New York Times Op-Ed: Nationalism Is Vital for a Good Society

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NEIL MUNRO

Liberals will be unable to win their stated claimed goal of civic equality unless they accept nationalism, says a pro-nationalist opinion article in the New York Times.

Left-wing author John Judis writes:

As long as corporations are free to roam the globe in search of lower wages and taxes, and as long as the United States opens its borders to millions of unskilled immigrants, liberals will not be able to create bountiful, equitable societies, where people are free from basic anxieties about obtaining health care, education and housing.

He continues, “To achieve their historic objectives, liberals and social democrats will have to respond constructively to, rather than dismiss, the nationalist reaction to globalization.”

The op-ed is a sharp break from the New York Times’ usual articles about the populist movement, most of which are pro-globalist pieces written by in-house columnists.

Judis is an old-style tax-and-spend liberal who calls for a rough measure of civic equality within a largely free-market economy. His focus on money and equality has left him isolated as the Democrat Party began in the 2000s to champion the alternative ideology of divide-and-rule diversity, which self-serving post-graduate progressives and globalist investors favored.

Judis makes sure to distance himself from President Donald Trump by posting a progressive caricature of Trump’s policies:

In Mr. Trump’s version of nationalism, Muslims and Mexican-Americans are stigmatized, and African-American football players who protest racial injustice by kneeling during the national anthem are denounced. Some of his applications of “America first” — repudiating the Paris climate agreement or abandoning the Iran nuclear deal — may not even prove to be in the national interest.

But Judis’s obligatory caricature of Trump likely helps liberals listen to his anti-progressive argument for nation-minded politics:

The perception of a common national identity is essential to democracies and to the modern welfare state, which depends on the willingness of citizens to pay taxes to aid fellow citizens whom they may never have set eyes upon.

Today’s nationalist revival is in reaction to the failure of global, not nation-based, initiatives that sailed over the heads of ordinary citizens. The reaction has been most potent on the political right, but there is certainly a basis for a liberal or social-democratic nationalism. If anything, the decline of liberal and social-democratic parties is a result at least in part of their inability to distinguish what is legitimate and justifiable in nationalism from what is small-minded, bigoted and contrary to the national interest it claims to uphold.

[Progressives]  denounce Mr. Trump’s tariffs without proposing any plausible means of counterbalancing the huge surpluses from China and Germany. They dismiss as a lost cause the attempt to revive the towns of the Midwest and South by reviving manufacturing. They rightly insist that the United States find a way to integrate and assimilate the country’s 12 million or more unauthorized immigrants, but they ignore the continuing flood of people without papers crossing the border or overstaying their visas and they dismiss attempts to change national priorities toward skilled immigrants.

Read it all here.

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