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Top Historian: U.S. ‘Dealing Not Just With Decay Of Traditional Religion,’ But Something ‘Far Worse’

   DailyWire.com

A top historian is warning that so-called “woke” culture is a “fake religion” that must be reigned in or else it could have deadly consequences.

Hoover Institution fellow Niall Ferguson, a Scottish author and historian, appeared on Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s podcast “Tucker Carlson Today,” where he explained why the political Left does not focus on the economy very much anymore compared to the past.

“The people on the Left didn’t really want to have a conversation about economics, because they had lost their arguments in the 1980s; they really hadn’t been able to make the case for socialism successfully,” Ferguson said. “And the conclusion was that there was more money to be made, or more power to be gained by exploiting identity politics and emphasizing cultural, racial, gender differences.”

Later on in the podcast, Ferguson warned that Western society does not yet “fully realize, although it’s becoming more and more clear,” that “wokeism, is in fact, a religion.”

“It’s not a secular political ideology … it’s not really about economics,” he continued. “It is about salvation, membership of the elect of the woke. It’s about persecuting heretics. It’s about elaborate rituals of speech that can only be pursued by the believers. It’s rather cult like, Matt Yglesias is not somebody I usually agree with, but he called it the Great Awokening. This was a very astute observation. So we are dealing not just with the decay of traditional religion, but far worse, the rise of new fake religions, political religions, and one thing that’s very clear from the 20th century is that when people take their religious feelings, and they apply them to political ideologies, terrible things can happen.”

“Central to what made communism so deadly, was it’s ultimately a religion, Marx is ultimately a prophet and Marxism is a kind of religion,” he continued. “The same was true of Nazism. The most ardent Nazis thought of Hitler and explicitly called him a redeemer of the German nation. So we’ve got to be very careful of political religions. Politics is not something that you should approach with a religious impulse. If you start feeling religiously about politics, take a lie down, you know, have some sleep, take a long walk and try again because politics should not be imbued with religious sentiment.”

WATCH:

TRANSCRIPT:

TUCKER CARLSON, FOX NEWS HOST: So for the latest episode of Tucker Carlson Today, we sat down with perhaps the greatest historian of economic trends still alive, Niall Ferguson. And we asked him, why doesn’t anyone talk about the economy anymore? Here’s part of our conversation.

NIALL FERGUSON, ECONOMIST:  The people on the Left didn’t really want to have a conversation about economics, because they had lost their arguments in the 1980s, they really hadn’t been able to make the case for socialism successfully. And the conclusion was that there was more money to be made, or more power to be gained by exploiting identity politics and emphasizing cultural, racial, gender differences. And that’s where all the energy moved to. And it was bad luck for the working classes, I mean, hard luck for the economic losers from globalization and financialization, because they really cease to figure in the debates that were going on in the elite universities and then in the educational system, as a whole.

So I think the answer is that partly, there was just a shift of strategy on the Left away from economics into what seemed like the more fertile ground of culture. But it was also partly because the people who lost out in that period that we could date from maybe 2001, that’s when China joined the World Trade Organization, the people who’d lost out, were of no interest to the academic Left, the working class of Middle America, just cease to figure. 

And I think one of the things that we don’t fully realize, although it’s becoming more and more clear, is that what the Left now offers, wokeism, is in fact, a religion. It’s not a secular political ideology. That’s why as you were saying earlier, it’s not really about economics. It is about salvation, membership of the elect of the woke. It’s about persecuting heretics. It’s about elaborate rituals of speech that can only be pursued by the believers. It’s rather cult like, Matt Yglesias is not somebody I usually agree with, but he called it the Great Awokening. This was a very astute observation. So we are dealing not just with the decay of traditional religion, but far worse, the rise of new fake religions, political religions, and one thing that’s very clear from the 20th century is that when people take their religious feelings, and they apply them to political ideologies, terrible things can happen.

Central to what made communism so deadly, was it’s ultimately a religion, Marx is ultimately a prophet and Marxism is a kind of religion. The same was true of Nazism. The most ardent Nazis thought of Hitler and explicitly called him a redeemer of the German nation. So we’ve got to be very careful of political religions. Politics is not something that you should approach with a religious impulse. If you start feeling religiously about politics, take a lie down, you know, have some sleep, take a long walk and try again because politics should not be imbued with religious sentiment.

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