America Comes Apart

National Review: What the West Is Becoming
To understand what the West is becoming, travel to Turkey, Egypt, or Pakistan. These are countries that, while never admitted to the club, were always of enormous strategic importance for Western powers, whose constant involvement created a culture of suspicion and resentment. What has been taking place in the U.S. since the 2016 elections would look strikingly familiar to Turks or Egyptians. Some episode or other of foreign involvement in the democratic process is reported. That is bad enough as far as it goes, but it gets worse. Once the fatal virus of suspicion enters the political bloodstream, it will never leave. Foreign involvement as such becomes a political strategy. The different sides in the political contest will strive to win not by developing better policies but by turning their opponents into traitors and quislings.

If you think the problem is Trump, think again. The forbidden fruit has been bitten. How could we go back? Why would Republicans refrain from lobbing the same accusations of foreign meddling against Democrats in the future? And why would foreign powers not attempt the same tactics again, now that they have seen how easy it is to sow chaos and discord? Trump did not bring this situation with him. He is in fact the product of a new world where voters in the U.S. feel increasingly vulnerable to influences from the outside — influences which can no longer be managed or controlled as they were in the past.

One could speculate endlessly about the root causes of the new situation, but the truth is notably straightforward. Technology — once the preserve of the West — is now universal. In both cases discussed above, the Muslim and Chinese worlds were faced with a new kind of civilization, carrying all the secrets of modern science, which at first must have looked like supernatural powers. The encounter between European and Asian empires in the mod­ern age had a very specific meaning to those involved: the superiority of European technology. Some Asian thinkers or polemicists went so far as to make the intriguing claim that the encounter was not between Asians and Europeans, but rather between Asians and European machines.
In addition to giving away its technological advantage, the West also destroyed its own civilization with mass immigration and multiculturalism. Foreigners don't only bring their bodies, but their ideas. When there is a small number, they are assimilated. When there is a large number, there is reverse assimilation. Foreign ideas take hold more easily (that's not to say foreign ideas can't take hold on their own).

The Western establishment is also unwilling to defend Western institutions and traditions. It's gone in the opposite direction. As the NYTimes most recent hire shows us, the way to rise in the Western establishment is to be the most vociferously hateful of Western people and their institutions.

The problem isn't that both sides in the USA will start calling each other traitors and quislings, it's that America has come apart. The NYTimes is a traitor to traditional America and Donald Trump is a traitor to the NYTimes because they come from two different nations. Two different countries. Forced together into political union.

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