Posited by Leif Smith as a replacement for the thought disrupting he/she—she/he
construct of political correctness; e is for ego, the individual within. The possessive, er, eliminates his/hers—hers/his (we must take care to avoid the micro-aggressions that send college students fleeing to safe spaces filled with stuffed animals and puppies). I like it and we’re going to test drive the concept in this post.
The Cold War Warrior celebrates the legacy of ordinary individuals enmeshed in an extraordinary fifty-three-year undeclared clash between the ideas of collectivism and those of individualism. By its very nature, the Cold War had a propensity to turn hot at the drop of a political hat.
Collectivism defines one extreme of a pendulum’s arc and individualism the other extreme. Human political history is written along the arc described by that pendulum. In the late 1700s the United States codified individualism into its founding documents inserting enormous creative energy into the pendulum. The struggles, donnybrooks, fits and starts of individualism were humorous and horrifying as the experiment proceeded in whether or not a nation composed of individuals could exist. Great things happened; roads, rail systems, bridges manufacturing opened the land, the middle class burgeoned, farmers fed themselves and a country took shape. Horrific things also happened; wars, takings, and social struggle.
In the 20th Century science and philosophy injected another burst of creative energy into the system. Einstein, Bohr, Picasso, Santayana, Bertrand Russel, Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich Hayek, Karl Popper, Wells and myriad others released a critical mass of ideas that spurred the pendulum of human history to swing through its prescribed arc with more speed than ever before. Collectivism grabbed Russia by the coattails and tossed it headlong into collectivism. Another great experiment began and spread.