The American Revolution of 2012
An inchoate, seemingly rudderless administration coupled with a sinking economy and civil unrest is a recipe for an anarchical response. Weakness, vacillation, and erosion of institutional authority are an invitation to anarchical thuggery, which looks like welcome strength when compared to feebleness and arbitrariness.
It should be no surprise, then, that the Occupy Wall Street uprisings are happening. After all, such mob uprisings have historical precedent. Anarchy followed by tyranny occurs whenever weakness and a power vacuum, perceived or real, exists.
Examples from history abound, but two cases may be particularly pertinent.
In eighteenth-century France, Louis XVI was heir to an absolute monarchy. This privileged construct actually worked when strong, even ruthless heads of state such as Louis XIV utilized the institution to the fullest in order to ensure their own and their country's advantage. However, the inherent advantages and strengths of the institution proved to be of no advantage in the hands of a man who could not make up his mind about much of anything other than what game he was to hunt on a given day. Louis XVI's feeble and ultimately doomed attempts to deal with France's deep unrest were not enough. Weakness followed by anarchy and chaos ensured the tyranny of the mob. The monarchy fell.
In early twentieth century Russia, the weak Kerensky Provisional Government, which followed the abdication of the essentially hapless Nicholas II, Tsar of Russia, was doomed when it refused to enact land reform and kept Russia in World War I. The tepid and ineffectual response to the two chief reasons for Russian civil unrest caused the demise the Kerensky administration. The anarchy that plagued the Kerensky government ushered in the Bolsheviks, with the attendant deleterious consequences with which students of history are only too familiar. The house of Romanov disappeared overnight.
In present-day America, the stage has been set for civil unrest by an administration whose determined pursuit of change -- based on the radical ideological principles of the left and the concomitant application of wrongheaded "solutions" to a faltering economy -- has left the core institutions of our country weak and reeling.
The fact of the matter is that leftist goals, economic and governmental, are as inherently incompatible with the founding documents and institutions of our Republic as Maximilien Robespierre's goals for France were with the monarchy. The institutions of our country are simply not designed to foster and achieve the radical makeover the Obama administration has in mind. This is, of course, why the powers that be have worked overtime to achieve their leftist goals by supra-governmental means, including the radicalization of agencies like the EPA, entities neither answerable to nor established by the Constitution or subject to the electorate. This is also why Wall Street, the epitome of free-market capitalism, has been targeted by the left -- Wall Street's capitalist principles are also inherently incompatible with schemes bent on distribution of wealth.
The result of the incompatibility of these two entities -- on the one side, free and constitutionally established governmental and economic institutions, and on the other, the means and goals of the current radical administration and its allies -- is civil unrest to a degree scarcely seen since the Civil War.
Thus we have the Wall Street protestors, who have now been joined by the too-often thuggish labor unions, organizations which have historically have often been wedded to violence as a means of achieving what cannot be gained by bargaining or legislative and judicial process. Comforting murmurs of support from President Obama, who says he understands the frustrations of the marchers, and House minority leader Nancy Pelosi's blessing -- "God bless Wall Street protestors"-- are green-light indicators that the Democratic leadership is callously and recklessly encouraging the mobs taking over the streets of our largest cities.
While many of the Occupy Wall Street protestors seem to have no idea as to why they are rioting in the streets, others who are more calculating may have more nefarious goals in mind than merely poking fingers in the eyes of greedy, corrupt capitalists.
First, the labor unions have rightly figured that the protests represent an opportunity to gain increased visibility and influence through violence. The lessons of Wisconsin have not been lost on union leaders. In that state, unions faced an intractable governor and a Republican legislature. This time, however, they have an inchoate, non-elected, supra-institutional mass they can mold to their own ends -- and union bosses know how to assume leadership of a mob, much as the Bolsheviks and revolutionists of 1789 did. There is every possibility that the unions will assimilate the protestors' energy to achieve their own ends -- retaining and extending their power and privileges, all the while stalling needed reforms.
Second, there is the distinct possibility that the current protests are a dress rehearsal for creating chaos before and during the elections of 2012. If the current protests achieve even a few goals, it is fair to predict the tactics will be repeated this coming election cycle.
It is conceivable that a combination of anarchists, labor unions, and left-leaning media could unite and utilize the unrest and chaos to derail the 2012 elections themselves, giving the administration the opportunity to suspend elections because of a national emergency. The nightmare that would ensue is almost unimaginable, as the tactics already utilized by the administration could become even more fully utilized. The erosion of the rule of law and constitutional institutions would be assured.
Thus the slippery slope to dictatorship begins.
Lest some cynically dismiss such a scenario as impossible in America -- "It Can't Happen Here" -- it is well to keep in mind that a similar scenario has transpired before in democracies such as the oft-mentioned Weimar Republic. To be clear, the phenomenon is not limited to monarchical eighteenth-century France and tsarist early twentieth-century Russia.
The fact of the matter is that the radical division of America is now on display for all to see. Will the institutions of our country prevail? Will this constitutional Republic stand, and will the people effectuate through peaceful means the reforms our country desperately needs -- or will this administration continue to commit itself to achieving its leftist goals through supra-constitutional entities as it allies itself with a labor movement joined with anarchical protestors?
This is the hour for the Tea Party and other organizations to rise up in mass protests of their own. All who are wedded to constitutional principles and ideals must take an even stronger stand, opposing with all their might those who seek to hijack our government by violent and extra-constitutional means.
The fate of our country may lie in the balance.
Fay Voshell may be reached at email@example.com.