Category Archives: Gulliver’s Travels (Swift)

The prideful Germans beat their breasts

The doctor-writer’s diagnosis of the deep German psychopathology — and why the rest of us always end up paying a heavy price for it

Dalrymple writes that a healthy patriotism

seems to be denied to Germany. The historical reasons for this are perfectly obvious, of course. But it is more difficult to rid oneself of pride than one might think: one can become proud of one’s lack of pride.

Moral exhibitionism

When Angela Merkel agreed to take more than a million migrants,

it was easy in her gesture to see her desire to restore the moral reputation of her nation.

One motive touted,

that with its ageing and declining population, Germany needed more young labour, is absurd: there are millions of unemployed young Spaniards, Italians and Greeks on its doorstep who could have been absorbed with much less difficulty.

Still the bully

The problem arises when Germany,

newly proud of its openness to refugees, tries to make other countries suffer the consequences of its policy, in the name of some kind of abstract principle. Thus other countries, such as Hungary, are to be bullied into taking refugees or face hostility and ostracism. (No one asks the refugees themselves whether they want to be resettled in Hungary. They are abstractions in the European psychodrama, not people of flesh and blood, with desires and ambitions of their own.)

Uriah Heep

The desire of the Germans

to overcome or dissolve their German-ness in the tepid bath of European Union-ness is the consequence of a certain historiography in which all of German history is but a run-up to Nazism: in other words that Nazism is immanent in the German soul, and the only way to control it is to tie it down as Gulliver was. But this supposed need does not exist to anything like the same extent in other countries, which may nevertheless be constrained by German power, influence and financial might to follow suit. The key to contemporary Europe may perhaps be found in the character of Uriah Heep.

Cataclysmic designs of the City plutocrats

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 22.14.52Dalrymple picks up a copy of the Brussels newspaper the Soir, and his eyes fall on the following passage directed against those elements that are reluctant wholeheartedly to embrace the mystical ‘European project’:

Seuls les ennemis de l’euro et du projet politique européen, notamment à la City de Londres, rêvent de pareil cataclysme.

(The cataclysm being dreamed of is the break-up of the single currency.)

Dalrymple points out that the City of London here plays the role

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 22.42.36of the bloated plutocrat of Soviet iconography or of the Jewish manipulator of Nazi iconography, pulling the strings behind the scenes in order to achieve its malevolent design of controlling the world.

He goes on:

One can make many possible criticisms of the City of London, but a determination to destroy the viability of the euro for some unspecified, atavistic reason is certainly not among them. If the euro is viable, the City couldn’t destroy it; if it is not, the City cannot save it.

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 22.46.11The idea

that there is a congregation of malign conspirators within the Square Mile who would rejoice at the euro’s implosion is absurd; the prospect is almost universally viewed with apprehension, though it would not come as a surprise to everyone.

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 22.48.38The conspiracy theory

serves to suppress the thought that perhaps the European project’s creators are not much wiser than those of Balnibarbi in Gulliver’s Travels.

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