The modern form of the gulag in the West is ostracism and exclusion. In extreme cases, such as with Tommy Robinson, they might even put you in jail. But with virtually all those who earn their living by writing or within academic institutions working for the government, you pay attention to what it is forbidden to say and conform without deviation to the ruling far-left ideology or you are out. You have to be relatively old by now even to have heard of the term “samizdat” but it was the means for what was a genuine resistance in the Soviet Union and the captive states of Eastern Europe pre-1989 to communicate with each other. Manuscripts were hand-typed by individuals who passed various subversive documents amongst themselves since actually having these works published was literally impossible. Today we can publish, but the consequences to one’s career can be devastating.
Oddly, and I am certain that this is pure coincidence, two prominent bloggers have used samizdat in titles of their posts just this week. First, at Powerline, Steve Hayward wrote on: IT HAS COME TO THIS: ACADEMIC SAMIZDAT. It begins:
We have come to the point where even liberal academics in good standing will feel the wrath of leftist orthodoxy if they depart from the party line. So what to do? Imitate the late Soviet Union, and start a samizdat literature.
And then this from The Other McCain: Reading Samizdat. Here he quoted from a book that is in many ways toxic but in which the following passage may be found that could not be written by anyone who wished to stay within the ruling class ideology of our current elites.
With the passing of the Melting Pot fantasy has come the anti-fantasy — the American Mosaic. The intellectual mise-en-scène has suddenly been rearranged to accommodate a new sociological fad, the pluralistic society, in which all races and nationality groups live harmoniously side by side, all maintaining and strengthening their racial and cultural identity, each making its own contribution in its own way to the total picture of American life.
Like the promoters of the Melting Pot, the salesmen of pluralism have misread history, which teaches that pluralistic societies are static and caste-ridden and a standing invitation to disorder and disaster. Historically disoriented, the voices of pluralism are also dramatically contradictory. They are opposed to racism in theory, but support minority racism in practice. They uphold group identity, but demand integration. They approve of racial quotas, but are against racial discrimination.
Basically, these are thoughts you cannot say in public if you value your career.