One of Orwell’s grim truths

Tuesday, December 17th, 2019

There’s more than one kind of loyalty:

Intentional loyalty (trying to help the Party), emotional loyalty (believing in the Party), and objective loyalty (being useful to the Party) are three different things. One of Orwell’s grim truths is how easy it is to be objectively useful to a regime by intentionally rebelling against it.


  1. Kirk says:

    Loyalty and fealty are things you should never offer up unquestioningly, and one should always monitor just what it is that you’re offering them up to.

    You have to also pay attention to the whole of things. I knew a guy who was an avowed Nazi, once upon a time, but he was not a Nazi for the anti-Semitic reasons; his Nazi party was the one that spoke out for Germany, and wanted Germans to be proud to be Germans.

    Hell of a shock, for him, when he found out what was behind the facade. He’d studiously turned his eyes away from everything going on around him, to the point of delusion. The blinders getting ripped off at the end of the war nearly ended in his suicide, but friends prevented it.

    You talked to him, decades later, and what came through was the sense that he had a decent, noble soul, but one filled with naivete and trust. Which had been exploited to the full, by the Party.

    It’s easy to let happen, and you have to guard against it. I’m sure that there are essentially decent people in every mob, but the problem is, they’ve been seduced by the crowd and the wiles of the demagogues.

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