Insights[edit | edit source]

Dr. Samuel Johnson’s quote: ‘patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel.’


A.P. Thornton's quote: ‘Patriotism is the first platform of fools.’

Patriotism is poison. Dictators, despots, lunatics – and too many democratic politicians – use it to enflame popular passions to enhance their power. There is nothing wrong with loving and respecting one’s homeland.

Canadians offer a fine example of quiet national pride without obnoxious flag-waving and bullying. Canada (also known as CAN) Flag of Canada.svg

Everything is wrong with unleashing toxic nationalist emotions to promote empire-building or eradicating whole peoples. Look at the horrors in Template:Burma and the mass crimes in Bosnia and Herzegovina (also known as BIH).

Cringe with faux patriotism of sports events?[edit | edit source]

Chants of ‘USA, ‘USA,’ and pro-war propaganda on TV. Having walked many of the battlefields of World War I, on which millions died, I detest the kind of patriotic cant that ended the civilized glories of pre-war, 19th Century Europe. The idiotic cries in 1914 of ‘on to Berlin’ and ‘on to Paris’ haunt us. Their modern version was ‘Get Saddam’ and ‘bomb, bomb, bomb Iran.’

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