Our civilization’s salvation may be dependent on the behaviors of “real liberals.”
I’ll probably piss off all of my friends, family, and readers with this column. That’s not my intent. But if it happens, then I’ll apologize on the front end for perhaps upsetting your conventional sensibilities.
My intent is to think out loud with those of you who can help us understand the political insanity that pervades our civil society. To get you to talk back to me, because I can only learn from you if we CO-mmunicate.
Political Insanity and Our Quest for Truth
I thought I had our political madness figured out years ago when I wrote about it at some length in a book. I discussed the origins of our modern democracy: the most liberal form of governance the world has ever seen.
This thing we call a “Liberal Democracy” is a byproduct of the demise of medieval culture, or what Thomas Jefferson described as the institution that allows us to find truth in our moral world.
Finding truth is the cornerstone to man’s quest on earth. This persistent quest exists in all civilizations and lives within the bulk of earth’s individuals. If it didn’t exist, people wouldn’t be drinking whisky in bars, talking in churches, and hanging out in coffee-houses trying to solve the world’s problems. And we wouldn’t see the evolution of governmental forms that have existed since the beginning of recorded history.
The word “democracy” comes from the Greek words “demos” which means “the people” and “kratos” which means “authority”: People Authority. In this case, the word “liberal” means an unrestrictive form of governance; a permissive form that allows the dissolution of restrictions customarily employed by those lording power over the individual. This liberal form of governance has enhanced our individual liberties and has advanced “people authority.”
What distinguished the older forms of governance from the new liberal democracies was this: A liberal democracy permitted a “hands off” approach to governance; where the ultimate political authority is vested in the people (demos kratos). This liberal form of governance allowed for the individual to overrule any group, elder, lord, king, clergy or deity from telling the individual what to do and how to do it.
This radical concept was considered a very liberal view on governance. It is still the most liberal and progressive form of governance on earth. By comparison, all the other “old” top-down authoritarian forms are today considered exceedingly regressive.
This liberal system of government presumed that people could determine their own destiny, and could make moral judgments and sensible decisions in their daily lives. These foundational components were eventually considered to be those human rights which cannot be taken away or amended: “unalienable rights.”
Unalienable Rights are yours by the sheer fact that you are human, and you exist. They are not given to you by any government, or endowed upon you by a document. These rights cannot be abridged, changed, or taken away by any person, government dictate, Supreme Court, congressional action, law, piece of paper, or any deed by others; by force or otherwise.
These rights are the foundation of a liberal democracy, and what Jefferson and others simplified for the masses by saying this: These rights are “endowed” to us by our creator; whoever or whatever you want that to be. It doesn’t matter. You define it.
Our Constitution and Bill of Rights
Our founding fathers understood what it took to free the individual from history’s restraints and the dictates of a few. They went through a revolution against the controls and edicts of an autocratic government whose sole function was to subjugate the individual for a monarch’s edification.
The documents they wrote, contrary to what some say, weren’t written for a different day-and-time or for a different technology or for a set of sexual morays of the 18th Century. They were written simply as an adjunct to our unalienable rights. As noted above, these documents do not give us our unalienable rights; they are merely documents that ratify what we know to be the essence of the human experience. And the Bill of Rights, as a protection, merely articulates some of those unalienable rights: the ones the founding fathers thought were important enough for us to contemplate and to remember. They wrote some of these rights down because they feared that the Constitution as drafted would allow tyranny on the part of the central government. They wanted to spell out the individual citizen’s immunities so the government wouldn’t meddle with them.
The Anti-Democratic Alterations to Democracies
Since the establishment of modern “liberal” democracies, people have understood that such a governmental form and its corresponding economic system can seem wildly unpredictable, disorganized, confusing, and just down-right messy. As a result, some have tried to put limitations on it; which means limiting the freedoms of the individual and controlling the supporting institutions. And those who understood that they could be enriched from controlling the freedoms of others tried to regress back to more authoritarian forms which resembled the old-world institutions. The early 20th Century German and Italian despots were just those types of people.
These tyrants considered the trend of liberal democratic governance, which supported the notion of free markets and free people, to be too chaotic. They decided that controlling human behaviors and the fluctuations in the markets would be best for the masses. They sought a system of government that was less difficult to implement, less intrusive, and less controlling than socialism, so they decided to take the middle ground. They concluded that instead of having messy free markets as in a liberal democracy, and not wanting to have the State own the means of production as socialism requires, they would merely have the State control the means of production.
This movement became known as fascism: a movement similar to what is happening to liberal democracies throughout the world today . . . including America’s. This is a relentless march away from “people authority;” a European style of governance which is an outright anti-democratic menace to liberal democracies everywhere.
As an aside, if you believe that government has the right to dictate to you and others how to live your life, then you are a socialist or a fascist or a communist . . . and that’s okay. But you aren’t a liberal.
Real Liberals and Progressives
Those who call themselves “Liberals,” and “Progressives” but advocate for the creation of regressive old-world style authoritarian governments-governments comfortable with eliminating citizens’ unalienable rights, and which promote anti-democratic governmental actions antithetical to individual rights and the functioning of a liberal democracy-are not progressive and are not real liberals. They are merely bullshit artists.
A real liberal is one who believes in a liberal democracy and is cognizant of this fact: our unalienable rights are not given to us by our Constitution or by our courts.
A real liberal is one who believes in the individual’s rights over the power of the State, never allowing the State to infringe on or abridge our unalienable rights; irrespective of any governmental or court interpretation of our constitutional rights.
A real liberal is one who is vigilant in barring our government from regressing into barbaric authoritarian forms from the past; authoritarian forms which control the individual and dictate individual and institutional behaviors.
A real liberal is one who defends those unalienable rights that allow for the evolution of civilization.
Cause and Effect – The Coming Revolution
When individual rights are crushed and people are disenfranchised, a reaction against the system or a backlash against the government will occur. It happens all over the world, and it happens here in America. It’s called cause and effect. It’s the reason why ACORN, the TEA Party and the Occupiers exist. Those groups may not be singing off the same sheet of music, but they are cut from the same cloth. Understand they are merely the symptom of a problem. They aren’t the cause.
When the individual’s unalienable rights are infringed upon, and elected and unelected government officials indiscriminately discount the gravity of such infringements, more people will consider a rebellion. That’s called cause and effect.
When leaders become autocratic and dictatorial in their pronouncements, decrees and actions, there will be a backlash. That’s called cause and effect.
When we see so-called liberal Senators, like Chuck Schumer, say they want to crush the TEA Party, he and others like him will be the cause for more groups to agglomerate and rebel. And when it is perceived that the IRS and the NSA (the government) is trying to squelch the unalienable rights of groups to assemble, be secure in their papers (telephone logs), and speak freely, then the government will be responsible for a rebellion. Again . . . cause and effect.
When the power of the government is used to infringe on the unalienable rights of any group or individual, and the more entrenched and repressive a government gets, then the government and those in control of the government will be cause for the escalation in uprisings and rebellions; in which the government will be besieged. It happens all over the world.
I want to be very clear to my supposed liberal and conservative friends. There is no middle ground between having unalienable rights and not having unalienable rights.
Anybody who wants to compromise on your rights wants to take them away. You either have them or you don’t. The only solution in that case is what the founding fathers did to secure their rights. Fight for them. And every time additional infringements take place, we are one step closer to an armed revolution.
For my so-called liberal friends who insist on going down the road of relentlessly advocating for the elimination of certain unalienable rights, you all need to pull your collective heads out of your collective butts. Understand one very important thing: if your actions are successful, you will eventually kill our liberal democracy and you will be cause for an eventual armed revolution.
Which brings us to the point of guns. I hope everyone is aware that the reason all of us have the right to bear arms is to kill people who take away our rights. THAT IS A LIBERAL PERSPECTIVE.
For those who call themselves Liberals, I beg you to start acting like real liberals, and avoid an armed revolution. I plead with you to save our civilization because only real liberals can save this liberal democracy and diminish the possibility of violence. Only you can make the decision to join with those who believe in the American Revolution. And only you can send the message that we are one nation with the common goal of protecting the unalienable rights of all.