The coronavirus has only made the alignment between nationalism and a certain sector of the financial elite that much clearer. There are audible sighs of irritation that the nation-state—so long a faithful partner in subduing labor unrest and bailing out one strategic corporate bankruptcy after another—now has to be mobilized to keep consumers and some workers alive. In the face of the virus, national elites have not so much mobilized narratives of the nation as indulged a series of nationalist tantrums.
The right to supervision! The right to surveillance! It sounds sinister now, but it went without saying at the time that the Communists could not have maintained the esprit de corps and internal organization necessary to defeat the forces of European fascism without it…