Sunday, February 13, 2005

The Left, And What's Wrong With It

The Cold War is over. But the imprints from that conflict can still be seen in today's politics. In the case of the Democratic Party, it's a legacy that needs to be cast off as soon as possible.

A stratagem used by both sides was political destabilization of hostile governments. Both the East and West tried to knock over governments of the other guy's client states with varying degrees of success. But the Soviets took that strategy one step further, and supported ideologically-aligned movements in the United States. It's a certainty that some of the anti-war radicals in the '60s were financed -- or at the very least, encouraged -- by Moscow.

Hence the widely-used statement, "There is no enemy to the Left." While the Right was divided between policital, economic, and social conservatives; the Left presented itself as a united front. This has had some very unfortunate consequences.

The one thing that brought it home to me more than anything else was a scene in Michael Moore's Bowling for Columbine.

There was a sequence where he basically ran a Hit Parade of all the violent, homicidal regimes of the 20th Century. You know, Hitler, Franco, Mussolini, all those fascist colonialists. Three men are conspicuous by their absence: Josef Stalin, Mao Zedong, and Pol Pot.

If those three don't own part of the top five in the all-time list of murderous bastards, I'll eat my hats. All of them. Next to that lot, Torquemada was a weak poser. His shade would burn with envy, if it weren't already burning in Hell.

Now, why do you suppose they weren't there? Because there is no enemy to the Left, that's why. Their fashionable politics absolves them of all guilt. The blood sheds from their hands as though they were made of Teflon.

That's plenty disgusting all by itself. But, with the fall of the regime they held so dear at the end of the Cold War, there's a segment of the Left that has turned to hateful nihilism. Communism is dead, but they can still hate the West and everything it stands for.

Well, that's crap. And we need to name it as such.

Part of what needs to happen to rejuvenate the Democratic Party is a repudiation of this part of our heritage. Not only was Communism a failed experiment, it was also something fundamentally inimical to human liberty. As de Toquville once observed, there's a depraved taste for "equality" that prefers equality in slavery to inequality in freedom.

I, for one, choose freedom. If the price of that is a bit of inequality, that's a price worth paying. We can exercise a little oversight, to make sure that the strong don't run roughshod over the weak. But we must also realize that freedom also means the freedom to fail. We can't legislate that away. We must also realize that there's a sickness in nihilism. Fetishizing destruction and death over creation and life is just plain nuts. And the mindless denunciation of Western Civilization comes damn close to doing just that.

Wake up, guys. Red is dead. Communism is very much an ex-parrot. Hold a wake if you must -- I won't, and frankly I'm delighted the old bastard's dead -- but for Pete's sake, move on.

It's either that, or continue gurgling down history's toilet. Your choice.

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