Snob of the Week
And the Second Nominee Is ...
Monday, 7 April 2003
Christopher Pearson's piece "Left misconstrues its right" is this week's second contender for Snob of the Week because of the deep vein of intellectual snobbery running through the article from beginning to end.
Pearson starts of with a quick resume of how those insidious reds came out from under the beds in the seventies and eighties and re-invented the Marxist agenda as a "Broad Left" agenda for social reform within progressive movements such as feminism, gay liberation, green "fundamentalism" and "the Australian version of Black Power". Thanks to the naivete of other members of these movements, the Marxist agenda became standard left-wing dogma:
To varying degrees they [the commies] were also able to colonise the the social movements and embed in them what might, for convenience sake, be called "a broad Left agenda".
It is most insidious when absorbed uncritically, almost unconsciously, in a form of cultural osmosis.
Pearson then segues, using an idiocy-by-association argument involving the appearance of "Madam Saddam and her Weapons of Mass Seduction" at Sydney's Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, into a sustained attack on Senator Bob Brown for his continued opposition to the war on Iraq. Pearson argues that Brown and other gays should be supporting war on Saddam Hussein because, as well as everything else that is nasty about the Ba'athist regime, it isn't exactly friendly to homosexuals, or sodomites as they are known in that part of the world. He finishes:
By March 31 he [Bob Brown] had stooped to the most shameful of rhetorical tricks, insinuating an element of moral equivalence between Hussein and those trying to disarm and dispatch him. "The terrorism of war is not unilateral," he said.
The depressing thing is that Brown and much of his constituency are too morally obtuse to understand why that proposition is so deeply offensive.
These two paragraphs carry an implicit claim that Pearson has the moral acuity that Brown and his supporters lack (blinded as they are by the "Broad Left" agenda they have unwittingly absorbed through too long an association with those perfidious Marxists who have really been running the "progressive" social agenda all these years). Pearson's snobbery is a little more insidious than the more overt variety shown in Alison Crosweller's bravura entry, but I find his article is still worthy of consideration for this week's award.