Suicide of the West: How Rebirth of Tribalism, Populism, Nationalism, and Identity Politics is Destroying American Democracy

by Johnny Punish

Just woke up this morning and watched author Jonah Goldberg speak about his new book “Suicide of the West: How the Rebirth of Tribalism, Populism, Nationalism, and Identity Politics is Destroying American Democracy” and how the west is losing it’s gratitude for all of its accomplishments going deeper into vision-less tribalism at the very moment the world is connecting globally.

I was actually already saddened deeply from last night watching the well-intentioned American Idol TV “reality” show run straight into the Trumpian Wall of tribalism, bigotry and racism by elevating “white” singers in favor of superior talented people of color.  I did NOT need more!  But here it was… just another terrible reminder and confirmation that America is truly suffering badly.  It hurts!  And so Goldberg’s book helps explain intellectually what’s really going on here….

Lovely innocent soul Catie Turner was in shock that she made the TOP 6! Being a good soul, she acknowledged Aida Fox (Drag Queen), Journee (Black Lesbian), Michele Sussett (Latina from Venezuela), Dennis Lorenzo (Black), and Marcio (Black) were far superior than her. Yet there she was VOTED INTO TOP 6.   Idol Judge Katy Perry asked “America, what is the disconnect?”


With his trademark blend of political history, social science, economics, and pop culture, two-time NYT bestselling author, syndicated columnist, National Review senior editor, and American Enterprise Institute fellow Jonah Goldberg makes the timely case that America and other democracies are in peril as they lose the will to defend the values and institutions that sustain freedom and prosperity. Instead we are surrendering to populism, nationalism and other forms of tribalism.

Only once in the last 250,000 years have humans stumbled upon a way to lift ourselves out of the endless cycle of poverty, hunger, and war that defines most of history—in 18th century England when we accidentally discovered the miracle of liberal democratic capitalism.

As Americans we are doubly blessed that those radical ideas were written into the Constitution, laying the groundwork for our uniquely prosperous society:

·         Our rights come from God not from the government.
·         The government belongs to us; we do not belong to the government.
·         The individual is sovereign. We are all captains of our own souls.
·         The fruits of our labors belong to us.

In the last few decades, these political virtues have been turned into vices. As we are increasingly taught to view our traditions as a system of oppression, exploitation and “white privilege,” the principles of liberty and the rule of law are under attack from left and right.

At a moment when authoritarianism, tribalism, identity politics, nationalism, and cults of personality are rotting our democracy from within, Goldberg exposes the West’s suicidal tendencies on both sides of the ideological aisle. For the West to survive, we must renew our sense of gratitude for what our civilization has given us and rediscover the ideals that led us out of the bloody muck of the past – or back to the muck we will go.

Suicide is painless, liberty takes work.

Author Details
Johnny Punish is a global citizen activist, visionary, musician, artist, entertainer, businessman, investor, life coach, and syndicated columnist. He is educated at University of Nevada Las Vegas and California State University Fullerton. His art music is promoted worldwide and played on net radio at and more.

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2 Replies to “Suicide of the West: How Rebirth of Tribalism, Populism, Nationalism, and Identity Politics is Destroying American Democracy

  1. Connecting one abstract to the other, and then trying to form a construct is challenging. Unfortunately, the deep thoughts which saddened you don’t connect. Non Sequitor much?
    Voting for an American Idol singer is a stretch from whatever is written in someone’s book.
    The U.S. of A. looks more like the frumpy singer than the FAB of whatever was up their last night. I don’t watch the show. And people have the liberty to vote for their “idol” of choice. What’s your beef? Where is society crumbling due to the voting on American Idol? What saddens me is . . . once these starry eyed wannabes are selected, graded with USDA Prime, the rejects go home, their dreams dashed. The ones selected are paraded off on a grueling tour, where the promoters make all the money, and the contestants have signed their life away. The “Top” 10 will come home to their lives after their tour, and . . . be the next Lionel Richie? Katy Perry? Yeah, right. If I hear another one of these celebrity judges tell a contestant “You’re a winner,” “I can see you going to the top” . . . blah, blah . . . BARF. I stopped watching the dream dashers.
    The contracts are probably so one-sided, the “Top” 10 will get no benefit from them out all. Welcome to Hollywood kids!
    But don’t worry . . . all that we’re supposed to be thankful for has been redeemed, no?!?!? The black drag queen’s popular vote was overruled by the judges, and he’s now in the top 10. See, this is how politics work. We’re not crumbling after all . . . We’re not on suicide watch anymore. YIPPEE!
    Ironically, the drag queen will probably fair the best, and have a gig in a female impersonator revue in Vegas. He’ll probably do Diana Ross for the next 20 years.
    Personally, I find my “Liberty” has nothing to do with a Hollywood talent show and who voted for whom, and some book/author I’ve never heard about. These cutesy words “tribalism” “identity politics” . . . WTF is that supposed to mean, and how do they destroy liberty of the West?
    LIBERTY: “the state of being free within society from oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one’s way of life, behavior, or political views.”
    So if I want to align myself with “tribalism” or “identity politics” . . . by DEFINITION, I’m at liberty to do so.
    What Goldberg is implying, simply by the title, is that Liberty is dying . . . as a result of Liberty?!?!

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