A while back I wrote in response to a Steven Den Beste piece why I thought the U.S. would not see another Civil War. In What if Your Loyalty is to The Constitution? I said that America wouldn’t see another Civil War because the majority of the population is too willfully ignorant and too apathetic to care much anymore. That piece was an update of Pressing the “RESET” Button, which I wrote in December. In that piece I wrote:
Generally, government is treated by the media as a vast benevolent force (unless, of course, that same government is defeating an enemy totalitarian government or unseating a murderous tyrant – then it’s eeeeeevil.) Whatever actions that government takes for the benefit of an endangered species, or “for society” is more important than what it does to the people who are directly affected by these actions.
Oh, occasionally something really egregious will pique some reporter, and we’ll get a “human interest” story that pisses off the few of us who are paying attention. Sometimes our ire will get the government to back off, claiming it was all a big misunderstanding or worse, the government doesn’t back off at all. The recent incidents of Melvin Spaulding in Florida, George Norris in Texas, Dennis Pryslak in New Jersey, Stratford High School in South Carolina, and many others come to mind. Scroll through the archives of this site. There’s probably at least one a week that will raise your blood pressure.
I’ve quoted Jefferson’s letter to William Smith several times recently, but this part is the one I find most interesting:
Where did it ever exist, except in the single instance of Massachusets? And can history produce an instance of a rebellion so honourably conducted? I say nothing of it’s motives. They were founded in ignorance, not wickedness. God forbid we should ever be 20 years without such a rebellion. The people cannot be all, & always, well informed. The past which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive; if they remain quiet under such misconceptions it is a lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty.
It seems, in the main, that we aren’t informed at all, much less well. Lethargy? For the overwhelming majority, yes indeed.
Until it happens to you. Then you get pissed right quick, and wonder why nobody hears your side of the story.
I think a lot of people are getting fed up with ever-increasing government intrusion into our lives. With our ever-shrinking individual rights. More than one of Jay’s respondents noted the apathy of the majority, though, and I agree. Government interferes lightly on a wholesale basis, but it does its really offensive intrusions strictly retail. So long as the majority gets its bread and circuses, it will remain content.
But not everyone.
And I gave the example of Steven Bixby, of South Carolina, who shot and killed two police officers over a 20′ section of his property taken under eminent domain.
Today I read via Instapundit this quotation from a Village Voice theater review:
Republicans don’t believe in the imagination, partly because so few of them have one, but mostly because it gets in the way of their chosen work, which is to destroy the human race and the planet. Human beings, who have imaginations, can see a recipe for disaster in the making; Republicans, whose goal in life is to profit from disaster and who don’t give a hoot about human beings, either can’t or won’t. Which is why I personally think they should be exterminated before they cause any more harm.
Compare and contrast this *ahem* progressive opinion with that of Wretchard of The Belmont Club in his latest piece:
Reader MG wrote to ask “in what way is The Left the spirit behind all the carnage of the 20th Century”. The answer might properly begin with the words of the Internationale (1871), which took as its starting point the notion that men born to the world had nothing to lose but their chains.
It set the theme which was to endure for more than a hundred years: that the familiar world is not worth fighting for. Only the unseen tomorrow gives life any meaning. The present could never be ended too soon. The odious aspects of life in the early 20th century were clear enough, and nowhere better portrayed than George Orwell’s The Road to Wigan Pier. Who can forget his portrayals of coal workers and their daily lives? From its earliest inception, the Left cried that the world was not good enough. It held that any attempts to find happiness in the present were not only doomed, but immoral. Religion, Marx said, “is the opium of the people. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is the demand for their real happiness.” He claimed that capitalism could never feed the poor. Lenin said Marxism could, and defined Communism as “socialism plus electricity”.
What they forgot to add was that the world would never be good enough. That not a single Marxist state ever managed to provide either the food or electricity in adequate quantities remained beside the point. Shortages were always in the present and the present was unimportant anyway. When capitalism provided wealth in quantities that Lenin could only dream of, then food and electricity themselves became hated in turn, the way starvation once was.
Lenin’s future was attractive only for so long as it didn’t exist and was legitimate only when its promises were not provided by capitalism. John Buchan could tell his son, when he wrote “Memory Hold The Door”, which described friends who died in the Great War, that “they held up the world for you”. But a true Leftist could only ever dream of boasting to his progeny that ‘I tore down the world for you’. The present was always too hateful to endure.
Please, take the time to read the whole thing.
I doubt that many of my readers would argue with the proposition that the Left has a firm grip on a large part of American society. They certainly control the entertainment industry – perhaps the strongest propaganda machine ever assembled. They control the education system, and are busy cranking out more little ignorant, pliable leftists daily. They, by and large, control the courts. But they do not yet control the NATION, and are, as many people are noting, coming unhinged by that fact, as America still supports, in the main, the war that they abhor in their very veins.
Hugh Hewitt commented on George Soros’s speech at a “Take Back America” conference. (Take it back? They haven’t – quite – taken it yet.) Soros is spending $15 million – regardless of the “Campaign Finance Reform” law – to see President Bush defeated. Soros spent $18 million, according to this USAToday piece, to support that legislation. Soros’s speech equated the Abu Ghraib prison abuses to 9/11, much as Teddy Kennedy equated the abuses there to Saddam’s murder and torture. And he was loudly applauded for it. He was introduced, gushingly, by Sen. Clinton. Soros is a major contributor to MoveOn.org. The Left is quite large, quite powerful, and very well directed.
I believe that Wretchard is correct in his assertion that the desire of the Left is to “tear down the world.” I don’t think the rank-and-file see it that way, but the pursuit of their beliefs would absolutely result in it. It would appear that the Left believes that the Right wants to “destroy the human race and the planet.” (Projection, do you think?)
This is a philosophical divide every bit as wide as the one that resulted in the last Civil War.
I cannot help but wonder: Are we going to war again, against each other? And what form would that take?
I think the answer might very well be “YES,” and the form will be that of domestic terrorism.
And that means a very, very ugly future.