Thursday, December 13, 2012
Any history of liberalism is bound to be fraught with contradictions, hypocrisy, and venality, because liberalism is not so much a historical phenomenon as a psychological one. The ideologies of liberalism are not made of whole cloth, but are instead fashioned around psychological needs and quirks. Investigation of the disparate liberal causes will reveal a common thread that arises, not from enlightened reason, but from an emotional response to social forces. The contradictions of liberal appeals for “the children,” in the face of opposition to school vouchers; nannyist bullying over private dietary choices amidst calls for liberalizing drug laws; and simultaneous condemnation of and participation in hateful rhetoric are easy to understand once one notices the common tell. There is a singular root of environmentalism, gun control fervor, redistributionism, population control, antagonism toward competition, and demands for soul killing conformity: There is just something about other people that bugs liberals. Liberals are threatened by other people’s freedom, because they are anxious about what those people will do with that freedom. Can just anybody really be trusted with a gun? And what if letting parents choose their children’s education leads to doctrines that are…undesirable? A liberal is a person for whom compassion for others in the abstract justifies disdain for them in reality. This is why liberals are much more fond of calling for higher taxes than they are of private charity. They have a bargain for you: do not threaten them with your freedom, your competitive spirit or your aspirations and they will will try to see to it that you get by. Decipher the words “sustainable,” “diversity,” and “progress” and you will find a misanthropic antipathy for others. The blindness that accompanies admiration of Marx, or Che, or Margaret Sanger illustrates the true nature of hard-core liberalism.