November 15, 2012
NUMEROUS comments have been added to the excellent discussion in the entry on whether American traditionalists can rightfully view themselves as dissidents similar to the Soviet dissidents who fought Communism. In that entry, Henry McCulloch writes:
I agree with [Lawrence] Auster that American traditionalists (Americans, in this comment) can no longer dissent from the U.S.A. in the same way Solzhenitsyn dissented from the USSR, although Americans’ view of the U.S. government should parallel Solzhenitsyn’s view of the Soviet Communist Party. Americans traditionally do not dissociate their country from its government, despite early Americans’ wariness of government. Solzhenitsyn, by the time he emerged from the gulag, certainly dissociated Russia from the Soviet Union; indeed he viewed the Bolshevik Revolution and all its works as largely alien irruptions into Russian life. In his mind, Russia and the Communists’ Soviet Union were not at all the same thing. Solzhenitsyn was right about that, even as he was also right not to deny Russians’ complicity in Communist crimes.
Any successful future in post-America for Americans will be despite the U.S. government, which is as anti-American as the Bolsheviks were anti-Russian. Mr. Auster says it’s no longer enough to be a dissident, because dissenting implies one seeks the restoration of a previous order. But no restoration of the old American order is possible. That America is gone. Thus the United States that was the legitimate government of America is also gone, succeeded by a U.S. government actively hostile to most Americans. This is not quite the situation Solzhenitsyn thought Russia was in under Communist rule. If Solzhenitsyn had believed the Russia buried under the rubble — to borrow a Solzhenitsyn title – of Communism was dead, his life’s work would have been meaningless.
Mr. McCulloch’s comment continues in that entry.