Several readers take exception to my saying that “socialists are supposed to care about the toiling masses.” What the Left really cares about, these readers tell me, is setting up a Vanguard Party — comprised of them, of course — which will tell the rest of us, including the t.m.s, how to live, and whack us if we don’t obey.
Well, sure. No disagreement from me. I did write “supposed to.” The affection a leftist feels for the toiling masses is abstract and theoretical, like the affection modern American liberals feel for minorities. The Common Man is, for old-line leftists, a mascot, not someone he wants in his dining room. (Lenin, according to Robert Conquest, never set foot inside a factory.)
Still, a socialist is expected to strike the right poses. From what I know of Lovecraft, he didn’t even pretend to like ordinary people. Well, perhaps I should read the big bio. (Which was beautifully reviewed, a friend tells me, by the late great Sam Francis. That review, I really must read.)