How to Be a Liberal

It’s easy to be an American liberal. All that is required are hypocrisy and ignorance.

Ignorance is an absolute must, but especially ignorance of three things: economics, human nature and all of recorded history.

One has to be truly economically illiterate to believe that high taxes encourages productivity, that union-imposed labor regulations don't dis-incentivize hiring, that energy regulations don't raise prices on the poor and working class.

Likewise, to be a liberal you must pretend that men and women are exactly alike in every respect and that communism produces the most happiness for the most people. 

Of course you can search the history books in vain for a communist society that did not produce poverty, misery and/or death on vast scales. But American liberals don’t read history books – just note the vast throngs who came out to support Bernie Sanders for President of the United States.

And though Sanders lost his bid to become the Democratic nominee for President, his ideas - derived almost entirely from superficial readings from Marx and Engels - proved so popular with the base that he successfully pulled Hillary Clinton far to the left.

Now the Democratic Party proudly boasts the “most progressive platform” in its history.

To be an American liberal one must also positively revel and rejoice in hypocrisy. You must act enraged over the alleged privacy violations in the Patriot Act, which liberals raved could possibly allow a government agent to know what books you checked out at the public library (Never mind that books publicly owned and publicly housed are by definition public).

But you must simultaneously ignore or be silent on union bosses being granted permission to take workers' money, or ignore the fact that unions can be exempt from stalking and identity theft laws, because, you know, solidarity.

More hypocrisy is needed on abortion debates as well. You must decry any restrictions on this procedure as a “war on women” while ignoring the fact that at least half of aborted babies would have grown up to be women.

The hypocrisy needed on race is an especially high bar that American liberals are able to hurdle in a single breathtaking bound. You must uphold Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. as a hero of civil rights, while ignoring his most fevered wish and foundational conviction that people ought not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

Dr. King’s maxim is of no use for modern liberals – they need to divide up people and categorize them by color and assign each to different standards. For example, affirmative action – is there a more odiously racist view than that which holds that people of color cannot be held to the same academic standards as white or Asian students?

But if you take a stand against affirmative action, liberals will charge you as the racist, which means of course, were Dr. King alive today, he would be considered a racist by these standards.

Immigration is another area where hypocrisy is an absolute must. Does one imagine for a moment that if Anglo-Americans were flooding into Mexico by the millions, overwhelming social services, and changing its demographics, that Mexicans would welcome them with open arms and demand citizenship to all of the illegal newcomers? Yet that is exactly what liberals expect of Americans when the reverse is true.

One could go on and on. Hillary Clinton supporters can spit on and harass Republican donors, and liberals don’t say a word.  But one person gets punched at a Trump rally and suddenly all of Republicans are KKK members. Hillary Clinton can hide, destroy, and scrub her public emails, hiding God knows what, but Donald Trump must produce his private tax returns.

Yes, it’s easy to be an American liberal. Just close your eyes, close your ears, and close everyone’s mouth who disagrees with you. It’s a formula for smug self-satisfaction.

Unfortunately, it is all too often a formula for electoral success.

Matt Patterson is executive director of the Center for Worker Freedom and president of 1st Amendment First.  He can be reached at