What’s clear from my observations at Socialism 2019 is that traditional Marxists have successfully melded their ideology with the identity politics and culture war issues that animate modern liberalism—despite still being quite far from the beliefs of the average citizen.
While you were enjoying your Fourth of July weekend, I was attending a national conference on socialism.
Why? Because socialism is having its moment on the left.
Since there’s often confusion as to what socialism really is, I decided to attend the Socialism 2019 conference at the Hyatt Hotel in Chicago over the Fourth of July weekend.
The conference, which had the tag line “No Borders, No Bosses, No Binaries,” contained a cross-section of the most pertinent hard-left thought in America. Among the sponsors were the Democratic Socialists of America and Jacobin, a quarterly socialist magazine.
The walls of the various conference rooms were adorned with posters of Karl Marx and various depictions of socialist thinkers and causes.
Most of the conference attendees appeared to be white, but identity politics were a major theme throughout—especially in regard to gender.
At the registration desk, attendees were given the option of attaching a “preferred pronoun” sticker on their name tags.
In addition, the multiple-occupancy men’s and women’s restrooms were relabeled as “gender neutral,” and men and women were using both. Interestingly enough, the signs above the doors were still labeled with the traditional “men’s” and “women’s” signs until they were covered over with home-made labels.
One of the paper labels read: “This bathroom has been liberated from the gender binary!”
While the panelists and attendees were certainly radical, and often expressed contempt for the Democratic Party establishment, it was nevertheless clear how seamlessly they blended traditional Marxist thought with the agenda of what’s becoming the mainstream left.