism does not serve the interests of his country...

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu May 21st, 2009 at 04:49:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The "nation" and the "country" are not quite the same

Well duh: one is an officially recognised territorial unit, the other is a group of people that may or may not have an officially recognised territorial unit that "belongs to them".

You can be a nationalist without being a patriot, and a patriot without being a nationalist.

Yes on the first, but no on the second. Anyone who views him/herself as a patriot can be seen by someone else as a nationalist.

Nationalism is inherently a movement that seeks to fracture the state into numerous sub-groups

Nope. Even the separatist ones only until they do get their own country -- then that nationalism will turn on even smaller separatisms within its territory. See the history of the Balkans. At the other end, nationalisms may have imperial ambitions, either by conquest (Nazis, Chinese assimilation by settlement) or the theorising of wider senses of nation (Panslavism, Pan-Germanism, French nationalism, India).

Of course, with that definition of patriotism, a jingoist cannot be a patriot either, because jingoism does not serve the interests of his country...

So, you do sense that the patriot-nationalist distinction (which, BTW, is more common in Western Europe and the USA than further East) is a form of No True Scotsman...

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Thu May 21st, 2009 at 05:00:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
So, you do sense that the patriot-nationalist distinction (which, BTW, is more common in Western Europe and the USA than further East) is a form of No True Scotsman...

Partly. I was being a little bit facetious. But I do think that that there is merit in distinguishing between the two concepts, in the same way and to the same extent that I think there is merit in distinguishing between liberalism and conservatism: Most of the time they are functionally identical, but they have different underpinnings and some subtle differences in operation.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu May 21st, 2009 at 05:22:39 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Liberalism and conservatism are functionally identical only in the present age and a Western context.

As for the concepts of patriot and nationalist, I can readily see a difference in the specific case of a separatist movement not yet with a recognised state, and I see usefulness of recognising people wanting to separate positive and negative connotations of collective identities. In fact, that enhances the problem with the No True Scotsman nature. Even if you take the US version in its purest idea-based form, patriots believing in the ideals of Democracy, Freedom and the Rights of (Wo)Man can be made to bring destruction to people who never asked for them to come in far-away Asian countries...

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Thu May 21st, 2009 at 06:12:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Of course, one could argue that as long as the country and the nation are not one and the same, the borders are wrong and should be changed.

Thankfully we have the EU now, so one one needs to worry about borders anymore. If you're the grandchild of some Prussian aristocrat who lost everything in 1945 you can stop smouldering about Willy Brandt and the Oder-Neisse line and just move to Poland and buy back the ancestral manor from the current owners.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.

by Starvid on Sat May 23rd, 2009 at 07:37:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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