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Monday, December 26, 2011

What Liberals Believe

Timothy Birdnow

Paul Shlichta has a great analysis of the differences between liberals and conservatives at American Thinker this morning.

My college thesis was on the evolution of modern liberalism, and I can say that Mr. Shlichta has nailed it here; he points out that conservatives believe in Original Sin, the Christian belief that Man is inherently evil and will do the wrong thing BY NATURE so must have checks and balances, and the liberal view of the inherent goodness of Man. The liberal view is essentially utopic; they believe that the human condition is perfectible, and that Man can create his own paradise. (We see that in the movies all the time; I recently watched the old move "Starman" and the aliens had a perfect society, which led me to remember other films such as Cocoon. The fundamental assumption is that a sufficiently technologically advanced species will have paradise. It's a fundamentally wrong assumption; we cannot simply "grow up" and end our problems, because our problems are part of our physical existence. We are Fallen.)

This desperate desire for a man made paradise drives liberal denial of reality, as Shlichta points out:

"In contrast, liberals accept the concept of human rights -- and have an admirable record of fighting for some of them -- but deny the existence of original sin. They do not believe that there is anything wrong with humanity that proper nurturing and education won't cure [2]. Instead, they tend to believe in evolutism, a quasi-religious belief that humanity is guided by a driving force (like the black slab in Kubrick's 2001: Space Odyssey) that will lead us toward an ever-higher form of life and intelligence. Therefore, if we follow the right path, we will inevitably come to a happy world with peace and security for all.

However, there is no experimental evidence that the black slab or shining path really exists. I therefore contend that liberalism is as much a faith-based religion as Christianity. As with any religion, it has a demonology -- Wall Street, big business, and the rich and powerful. Once we get rid of these demons (after stripping them of their wealth), we will all be kind and prosperous.

To exorcize these demons, and to supervise our nurture and education, liberals believe that the common herd needs shepherds to guide it. This is in keeping with the doctrines of evolutism; some of us will be more evolved than the rest and will be the fittest leaders [3]. Therefore, despite constant professions of universal equality, liberalism is essentially elitist and tends, as Djilas pointed out, to produce a class system of its own.

Liberalism has even flirted with a variety of gods. The rationalists of the French revolution tried to make mankind its own god. Others have worshiped Historical Necessity or Gaia [4]. But these are unsatisfactorily abstract, so contemporary leftists tend to choose dictator-gods like Chairman Mao or Kim Jong-il"

End excerpt.

Indeed, the concept of the strong man goes back to the early days of the Liberal movement. It's part of why Rousseau admired Islam so much; a "whole" world where everything was governed and improvement could simply be imposed from above. Today you have people like Cass Sunstein; his recent book "Nudge" suggests that most people want to "do the right thing" (if by right thing you mean create a world socialist utopia) and that government should give them a nudge to get them moving in the right direction - until the time for nudging is over and heavy compulsion is necessary. Sunstein's Stalinistic shoulder poking is predicated on this rainbows and kittens worldview, the utopian nightmare of the godless liberal who would make us believe in Santa Claus and sit on his lap or ve vill be shot!

The conservative view of Original Sin suggests that any human shepherd is likely to lead the flock astray because he is as flawed as those he is trying to lead. This is true; consider the pedophilia scandal in the Catholic Church, or any one of a number of scandals involving Protestant Ministers, or just plain-old corruption in any organization. (There are more cases of pedophilia by lay teachers in public schools than there were among Catholic priests.) The Shepherd doesn't always deliver the sheep in prime condition; sometimes he sells a few for slaughter while out in the fields. It is what is wrong with the liberal accusations against Christians of being "holier than thou" and of hypocrisy; they purposely refuse to believe in the non-perfectibility of Man, and so delight in pointing out the failures of Christians as examples of bad people rather than weak sinners. They see their own lack of standards in some regards as excusing themselves from the same standard (remember Saul Alinsky's "hold them to their own standards" admonition?) Of course, as the elite shepherds they themselves are entitled to an occasional indescretion...

But the Churchmen are given no such leeway. The fundamental assumption is that they are BAD because they have usurped the authority to lead, and must be doing so for their own purposes, their own power, rather than the purity of the greater good, which the liberal believes is self-evident since they themselves believe that way. The same is true for any conservative leader, for anyone who thinks there are any limits on the absolute freedom of mankind, for anyone who just dares to say "the Emperor has no clothes". Evil does not exist in Man, except where a man opposes the liberal worldview. How can they be anything other than evil, if they oppose the enlightening of Man and the exercise of his greater social and physical development?

It's not a rational intellectual system, but rather a secular substitute for religion. It IS a dogma of Faith. Liberalism is perhaps the ultimate dogma of Faith in that it demands the believer to believe in Man as a mass of tissue, as a series of conditioned responses, as a pure algorithm to be molded and shaped by a purely human sculpter. Most other religions tell of a Supreme Being, a Creator with superior wisdom who asks certain things of us, things we in our weakness cannot understand. Liberalism asks it's adherents to believe that Man is but a puny ant, a machine, a mechanistic system, and yet that he is also divine, the shaper of himself, the self-willed god. It is insane at it's core. As has been attributed to Chesterton "when a man stops believing in God he will believe in anything" and that is precisely what the liberal does. There is an enormous leap of faith involved in becoming a liberal.

On the other hand, one needn't be religious to see that liberal tenants are daft, and do not work. I know a number of good conservatives who are also atheists; they simply have eyes and trust them over what some stuffed-shirt self-styled expert tells them. Yes, they do believe their lying eyes! A rational being understands that Man is flawed, perhaps fatally so. The human condition can only be advanced through dilligent labor, through eternal vigilance. An educated and informed public is the bane of tyrants, and so we believe we should encourage real education, the dissemination of true information, the empowerment of the public. They should be armed, to act as a check on the aggressions of those who would be their masters. They should be the ones who determine their own destiny, for the many would likely seek the greater good as they perceive it and want it. A republican form of government is the best, conservatives believe, because it tempers passions, opposes interests, yet guarantees representation. Liberals love either totalitarian dictatorships or pure democracy, which inevitably leads to totalitarianism. They ultimately do not trus the public that is so good in their view, because the public refuses to accept the rule of the liberal. It's a fascinating dichotomy; Man is inherently good, and we're going to force them to believe it! We'll crush all the evil bastards who stop us from teaching the goodness of Man!

In the end, liberalism is a parasite, something that feeds off of the good works of others. Jewish concepts of law for deliverance, Christian concepts of salvation, all are stolen by the liberal, hijacked to the Cause. Charity comes from the Judao-Christian tradition. So does freedom. Who ended the slave trade? It wasn't hippies.

And science wasn't started, promoted, or developed by Occupy Wall Street, either. The search for Truth comes from the search for God. Copernicus was a Catholic priest. Newton an Episcopal one. Liberalism, despite it's profession of reliance on science and acceptance of the supremacy of human reason, is essentially a superstition, and leads away from an understanding of what is real. Just look at Global Warming, or Darwinian theory, or modern psychology; science is a tool for the left, something to be twisted and manipulated for their particular purposes. Yet the liberal will boldly claim it is the opposition who is somehow anti-science or anti-rational. They are the kings of projection, putting their own faults on those they oppose.

At any rate, Mr Shlichta has written a fine piece; be sure to read it!

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