I think we can interpret this stuff with either a grand narrative or a focused narrative, depending on what direction we want to go.
I would agree that the fanatical political correctness we see coming from the cultural Left today is traceable to puritanism, but only in the sense that puritanism emerges due to certain strands in the human personality or human psychology. There’s been a great deal of discussion of to what degree modern totalitarianism is an outgrowth of puritan forms of Christianity. I’ve seen some on this site argue that the lineage of PC can be traced directly to old fashioned Calvinist puritanism, and it’s possible to outline a historical trajectory of that kind with a broad brush.
The way it seems to have happened is that puritanism emerged in the UK countries and then migrated to North America where it became the basis of the founding New England settlements. Over time, the Enlightenment overruns orthodox Calvinism but the puritan spirit remains and finds its way into neo-Protestant movements like Unitarianism and Progressive Christianity. (If you want to know what this spirit is like, just read the lyrics to the “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” the anthem of the Yankees during the American Civil War).
This kind of Progressive Christian neo-puritanism finds its way into secular progressivism in the 20th century (with movements like prohibitionism to use one of many examples), and creates the cultural and intellectual atmosphere for “cultural Marxism” to take root (the latter having been imported from Europe).
Some theorists of the European New Right like Alain de Benoist and Tomislav Sunic have argued that Marxism is a kind of secularization of Christian ideas like original sin (which becomes “alienation” in the Marxist outlook via Jean Jacques Rousseau), dualism, eschatology, egalitarianism, etc. Rothbard made a similar but narrower version of this argument regarding Protestantism as he tended to admire the Catholic emphasis on natural law. Catholic traditionalists like Erik von Kuehnelt Leddihn have actually argued that German Protestantism in the Lutheran tradition was a forerunner to Nazism. I also seen some Objectivist-influenced philsophers making arguments of this kind. And, of course, there’s the Nietzschean critique of slave morality that Nietzsche saw as having Christian roots.
But whatever the validity of these grand narratives, it seems to me we can also develop a more focused narrative. For example, the “privilege theory” that present day leftists (and, rather embarrassingly, left-libertarians) are obsessed with has its roots in American Marxist-Leninist theoreticians who developed the doctrine of “white skin privilege” in the 1960s, which then found its way into the New Left via Maoist groups like the Weather Underground. This privilege theory converged with Marcuse’s view that the working class had been bought off by consumer culture and integrated into capitalism. The extreme wing of the New Left adopted the view that the white working class in America had become collaborators with white skin privilege and that the black proletariat was the real revolutionary class. And then other groups like feminists, homosexuals, etc started getting added to this.
Paul Gottfried argues that this stuff took root in the American universities and among the American cultural elite first because the pre-existing cultural atmosphere of neo-Protestant puritanism had created an intellectual and cultural environment that was susceptible to it. Then the Europeans picked it up and ran with it.
For instance, I’ve heard it argued that PC takes on a different form in the historically Protestant European countries (i.e. the smug, smarmy moral puritanism of the progressives) than it does in the historically Catholic countries (where it more closely resembles the anti-fascism of the Old Left-for example, some of the first laws criminalizing Holocaust denial were introduced by the Communist deputies in the French Parliament, and the French CP was the last to de-Stalinize in Western Europe). Of course, Germany is a special case given their history.
As for the Jewish role in all this, its certainly true that historically speaking a lot of Jewish intellectuals and politicians have been leftists, but so have an awful lot of Anglo-Saxons, Americans, and continental Europeans. I think modern Jewish intellectuals tend to be liberals and leftists because modern intellectuals generally tend to be liberals and leftists. It’s true that some Jews have embraced multiculturalism on the grounds that Jews are ostensibly safer in a multi-ethnic society without a dominant ethnic majority (although I don’t know that’s actually the case). It’s also true that Jews were greatly disproportionately represented within the Communist movement, but much of this was more of repudiation than an embrace of Jewish identity. Its seems to me that, at best, liberal, socialist, or multicultural trends among Jews simply converged or ran parallel with trends of this type found among Gentile neo-Protestants or European intellectuals generally.