The End of an Age – However!

So it is finally over! No one can say exactly when it began. Different groups see the final phase as belonging to them. To the French – it was the Jacobins apposing the Girondins. One cannot say at what point the dialectic began but at some point political theory intervened. The great Roman Republic found itself in crisis when it tried to introduce a third party. The arrival of Karl Marx finally settled for conflict which offered a solution. Borrowing on German 19th Century philosophy as it emerged, the thesis and the antithesis were locked in battle. The third force which lay in the future was the synthesis. By the time of the Russian Revolution society, with an emerging financial system, found itself split in two. The dialectic of thesis and antithesis found itself in perpetual conflict. As long as there was a socialism to oppose the dramatically evolving capitalism the political phenomenon could continue.

The new American state divided itself into Republican and Democrat and was able to continue the myth of its unresolved conflict, but when the two conflicting parties emerged as indistinguishable the political frame was shattered. The conflict of Left and Right became increasingly meaningless. Across Europe the masses turned away from something that emerged as, on the face of it the political class were not to be trusted, party leaders clinging to the shattered remnants of Left and Right were finally judged as being personally responsible. The British Prime Minister, having sunk his own boat, gazed in horror at the collapse of the Socialist party across the channel. With both the Left and Right leadership having failed in the eyes of a sophisticated public it became finally clear that we have reached the end of an age.

Then from out of the ruins of the Socialist party’s dismal inability to see a way forward one man emerged. Seen as Left-wing by the Right and as Right-wing by the Left he represented a man who offered modernity.

In the same way that Paul Ryan, the American speaker of the House, is just ahead of his time but knows how to make it new. What is essential is that the educated French Muslims should not hang back with the old ideas of the State against Terror and recognise that that too is a used up dialectic. The future lies with Emmanuel Macron.