A leftist on the Charlie Hebdo massacre: Are the worst really full of passionate intensity?

A photo from the web that someone selected to illustrate The Last Man. Source.

Now, when we are all in a state of shock after the killing spree in the Charlie Hebdo offices, it is the right moment to gather the courage to think…

Such thinking has nothing whatsoever to do with the cheap relativisation of the crime (the mantra of “who are we in the West, perpetrators of terrible massacres in the Third World, to condemn such acts”).

It has even less to do with the pathological fear of many Western liberal Leftists to be guilty of Islamophobia. For these false Leftists, any critique of Islam is denounced as an expression of Western Islamophobia; Salman Rushdie was denounced for unnecessarily provoking Muslims and thus (partially, at least) responsible for the fatwa condemning him to death, etc…

…What is much more needed than the demonisation of the terrorists into heroic suicidal fanatics is a debunking of this demonic myth. Long ago Friedrich Nietzsche perceived how Western civilisation was moving in the direction of the Last Man, an apathetic creature with no great passion or commitment. Unable to dream, tired of life, he takes no risks, seeking only comfort and security, an expression of tolerance with one another: “A little poison now and then: that makes for pleasant dreams. And much poison at the end, for a pleasant death. They have their little pleasures for the day, and their little pleasures for the night, but they have a regard for health. ‘We have discovered happiness,’ – say the Last Men, and they blink.”

It effectively may appear that the split between the permissive First World and the fundamentalist reaction to it runs more and more along the lines of the opposition between leading a long satisfying life full of material and cultural wealth, and dedicating one’s life to some transcendent Cause…

The “Last Man” sounds rather familiar, (even if I do not agree with the author’s leftist stance.)  I have not read Nietzsche (my life took me to other places).   The Last Man does indeed appear to be accurate and the complete opposite of the fanatic Islamic jihadist.  

The article was worth reading for me.

  • eMan14

    Plausible. If we are indeed heading in that direction, it’s with the encouragement of our progressive left. From our school boards, our city counselors, our various governments, to each and every law, code, and treaty we tie ourselves up with.
    They don’t want greatness. They want sameness.
    They don’t want winners. They want equal participation.
    They don’t want struggle. They want comfort.

    “When I was a child
    I caught a fleeting glimpse
    Out of the corner of my eye
    I turned to look but it was gone
    I cannot put my finger on it now
    The child is grown
    The dream is gone
    I have become comfortably numb.” Pink Floyd

    • Frau Katze

      Good observations. Our govts really have been encouraging it.

    • Santos2

      Aside from quoting the lyrics co-written by a blatant anti-Semite, I agree.

      • eMan14

        Yes… I did realize that. But the lyrics did seem appropriate.

  • A citizen of the post-modern West has a full life in that he tends not to be starving or riddled with curable diseases. He has a government that is not mad and more privileges than rights. He is confronted with citizens who have had none of those things and still wish to impose that life on others. As he has no traditional or personal values, he is struck dumb as to what to do. He will either ignore or go along with X regime or trend without thinking of the consequences.

    We’ve seen empires fall after these personal changes.