Political Societies as Coalitions Of Subcultures

Political societies are coalitions of diverse subcultures or movements. And so I’ve been trying to remember all the cultural movements that I’ve seen arise over the past 70 years, and which were overlaid on top of the pre-existing culture, which was itself a coalition of different subcultures.

The antismoking/healthist cultural movement was perhaps the oldest, because it began to gather momentum in the 1950s, although it had roots in Nazi Germany, and far earlier. As a movement it was almost non-existent in the 1950s, but became steadily more powerful with almost every single subsequent decade. And since it is the principal concern of this blog, I’ll say little more about it, enough having been said already.

The next cultural movement also emerged in the late 1950s, and was the pop music culture. This culture rather exploded onto the world with the likes of Elvis Presley and a constellation of other musicians playing electric music. It was at its height in the 1960s, but has arguably been in slow decline ever since.

The third cultural movement, which emerged in the 1960s, was the drug culture, that began with marijuana, but rapidly expanded to include any number of other drugs, both legal and illegal. It seems to be still expanding, with new drugs added every decade, if not every year.

The fourth cultural movement was the US antiwar movement, which arose in response to the Vietnam war into which many young Americans were being conscripted. The 1960s drug culture may have been a consequence of US soldiers coming into contact with drugs like marijuana and opium in Vietnam. The antiwar movement now seems to be almost non-existent.

A fifth cultural movement in the late 1960s, perhaps also a consequence of US soldiers in Vietnam coming into contact with other cultures and religions, was the rise of what might roughly be called Eastern mysticism, whose various cults usually featured some Indian guru.

A sixth cultural movement was the women’s movement that began to gain traction in the early 1970s. This was almost contemporaneous with the seventh, LGBT movement, which started up around the same time, and now seems to be adding new sexual minority categories (e.g. transgender) every decade or so.

The eighth cultural movement was the environmental movement, which metamorphosed into the Green movement, and mutated further into global warming/climate change alarmism. This has become a very powerful movement, perhaps because it’s been the only one that’s science-based, and has entire industries based upon it.

The ninth cultural movement, which actually started life in the 1950s, but only became significant in UK culture in the 1970s, was the European movement, firstly with the European Economic Community, and then the European Union. This has perhaps been the most powerful cultural movement of all.

A tenth cultural movement might be Cultural Marxism, although this one tends to ride parasitically on the backs of other cultural movements (e.g. environmentalsim and the EU) and co-opt them for its own purposes. Marxism seems to have an endless ability to re-invent itself.

Perhaps Islamism might be termed another cultural movement, although it’s an import from the Middle East.

When these various subcultural movements emerged, they began to form loose coalitions. Political Correctness is perhaps simply a coalition of values, reflecting an underlying coalition of subcultures. It has no internal logic: it’s simply a consensus opinion. And in forming coalitions, the various cultural movements gradually ceased to be separate subcultures, and merged into a single pop, environmental, antismoking, LGBT, left wing, European superculture. In the UK, the adoption by the Conservative party’s David Cameron of the entirety of the environmental agenda in 2005 marked the triumph of environmentalist movement. The later acceptance of gay marriage by David Cameron marked the ratification and triumph of LGBT subculture. And the UK smoking ban of 2007 of course marked the triumph of the antismoking movement.

But when this loose coalition of subcultural movements gained cultural ascendancy, it also became fascistic. Fascism may simply be something that emerges when some subculture gains ascendancy. Up until the point when they became ascendant, the subcultures were usually simply trying to defend themselves. But once they gained the cultural ascendancy, they started imposing their values on everybody else, usually by force of law. So, for example, in 2009 the EU parliament voted for a European smoking ban, complete with show trials for prominent dissidents. It was a way of saying, “We’re in charge now! Do as we tell you to do!”

It was at this point that the entire coalition, gradually pieced together over many decades, began to disintegrate. It’s rather hard to see how a political union can survive when it makes large numbers of its own people into second class citizens, arrogantly imposing its values upon them in all kinds of ways.

In the USA, the Democratic political movement – Clinton, Obama, etc – has been exactly the sort of “rainbow” coalition of separate movements just described. But wherever it has gained ascendancy in the USA, it has regularly behaved tyrannically. And whenever it has done so, it has begun alienating former supporters. And these have been slowly drifting away, and voting for somebody else. In the UK that’s been evidenced in the shock Brexit vote, as Britons rejected the EU. And in the USA it’s been expressed by the shock election of Donald Trump, as Americans rejected Hillary Clinton.

The loose coalition of cultural movements had gained the ascendancy, only to lose it a few short years later, when people began to recognise – and reject – the fascistic characteristics it had increasingly begun to openly display.

The collective hissy fit of the largely leftwing US mainstream media at the presidency of Donald Trump grows from a refusal to recognise that they have lost their ascendancy. They thought that history was going in one direction, and that they were riding its wave. But the wave has now broken, and is retreating back down the beach. And the danger is that, having scored a great many victories, the left is about to lose everything it has won.

Not all the cultural movements I’ve listed have been fascistic in nature. Music is not inherently fascistic. Nor are drugs. Nor is sex. Nor is quietistic Eastern mysticism. Environmentalism – the wish to preserve the natural environment – might not be inherently fascistic, but modern environmentalism with its tyrannical windmills has somehow managed to become fascistic. But Islam and Cultural Marxism and the EU superstate were arguably always inherently fascistic and bullying in character. And antismoking healthism also. And when ordinary people recognise it, they reject it. They revolt against it.  And if all the cultural movements I’ve listed have grown out of a revolt against one thing or other, the next set of social movements will also grow out of similar revolts.

About Frank Davis

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15 Responses to Political Societies as Coalitions Of Subcultures

  1. Radical Rodent says:

    For the green movement, the term “science-based” based is more a question of virtue labelling rather than reality. Explore many of the “scientific” claims made, and you are more likely to find that it is pure hokum as not.

    • Joe L. says:

      Absolutely. Environmentalism, as with the Antismoking movement and Healthism in general, the foundation is pseudoscience, not actual science. However, I believe Frank’s point is that these movements have gained the most traction because they give the appearance of being based upon science.

  2. Really good post here Frank. I do like it. Thought provoking. I’m re-blogging on my blog ‘Life on an Alien Planet’ wordpress.com if that’s OK?

  3. Reblogged this on Life on an alien planet and commented:
    From Frank Davis – thought provoking.

  4. waltc says:

    Brilliant, Frank. But right now, they’re fighting for their lives and they’re fighting dirty and with everything they’ve got, and what they’ve got (like almost all the media and almost all of Youth) is considerable. How it ends is unpredictable.

  5. Dmitri says:

    Great. I really mean it. Take my hat off, or will do it in winter, when I wear one.

  6. Rose says:

    Weirdness from UCSF.

    Cigarette makers shifted stance on nicotine patches, gum, study shows
    August 17, 2017

    “Now, a new study conducted by scientists at UC San Francisco reports that tobacco companies have known for decades that, without counseling, NRT hardly ever works, and that consumers often use it to complement smoking. This insight from the formerly secret industry documents known as the “Tobacco Papers” reveals why companies that once viewed nicotine patches and gum as a threat to their cigarette sales now embrace them as a business opportunity, the researchers said.

    “It was surprising to discover the industry came to view NRT as just another product,” said UCSF’s Dorie Apollonio, PhD, associate professor in clinical pharmacy and lead author of the study. “The tobacco companies want people to get nicotine — and they’re open-minded about how they get it.

    The new analysis comes on the heels of the FDA’s July 28, 2017 decision to lower nicotine levels in conventional cigarettes while delaying regulation on e-cigarettes as part of a “comprehensive nicotine strategy.”

    “The industry has long taken a broad view of all nicotine products as a way to support smoking,” said senior author Stanton Glantz, PhD, a UCSF professor of medicine and director of the UCSF Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education. “Our study shows that by not regulating nicotine in all tobacco products, including NRT, the FDA could be walking into a trap.”

    • Joe L. says:

      Yes, this is quite strange, Rose. I assumed NRT was intentionally left out of the FDA’s proposed nicotine level regulations in hopes of driving more profits away from the tobacco companies and toward the pharmaceutical companies.

      However, this makes it sound like Glantz is more interested in prohibition than kickbacks, and he feels people will continue to smoke low-nicotine cigarettes for the pleasure of the habit and simply supplement the nicotine with NRT products. Therefore, he’s scared that unless nicotine levels in NRT are also regulated, there will be no significant decrease in smoking rates. I can’t imagine the pharmaceutical companies are very happy with Glantz after this.

      I hope I’m correct and this is the beginning of an internal conflict between the “for-profit” Antismokers and the ideological “pro-prohibition” Antismokers which causes a deep rift that destroys the whole bullshit movement!

      • Rose says:

        I was wondering if he was trying to make out that NRT products are more effective than they are by linking them with Big Tobacco.

        Sugar is a new venture.

        November 2016
        Sugar Industry and Coronary Heart Disease Research
        A Historical Analysis of Internal Industry Documents
        Stanton A. Glantz

        “Together with other recent analyses of sugar industry documents, our findings suggest the industry sponsored a research program in the 1960s and 1970s that successfully cast doubt about the hazards of sucrose while promoting fat as the dietary culprit in CHD.”

        • Joe L. says:

          I was wondering if he was trying to make out that NRT products are more effective than they are by linking them with Big Tobacco.

          I think he’s actually admitting that NRT is ineffective, while unsurprisingly trying to put the blame on the “evil” tobacco companies.

  7. Joe L. says:

    OT: A Missouri state senator, Maria Chappelle-Nadal called for the assassination of President Trump on her Facebook page today. She posted, “I hope Trump is assassinated!”

    Even after being called on to resign by a number of her fellow Democrats, she has refused, issuing this statement (emphasis mine):

    “There is no way in hell that I’m resigning,” she said. “There are legislators who have cheated on their wives, they have smoked in the Legislature, in the state Capitol. If they have not been asked to resign for those acts, which I do believe that cheating on your wife or your spouse is immoral, I am not resigning for a mistake that I made and that I’m owning up to.”

    That’s right, she admits that calling for the assassination of the POTUS was immoral … and then compares it to cheating on one’s wife or smoking in the state Capitol building.

    I don’t know if I’m more disturbed and outraged that Progressives now view smoking as an “immoral act” on par with infidelity and calls for murder, or the further proof that the workplace smoking bans that we laymen have been forced to obey for years still don’t apply to those who govern us (to my knowledge, Missouri has never enacted a statewide comprehensive smoking ban, but I believe they’ve had a workplace ban in effect since the ’90s–I believe the state Capitol is considered a ‘workplace’).

    Missouri State Senator Urged To Resign Over Her ‘Hope’ For Trump’s Assassination

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