Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Convergence

In "Insiders and Outsiders" Alan Jacobs notes a convergence of attitude by "the real Left" and "tradtionalists" like him concerning the growing power of "the surveillance state."
.... We suspect the vast and ever-increasing powers of the militaristic surveillance state for very similar reasons: we see its infinite voraciousness, its lust either to consume or erase differences, and its willingness to persecute and prosecute anyone who won’t get on board.

This convergence is not new: consider, for instance, the astonishing overlap between the views expressed by the socialist George Orwell in 1984 and those expressed by the Christian conservative C.S. Lewis in That Hideous Strength, right down to the brilliant parodies in both of foully obfuscatory bureaucratic language. Both writers see the rhetorical subtlety by which the pink police state entrenches itself before ultimately revealing its true character. (Orwell didn’t seem to know quite what to make of Lewis’s novel when he reviewed it — he strongly disliked its supernaturalism — but it ended up having a significant influence on the development of 1984. Lewis for his part didn’t especially care for 1984 but thought Animal Farm was “a work of genius.”) .... [more]
I am less concerned and will always reconsider my views if they seem to be converging with "the real Left," a political tendency that doesn't have a very good history of respect for privacy or freedom. But I do like the Orwell/Lewis comparison.

Insiders and Outsiders | The American Conservative
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