American communism was wholly un-American: all eight of the Communist Party dailies published in 1921 were in foreign languages. Writes Flynn: “Such American originals as J. A. Wayland, Big Bill Haywood, and Eugene Debs passed the baton to conformists directed in thought and deed by overlords halfway round the planet.”...and defends the Beats and the New Left, who for the most part were trying to get past communism and re-connect with the more rootsy and chaotic American anarcho-socialist tendency.
The noncommunist American Left pushed back. The freeswinging and disorderly Wobblies and farmer-labor parties, with their “the star-spangled anarchism,” in Flynn’s felicitous phrase, were a poor fit for European regimentation.
2) From an allegedly leading light of cultural conservatism (Roger Kimball, editor of The New Criterion), a rather disgustingly preening post about how he doesn't care about people in Burma. It occurs to me that all two of my readers might share his attitude. I feel compelled to write something in response to this although I can't quite get my thoughts in order. First, at some level, you care about what you care about, and you can't be coerced or convinced to care otherwise. But that's very superficial, since in fact the process of moral maturation is in large part learning to be less egoistic, and to care about other people. Does that mean you have to care equally about everybody? Obviously not (some moral philosophers seem to think otherwise; but they're cracked). So, what are one's obligations to total strangers on the other side of the world? I won't pretend to know, but I know that there's something mildly revolting about such principled devotion to uncaring.