So, as my long time readers know, I like to engage people in political discussions on social media, doing what I do here, arguing about the nature of rights and criticizing both socialism and the current administration. In the course of doing this, I’ve noticed that when your typical American voter discusses politics, they often resort to a “left versus right” framework as a philosophical shorthand for the political spectrum.
Unfortunately, this invariably ends up in relentlessly partisan arguments, usually locked into only two philosophical points. This is especially true when it comes to individuals who see themselves as being on the “right” politically, though leftists are by no means innocent of this simplistic thinking. However rank and file Republicans have no idea how far left the positions they take as being “right of center” actually are.
This is a result of a sort of dogged oversimplification of the political discussion that’s infested the political discourse in America since the Cold War, which, while important, has unfortunately taken our eyes off of the actual mechanisms of tyranny, and focused it more on the political rhetoric used by one particular strain of socioeconomic theory, namely Marxian socialism, which became the boogeyman of the right.
Ironically, red state voters became so focused on the “red scare” that they haven’t notice they’re every bit as red and every bit as nationalistic as the communists they oppose. They forget that the American Founding Fathers weren’t terrified of socialism, which existed but didn’t work, or of communism, which didn’t exist but doesn’t work. They were afraid of what both socialism and communism require: centralized state power.
Denied centralized state power to force the people to obey misguided redistributive policies, socialism and communism sputter impotently and inevitably collapse under the weight of the free loader problem. When no one can force their countrymen to keep their broken system afloat under threat of imprisonment and impoverishment, people don’t tolerate free loaders and seek their own self-interest peacefully.
When you think about it, it’s obvious how dependent dangerous socialist systems are on centralized state power, but that’s exactly the thing the American right has chosen to ignore and now even resorts to exactly the sorts of measures (punitive tariffs, taxation, and even deploying troops against civilians) the Founding Fathers fought a war freeing themselves from.
By the standards of our country’s Framers, the American right is now just as tyrannically left as the socialist left the Republicans fear.
Liberty is For The Win!