The Cynical Theories of the Left

In my continuing series on exposing the evils of Socialism, I will show a video interview with with James A. Lindsay, co-author of Cynical Theories: How Universities Made Everything about Race, Gender, and Identity―and Why This Harms Everybody.” Lindsay is no “right-wing” Christian. Besides being an atheist, he’s a cultural libertarian, more along the lines of a classical liberal, which is where I think we can find common ground with his views on the cultural evils of Socialist ideology.

As Lindsay explains on the video, what he calls “cynical theories” are the critical theories mostly made about identity (Critical Race Theory, Critical Gender Theory, etc.), and all the other theories that came from the neo-Marxist Frankfurt School would be included, but also the deconstructionism of postmodernism (which came from neo-Marxists in the 1970s, like Foucault and Derrida).

Lindsay say that the idea is they weave cynicism into their theories, where nothing is good and everything must be overturned. It overstates the problem with racism by saying it’s the ordinary state of things. Progress isn’t really happening, the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s changed nothing, etc. This is where it’s similar to the deconstruction of postmodernism. Of course, Marx himself advocated “the ruthless criticism of all that exists.”

Lindsay gives a fascinating historical overview of these critical theories and how they are closely tied to neo-Marxist ideology.

For instance, Marxist and black activist, Angela Davis, led the precursor to today’s version of critical theories in the 1960s. She was a PhD student of Frankfurt School’s Herbert Marcuse, and was a pioneer of the prison abolition movement and of the current “defund the police” movement.

Davis also inspired a generation of Queer black feminists (like the leaders of the BLM organization, Patrisse Cullors and Alicia Garza) to start looking at the gender theories, feminist criticism, and black liberation criticism—from the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory to identity politics in society today.

Lindsay summarizes three key components of these critical theories from a 1937 essay by one of its founders, Max Horkheimer:

  1. It has to have a normative vision for society. In this case, the creation of a society similar to a neo-Marxist state.
  2. It has to identify how society in its systems have failed that normative vision.
  3. It has to inspire what Karl Marx called praxis, which is the fusion of putting theory into practice. So, it’s theoretical-driven activism.

Lindsay makes a great point that the modern application of critical theories cannot rightfully be considered a continuation of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. Critical Race Theory is the inversion of the values that we saw from leaders like Martin Luther King and others. With Critical Race Theory, the color of your skin is all that matters but, apparently, your character doesn’t matter.

When asked what kind of society is created by these cynical theories, Lindsay responded by saying, “A sick society…filled with emotionally sick people.”

He continued….

“If you’re constantly focusing on the negative, and you’re constantly putting the blame on systems outside of your control, psychologists call that an External Locus of Control. You become less and less and less emotionally and mentally capable of dealing with the challenges of life. And that transfers into society…”

Video: Interview with Dr. Carol Swain

I would say we’re seeing this sickness already manifesting because of the insane policies of the “woke” left who seem to be at war with reality. What we may be waking to is a dystopian nightmare none of us could even imagine five years ago.

I agree with Lindsay. These people won’t stop until they destroy America as they keep pushing to create their pipedream of some imagined utopian state—the new feudalism where the enlightened globalist elites rule over the ignorant peasantry (the rest of us). That’s why these theories must be exposed for the culturally toxic poison that they are before it’s too late.

Lindsay also mentions the school of thought behind fascism: “The idea with fascism is that you’re going to marry state power with corporate power….then we’ll have total control over the economy….” (Sound familiar?) That’s a subject for another time.

It’s a very informative interview. Well worth watching.


About Mel Wild

God's favorite (and so are you), a son and a father, happily married to the same beautiful woman for 41 years. We have three incredible adult children. My passion is pursuing the Father's heart in Christ and giving it away to others. My favorite pastime is being iconoclastic and trailblazing the depths of God's grace. I'm also senior pastor of Cornerstone Church in Wisconsin.
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10 Responses to The Cynical Theories of the Left

  1. Pingback: “The Cynical Theories of the Left” | See, there's this thing called biology...

  2. LightWriters says:

    Hugely insightful—why does media seem so much behind all this (?!) These fascist-Marxist ideas actually sounds like a political form of extreme narcissism.

    • Mel Wild says:

      The current mainstream media is just as brainwashed as the politicians and Big Tech. And another dirty little secret is that the CCP controls a lot of what Wall Street, news organizations, how movie studios like Disney and Hollywood can talk about the CCP. It’s all connected to this overarching neo-Marxist ideology. But they are all willing participants because of greed.
      Here’s an interesting (in a disturbing way!) video interview with someone who’s been investigating how the CCP first infiltrated our Universities, then Wall Street and Corporate America, and Hollywood…

      And you’re right, it is all extreme narcissism. This insidious monster feeds on our narsissistic tendencies (think Social Media “likes!”). The “image” that must be upheld at all costs is the narrative. Any dissenting voices from the narrative must be suppressed or canceled. That’s classic narcissism.

  3. misterkiddo456 says:

    Another “spirit” that God has shown me in this recent tumult is something a lot of us have been overlooking. 1 Peter 2:1 “Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and ***slander*** of every kind.” I think it’s the slander part. A lot of people have slander in their hearts towards their neighbors these today. They are immediately projecting this spirit of slander on others assuming everyone “else” is to blame somehow. They perceive some sin or offense FIRST when interacting with others before even engaging in discussion or common discourse. Instantly alienating any hope of coming to common ground or an ounce of truth.

    • Mel Wild says:

      That’s a good point, David. Too easy to demonize anyone who disagrees with you. I think social media has made this worse because people have lost the art of polite conversation. And social media feeds on drama. People have become so offendable and frail about relationships, it’s very hard to have an honest conversation.

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