Influential left-wing ideas

BobFromBrockley (UK) presents three categories of influential leftie core values in a thoughtful post which bears repeated reading.

Good influences

  • Social justice
  • Internationalism
  • The one state solution
  • Open source
  • Strangers into citizens

Social justice seems to me to be the predominant leftie value, and is the one that separates the left from conservatives and libertarians. Most everything flows from the assumption that all should get a reasonably sized piece of pie and be treated fairly. Yes, some conservatives and libertarians may believe this too. But it’s not their primary value, that’s the difference.

Bad influences

  • National sovereignty
  • Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions
  • Blood for oil/the Israel lobby/the shock doctrine
  • Foreigners are stealing our jobs –
  • Second campism

He sees boycotts of Israel having “zero chance” of actually helping Palestinians and the shock doctrine as conspiracy theory analogous to South Park underpants gnomes who jump from Phase 1 to Phase 3 in their business plan, completely ignoring Phase 2 with no causal relationships linking Phase 1 and Phase 3.

Not influential enough ideas

  • Mutualism, co-operatives, self-management
  • Small government
  • No borders
  • Class analysis
  • Agnosticism

The left should take back the idea of small government, which is now the sole property of the right. I completely agree. Also, he adds, class analysis needs to be restored as a major idea for the left in Britain because without it, the left meanders and is rudderless. Here in the States there is finally, due to the financial crisis and accompanying obvious exploitation by the few of the many, a dim but growing awareness that class differences exist.

What are your thoughts about influential ideas on the left?

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