« Him and Her are anathema in Sweden | Main | "You Never Said Not To!" »

Progressives and the Totalitarian Urge


There is nothing more dangerous to liberty than those who would tell you what to do for your own good.  Indeed, the descendents of the Progressive movement (Socialism, Fascism, and Communism) were more destructive to life and liberty in the 20th Century than any other set of political philosophies.

By Paul A. Rahe | Ricochet

...

Thanks to the Progressives, we now live in the worst of times, and we also live in the best of times. Our greatest misfortune is our greatest good fortune. Thanks to our benefactor Barack Obama, we live at the moment - one hundred years after the initial victory of Progressivism - when the tyrannical character of the administrative state is becoming evident to one and all, when with the help of what my friend Michael Barone calls "gangster government," we are being made aware that, due to our abandonment of federalism and the separation of powers, we now live under a government that is irresponsible in every sense of the word. Put bluntly, President Obama is giving us the political education that we were denied in the schools and universities that the Progressives have crafted for our indoctrination. Unpleasant as it is to be confronted with gangster government, it is enlightening - and now, for the first time in my lifetime, we are in a position to think clearly about our options. No one is kidding anyone any more, and no one is pretending. We are witnessing the Great Unmasking. As William Blake once said, it is the road of excess that leads to the palace of wisdom. For us, alas, there is no other way.

We've been down this road before, and it has never ended well.  What say for once we break the stupid-loop and try something else, for a change.


TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
/cgi-bin/mt-tb.cgi/41858.

Comments (27)

If you're an elitist libera... (Below threshold)
recovered liberal democrat:

If you're an elitist liberal/socialist you can't admit you're wrong. The policies that aren't working aren't affecting you anyway. Alfred E. Obamalala "What, me worry?"

As I have said: Leftist/pr... (Below threshold)
jim m:

As I have said: Leftist/progressive policies never fail. The implementation was just insufficiently leftist.

The stimulus didn't fail, it wasn't big enough. Communism didn't fail, Stalinism did. They never learn from their failure and analysis stops with blaming lack of ideological purity for the poor results. You are never allowed to question the means because their ideology informs them that the means are correct. Facts from the real world are irrelevant.

So while some people may have learned the lesson that progressivism is just a dressed up fascism, most leftists are incapable of receiving that lesson.

The total surveillance stat... (Below threshold)
Chico:

The total surveillance state established by electronic spying, growing lack of respect for rights of the arrested - even US citizens arrested in the US - and the use of "enhanced interrogation techniques" bode ill for the future of freedom in the USA.

Only Ron Paul among political figures has the balls to protest.

Can we try affirmative acti... (Below threshold)
Sep14:

Can we try affirmative action some more? Its so much fun.

Chico, if you can leave "Ro... (Below threshold)
Justrand:

Chico, if you can leave "Ron Paul" out of your quote I might agree with you (except for the "enhanced interrogation techniques" part...which I'm all for for truly BAD GUYS/GALS).

But yes, Chico, the powers that Obama is bringing to the Executive Branch are scary...and Caesar-like. And yes, I will fear & fight them just as hard when a Republican is in the White House (Jan-2013).

I do NOT want Caesar...what letter is after their name (C) or (R)

What really bodes ill for f... (Below threshold)
jim m:

What really bodes ill for freedom in the USA is the selective enforcement of the law where politically connected people are not prosecuted and where the government exempts itself from the laws that it imposes upon the rest of us.

The current admin is a perfect example. Geithner and friends exempted from the consequences of not paying their taxes. A DOJ that determines who to prosecute based on skin color. A BATF that countenances multiple felonies, not as part of a sting operation, but to further a partisan political argument and then illegally punishes whistle blowers, all the while protected by the same politicized DOJ.

Freedom isn't in danger from government surveillance. It is in danger from a lawless government.

Progressivism is a... (Below threshold)
irongrampa:


Progressivism is an illogical premise.

A governmental policy based on this illogic is doomed to failure. Refusal to analyze those failures is also illogical.

Rational conclusions and practices cannot be implemented from an illogical premise.

For an example, see the late USSR.

We have an opportunity to discard progressivism in 2012.

Keep that in mind.

I see Bush II as laying the... (Below threshold)
Chico:

I see Bush II as laying the foundations of tyranny, and Obama as the one consolidating tyranny. The next president will further it with national ID cards, checkpoints, and detention camps.

As far as selective prosecutions go, I am totally in agreement. There haven't been fraud prosecutions out of Wall Street because of the financial crisis because they are buddies of Geithner and contributors to Obama.

The next president will ... (Below threshold)
jim m:

The next president will further it with national ID cards, checkpoints, and detention camps.

Only if the next President is obama. And if that is the case I would start to worry whether or not he will be replaced in 2016. In 2008 he said in a letter to Jacques Chirac (mistakenly thinking that Chirac was still President of France) that he looked forward to working with Chirac for "The next ten years or so". That is either ignorance or intention.

Since obama has shown deep ignorance of the US (57 states anyone?) I have chalked it up to that, but with the increasing tendency to ignore the law I'm thinking that it may be the latter.

Only if the next Preside... (Below threshold)
Chico:

Only if the next President is obama.

Really? I hope you're right, but I don't see Romney, Pawlenty, Palin or Bachmann as champions of civil liberties.

Romney has already come out in favor of the national ID card.
http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2007/05/giuliani_romney/

It always amazes me that th... (Below threshold)
baseballguy:

It always amazes me that the liberals of the sixties were fighting against the man and now that they are the man, they are fighting for even more power over the same people they were originally defending.
Makes sense to only people who specialize in pretzel logic.
If the liberals of the sixties could have taken a time machine to 2011, they would be appalled at themselves.

Too bad I can't vote for po... (Below threshold)
liberalnitemare:

Too bad I can't vote for post 11, more than once.

I'm against abortion -no ma... (Below threshold)
Don L :

I'm against abortion -no matter what, but if there were a way to pick these people at birth...(some say they're the ones who always cry if the maternity ward nurse doesn't comply with their whining fast enough)

The choice needs to be betw... (Below threshold)
jim m:

The choice needs to be between people who believe in big government solutions and those who do not. Romney is a big government Republican. That is one of the reasons why he is not going to win the nomination.

The only problem with liber... (Below threshold)
retired military:

The only problem with liberalism is that eventually you run out of other people's money.

jim m @ 14 wrote:<blo... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

jim m @ 14 wrote:

The choice needs to be between people who believe in big government solutions and those who do not. Romney is a big government Republican. That is one of the reasons why he is not going to win the nomination.

Indeed.

Jim m made a good point in ... (Below threshold)
boqueronman:

Jim m made a good point in #14. A review of the early history of the Progressive movement - particularly the TR-Wilson period - shows that one of the currents of thought was that government was too "weak" to confront the large and powerful corporations and "robber barons." Thus, the government needed thorough institutional reform and strengthening through a more technocratic administration to "identify and solve the nation's societal problems." Under this definition of government the U.S. Constitution stood as an impediment.

Flash forward 100 years and where are we? Well, the Progressives are nearing completion of their "long march through the institutions." And, by now, the government virtually controls the water you drink, the food you eat, the transportation you use, the shelter you choose, the energy you consume, and - literally - the air you breathe. Where do the announced Republican Party candidates stand on the issue of government control of these fundamental issues and the freedom to choose? Unfortunately, Margaret Thatcher's dictum of Progressivism "running out of other people's money" is about hit us upside the head.

A glance at the numbers reveal that the life-style we live was built on - certainly after 1980 - a growing mountain of unsustainable household, business, and public sector debt. The easiest way to visualize the trouble we are in is search for a total debt-GDP ratio chart since 1900. Well, the kicking of the can down the road is only adding more $s to the debt and liability side of the societal balance sheet. And real per capita economic production - with wasteful USG spending netted out - has been largely stagnant. In fact, real median income today is about the same as it was in 1973!

If we look closely we can see Greece fast approaching our own future. Does Romney, Huntsman, Gingrich, Pawlenty, or "candidate to be named later" offer a clear view of where our current path will end and how we can reverse course to return to real, stable, sustainable production and growth? Does anyone really believe they see through lenses which will identify and implement a vision of an affordable public sector losing administrative "weight" and shedding itself of all but the constitutionally enumerated powers? Bwahahaha!

I've often joked that a lib... (Below threshold)

I've often joked that a liberal's worst nightmare is that someone, somewhere is doing something without his/her permission.

I strongly lean Republican because, while we may be cursed with a few such, the type of arrogant snots who feel they must control absolutely every aspect of our lives (because we’re too damned stupid to do so ourselves) seem to infest the Democratic party far more than they do the Republican party.

That difference is worth preserving, worth fighting for. Always!
-

Not to worry Rodney, I'm su... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Not to worry Rodney, I'm sure the Progressives "will get it right this time".

For them it's always 'this time'.

@18 Ah, Paul, the ... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:

@18

Ah, Paul, the problem is that when the proletariat are left to their own devices they often make the wrong decisions. So it's in their interest to have their betters, the revolutionary vanguard, make their decisions for them. That way they experience true freedom.

(Seriously, I've heard this argument made - straight-faced - by hard-core leftists.)

As far as selective pros... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:

As far as selective prosecutions go, I am totally in agreement. There haven't been fraud prosecutions out of Wall Street because of the financial crisis because they are buddies of Geithner and contributors to Obama.

Hats off to Chico, with whom for once I agree, for recognizing and stating this truth.

Dems always try to paint conservatives as colluding with Wall Street, but a minute spent checking FEC filings on FactCheck.org reveal that the Street is in the tank for Dems, big time.

Goldman Sachs, in particular, ponied up serious dinero to Obama, as did Freddie and Fannie, so it's exasperating to hear Dem apologists attribute their political protection to Republicans. Not even close.

Romney is a big governme... (Below threshold)
Chico:

Romney is a big government Republican. That is one of the reasons why he is not going to win the nomination.

That is exactly why Romney will win the nomination. The oligarchy wants big government - at their service, to protect them, bail them out, and muscle other countries with our military. This will produce economic conditions at home which will produce more dissent and disturbance. This will lead to more laws and controls for "order."

The script has been followed many times. Plan accordingly.

'That is exactly why Romney... (Below threshold)
DaveD:

'That is exactly why Romney will win the nomination. The oligarchy wants big government - at their service, to protect them, bail them out, and muscle other countries with our military. This will produce economic conditions at home which will produce more dissent and disturbance. This will lead to more laws and controls for "order." '

Plausible in my mind. The Democrats are the vanguard of this political evolution toward tyranny. Despite the rhetoric, Republicans have done nothing of substance to defeat this. The few who speak the truth are marginalized.

With all due respect, Chico... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:

With all due respect, Chico, I think you're misdiagnosing the origin of the dissent and disturbance. I don't think it comes from the oligarchy - which if it's at all rational, would rather just have things run smoothly and quietly, thereby making their lives easier.

I think it comes from hard-left agitation. Notice all the dissent and disturbance regarding the war in Iraq is pretty much ... gone, as of Jan. 20, 2009. New war in Libya? No problem. Has their been a single demonstration - one - against it? Nope, AFAIK. (Where's Code Pink? Where's Cindy Sheehan?)

Any hypothesis regarding political dynamics has to account for the absence of demonstrations. The suspension of left-wing agitation with a left-winger in the White House explains it. The machinations of the oligarchy does not.

I don't think it comes f... (Below threshold)
Chico:

I don't think it comes from the oligarchy - which if it's at all rational, would rather just have things run smoothly and quietly, thereby making their lives easier.

You would think that, yes. I question it myself. But history has so many examples of the few plundering and exploiting the many, even to the ultimate detriment of their own interests, that we have to account for that possibility. These a-holes want it all and the rest of us to be impoverished slaves.

As for left-wing agitation in the USA, it's been a joke since the end of the Vietnam War. The Free Mumia crowd will never attract large support.

As for left-wing agitati... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:

As for left-wing agitation in the USA, it's been a joke since the end of the Vietnam War. The Free Mumia crowd will never attract large support.

Left-wing agitation is thriving in the US, Chico. Re-read my comment above. Look at all the anti-war protests against Bush, and the absence thereof now.

The conclusion is inescapable: the protests during the Bush era did not result from anti-war sentiment, but from left-wing agitation. Left-winger in the White House? No left-wing agitation, no protests. Libya, Schmibya.

It's the perfect control experiment. Bush had 17 broken UN resolutions, a unanimous consensus among members of both parties and all Western intelligence services about the threat from Iraq, Saddam's well-known history of brutality, terrorism, and willingness to use WMD (e.g., gassing the Kurds), and that was an immoral, illegal war for oil.

Obama, erstwhile member of the Democratic Socialists of America, decides to bomb Libya - a country that posed zero threat to the US, and was of minimal strategic interest to us, and he doesn't even bother to mention this to Congress, or the UN (which is fine with me, btw), or the American people, and nary a peep.

Conclusion: left-wing agitators have taken this four years off because one of their own is calling the shots. When President Perry sends Obama packing, the Reds will be back in full force. Out will come the papier mache heads, etc.

You know this is true.

Jay,It's not only ... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

Jay,

It's not only true, it's self evident to anyone who cares to look and trust the evidence of their own eyes.




Advertisements









rightads.gif

beltwaybloggers.gif

insiderslogo.jpg

mba_blue.gif

Follow Wizbang

Follow Wizbang on FacebookFollow Wizbang on TwitterSubscribe to Wizbang feedWizbang Mobile

Contact

Send e-mail tips to us:

[email protected]

Fresh Links

Credits

Section Editor: Maggie Whitton

Editors: Jay Tea, Lorie Byrd, Kim Priestap, DJ Drummond, Michael Laprarie, Baron Von Ottomatic, Shawn Mallow, Rick, Dan Karipides, Michael Avitablile, Charlie Quidnunc, Steve Schippert

Emeritus: Paul, Mary Katherine Ham, Jim Addison, Alexander K. McClure, Cassy Fiano, Bill Jempty, John Stansbury, Rob Port

In Memorium: HughS

All original content copyright © 2003-2010 by Wizbang®, LLC. All rights reserved. Wizbang® is a registered service mark.

Powered by Movable Type Pro 4.361

Hosting by ServInt

Ratings on this site are powered by the Ajax Ratings Pro plugin for Movable Type.

Search on this site is powered by the FastSearch plugin for Movable Type.

Blogrolls on this site are powered by the MT-Blogroll.

Temporary site design is based on Cutline and Cutline for MT. Graphics by Apothegm Designs.

Author Login



Terms Of Service

DCMA Compliance Notice

Privacy Policy