Star Wars has always been a leftie fantasy

Star Wars has always been a leftie fantasy, by Arthur Chrenkoff. The latest Star Wars movie is more nakedly political. But even the first ones were political too … which surprises many people.

CNN reports (spoilers alert): … ““The Last Jedi” seemingly dispenses with heredity as a primary concern. … most of those one-percenters earned their money from war profiteering — selling weapons to the First Order and Rebels alike — while subjugating and exploiting those around them. The pair’s escape also weaves in an animal-rights theme, as the two rebels liberate a creature used for a kind of horseracing entertainment. The beast eventually wanders off free, regaining its natural state.”

And all that’s even before analysing the “triumphant feminism” of “The Last Jedi” …

But “Star Wars” as a left-wing critique of the American society is hardly restricted to the latest instalment of the saga, as once again CNN recalls:

In 2005, many took dialogue in “Revenge of the Sith” as a not-so-subtle indictment of the Bush administration, starting with Princess Amidala’s observation as the Emperor expands his wartime powers. “So this is how liberty dies,” she says, “With thunderous applause.” Later, when the turned-to-darkness Anakin Skywalker confronts Obi-Wan Kenobi he warns, “If you’re not with me, then you’re my enemy,” to which his former master replies, “Only a Sith deals in absolutes.” To many, the exchange vaguely echoed then-President George W. Bush’s pronouncements about terrorism.

Spoiler alert: liberty somehow survived the Bush Jr presidency, and the democracy did not die either to a thunderous applause or in darkness. …

This, perhaps, is a good time to recall that right from the outset, “Star Wars” was conceived as a still fashionable in the 1970s New Left critique of the United States and its foreign and military policies. …

George Lucas conceived the whole story as a science-fiction metaphor for his own times – the (small letter “e”) evil Empire is his own United States, and the heroes, the good guys that we, the viewers, are meant to root for, are the communist guerrillas.

The New Left “revisionist” historians of the 1960s and thereafter, of course, loved to refer to the United States throughout all its history, up to and including the present, as “the Empire”. Thus, according to the left-wing metanarrative, the American Empire was a quasi-fascistic, semi-dictatorial, highly aggressive and militaristic polity in the grip of “the military-industrial complex” and “the power elites”, suppressing dissent and subjugating minorities at home, while continuously invading poor Third World countries to crush their national aspirations in the interests of the American corporations and the American war machine. This is the Galactic Empire too, whether it’s in the 33rd century or a long time ago in a galaxy far far away.

Just so you can’t possibly miss the point about how evil the United States is, the Galactic Empire’s trappings are meant to bring to your mind Nazi Germany, with its crisp uniforms and military parades – George Lucas channelling Leni Riefenstahl as a social commentary on his own country. No wonder it makes you root for the courageous Rebels and the brave Ewoks, whose low-tech (and ultimately victorious) battle with the Imperial forces on Endor, comes as close to a restaging of a Vietnam jungle battle as possible in a science-fiction epic. …

For the far (and often not so far) left, the United States is always the enemy, the monster, the bad guy, and so whoever confronts it and fights it – the enemy of my enemy – is the hero to be cheered on, whether Uncle Fidel’s Cubans, the Viet-Cong, the Sandinistas, or even the Arab insurgents. The United States, too, is perpetually on the brink of a fascist dictatorship, whether under Richard Nixon, or Ronald Reagan, George W Bush, or Donald Trump (in fact, pretty much every Republican president). The country in which the left live, work, and politic, is the source of all the evil in the world and not an example to be emulated by others. …

Like “Star Wars” itself, the left-wing ideological franchise is too emotionally lucrative to let go.

Reader Stephen writes:

I can’t watch the Australian national broadcaster (though I help pay for it), I almost never go to theatre any more as the subject matter is invariably unsubtle left-wing proselytisation (anything ‘edgy’ ‘brave’ or ‘political’ can only be left-wing).

All the movies are left-wing agit-prop – for open borders, same-sex romance (though they invariably deceitfully disguise that fact in the movie’s blurb) or some other lefty cause-du-jour. The newspapers are crap; tv is crap.

Pod-people espousing left-wing pap are everywhere. Even decent, common-sense, nominally right-of-centre folk, who don’t know that they are pod people, are espousing left-wing pap. The Borg is triumphant. It is so dispiriting.