Highbrows Vs. Deplorables

Highbrows Vs. Deplorables, by Bruce Bawer.

The degree to which [Bernard-Henri Lévy, the French intellectual] manages to turn everything upside down here is impressive. The actual false prophets are the EU’s unelected leaders and their collaborators, lackeys, and running dogs, such as Lévy and his pals. They’re the ones who are, to borrow Lévy’s metaphor, drunk – specifically, drunk on unearned power that they’ve seized from the once free citizens of Europe’s nation states.

As for Britain and the U.S. — yes, they did save Europe from suicide twice in the twentieth century. Today, in keeping with that history, the Brexiteers in Britain and the Trump administration in the U.S. recognize the EU as, like Nazi Germany and the USSR, a misbegotten imperial project — an ideologically rooted effort, conceived and driven by an arrogant and self-regarding elite, that has steadily encroached on individual liberties, steadily weakened economies, and steadily evolved into something that looks increasingly like a suicide pact.

If twentieth-century Europe was almost destroyed by various totalitarianisms, twenty-first-century Europe now risks destruction either at the hands of Islamic totalitarianism, to which the EU honchos have kowtowed for two generations, or at the hands of the burgeoning totalitarianism of the EU itself. Or both. “Europe as an idea,” Lévy tells us, “is falling apart before our eyes.” Good. The key lesson of the twentieth century — which the multitudes are waking up to even if the “intellectuals” aren’t — is that Europe’s Achilles heel isn’t populism but a susceptibility to control-happy “ideas” for the organization of societies. …

As for xenophobia, very few native Europeans are infected with a blanket hostility toward foreigners; what’s happened is that more and more of them are opposing the introduction into their societies of primitive values and practices that could scarcely be more antithetical to their own.