The Left's Neverland

I hear more and more frequently concerns about an impending civil war. It is certain that something momentous is taking place; the signs are all around us, but I’m not at all sure that the something will turn out to be two sides of the same country warring over principles, like the Civil War, which was mainly about slavery and states’ rights. Now, we’re up to our nose-piercings in politically polarizing problems and the leftist contingent of the country doesn’t even like America anymore.  If we come to open warfare, it will be as two separate nations battling it out. Over what? Not over policies, not over territory, not even over moral issues. We will be fighting over reality.

The left, which I used to see as misguided but mostly benign, has built for itself -- because it knows it can’t convince Americans to throw away freedom -- a make-believe utopian country. It has constructed, ex nihilo, a nation that has no borders, no laws, no specific language, and no recognizable morality. When Barrack Obama said he wanted to “fundamentally change” America, he wasn’t bluffing. When he’d stick out his chin and say, ”That’s not who we are,” he wasn’t talking about us; he was talking about the citizens of his make-believe land which I’ll name “Neverland.”

The name is suitable in many ways. In the first place, it isn’t real and never will be.

Even if the Democrats win in 2020, and even if they slap the Green New Deal into place, Neverland will never be the utopia the left envisions because socialist utopias never are. They routinely end in poverty, tyranny, and death.

The word “utopia” comes into English from the Greek. The “u” is from “eu” which means “good,” like in “eulogy,” and the “top” means “place,” as in “topography.” A utopia is to be the perfect society, the perfect place, but there is always a catch. In James Hilton’s Lost Horizon, Shangri-La looked perfect -- calm, cultured, moderate, fair -- but once there, you couldn’t leave. It wasn’t that guards and prison doors kept people in. It was just impossible to travel; the terrain was too forbidding. So the heroes were trapped in perfection, which, ironically, made it a hell. Nothing about Huxley’s Brave New World was brave or even new. Nothing about life in Orwell’s 1984 was good. But the left is under the delusion that Neverland can reach faultlessness.

Secondly, “Neverland” is an appropriate name because it’s where lost boys (and girls, or whatever) can avoid growing up. They can fly anywhere -- even to climate change conferences -- without using any fossil fuels. They can fight in swash-buckling, Antifa rumbles without being either arrested or injured. They can imagine any reality they want and they can pretend that whatever they dream up will be superior to American reality.

They can convince themselves that it’s possible to change the climate of the entire world by banning plastic straws or dissuading cattle from passing gas. There in Neverland, liabilities -- national debt or student loans -- don’t ever have to be paid. Money doesn’t have to be earned.  Medical care can be both top-notch and free. In Neverland, the Lost Boys can have a pseudo-family to replace the real one they didn’t have in 21st-century America. In fact, I suspect that this lack of family is the main causal factor in the creation of Neverland.  Whether the citizens of this new land are Peter Pans or Tinkerbells, they find belonging and purpose in pretending that their new world is viable. This is at the heart of the visceral hatred for Donald Trump. He is real, which has to mean that their world isn’t, and if you live in a make-believe, untenable world, you don’t matter; you have no purpose. Egos are cracking under the strain.

Now, over 150 years after the Civil War, we find ourselves living in a world that has tucked reality away in a locked cupboard and our schools, our media, and many of our churches don’t want it to get out. We live in a TV-Internet-Smartphone world where our music is mostly canned, our connections with people are at least once-removed, and our children never look up. The virtual has taken over to a point where people actually think we can alter history by removing statues and painting over murals, and they have to change history because Neverland has to have its own annals, its own chronicles. Neverland is not America.

This explains why both Obama and Hillary could talk with such disdain about half of the population. We aren’t their people. They were running to be president of Neverland, not of traditional America. They could call us “deplorable” and mock our devotion to the Word of God and to our right to bear arms because we are not citizens of their realm. Americans are “other.”

You see, in Neverland the only important thing is how its inhabitants feel. What actually is –- I speak here of data, of facts, of actual –- as opposed to virtual –- experiences. In Neverland there are no pesky absolutes, no facing up to Almighty God, no bearing the consequences of our choices. In Neverland one can indulge one’s strangest and most disgusting sexual fantasies and the Neverlandiers will cheer you on and protect you. Isn’t that what happened at Michael Jackson’s mansion of the same name? Isn’t that what happened to the blue dress in the Oval Office? Isn’t that why Jeffery Epstein is dead? There in that prison cell, he got too close to reality.

In Neverland the Constitution is “living,” animated -- like some kind of Pixar cartoon -- and can be altered to fit the current narrative. If the present story they’re selling needs laws to be ignored, then they are. If a new law -- like the proposed red flag legislation -- seems to fit the tale, then they whip up one. Obama once proudly declared that he had “a pen and a phone” and was therefore apparently qualified to make up whatever laws he liked. If the facts of an issue are “inconvenient” then the Neverlandian news organization rearranges them, buries them, lies about them. No reality is allowed to seep into the realm.

And in Neverland, not only are the laws and the facts flexible, the language is as well. In Neverland they have created a whole new part of speech -- the flex-noun. These handy words can mean anything -- like “racist” or “lie” or “hate.” No dictatorial dictionary holds sway in this magical kingdom. Newspeak is nothing compared to Neverlandian and all real languages are verboten.

Which brings me to my third point: Neverlandia is ruled by various Captain Hook-type tyrants, by 21st-century pirates. In Neverland pirating is done through lobbying Congress, through selling America’s secrets to foreign powers -- which is acceptable behavior since America is, to the Neverlandiers, a foreign power itself, -- but mainly through taxation. The Lost Boys have figured out ways to absolve themselves from having to pay taxes -- they park their yachts in neighboring states, craft and claim remarkable deductions, or live tax-free in their parents’ basements.

I don’t know how we’re going to bring these people back. Their fairytale world is not a good place and we can see this by looking at the suicide rates, at the drug overdoses, at the homelessness that is creeping over that land. And it is a different country altogether, which is why we can no longer discuss things and come to compromises; you can’t compromise with traitors. The left has left America and are currently citizens of an impossible, angry, fearful, hateful land which will never, never make them happy.

Deana Chadwell is an adjunct professor and department head at Pacific Bible College in southern Oregon.  She teaches writing and public speaking.

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