The War on the West: How to Prevail in the Age of Unreason

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The War on the West: How to Prevail in the Age of Unreason

The War on the West: How to Prevail in the Age of Unreason

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Once again, Murray has started by positing some plausible assertions without actually citing sources—of course, my experience may not be representative, but I think it would be fair to say that many Brits don’t learn about these subjects at an advanced enough level to have truly grappled with them.

The eagle-eyed Deverell was quick to point out that many of these plants had been known about by Indigenous communities for years before Western botanists and explorers came across them. It is a life that is lived off-kilter: one in which, incapable of realizing what you have to be thankful for, you are left with nothing but your resentments and can be contented by nothing but revenge.

Some of that information may be faulty, but much of it seriously undermines the veracity of the old narratives.

In an interlude on China, Murray goes over the rise of the CCP in international economic affairs and as a serious contender to American hegemony. Eliot had done for Murray, he said, something similar to what he had done for the late English philosopher Roger Scruton, who wrote in his memoirs that the poet had “saved him from Oswald Spengler. All history, after a point, is propagandistic—Julian Barnes is very compelling on the subject: on the essential feeling that historical narratives are, to an extent, deceitful and have an element of fiction woven into them; and that the objective truth is gone and can never be regained, perhaps even never existed, not in a form humans can articulate at least. It’s far too lucrative to tell the reactionaries what they want to hear, and so Murray, who is clearly an intelligent man, panders to this audience rather than delving more deeply into the subject in the hopes of dredging up any real insight. It makes some okay points about the achievements of western society, but some of it gets just plain old pig-headed.

Murray applies the same argument to reparations: in the case of slavery, people who might be related to people who perpetrated terrible crimes might be offering money to people who might have suffered from those crimes. To say "all Chinese people think this" or "all black people behave like that" had been thought to be rude as well as ignorant. That racism is interwoven so deeply into white-majority societies that the white people in those societies do not even realize that they live in racist societies.

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