Just a few years ago, fatigue from "Anglo-Saxon lecturing" was a hallmark of authoritarian regimes like President Vladimir Putin's in Russia or President Xi Jinping's in China. Now it's surfacing in mainstream European media — a sign that, after Brexit and U.S. President Donald Trump's victory, the English-speaking world is losing intellectual legitimacy.

On Thursday, El Pais, Spain's newspaper of record, published an article in English by its editorial director Jose Ignacio Torreblanca, titled "Anglocondescension." Dripping with sarcasm, the column tells off English-speaking pundits for their criticism of Madrid's harsh, unyielding treatment of the Catalan secession bid: "They are crying in their editorials and opinion columns about the huge disappointment they feel because we have not been able to buckle in the face of the national-populist blackmail of Carles Puigdemont and company, and because we want to defend our constitution as they defend theirs (ferociously, in many cases, and if necessary invading other countries to do so)."

El Pais recently fired top British columnist John Carlin after he criticized King Felipe and the Spanish government for refusing to solve the Catalan problem through compromise. It was described in the Columbia Journalism Review as a sign of the paper's excessive closeness to the Spanish government. Perhaps, but while El Pais can afford to publish the odd pro-Catalan piece, it doesn't feel obliged to take policy advice from "Anglo-Saxon" intellectuals. It's not a matter of how the columns are written but rather of resentment in the outsized role the United States and its closest ally, the United Kingdom, have played in shaping policy and the global intellectual discourse in the liberal world order era.