Jews, Marx And Flying Saucers
Seth Lipsky in his review of Norman Podhoretz’ Why Are Jews Liberals in the online Tablet Magazine quotes the Catholic writer, G.K. Chesterton as observing: “When men stop believing in God they don’t believe in nothing; they believe in anything.”
Lipsky’s comment is that the Jews didn’t believe in anything they believed in Marx. Lipsky misses the point- Chesterton included Marxism under the category ‘Anything.’ Marxism by any standard is a stretcher. If you’re going to believe in Marx you may as well believe in Flying Saucers; in fact, a great many people do believe in Flying Saucers and for the same reason.
Witness the popular film of the early fifties- The Day The Earth Stood Still- recently remade. A more impressive film on first viewing than it is on subsequent viewings. Rather tedious actually.
The Day The Earth Stood Still is a virtual metaphor for the Second Coming of Christ. Klaatu didn’t do any better than the original. The motivations of the believers in deliverance from outer space aren’t any different than the believers in deliverance from some stupid ideology.
Lipsky quotes Podhoretz as asking: The question then arises of why Jews who joined the radical camp were not put off by the egregious anti-Semitism of Marx. He then quotes Rosa Luxembourg as gratuitously asking: Why do you come with your special Jewish sorrows?
Well, there you have it. Jews and Flying Saucer nuts are seeking ‘Close Encounters Of The Third Kind,’ Redemption, deliverance from their special sorrows, the Second Coming, a trip in that old Gospel ship to a land way beyond the stars.’
It isn’t necessary to try that hard, Seth; the answers are much more down to earth than one might think on first blush.