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The Gods That Will Fail [?]
This question is an empirical one: Does tribalism feed a deep human hunger that liberalism does not? Liberals, I think, give up too easily on this point. Defenders of the old liberal order are tired and jaded, it's true--who can observe the iniquities and false promises of modernity without a loss of faith? But the contention that Enlightenment liberalism's mojo has natural limits, and that illiberalism's mojo is inexhaustible, seems to me at best debatable [...]

[...] "American [intellectuals] think they are atheists," this grim man said, "but they are not atheists. In Romania -- there you found men who believed in nothing."

Compared with these nihilists, American liberals look vapidly chipper. When they peer into the existential abyss, they assure themselves that it has a bottom, just out of sight, and when they toss a penny into it they think their wishes will be granted. The real nihilism is daily in evidence by the Trump administration, which will tell not only noble lies -- the alleged sin of the George W. Bush administration -- but indefensibly ignoble ones, and which swaggers past all moral lines, both in policy and in electoral politics.

by das monde on Sun Dec 16th, 2018 at 11:03:08 AM EST

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