We Don’t Do Humility

We self-righteous high priests of the German political left, I mean. It’s just not our thing.

But what we do do is regularly transform a little imaginary something we call “collective guilt” (World War II guilt, there is no such thing as Communist East Germany guilt) into new products (poems) with new perpetrators (Israel) which we market at irregular intervals to cover our countrymen’s never-ending demand for ritual redemption which of course will never be satisfied, or so we lead them (and us) to believe.

“Membership in the Waffen-SS is normally not a great beginning for a career as keeper of the global conscience. Were I to have joined the Nazi military at age 15, I too would likely be a bit wary of criticizing Holocaust survivors. But that is exactly the problem: Humility was never Grass’ thing. His expertise lies more in self-righteousness.”

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