The art of advertisement, after the American manner, has introduced into all our life such a lavish use of superlatives, that no standard of value whatever is intact.
No American worth his salt should go around looking for a root. I advance this in all modesty, as a not unreasonable opinion.
I feel most at home in the United States, not because it is intrinsically a more interesting country, but because no one really belongs there any more than I do. We are all there together in its wholly excellent vacuum.
In the democratic western countries so-called capitalism leads a saturnalia of ''freedom,'' like a bastard brother of reform.
The intelligence suffers today automatically in consequence of the attack on all authority, advantage, or privilege. These things are not done away with, it is needless to say, but numerous scapegoats are made of the less politically powerful, to satisfy the egalitarian rage awakened.
With a new familiarity and a flesh-creeping ''homeliness'' entirely of this unreal, materialistic world, where all ''sentiment'' is coarsely manufactured and advertised in colossal sickly captions, disguised for the sweet tooth of a monstrous baby called ''the Public,'' the family as it is, broken up on all hands by the agency of feminist and economic propaganda, reconstitutes itself in the image of the state.
Feminism was recognized by the average man as a conflict in which it was impossible for a man, as a chivalrous gentleman, as a respecter of the rights of little nations (like little Belgium), as a highly evolved citizen of a highly civilized community, to refuse the claim of this better half to self-determination.
As a result of the feminist revolution, ''feminine'' becomes an abusive epithet.
The ideas of a time are like the clothes of a season: they are as arbitrary, as much imposed by some superior will which is seldom explicit. They are utilitarian and political, the instruments of smooth-running government.
Prostration is our natural position. A worm-like movement from a spot of sunlight to a spot of shade, and back, is the type of movement that is natural to men.
A sort of war of revenge on the intellect is what, for some reason, thrives in the contemporary social atmosphere.
Category: Intelligence And Intellectuals
Then we are assured by Sartre that owing to the final disappearance of God our liberty is absolute! At this the entire audience waves its hat or claps its hands. But this natural enthusiasm is turned abruptly into something much less buoyant when it is learnt that this liberty weighs us down immediately with tremendous responsibilities. We now have to take all God's worries on our shoulders --now that we are become ''men like gods.'' It is at this point that the Anxiety and Despondency begin, ending in utter despair.
If the world would only build temples to Machinery in the abstract then everything would be perfect. The painter and sculptor would have plenty to do, and could, in complete peace and suitably honored, pursue their trade without further trouble.
It is more comfortable for me, in the long run, to be rude than polite.
Men were only made into ''men'' with great difficulty even in primitive society: the male is not naturally ''a man'' any more than the woman. He has to be propped up into that position with some ingenuity, and is always likely to collapse.