Patriotism, pure and simple v. tortured

I have two wonderful things for you to read on the subject of patriotism.  The first is from Zabrina, at Thought You’d Never Ask, in which she dispenses some words of wisdom to a child about to head off to college.  The second is from Jonah Goldberg, who explains why conservative Americans often don’t recognize as patriotism the feelings Barack Obama and those closest to him have for America.

Quick update:  James Taranto also has a good take on Obama’s patriotism speech.

I also want to add in connection with all this the fact that, when you criticize something brutally and relentlessly, it becomes ever harder to believe that you love it — and loving your country is, of course, the essence of patriotism.  As Dennis Prager once said, everybody would understand this principle if they were in the presence of a husband who heaps nonstop physical and verbal abuse on his wife, all the while claiming he loves her.  At a certain point, those protestations of love appear increasingly hollow and false.

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  • Ymarsakar

    Patriotism is a derivation of filial love.

    This means that just as filial love require that you invest love, trust, and work into your family and expect, sometime in the future, for the family to help you out of a rut, so the same is true for a citizen of his or her nation.

    If the Left did what they preached, meaning if the Left both assumed and demanded that when they have done wrong things, for the rest of America to criticize the Left and call for the disembowelment of Leftist leaders, the same as the Left has called for the deaths, trials, executions, and punishment of other Americans that they viewed as having lied or made mistakes, then this might actually produce something of worth, BOok. However, you know as well as I do, that the Left and the Democrat party does not hold themselves to the standards that they hold Republicans or the nation itself to.

    In family affairs, there is trust. Trust that they won’t betray you, if only because by betraying you, they will have nobody else they can count on. The same applies for a nation, except macroscopically. Strangers can now trust their fellow Americans, if only because they trust that an American that betrays America will find no succor either in America or the rest of the world. (Most nations won’t trust a traitor of another nation and make them a citizen, although America is one of the few that have) Obviously, you get more traitors the more safehouses there are for them in the world. Which is what has happened, and not coincidentally.

    On top of America’s nationalism, we have universal human rights. Americans do not just see themselves as a peer amongst equals compared to the rest of earth’s nations. No, Americans see America as not only a nation but an ideology, a faith that draws in adherents and conversions from the rest of the world by the people’s own free will. Thus the superstition and hate mongering that might get produced by pure nationalism, ala Nazism or Palestinians, is either not present in America or easily reformed and refocused into more productive and peaceful avenues.

    When you have somebody like Obama that promises to loot the nation to pay for his particular faction, solely because he says America is already corrupt, evil, and run by mega corporations that are looting the nation, just not looting it for the benefit of Obama’s supporters.

    That’s not how citizens of a nation behaves. Or rather, that’s how the citizens of a nation behaves sometime before the nation falls due to internal sedition and external invasion.

    It doesn’t require a genius to realize that one way to destroy a city’s defenses is to acquire traitors and insurgents inside the city. This is nothing new. Thus often the criticisms and instability caused in a nation by their own citizens is not for the good of the nation. It is for the good of the enemies of that nation who wish to loot that nation without encountering the full military and political might of that nation.

    So thus the ability to separate consequences and the causality chain of actions makes critically important for any individual, especially if they belong to a family or a nation.

    But that is exactly why the Left has worked tirelessly for decades to undermine America’s ability to use the skills of objective analysis in order to prevent individuals from realizing the true motivations of individuals, foreign or domestic. If the masses no longer comprehend the perspective of their rulers, then it becomes very easy to convince the masses that their rulers are corrupt, decadent, and in need of violence revolution to remove. As was the case with the Shah of Iran. When the masses cannot accurately see the intentions and the consequences of the actions of their leaders, can they see the intentions and effects of foreigners? No they cannot. They also can’t see through the lies of an Obama, who challenges the right to be internally placed into power from inside America, even though he was once outside America.

  • NavyOne

    Before 9/11, I viewed America as a child, as an eternal entity that served me. After that day, with the realization that we could go bye-bye easier than previously thought, I sprouted a righteous indignation for anyone who unfairly tromped on the U.S. Perhaps I grew up, but in a strange way, I partially owe terrorists both for my backbone and for the inability to suffer those who spit on her, our country. And to those Neanderthals, I bequeath a hug (a half man-clasp, like in sports) for giving me such a career that I love so much. . .

  • David Foster

    Some very astute thoughts from C S Lewis.

  • pondering penguin

    Thank you for the link to Zabrina’s blog. It hit home for me. My son goes off to college in August and I’ve been trying to bring him back from the dark side – he intends to cast his first ever vote for Obama in November.

    From the ‘about’ info on Zabrina on her sidebar, looks like we are the same age and probably why I related to what she said so well.

  • Bookworm

    Yeah, Zabrina’s blog is pretty darn cool. Although I don’t get to it daily, I certainly stop by there regularly for the pleasure of reading her posts.

  • Ymarsakar

    Also, the nation is a resource provided to individuals in return for the investment of that individual’s life and work.

    Unlike with a family, where there are no laws saying what they must or must not provide for you, except in the case of child custody laws and social workers, the government has strict limitations and commandments regarding what an individual citizen is owed from their government and thus their nation.

    To most people, “maintaining the nation” means getting rid of debt. They do not really see how there could be any kind of physical threat to the nation, given how invasion invulnerable it is. Of course, those people are the ones that lack a comprehension of human nature, will, and military science.

    No fortress is impregnable and the same is true of a nation bordered by two oceans.

    Whatever deal an individual agrees to will not be worth the ink the document was signed with, if that same deal caused irreparable harm to the nation. Sacrificing the help of some 300 million people, mostly strangers, is not worth that little extra help from X.

  • expat

    Thanks, David. That was a really good tip.