Nothing is as moronic about the modern left as its espousing of socialist values, like wealth redistribution and state-determined equality of outcomes, and its simultaneous backing of politicians and leftist celebrities who defy every one of those purported values. The cognitive dissonance it takes to support a left-wing party headed by wealthy oligarchs is truly breathtaking. Such radical fat cats in the main use the state as a way to suppress competition, flaunt the radical environmentalist claptrap through carbon-belching air and motorcade travel, and even crush the market system that got them to their lofty positions.
The country is in moral crisis. The great majority of citizens appear to be aware of the dire situation, even if they do not recognize it in such terms. They may feel powerless to change the cultural decay or that they have no recourse but to pray for the fate of the country. But a fundamental understanding of the ideological and political sources of our nation’s demoralization would do much to empower a counter-movement dedicated to preserving American values and defeating their opponents.
A radical minority desires social breakdown as an opportunity to promote its leftward political agenda. It is hard for most Americans to contemplate why a sizable number of their fellow citizens would seek to purposefully throw the country into tumult. Many commonly give the left too much credit for noble intentions, such as aiding the poor, protecting the helpless, and defending supposed victims. There may be many people who vote Democrat who have such admirable aims, but they do not have a deep enough appreciation for the moral means of advancing these worthy goals.
The nation is being torn apart not by two competing visions, but by two mutually exclusive ones. Whereas conservatives and liberals once debated the alternative means of reaching the same end goal — the promotion and expansion of the American Dream — our country is now essentially divided over whether we should have a limited, Constitutional republic or an unfettered state with complete control over all aspects of human life.
We should all realize that the current discourse between supposed right and left is not a rehashing of the debates between the so-called Federalists and Anti-federalists that rent our country for decades. While it was legitimately and honestly debated by our Framers whether a stronger central government or a more directly democratic one would be the better guarantor of liberty, it was generally agreed that the protection of the individual from oppression was the foremost of the government’s duties.
Everywhere around us it appears the ties that bind us together as Americans are unraveling. The value of freedom that formed us as a people and provided us with unity of purpose, and consequentially allowed for civil and sensible national discourse, has been utterly severed. We now discuss to what extent we must enslave our fellow man to our most capricious of desires; and we plot to what degree we will ruin the nation through unchecked debt born of disregard for consequence.
What is lacking in our Constitutional republic is any sound notion of rights; due to the self-serving immediacy of our capacious desires and through our utter confounding of democracy and freedom we have sacrificed our children on the altar of expediency. By majority rule we have selected our oppressors, who heave our wealth into the ever-gaping chasm of want and idleness; and meanwhile, our politicians with earnest displays of self-aggrandizing pomposity claim credit for siphoning off our sweat and tears and blood in which to baptize their party faithful.
The American Left has pushed the United States to the brink of Constitutional crisis. Whether or not the left agrees with conservatives regarding the unconstitutionality of its preferred laws, the perception of millions of Americans is that the country is in political crisis. This is the state of the nation because what have widely been agreed-upon as the “rules of the game,” as implied in liberal democracy, are being replaced in piecemeal fashion by progressives, whose primary agenda is to unfetter the government. Whether or not some of the left’s methods of transforming the country should be considered illegal or unconstitutional is the subject of this essay.
The New Left rationalizes its “fundamental transformation” of the nation, with the tacit endorsement of using extra-constitutional or even unconstitutional means, by appealing to a crusader-like mission to remedy the supposed structural injustices of our legal system. Among the left’s devices of transformation are the linguistic redefinition of terms like “freedom” and “equality,” thereby impacting public law, and the opportunistic and pragmatic employment of power.
We conservatives find ourselves in a state of bewilderment as to how our country could be slipping into socialism. ”This is the United States of America” we cry. “This is not supposed to happen here!” But a moment’s introspection can clarify what happened and what needs to happen in order to reverse the nation’s course.
The simplest explanation for our country’s incessant drive towards central government is that we conservatives have failed to advance the system of liberty and free enterprise on moral grounds. We who call ourselves conservatives, to our own detriment I believe, have relied too much on tradition while blindingly revering our values as self-evident truths.
While our Founders provided us with valuable insights into human nature and government, we mistakenly believed that the debate was over. Too many of us failed to recognize that new challenges to our beliefs had arisen that demanded to be directly addressed.
Institutions centralizing control over the economy were established in the “progressive era” that could later be employed by radicals to move the country in the direction of socialist revolution. The two most important are torn from the pages of the Communist Manifesto: a progressive income tax and a central bank dispensing fiat currency. The former would penalize those seeking to ascend into the upper class; the latter would devalue the currency nearly a hundred times over since it was founded.
This arrangement would help finance a system of incessantly expanding government and affiliated bureaucracy, which would eventually turn the American economy upside down.
A Foreign Ideology Makes Its Way in America
The United States was exceptional in its founding compared to the states of continental Europe because it had no direct experience of feudalism. As Alexis de Tocqueville wrote in Democracy in America:
Marxist philosophy would triumphantly predict the implosion of the capitalist system and the eventual victory of the socialist state. But when the opportunity came during the First World War, heralded as symbolizing the last death throes of “capitalist-imperialism,” for the workers to rise up and overthrow their respective states, they predominately threw in lot with the nationalist powers and defended their homelands. When the Bolsheviks rose to power in Russia, preying on the weakness of the Tsar’s abdication and the divided and weak Provisional Government, the workers and soldiers, however, did revolt, inspired by the promise of “Bread, Land, and Peace.” Many of them would receive none of these things after the communists came to power.
Background: Who are the Marxist Left and What Do They Want?
In the afterward to the second edition of Das Kapital, Karl Marx attempted to clarify his materialist view of history. Sloughing off his Young Hegelian credentials, Marx wrote, “The mystification which dialectic suffers in Hegel’s hands… with him it is standing on its head. It must be turned right side up again, if you would discover the rational kernel within the mystical shell.”
More than one hundred and fifty years later, it is Marx’s ideology that is standing America on its head. It is time to delve into why the German philosopher’s ideas were such an abysmal failure, and why the left continues to pursue their implementation.
The following piece was based on a hoax study originally reported by BreitbartTV and commented upon by several radio hosts. There is still valuable information within, but the study itself was a fraud.
A Flawed Study?
Is America crazy or is the United States government? A new “study” published in The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry suggests that people holding an intense fear of the government may be suffering from “Anti-Government Phobia” (AGP), whose symptoms include “extreme suspiciousness, conspiracy-mongering, delusional thought patterns, staunch ‘us against them’ mentality, withdrawal from reality, and often religious fanaticism.”
The Obamacare provision forcing all healthcare providers to provide contraception services, including the “morning-after pill,” is causing a firestorm in religious communities and particularly, in the Catholic Church. Numerous churches have drafted letters of protest, and are working in concert to oppose the president. Many have refused to comply with the unconstitutional law, which is the right approach.
It is clear to students of history that the Obamacare provision is pure Marxist-Leninism, and intended to demoralize Christians. But such an anti-religious policy should not come as a surprise, since Obama was described as a “Marxist-Leninist” by a fellow Marxist classmate who remembered him from Occidental College.
Man does not “possess” individual rights, but should defend them because he is rational and has a sense of enlightened self-interest. Unfortunately, this is a rather high threshold, and the propensity for enlightened self-interest fluctuates according to the age; namely, it is likelier to arise after collectivist movements have engaged in wanton slaughter, or tyrannical regimes have oppressed men to the point that there is nothing rational left to do but rebel.
In the worst of these desolated conditions, men generally rebel in the realm of ideas. Invisible and hidden from prying eyes, men capable of abstraction and imagination of alternate existences begin scribbling. The man of genius, or divine fire, becomes possessed of ferocious ardor and insatiable escape into the world of “oughts.” Eventually, he becomes courageous enough to spread the word of his new plans for society. The ideas catch fire; and creating a sentiment of the possible, men are inspired to great revolutionary deeds. If successful, they establish freedom and a constitution to safeguard it to their posterity. If not, the trial degrades into violent and senseless debauchery, culminated by an even greater despotism.
The overcoming may indeed sow the seeds of destruction. Having convinced themselves of the rightness of their ideas, the founders of the new nation set forth their laws. The blessed then suffer under the delusion that these bold and noble ideals are self-evident, and therefore self-enforcing. Laziness wrought of overconfidence leads the country onward down the path to tyranny, ever so slowly. Men of learning, tending to be narcissists, are both inspired by the founders’ example, and dream too of their alternative existences. But these ideals are not born in misery, but in luxury and excess; they condemn the materialistic side of life, or the disparity in fortunes, no matter how truly well off nearly everyone has become. They rise to esteem in academia, and the universities, the fount of all professions, become the havens for vainglorious dreamers. The prior revolution dies in the minds and hearts of men, and a new vision, a dream that defies reality, is given life.
The resulting war is not one of man versus man at first; foremost, it is one of fantasy versus reality. The utopian schemers, failing time and time again, demand more resources, more manpower, to make it work, to jam the square peg in the round hole. They develop totalitarian plans to recruit every able bodied and willing man; and when it turns out that there are plenty able but not willing, civil conflict ensues. The results are indeterminate at this point, for they depend on local conditions. But the war has been determined prior on the battlefield of ideas, long before a shot is ever fired.
H/T Duke Boyne
Karl Popper is famous publicly for his political treatise The Open Society and Its Enemies, but he is also well-known among academics for his work in the philosophy of science. Readers may recognize in the above-cited title the phrase “open society” – it is shared by the mainstay organizing and funding arm of billionaire activist George Soros.
The controversial philanthropist did not agree with everything Karl Popper wrote, and therefore one must be careful not to consider the men as analogous thinkers. For example, George Soros criticized the theorist in an editorial by claiming, “Popper failed to recognise that in democratic politics, gathering public support takes precedence over the pursuit of truth.”
To say Popper believed in pursuing the truth is quite slippery indeed. In the theorist’s view, the truth can only be approached, never finally apprehended. Popper’s ideology is skeptical to an extreme; it presupposes that there can be no such thing as certainty in a theorem or maxim, and therefore, the best a scientist can do is to falsify hypotheses. What withstands falsification over an extended period of time, with repeated trials, can be held contingently as a theory.
The sense of bewilderment affecting the country-deprived patriot, who watches his beloved homeland crumble before his very eyes, is not a new phenomenon particular to the devout American. How a minority of oligarchical radicals could penetrate all spheres of government and civil administration, abetted and sanctioned by the schools, the courts, and the arts, is a perplexing and distressing reality to grapple with. The confidence in the center-right majority and the institution of elections has proved too great; the enemies of freedom and the Constitutional republic have circumvented our most potent barriers to unchecked democracy, have looted the treasury, destroyed all notion of civic rights, and brought the nation to the brink of despotism.
Available at National Review Online. Excerpt:
The United States should pay heed to the modern Greek Cassandra, since our own rendezvous with reality is rapidly approaching. The costs of servicing a growing national debt of more than $15 trillion are starting to squeeze out other budget expenditures. Americans are no longer affluent enough to borrow hundreds of billions of dollars to import oil, while we snub our noses at vast new oil and gas deposits beneath our own soil and seas.
In my state, Californians for 40 years have hiked taxes; grown their government; vastly expanded entitlements; put farmland, timberland, and oil and gas lands off limits; and opened their borders to millions of illegal aliens. They apparently assumed that they had inherited so much wealth from prior generations and that their state was so naturally rich, that a continually better life was their natural birthright.
It wasn’t. Now, as in Greece, the veneer of civilization is proving pretty thin in California. Hospitals no longer have the money to offer sophisticated long-term medical care to the indigent. Cities no longer have the funds to self-insure themselves from the accustomed barrage of monthly lawsuits. When thieves rip copper wire out of street lights, the streets stay dark. Most state residents would rather go to the dentist these days than queue up and take a number at the Department of Motor Vehicles. Hospital emergency rooms neither have room nor act as if there’s much of an emergency.