Previous month:
August 2018
Next month:
November 2018

October 2018

H. P. Lovecraft's Republicans seem largely fictional, but unfortunately not quite ...

This is some of the best political vituperation I've ever seen. I thoroughly disagree with Lovecraft's disdain for human freedom and his childlike faith in Central Planning, but he finds several genuine weak spots, and makes the most of them. Weak spots that Republicans still have, and need to watch out for. I don't know if he's just blindly swallowing, and brilliantly regurgitating, a cartoonish portrayal of conservatives by the media and politicians at the time, or if this is based on some firsthand observation -- probably a lot of one and a little of the other.

"As for the Republicans — how can one regard seriously a frightened, greedy, nostalgic huddle of tradesmen and lucky idlers who shut their eyes to history and science, steel their emotions against decent human sympathy, cling to sordid and provincial ideals exalting sheer acquisitiveness and condoning artificial hardship for the non-materially-shrewd, dwell smugly and sentimentally in a distorted dream-cosmos of outmoded phrases and principles and attitudes based on the bygone agricultural-handicraft world, and revel in (consciously or unconsciously) mendacious assumptions (such as the notion that real liberty is synonymous with the single detail of unrestricted economic license or that a rational planning of resource-distribution would contravene some vague and mystical 'American heritage'…) utterly contrary to fact and without the slightest foundation in human experience? Intellectually, the Republican idea deserves the tolerance and respect one gives to the dead."


—Lovecraft in a letter to C. L. Moore, exact date unknown, mid-October 1936

Posted on "The Rising Tide: Strategies for a Sustainable Future"