In Hbl of Sö 13.08. Ann-Cathrin Jungar quoted people pointing to the possibility that the present wave of högerextremism might be a late consequence of the student (and other) revolt of 1968.
Before I concentrate on the topic of the headline I should like to point to two pieces of information which will later play some small role in this text: (a) as I already mentioned in one earlier piece, one will from the web find under yournewswire.com, rubrik ”Conspiracies”, the claim that a former CIA agent by the name of Malcolm Howard had confessed on his deathbed that he had been in a small team which prepared, by orders of the CIA, World Trade Center Building 7 for the demolition which then happenend on the afternoon of 9/11 (this piece dated 17 July 2017); (b) under https://blogfactory.co.uk/2017/07/31/russia-presents – … one will find the claim that Russia has decided to go public with its own version of a 9/11 report, which is then followed by a lengthy text in which it is claimed that, among others, at least in the collapse of the towers small nuclear charges were involved (the whole matter organized by the USA, Great Britain and Israel). The faithful reader of the mainstream media will be tempted to dismiss all this as ”just conspiracy theories”, but I should in fact prefer that this series of claims were taken as a reason to organize a new commission (consisting of independent, international, experts !!!) which could investigate the matter once more and come up with a CONVINCING report on the events of 9/11. Below more of this.
To the matter of the headline: the reason why I write this piece is a page-long text by Ann-Cathrin Jungar in Hbl of Sö 13.08., which was titled ”Kärlekssommarens oönskade barn?” and in which she was quoting (without expressing any own doubts) a string of people who are pointing to the possibility that the present wave of högerextremism might be a late consequence of the student (and other) revolt of 1968. To which I can only say ”sorry, I can’t quite believe that”. But of course I should give reasons: And my first reason is that in the former East Germany, where the revolt of 1968 hardly took place at all, is nowadays that German area where the Extreme Right is strongest. Further, already 1968, and ever since, many media (especially the very widely spread Springer Press) were consistently cultivating högerpopulism among their readers; in Britain you have similar actors in the Daily Mail, the SUN, etc.. Should we say that the yellow press has quite generally the tendency to cultivate conflicts while flattering their readers (who are assumed to be easily manipulated, which may be true) and offering scapegoats or other ”good enemies”, though never directing the anger of the readers against the ownwers of the media. And in the USA we had in additon Hollywood (the two most fascist fims which I have EVER seen were both by and with John Wayne – and of course shown all over the world to large audiences); we have the churches preaching uncritical belief in authority and in a belief that there is ”Good” and ”Evil” in the world and that Evil should not be analyzed and understood (for easier abolution), but fought (and Oh how good it feels to be victorious over Evil); we have the carefully cultivated pride in an ever-larger military; we have the advertisement of the National Rifle Association; we have a school system where teachers are easily fired while parents’ councils are demanding that the parents’ prejudices are carefully transmitted to the children (and if science says something different, so the worse for science); and also the lower levels of the jurisdiction are (as the actors were democratically elected) supposed to support and impose the prejudice of their electorate. Altogether: in the USA a system which systematically cultivates prejudice, denounces own thinking (such is ”elitist”), and takes it as the approved way of dealing with differences of opinion that one of the two sides is fired or even imprisoned; in Europe at least a yellow press which is cultivating US American ways, a moneyed class which owns a large part of the media and is, at least since Reagan and Thatcher, also eagerly promoting American ways (such as ”tax relief” and free trade). In addition, NOwhere a school system which would teach anybody to be critical in general. and psychologically at least so well informed that a demagogue would have to fear being recognized as one; electronic social media which allow anybody to spend the time playing and/or cultivating such prejudices which feel best to her/him (and conveniently keep people from reading – books contain after all somebody ELSE’s thoughts, which might stimulate the reader to make own ones); and a generation of politicians for whom memories of any war (and its consequences) are something like ancient history.
On top of all this there are the ”respectable” media who consider themselves as the ”watchdogs of democracy” and consider it as their job to provide the population with such information which might enable people to make good political decisions (e.g. when voting) – this at least in theory. And in Germany there was as a consequence of World War II a whole generation of founders of newspapers who took this job serious. Well, they have died, the editors who came after them are very much more ”mainstream”, and aside of these founding fathers there were already from the beginning others who considered a newspaper just as a source of profit (or as a tool to spread their own authoritarian ideas). And then came 9/11. – ANYbody who had payed attention during her/his physics lessons at school would have had VERY good reasons to become suspicious, and in fact there appeared quite a number of books in which such suspicions were expressed, but practically ALL of the media, ”respectable” ones as well as all the others, were obediently following the official line, declaring ”conspiracy theories” as some type of symptom of mental disease (as if we had not at any given moment a few dozens of conspiracies going on – just think of the Mafia). For the US government it must have been a huge encouragement to work with further lies in the future (as it did when preparing the invasion of Iraq). And lo and behold, also other governments all over the world are learning that lies are a very good instrument of politics. Now we have Trump, who is said to be ”lying like a horse is trotting”, we have Erdogan (who was recently forbidding evolution theory to be taught at school), we have Putin … . And once lying is accepted as a method, why not turning to demagogy? It is after all an old method (the whole term comes from Ancient Greece – where demagogy led, among others, to the defeat of Athens …).
Thus, our politicians have, by the obedience of the media, learned that lies and demagogy are accepted means of getting to power. And against the ideas which the demagogues are cultivating in their audiences even the ”respectable” media are offering little more than ”political correctness”, i.e. the demand that one should simply not say certain things. Sure, there are things which are, in public, only said openly by irresponsible people. But political correctness has meanwhile grown into something like a ”dictatorship of flattery” – suffocating any analytical thought or discussion, also being a wonderful tool by which to protect criminal governments. And people do in fact notice that. There is a German saying that ”half a truth is a whole lie”, and the attempts by politically correct people (especially politicians) to avoid saying certain things result then in mistrust (or even contempt) of politicians (which also will lead to some peole being proud if they say loud and clear things which are definitely NOT politically correct – which will be one component of Trump’s appeal to his voters). – It may be that politicians will think it too time-taking or too stressing to explain in clear terms why they should avoid mentioning certain facts. But if they want to be believed by the electorate they should take this trouble at least occasionally. And aside of this, it might have become clear why we have nowadays a wave of högerextremism, and also that this has nothing whatsoever to do with 1968.