The above questions are pertinent. The American political right-wing has never lacked for honest critics within its own ranks; persistent gadflies on the right who demand that we on the right justify, back-up, support and defend the conclusions to which we arrive. Look at all the loud, persistent Republican and Conservative critics of President Trump.
On the American political left? Not so much.
Go ahead — look at the various policy positions the Left support. Not a single one of them can stand up to even the most basic questions that every policy position must answer before it can be remotely considered a legitimate thought.
- Big Government? Ah, yes… all those monarchies, dictatorships, despotisms, empires that were such fun, congenial, idyllic places for the people throughout all of human history! Central government power! How new and cool is that?!?
- Abortion? Oops… but, what if it’s a real, authentic, genuine human baby?
- Feminism? Sure, women have had it tough throughout the ages, but what if men had it worse?
And so on, throughout the list of policy positions supported by the Left for centuries.
So, where are the honest leftists to pose those questions of their confrères? The reason I ask is simple: I was one of those leftists, who believed much of what the Left fed me throughout my young life. But, I always wanted to know why. So, I asked, and I pushed, and prodded, and probed and read far and wide. I read left, right and center, and lots and lots of each. I demanded of myself that I have the intellectual ammunition necessary to defeat any objections I might encounter.
The problem: A leftist, as I was, is intellectually unarmed. And he knows it. I found myself continually unable to win an honest debate, and was always arriving at the conclusion that I simply wanted to be right, and that was all that I had in order to justify my increasingly tortured and contorted arguments.
That’s why the leftist needs to shut down opposing arguments on college campuses, and in countries where he has seized power. Ask anyone who survived Stalin’s Soviet Gulag, or Mao’s people-eating apparatus, or Vietnam, or North Korea, or Cuba. Ask them about their ability to challenge the reigning belief systems in their countries. Ask them about their ability simply to ask questions. The leftist shuts down debate simply because he cannot win in an honest exchange of ideas.
The Left’s belief systems are little more than Dick and Jane wrapped up in a fog of sophisticated-sounding weasel words. Here’s what the Left do:
Oh, look! See Dick. See Spot. See Dick throw the ball. See Spot run. See Spot fetch the ball. See Spot give the ball to Dick. The Left turn that into: Consider the relationship between Dick and Spot. It’s a relationship of oppressor and victim. Dick controls Spot’s life goal: acquisition of the ball, to which we’ll refer as the Life Goal. Dick taunts Spot, to show him who occupies the superior position, the seat of power. Alternately Dick puts the Life Goal near Spot, then withdraws it, laughing the whole time. Then they go into a field where they repeatedly enact an unsubtly cruel demonstration of Dick’s oppression. Dick hurls the Life Goal out into a field, symbolically telling Spot that he forcefully rejects Spot’s ambitions, his hopes and dreams. Spot sees his Life Goal receding from him, and sprints madly after it. After retrieving the Life Goal, Spot comes to the dark realization that he cannot simply make off with it, and in an act of chains-shattering rebellion, claim his freedom for himself. After all, Spot remains dependent on Dick for his daily sustenance and shelter. Resignedly, Spot picks up the Life Goal, and returns to his oppressor, where in an act of deep, humiliating self-abasement, he surrenders the Life Goal back to his oppressor. This degrading, soul-sapping act of cruelty repeats itself over and over again until either Dick grows bored with tormenting Spot, or Spot realizes the futility of it all, and stops pursuing his Life Goal.
This is the fog — I call it “fogwash” — that the Left unleash to turn simple, ridiculous flapdoodle into seemingly complex, sophisticated, nuanced, deeply-reasoned arguments. Yet, deep down, you and I know it’s just a dude and his dog enjoying some exercise and each other’s company. If the Left were to take seriously Freud’s joking admonition that, “Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar,” then feminism, black racism, euthanasia, the Left’s current love affair with eugenics and killing old people, and a whole lot more would vanish overnight.
If you read, as I have, biographies of the Old Bolsheviks in the Twentieth Century, you realize that this is nothing new. The convoluted, tortured ratiocinations that the Communists used simply to eliminate (with extreme prejudice) any competitors, real or imagined, for their power were mind-numbing. As you read, you realize that a determined, power-hungry leftist was and is able to make anything at all a reason to kill someone he thought might stand in the way of his obtaining or keeping power… or to prevent Conservative speakers from expressing themselves on college campuses. This is how, finally, you realize that the deeply surreal, truly unbelievable stories that emerged from The Soviet Union were… real. For example, there’s the absolutely true story of the guy who bought a fish, wrapped the fish in a copy of Pravda (newspaper ink had known germicidal properties) and brought it home for that evening’s dinner. Later he was arrested, sentenced to death for terrorism and executed. You see, the copy of Pravda had a picture of Stalin on the front page, and some fish blood had stained the image. Do yourself an eye-opening, sobering favor. Read Aleksandr Solzhenistyn’s The Gulag Archipelago.
One would think that all leftists would want to have solid thinking and reasoning and logic to undergird their conclusions. One would be wrong. Leftism is the landing spot of the lazy. It’s where you go if you specifically do not want to have to challenge yourself. It’s the home of those who are too insecure in their beliefs to allow those beliefs to be scrutinized by intelligent dissenters. It’s where you end up when you want to have people slapping you on the back and telling you how compassionate and kind and… deep you are. Without having to do the actual work necessary to be actually compassionate, kind or deep. Intellectual laziness, and a desire never to have to face one’s own insecurities, are the reasons for campus leftists’ engaging in overtly fascistic shout-downs of Conservative speakers on college campuses. I shouldn’t have to remark that no Conservative mob has ever prevented the speech of someone who disagrees with them. Ever. Not even once.
Now, ask yourself this: without imagined oppression wrapped up in fancy words — Dick and Jane wearing the new clothes they just picked up at the Emperor’s Tag Sale — where would the Left be electorally? Seriously… without the frauds of the Feminist Grievance Industry, the Race Grievance Industry, the Gay Grievance Industry, the Climate Grievance Industry, the Poverty Grievance Industry, the general Victim Grievance Industry, where would the Left be? If the only problems out there being debated by you and me were real problems, the political left, and the Democrat Party, would cease to exist overnight.
It takes honesty and very real courage to admit that the policy positions you’ve been supporting are wrong, fraudulent, poorly thought out and reasoned and, well… really stupid. There aren’t a lot of such leftists around, but there have been a few. Irving Kristol, Whittaker Chambers, David Horowitz, Eldridge Cleaver, Jerry Rubin, to name a few. Do you know what, besides “endangered species,” we call an honest leftist? A future rightist.