The Bruges Group spearheaded the intellectual battle to win a vote to leave the European Union and, above all, against the emergence of a centralised EU state.

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Sargon of Akkad: crusading for liberty from EU group-think

How can the younger generations be enticed away from the group-think that defines the EU as a paragon of virtue? They won't be persuaded by Leave-supporting politicians or mainstream media, but they might listen to Sargon of Akkad. This is the YouTuber from Swindon, real name Carl Benjamin, who has taken his cyber-sword to the stifling so-called 'political correctness' of the liberal-Left establishment and the social justice warriors who use institutional power to silence their opponents. And he's a committed Brexiteer (more on that later).

Recently the Libertarian Society at King's College London invited him to speak, but as widely reported, the event was abandoned when a group of masked thugs threw smoke bombs, triggered fire alarms and lashed out at anyone in their way. A tweet by 'North London Antifa' gloated with a photo of Sargon of Akkad leaving the building, having been successfully 'no-platformed'. The Libertarian Society described this as 'a tragedy for free speech', suspecting collusion between left-wing societies of King's Students Union and the infiltrators. Despite the principal's condemnation, no action has been taken.

Sargon of Akkad won't get much sympathy from the authorities, having a long list of crimes against progressive sanctimony. He first gained publicity in the Gamergate controversy in 2014, when he alleged that the Digital Games Research Association was trying to steer his hobby of video-gaming to conform to feminist ideology. He exposed this plot, and went on to more broadly criticise the growth of identity politics and social engineering.

Describing himself as 'a classic English liberal', Sargon of Akkad is faithful to our heritage of Magna Carta, regarding a civic democracy - national and rational - as demonstrably the best system for a stable society. Equality policies, by privileging certain categories of people and giving them immunity from criticism, contravene hard-won principles of justice and actually enforce inequality. The ideological infiltration of universities is a concern to Sargon of Akkad, and although this process took hold before he was born, it has cemented of late. Indeed, Gramsci's 'march through the institutions' is nearing completion.

Described as the devil incarnate by American scholar Michael Walsh, cultural Marxism has prospered by portraying itself as a defence of the vulnerable or oppressed. Nobody wants to be seen as obstructing the fight against racism, sexism or homophobia. Subversive postmodernists have used language to control debate, and political parties Left and Right have been neutered, here and elsewhere in the West (Trump may be no more than a fleeting aberration, as the ideology is soaked deep into the state).

Most of the students I teach are not active proponents of revolutionary struggle. In each cohort are a few activists, who impose the correct views on their compliant peers. The young student and graduate ranks were overwhelmingly for Remain in the EU referendum, yet the proportion who actually voted was relatively low. The EU symbolises modern, cosmopolitan values, but this was apparently more of a virtuous feeling than a compulsion to act at the voting booth.

Patriotic Brits look askance at anti-Brexit rallies and the bright-eyed youth emblazoned in yellow stars on blue, besotted with a bureaucratic, power-grabbing regime. Students should be learning to think critically, but instead their assumptions are left unchallenged. Of course, Brussels spouts egalitarian mantra but so did the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, which dispatched millions of ordinary people to the Gulags. The EU doesn't send citizens to perish in logging camps in the Tundra, but it has political and economic omnipotence, bribing countries and regions with infrastructure projects, funding research that suits its objectives, and brainwashing schoolchildren with propaganda.

Sargon of Akkad has been a thorn in the side of Remainers. Defying their portrayal of the Brexit voter as a grey-haired provincial ignoramus, he appeals to the overlooked but considerable proportion of younger people who are sceptical towards the EU. Rejecting the label of 'alt-right mouthpiece', he celebrates Brexit as a quest for liberty. Leaving the EU, Sargon of Akkad believes, should be welcomed as an opportunity for reform, but it is being actively undermined. Vitriolic snipers who refuse to accept the referendum result are bluntly described as 'a bunch of traitors' by our YouTube guru: they want Britain to be humiliated, and to beg to be allowed back into the EU.

One of his sharpest contributions to the EU debate was his dismantling of a ludicrous report by a professor of politics at University of Surrey, who argued that Brexit is the biggest threat of modern times to the rights of women. Allegedly prioritisation of trade deals will lead to dilution of equality legislation. Now, Sargon of Akkad is a trenchant critic of feminism, but he certainly doesn't want women to suffer from discrimination. How would leaving the EU cause this? Existing laws will remain on statute, until we as a democratic nation decide to change anything. Meanwhile, maternity rights are substantially better here than in most European countries. Such blatant abuse of scholarship would shame academe, were it not for the inherent anti-British bias that blinds reviewers and readers of such literature. The authors do not really represent women, suggests Sargon of Akkad, but fear the loss of socialist directives that suit their own narrow agenda as privileged feminists.

Sargon of Akkad took up the challenge of the New European newspaper, which set 48 questions to be answered by Leavers. He did so, robustly, giving some questions the short shrift they deserved. The theme running throughout his responses was not the authoritarian Right-wing stance fantasised by Remainers, but true Enlightenment values. He preaches genuinely liberal principles of democracy, free speech and equality. In my experience, a few students are beginning to break free from the straitjacket of identity politics. Seasoned Brexiteers can help indirectly, by drawing younger people's attention to the voices most likely to be heard. Let Sargon of Akkad slay the bleating euro-sheep!

Brexit and Beyond
London Hopes and London Matters
 

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Monday, 10 December 2018