Why capitalism loves transgenderism

Some British communists have finally said it – the trans ideology is neoliberalism in drag.

Brendan O'Neill

Brendan O'Neill
chief political writer

Topics Identity Politics Politics UK

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I see more fascists have aligned with the ‘TERF’ cause. Only their disguise is even more cunning than usual. Now the biology-believing Brownshirts aren’t only dressing up as middle-aged women to try to throw everyone off the scent of the fascism that lurks beneath their talk of women’s rights. They’ve gone that extra step and camouflaged themselves as actual communists. Truly there is no end to the cynicism and intrigue of these far-right loons who believe people with penises are men, not women.

This is the news that the Communist Party of Britain has come out against gender self-ID. The CPB is an offshoot of the Communist Party of Great Britain (deceased). It’s all very Life of Brian. Yet however eccentric and even Soviet-sympathising the nostalgic anoraks of the CPB might be, they’ve managed to think crystal clearly about self-ID and have decided that it clashes with ‘the sex-based rights of women’. Too right, comrades!

It remains to be seen how the trans lobby and its noisy allies will square the existence of these commies for biology with their belief that everyone who says men are not women is basically Himmler. Posie Parker, JK Rowling, the mums and grans who gather in Hyde Park to politely request that fellas in dresses stay out of women-only spaces – all have been damned as ‘fascist-adjacent’ by woke bros. Alt-right pond-life once branded women’s rights campaigners ‘feminazis’; now Oxford-educated fake leftists call them ‘fascist-adjacent’. Same arse, different cheek.

Yet even as the bourgeois identitarians furiously WhatsApp each other to work out how to rebrand communists as fascists, they might also take the time to read the CPB’s statement. It’s very good. It bristles at Scotland’s gender self-ID law, the one Westminster plans to block, on the basis that it will be bad for women. Making it easier for blokes to be legally recognised as ‘women’ will raise ‘great difficulties’ for ‘sports organisations and other clubs and societies’ that are organised on the basis of sex, decrees the CPB executive committee. What’s more, making self-ID the ‘sole requirement for access to single-sex spaces’ threatens to expose women and children to ‘predatory and abusive behaviour by men who can simply declare themselves to be women’. The committee is correct.

Then our red friends get into really dangerous territory, into the kind of thinking that might see them cancelled as surely as commissars who displeased Stalin were airbrushed from official photographs. They say sex is real. Gender should not be ‘confused or conflated with the material reality of biological sex’, their blasphemous tract declares. Hence, the CPB ‘rejects gender self-ID as the basis for sex-based entitlements in law’ because society must protect ‘women’s single-sex rights, spaces and facilities’. An organisation speaking up for women’s sex-based rights? Prepare the gulag.

The CPB’s statement has broken the internet – well, that small portion of it that is interested in the internecine battles of the British left. The publication of its gender statement has ‘resulted in a million views and our website being zapped’, the CPB says. Time for new servers, comrades? It’s good that the CPB has made itself the communist cat among the identitarian pigeons, the fox of materialism in the chicken coop of postmodern bollocks. Because it just might give rise to a discussion, or at least some thought, on why the hell the modern left has aligned itself with something as irrational, illiberal, anti-women, anti-science and harmful to working-class families as the ideology of transgenderism.

There’s a great line in the CPB’s statement, one that will really get the goat of London’s trustafarian trots who think spending twenty-five quid on Novara hoop earrings that say ‘Literally A Communist’ makes them Rosa Luxemburg. ‘Gender-identity ideology is well-suited to the needs of the capitalist class’, it says, ‘focussing as it does on individual as opposed to collective rights [and] enabling and supporting the super-exploitation of women’. Boom, there it is, the thing too rarely said – that capitalism loves transgenderism. That the boss class is absolutely fine with the creation of a new generation so obsessed with changing their bodies that they lack the time, energy and balls (literally, in some cases) to change the world.

The CPB has thrown down the gauntlet to the post-class bourgeois left, the left that gets more excited about the right of men to piss in women’s toilets than it does about the right of millions of working-class voters to remove Britain from the clutches of that ultimate capitalist club, the European Union. It is forcing these LINOs (leftists in name only) to ask why they so often find themselves on the same side of the barricades as the neoliberal elites. Why they fly the same flag – that eyesore trans Pride flag – that every bank and hedge fund flies. Why they are as one with ‘big business’ when it comes to the importance of using people’s preferred pronouns. Why they are in full agreement with the armed wing of the state – the police, the army, the prison service – that a person with a dick can be a woman if he wants. The middle-class graduate left with their well-thumbed bell hooks books and their selfies at Marx’s grave can make fun of the CPB as much as they like, but at some point they’re going to have to answer the question it has raised: if transgenderism is progressive, why do the ruthless owners of the means of production love it so?

The CPB’s intervention in the gender debate is not only funny – it’s insightful. The cult of gender self-ID is ‘well-suited to the needs of the capitalist class’. All identity politics is. Hence every HR department in Christendom has a copy of Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility. Hence ‘diversity training’ is all the rage among bosses who are always on the lookout for ways to divide and rule their workforce. Hence big businesses coat themselves in the Pride colours, hoping their feverishly expressed fealty to the new neoliberal ideologies will distract from their maltreatment of their workers. Transgenderism is every capitalist’s favourite fad right now because they instinctively recognise that it is neoliberalism in drag. It is a hyper-consumerist ideology, with its off-the-shelf identities, which entices the young in particular to treat the self as the only site of radical overhaul and to fiercely police older generations, especially women, who use the ‘wrong’ pronouns or think the ‘wrong’ thought. Capitalists can’t believe their luck.

It’s already becoming clear how the post-class bourgeois left will deal with the pesky CPB and its gender heresies. They’ll brand them ‘Stalinists’, rather than ‘fascists’, and hold them up as further proof that tyrants of all shades oppose transgenderism. Stalinists? That’s rich coming from a movement that purges wrongthinkers, erases dissenters and turns a blind eye as a woman said to be in her 70s is allegedly headbutted and repeatedly punched at a women’s rights rally in Auckland, New Zealand. The CPB felt the heat of trans McCarthyism today. ‘We won’t be silenced’, it said in response to the social-media meltdown over its defence of women’s rights. Good on you. Keep speaking, comrades.

Brendan O’Neill is spiked’s chief political writer and host of the spiked podcast, The Brendan O’Neill Show. Subscribe to the podcast here. And find Brendan on Instagram: @burntoakboy

Picture by: Getty.

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Topics Identity Politics Politics UK


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