What is the Left?
It is getting harder and harder to ignore the disconnect between the people who associate “Left” with social democracy (people like Jimmy Dore or Secular Talk or Ben Burgis) or with liberalism (people like Thomas Frank) and woke progressivism (people like Sadie Farrell).
These conflicting visions of what “Left” means are naturally in extreme tension. The anarchist agenda of “no platforming” tramples all over the principles of free speech, tolerance, non-violence and civil liberties valued by liberals. The anarchist agenda of violently overthrowing the state is a massive albatross for the left populists and social democrats who are engaged in electoral politics.
You could say that all of these people are right. They are all on the “Left” in their own incompatible way. Wokeness is a school of leftwing thought which is focused on the transformation of consciousness, NOT on improving the material standard of living of the working class, which can be traced back to its ideological roots in modernism, postmodernism, critical theory and anarchism. These people are obsessed with racial, cultural and gender politics and dismantling “structures” of “oppression.”
We can laugh about Lockheed Martin having its top executives check their white privilege. The real question though is why has the political establishment embraced this version of the “Left” over other versions. Are you really a revolutionary when Citibank and Lockheed Martin are on your side? Maybe they are elevating this cultural virus because it is in their own interest to do so?