Everything about a philosopher can be gleamed from a single utterance of theirs. This is because an established paradigm – if the philosopher is worth his or her salt – is the necessary precursor to all statements. How, why, and for what purpose, can be immediately ascertained as the viewpoints spew forth. In Slavoj Zizek’s case, a veritable feast of a living has been made from stating the obvious and presenting this ability as an expression of an advanced Marxist critique – which in Zizek’s case, it obviously is not. One such example involves his reflections upon the presence of Buddhism in the West. His racist disregard for Asian culture and Asian Buddhism is obvious as he deems Buddhism in general to be in the service of bourgeois capitalism. It is not that this is incorrect – far from it – but rather that it is a statement of an obvious fact which is essentially saying that everything existing within capitalism, exit within a ‘capitalist’ state. This is not the use of the Marxist analytical technique of weeding out ‘inverse’ thought processes, but is rather the expression of a pure bourgeois mindset unsullied by any real considerations pertaining to Marxist analysis. The racist aspect lies with the fact that Zizek either knows about – but chooses to ignore – indigenous Asian culture, or that he is not interested in any interpretive narrative that lies outside of the scope of a Eurocentric thought. In short, Zizek is a postmodern bourgeois thinker, masquerading as a post-Marxist thinker. How did the dialectical forces of history create this Zizek figure?
With the collapse of the USSR – the traumatised Left in the West has desperately grasped at any ideological straw it can, for years. If it looks ‘leftist’ it must be right. Zizek’s bourgeois Leftism is popular in the minds of the confused and leaderless masses – but facts must be faced; Zizek’s work is as superficial as the bourgeois class that has inspired it. As long as the masses make the error of following ‘truisms’ and ‘tautology’ as genuine proletariat dialectics – the work of philosophers such as Zizek prevent the very revolution they claim to analyze and assess. Zizek hides behind postmodernism as if he were representative of an ‘ironic’ manifestation of post-Marxism, when in fact he represents the sickness of the age whereby superficial bourgeois intellectualism is misconstrued as correct dialectical assessment of historical forces, representative of the proletariat. This pseudo-dialectics is dangerous to those who would follow it, as it leads straight back to the bourgeois status quo through the stating of the obvious.
Zizek is the preferable face of bourgeois leftism and has reaped the financial awards for his betrayal of the working class in a post-Soviet state (Slovenia) that has benefitted directly from USA and EU neo-colonial policies. These former Soviet states – which form a vague ‘Eastern Europe’ in Western political narrative – were essentially impoverished with the collapse of communism in 1991 – and not because of it. This sudden and dramatic withdrawal of mutual USSR support triggered a social and psychological disaster that has been all but ignored in Western Europe and the USA. The suffering that this counter-revolution caused amongst the masses must surely rank as one of the greatest tragedies that has ever befallen humanity – and which has been deliberately and completely ignored by the Western media. Even the leftist movement in the West has been slow to provide an authentic and consistent dialectical assessment of this large scale humanitarian disaster. Instead, the various and fragmented so-called ‘communist’ movements in the West have instead played straight into the hands of the bourgeoisie, and adopted whole-sale, their capitalist inspired criticism of the USSR. Lenin and Stalin are distorted into ogres – whilst Churchill and Truman become lifesaving angels who appeared on earth to save humanity – the obvious biblical allusion notwithstanding.
The left in the West has not fully recovered from the collapse of the USSR – because within the remit of Soviet ideology, such a collapse was thought to be impossible, and has within it the unsavory connotation that Marx may have been wrong. Such idiocy has opened the door to so-called post-Marxists like Zizek who continuously undermine the leftist cause whilst simultaneously pretending to support it and progress it. Whilst billions of dollars is unceremoniously pumped into the former Eastern and Central European states (paid for by Western taxpayers), these countries have effectively become capitalist economic colonies of the USA and the EU. The people have not spent hundreds of year developing bourgeois economic tendencies, but have been plunged artificially into an advanced capitalist (and exploitative) state by the steady flow of unearned money from the West. People still starve and die of disease and neglect in these former Soviet states – but it is now considered ‘just’ and ‘natural’ from the bourgeois perspective that it is right for some to rise, and equally right for many more to fall. A capitalist rhetoric has been firmly established that has thoroughly reversed all the material and psychological gains achieved under the communist system.
Zizek, both mentally and physically, represents everything that is ‘wrong’ about the post-Soviet, Western gorged, situation in Central and Eastern Europe. Like the American colony of South Korea – the USA demonstrates that it will pay any price in dollars to prevent the working class from rising-up and taking power. How ironic it is that this once progressive state that over-threw the thoroughly bourgeois British Empire, now completely represents the aims and objectives of that very same bourgeoisie! This is because the contemporary USA is nothing more than a counter-revolutionary entity, the essence of which is embodied in Zizek’s physicality and mental expressions. The portly expressions of bourgeois sentiment dressed-up as proletariat dialectical science is clear for all right minded leftists to see, but the petty bourgeois intellectuals who tend to run the fragmented communist movements in the West, are still ‘in love’ with Zizek, and it is this flatulent obsession in the minds of these self-presuming leaders that is betraying the working class and leading it astray. Zizek is superficial in every way and should be firmly viewed as such.
©opyright: Adrian Chan-Wyles (ShiDaDao) 2015.