Dalrymple has a new piece for the Library of Law and Liberty that provides a deeper analysis of a human type he has written about before and which we all know well: the unjustifiably and self-righteously enraged.
Anger allegedly felt on behalf of vast numbers of people who are believed to suffer because of a single characteristic that they have in common is deeply satisfying to those who feel it because it assures them that they are, at heart, generous and open-minded people, capable of empathizing with a large proportion of suffering mankind (the larger the better), despite their own personal good fortune.
But why should they require such assurance in the first place? Because they know in their hearts that they do not care half as much for humanity as they think they ought, and therefore compensate for the coldness of their love by the warmth of their wrath. They are angry that they are not as good as they would like to appear in a world in which a person’s goodness is often measured by the strength of feeling he expresses on behalf of others. Hence the shrillness of anger; this also explains the oft-noted paradox that those who love humanity or some very large portion thereof seldom love individual humans, to whom indeed they are frequently outright hostile, while those who make no claims to love humanity en masse are kind and considerate in their personal relations.