The German cultural English language site Signandsite recently dealt with an interview, published in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung am Sonntag with sociologist Wolfgang Sofsky, "who, in his coming book defends the private sphere in Germany against ever greater infringements in the name of terrorism control and tries to explain Germans' resignation to these constraints on their freedom."
"There's something missing in Germany: anti-totalitarian consciousness. We've had anti-communism, we've had anti-fascism on command, but we've had no clear-sighted anti-totalitarianism. While totalitarian regimes have existed on both German soils, there is no fully-developed sensitivity for the threat to freedom."
I posit that Sofsky's "sensitivity for the threat to freedom" comes with the Enlightenment's philosophy of Libertarianism, that was - at heart - an Anglo-Saxon project. It brought with it the blessings and accomplishments of human autonomy, the individual as operative unit, limited government, free market and a laissez faire attitude towards economy, and all what comes with reason and the right of free enquiry: technology, mechanization, and the scientific method.
Germany, upon shedding feudalism - instead of embracing Libertarianism, became home to the collectivist Counter-Enlightenment movement as started by Rousseau; thereafter - to its later chagrin - it adopted from that collectivist movement, both its political branches: Right Collectivism, National Socialism, and after its defeat, Left Collectivism, Communism. Germany's Libertarian Party, is until this moment, a marginal affair.
From the above may be concluded that Germany just doesn't seem to like individualism very much, preferring instead big government, the state as the embodiment of the collective spirit of the people. As a consequence Germans simply cannot be bothered with "ever greater infringements in the name of terrorism control" and "these constraints on their freedom."
I suspect, that the sociologist's sudden concerns over the people's privacy have more to do with the psychological projection known as Bush Derangement Syndrome and the American war on terrorism, in Leftist eyes seen as an excuse for a power grab, rather than the freedoms of the German people.
And it's not just the Germans who prefer to swap freedom for state control. It is true for most parts of Europe, as we shall see. Perhaps feudalism has made its way into the European psyche, predisposing it for the safety of Collectivism and the immaturity of never really having to grow up. Father State Will Provide is - according to psychiatrist Lyle H. Rossiter Jr in "The Liberal Mind, The Psychological Causes of Political Madness" - to blame for much of today's Narcissistic pathology (I'll come back about it in some detail). The chaos and responsibility that come with freedom can indeed be frightening, as adolescents know.
In social-economics there's the light weight Anglo-Saxon model, and the so-called 'Rhineland' variety. The continent - having adopted the latter, and Scandinavian countries an even weightier version of it, sees the Anglo-Saxon model as predator capitalism and - like the Germans - fail to see that they themselves have traded their freedom for a collectivist government that redistributes people's wealth as it sees fit: not free citizens, but all dependents of the state, from cradle to grave. They have even managed to turn Liberalism into Socialism Redux by the colpo of usurp, pervert, destroy.
While the French may be irritating the rest of the known world to bits by their obnoxious chauvinism, and the Germans - in view of recent history - temporarily don't talk so loud about The Goodies At Home, the Swedes somehow have persuaded themselves of the idea that they are the envy of the cosmos. Europeans misinterpret American patriotism in a similar vein.
But Americans don't pride themselves of their (heavily mixed) blood, or the beauty of their soil! They are proud of the Idea that is America, the human spirit that has shed the mentality of serfdom: the symbols of the government of the people, by the people and for the people. Europeans completely fail to understand the Americans' right to bear arms. They miss the connection, that those arms stand symbol for the guarantee of the principle, that the government exists at the people's pleasure, and not the other way around.
Fjordman has again produced what he knows best, another article on the inherent totalitarianism of the European Union: "... The European Union is basically an attempt – a rather successful one so far – by the elites in European nation states to cooperate on usurping power, bypassing and eventually abolishing the democratic system, a slow-motion coup d'état. Ideas such as 'promoting peace' are used as a pretext for this, a bone to fool the gullible masses and veil what is essentially a naked power grab. It works because the national parliaments still appear to be functioning as before."
"This is perhaps the most dangerous aspect of the EU: it is increasingly dictatorial, but it is a stealth dictatorship ... [it] has a lot more in common with totalitarian regimes such as Nazi Germany - and the Soviet Union - than the supposedly evil nation states it seeks to replace, especially its tendency to suppress freedom of speech, indoctrinate school children with blatantly false information and impose decisions upon its subjects without their consent."
Fjordman goes on a bit about the E.U. 'glossocracy', the Orwellian new speak, and government spokespersons' media guidelines regarding idiom and self-censorship: political correctness with a view to control mind and free flow of speech. Certainly also in evidence in the U.S. as promoted by the Democrats, it defies comprehension, but it now transpires that this phenomenon is an attempt by Pomo (Postmodernism: see Chart I: The Straight Red Line) to redistribute the right of free speech: a totalitarian effort to compensate unequal groups in proportion to their inequality. Pomo logic: the more elements of The White Patriarch a particular group has, the less unequal it is, the less entitled it is to free speech.
It is the same source that keeps on hyping the message, that we should loath ourselves on account of our imperialistic past: that waive after waive of ethnic cleansing, the enslavement of peoples other than powerful, rich, white, Christian males. I'll come back very shortly on the curious and fatal relationship of Pomo and language in general.