The True Face of Collectivism
Most politicians are crafty. They hide the mailed fist of political power in a velvet glove of caring and compassion, and they conjure up an appealing picture of competence to hide the reality of blundering ineptitude.
But not Barack Obama. He believes his own propaganda; he's even said so. He thinks that politics is exhausted by the cunning tricks of the community organizer, that all you need to do is find a festering sore, and pick at it.
Even Frantz Fanon, author of the anti-colonialist screed The Wretched of the Earth, understands that sore scratching and the messianic moment will only get you so far. But Fanon is always looking for the magic political fix that will redeem the post-colonialist state from its murderous self-harming.
Politics always means gathering up a band of warriors and fighting for power. You sweep away the injustices of the old regime, and then -- ten to one -- your fundamental transformation makes the losers pay.
That, we learn, from Obamacare guru Jonathan Gruber talking with Chuck Todd, is what Obamacare is all about, after you've stripped away the bodyguard of lies. Make the folks who have benefited from life's lottery pay!
The only way to end that discriminatory system is to bring everyone into the system and pay one fair price. That means that the genetic winners, the lottery winners who've been paying an artificially low price because of this discrimination now will have to pay more in return.
See what he means? The only way to make life fair is to force everyone into one "system and pay one fair price."
Except, of course, that's not what Obamacare does. It takes a few people, the ones with individual health insurance plans, and makes them pay. Individual health insurance payer Mickey Kaus understands exactly what is going down:
Why should this small group have to pay the freight for all the uninsured -- a huge crappy risk pool of disorganized chance-takers that apparently terrifies insurers -- and those with preexisting conditions? What about the lucky 80% who get insurance from their employers? Shouldn't they pay some of the freight too?
That's the fundamental problem with collectivism. It's never about happy peasants sitting around in their collective meeting willingly sharing the burdens. It's always about the powerful preying on the weak, the organized combining against the unorganized. As in strong local government unions bullying weak politicians and weaker voters into unaffordable pensions.
Collectivism always means subordination. You may be a slave subordinated to the cowskin whip. You may be a serf tied to the lord's land. You may be a woman, who typically had no rights at all in a peasant household. You may be a young son, condemned forever to work on your family's land. But you are always under some big boss.
What's the solution? You go out and find yourself a job, as the slave Frederick Douglass did in antebellum Baltimore, Maryland. But then you get really pissed off at giving your entire three dollars in wages to your master. So you escape and end up in New Bedford, Massachusetts in 1838. And then you find that all the miseries you'd heard tell about life in the north were all wrong.
Every man appeared to understand his work, and went at it with a sober, yet cheerful earnestness, which betokened the deep interest which he felt in what he was doing, as well as a sense of his own dignity as a man. To me this looked exceedingly strange. From the wharves I strolled around and over the town, gazing with wonder and admiration at the splendid churches, beautiful dwellings, and finely cultivated gardens; evincing an amount of wealth, comfort, taste, and refinement, such as I had never seen in any part of slaveholding Maryland.
You discover the paradox of freedom. When you take up the mantle of individual freedom you become not selfish but responsible. You live not by following orders but by voluntary exchange: of work, of favors, of property, of trust. And everything is done by agreement, by "sober, yet cheerful earnestness," and not by force.
All this has been codified into political philosophy, limited government, property rights, and settled science. But liberals insisted that they knew better.
Oh dear. Now it looks like liberals didn't know anything after all. Except how to brazenly lie to the American people.
Maybe it's time for Jane Fonda to do a sequel of The China Syndrome. Who cares about boring old nuclear plant meltdowns! How about a liberal political meltdown to be dramatized in the upcoming major motion picture The Obama Syndrome.
According to Charles Krauthammer, President Obama is in danger of making the whole liberal project radioactive.
Christopher Chantrill (mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org) is a frequent contributor to American Thinker. See his usgovernmentspending.com and also usgovernmentdebt.us. At americanmanifesto.org he is blogging and writing An American Manifesto: Life After Liberalism. Get his Road to the Middle Class.