April 30, 2002

CHRIS BERTRAM suggests that it’s kind of hard to be an anti-globalization, anti-bourgeois Marxist. If, that is, you’ve actually read Marx.

The problem isn’t that the far right is adopting leftist themes, but that the left, still as hostile to capitalism as ever but lacking a clearly articulated modernist alternative of its own since the failure of the Soviet experience and the Hayekian critique of central planning, has been drawn into adopting traditionally reactionary and conservative positions and a celebration of the very “idiocy of rural life” that Marx condemned. That doesn’t mean that we should be passive in the face of environmental destruction, but it does mean that we should think harder about how to combine a modern urban and diverse civilisation with greater social justice.

Yeah. But “thinking harder” isn’t a hallmark of the antiglobalization movement, is it?