Clashing protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia — far right, far left, and others. Street violence and declarations of emergency by the governing officials. How did we get to this?
First, how postmodernism evolved through three phases from high theory to coercive activism:
Second, other anti-liberal and anti-rational movements learn and adopt the same strategies to their own ends: “Will the Alt-Right Make the Left embrace the Enlightenment?”
That’s the intellectual form the dynamic takes. But that works with embodied psychology of the individuals who make up the movements.
So third: neo-Nazi, white supremacist, alt-right, and related movements are populated with envious losers who seek cheap self-esteem by embracing a group identity.
Then, fourth, they meet the many left-identity factions that are equally resentful and seeking validation through their group memberships:
At the same time, genuine liberals who care about individual rights, civility, and the peaceful prosecution of disagreements become the marginalized minority.
And now both alt-right and pomo-left are angry and energized — and at the same time committed to anti-rational and anti-individual principles. Their taking it to the streets becomes inevitable.
“Understanding Postmodernism: The 3 Stages to Today´s Insanity” is excerpted from an interview Michael Mark Lewis did with me in 2016.
“Nietzsche Perfectly Forecasts the Postmodernist Left” is excerpted from a 1998 lecture at The Atlas Society conference in Boulder, Colorado.