The Revolution the US is Experiencing – and What if it Succeeds
It may be difficult to admit that a full-scale revolution is brewing in the United States of America. While there are no guerilla bands pouring out of the mountains to attack towns or cities or government installations, recent violence by armed revolutionaries against US courthouses may be a harbinger of things to come. While there are no formal press briefings or published manifestos in which the revolutionaries explain why the current system is rotten and why their proposed new system will herald peace and justice, the utterances and proposals of Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and, indeed, of virtually all of the radical left Democratic presidential candidates – as well as those of almost all Democratic Congresspersons and senators, and many radical Democratic city mayors – would seem to qualify.
As for putsches or cleansings at our leading cultural institutions, can you say, “cancel culture”? The expression of traditional ideas that have been mainstream American culture for generations: the American family is primarily one male father, one female mother, and their children; you can get ahead in life by going to school, studying hard, working hard, getting married, and developing products/ideas that others want to obtain/follow -- is now considered a violent aggression worthy of punishment. The people who react thus are revolutionaries.
And there are many of them. Virtually all the opinion molding organs of American society are in the hands of the revolutionaries: the entire educational establishment, the media, the law schools, the libraries, big corporation boards, the entertainment industry and the Democratic Party. Moreover, they are winning. The youth of America have been brainwashed for at least the last 50 years. The average youngster has no idea who John Marshall or Edmund Burke or Adam Smith were or what they said, or how their ideas shaped the political, economic and social systems of our country. But he or she can tell you with certainty that capitalist America has polluted the oceans, fouled the atmosphere, oppressed people of color all over the world, demeaned women and hoarded the wealth. Alas, the cultural revolution these folks have engineered is essentially complete; now we are on the cusp of the completion of its political counterpart.
This eventuality represents the success of an idea that is generally attributed to Antonio Gramsci – that is, politics runs downstream from culture. The Progressive Movement began its ongoing revolution 125 years ago with the express goal of destroying the classic American culture and overthrowing the established political system. They have succeeded at the former. But the political revolution has not quite yet come to fruition. There have been times when it looked like it might: the Wilsonian 1910s; the 1930s under Roosevelt’s New Deal; the mid/late 1960s when riots ruled the land and we were catapulted into The Great Society. Now we are apparently in a fourth great upheaval. Will the radicals triumph politically this time? The cultural foundation had not been satisfactorily laid in the previous three instances for the political overthrow to succeed. Perhaps this time….
To have a clear understanding of what such a triumph would mean, here are two lists – each encapsulating the key politico-cultural components of the rival systems. First, traditionally, Americans:
- Are committed to republican government.
- Hold liberty (as opposed to equality) as its most cherished ideal.
- Believe in the sanctity of God-given individual rights.
- Also believe strongly in free enterprise.
- Uphold the rule of law.
- Believe in US “exceptionalism” – that is, unlike all the other nations, the US is an exceptional land with the moral authority and right to lead the peoples of the world in the fight for freedom, justice and opportunity.
- Agree that religion plays a key role in developing the morality that allows government by the people to succeed.
- And subscribes to the political, cultural and ethical tenets of classic Western Civilization.
The political revolution that the Progressives foresaw replaced the remarkable list above by the following:
- Desire for an authoritarian and powerful central government that controls the economy.
- Hold equality above liberty.
- Foresee universal world government over the nation states, with the US no more special or exceptional than any other nation.
- Deny that religion has any public role to play in the nation’s development, and that it is up to the people to set the moral standards that guide the nation.
- Sees Western Civilization as corrupt, oppressive and racist; and the nation would better prosper if it accorded more respect to the cultures of indigenous people, peoples of color and immigrant groups.
- Free enterprise has not turned out to be free or enterprising for most Americans. It concentrates wealth in the hands of white privileged segments of society; holding down the common folk in unsafe, poor paying, ephemeral jobs while a small coterie accumulates vast wealth – which it uses for nefarious purposes.
- Individual rights are a scam to keep minorities oppressed. Group rights protect the average citizen much better.
- Fair trade is not fair and not really trade. It sucks the wealth from poor people and enriches the white privileged.
- Finally, considers the Founders’ Constitution to be outdated, to be replaced by one giving force to the ideas in the previous bullets.
Once again, a common and critical reason that the Progressive political revolution did not succeed in any of the three periods discussed is that the cultural revolution was not yet complete. Not anywhere close in 1920 or 1940; advanced, but not far enough in 1965; however, by 2020….
The widely-predicted triumph of the Democratic Party via a newly elected president and control of both houses of Congress may well herald the arrival of the political revolution toward which the children of Gramsci (from Wilson to Sanders) have been driving us. The land of the free, the bastion of liberty, whose light the whole world looked to for freedom the last quarter millennium may be overthrown when the revolutionaries take power in 2021. They will:
- Abolish the Electoral College and guarantee majority leftist rule perpetually.
- Pack the Supreme Court to guarantee leftist “justice.”
- Cripple the economy with confiscatory taxes, overwhelmingly burdensome regulations, banned fossil fuels and profligate government spending.
- Reinstitute all the absurd federal regulations removed in the last three years and institute myriad new ones, putting the federal knee on the throat of American business.
- Continue to flood the country with aliens not schooled in Western Civilization or representative government.
- Persecute those who espouse traditional values, laissez-faire economics, individual rights, American history and exceptionalism, and religious morals.
- And very possibly, abrogate the Constitution.
They will purposefully destroy the United States of America as we have known it for nearly two hundred and fifty years.
Two final thoughts. First, even if by some miracle, the Dems do not take control of the Presidency and both Houses of Congress in January, it is just a matter of time until they do. The flood of illegal immigration and the brainwashing – in school and by the media – continue unabated. It is inevitable that conservative America will be reduced to a voting minority. And then the revolution will be unstoppable.
On the other hand, perhaps I am underestimating the strength, character and wisdom of the American people. I recall vividly the fear I felt in 1967 and 1968 when American cities were burning, a savage war tore at the very fabric of our society, riots determined the selection of a president, and we seemed on the cusp of revolutionary change. It didn’t happen. The good sense of the American people prevailed as we restored order and proceeded to rely on our traditional beliefs and values to right the ship. Perhaps we shall again.
Graphic credit: Jarem Frye, Creative Commons CCBY