Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Fading memories

There is a first rate article over on The American Thinker from J.R. Dunn.

In the article, Dunn considers the way the left has collectively erased or altered historical events which are somehow inconvenient to the ideology.

The process of selective amnesia is an important and often overlooked aspect of the left-wing mentality. It's a direct inheritance from the communists, for whom the capacity to self-edit was often a matter of life and death. In Stalin's Soviet Union, honored heroes of the Revolution could suddenly turn into traitors to the Worker's Paradise and just as suddenly into nonentities on a day-to-day, if not an hour-to-hour basis. Among survivors, the capacity to manipulate memory was honed to a fine instinct.

Indeed. One of the most blatant lapses of memory the left seem to have is one of my favourites - the Soviet Union's role in WW2.

Possibly the greatest act of selective mass amnesia -- certainly the fastest -- occurred in the summer of 1941. For two years following the August 1939 gangster pact between Hitler and Stalin, international communist parties protested the war against Nazism. The American left worked itself into a frenzy in support of Hitler and his occupation of Europe. A particular target was U.S. materiel aid to Great Britain, at the time standing alone against the Nazi monolith. The campaign's centerpiece was to have been "Peace Week", scheduled for the last week of June 1941. Unfortunately, Hitler chose June 22nd to send three army groups armed with over 4,000 Panzers against the Soviet Union.

Much is made of the "heroic" sacrifice made by the Soviet Union but, although not wishing to demean the immense personal and individual sacrifices made by the people of that nation, I personally believe that the role of the Soviet Union is often overstated in modern historical accounts of the conflict. Far worse, in my opinion, is that the Soviet Union's role in starting the whole dreadful business is understated as, without the non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union, it is questionable whether the Nazis would have attacked Poland in the first place.

The Soviet Union didn't win WW2 but they sure helped start it.

Where I disagree with Dunn, though is in his analysis of how media is changing to prevent the collective memory loss of the left.

At one point, the left controlled virtually the entire national media sphere. This is no longer the case. If the new media is about anything, it is about discovering, highlighting, and promulgating the things that we're not supposed to know, the stories we're not supposed to think about, the events that are supposed to be forgotten ...... the right has been using the new technology, both the Net and talk radio, to confront the left with facts they'd rather not acknowledge for some time now.

That may or may not be true in the USA, but here in Britain - and I'd argue that it's the same for the rest of Europe - that is far from the case. Here the left still dominate the media including talk radio. There is a groundswell of right wing influence on the net, but it remains modest in comparison to that in the USA and minuscule when compared to the huge influence exerted by left-wing institutions such as the BBC and the print media.

Another article on the same site by James Lewis kind of reiterates that point.

Those deliberate, cynical, arrogant lies are typical of Europe's tenured Ruling Class -- socialists to a man and woman, amazingly arrogant, and completely helpless in the face of real danger. Europe's rulers have rejected tough choices, so when Slobodan Milosevic was committing daily genocide and mass rape in the Balkans, our moral superiors in Europe called on Bill Clinton to bomb the Serbs, and Good Ole' Bill obliged his friends. Europe didn't want to get its hands all dirty.

Here, in Europe, the left can still hide those events they'd rather forget and that is primarily due to the left wing nature of the vast majority of the media. And I don't see that changing any time soon.

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