12-Step Totalitarian Program: Step 1

 

It is a testament to the power of the human mind to create blind spots to the Truth that so many conservatives and classical liberals who deeply admire and respect Thomas Sowell can still fail to see what he sees. This is understandable, especially for those with public reputations. The mind is designed to protect our self-image and our view of reality. It screens out threats, especially ones that would upend all that we know.

I have no illusions that this essay will persuade the staunchly certain. The mind responds to such certainty by creating blind spots to anything contradicting those certainties. I can only hope this essay chips away at the certainties of many who believe that in America we still have Politics as Usual. That the good fight can still be waged by our elected representatives.

Those able to see the threat in plain sight have taken the time to study, among others:

Hannah Arendt’s The Origins of Totalitarianism:

In an ever-changing, incomprehensible world the masses had reached the point where they would, at the same time, believe everything and nothing, think that everything was possible and that nothing was true. […] under such conditions, one could make people believe the most fantastic statements one day, and trust that if the next day they were given irrefutable proof of their falsehood, they would take refuge in cynicism; instead of deserting the leaders who had lied to them, they would protest that they had known all along that the statement was a lie and would admire the leaders for their superior tactical cleverness.

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s The Gulag Archipelago (at least the abridged edition):

Oh, Western freedom-loving left-wing thinkers! Oh, left-wing laborists! Oh, American, German, and French progressive students! All of this is still not enough for you. The whole book has been useless for you. You will understand everything immediately, when you yourself — “hands behind the back” — toddle into our Archipelago.

Whittaker Chambers’ Witness:

“You don’t understand the class structure of American society,” said Smetana, “or you would not ask such a question. In the United States, the working class are Democrats. The middle class are Republicans. The upper class are Communists.”

Stephen Koch’s Double Lives: Spies and Writers in the Secret War of Ideas Against the West:

The aim was never to make Stalinist movies. It was to Stalinize the American glamour culture, while simultaneously giving the apparatus a cash cow capable of producing a large, untraceable supply of much-needed American hard currency to finance various operations around the world. It was also a refuge for favored cultural apparachiki like Bertolt Brecht and Hanns Eisler.

Theodore Dalrymple’s The Wilder Shores of Marx:

Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.

Mattias Desmet’s The Psychology of Totalitarianism:

The fact that, in the current social climate, there is hardly any latitude to expose this decay in the exercise of power is highly dangerous. This is precisely the detrimental influence of the rise of the masses: It is so radically intolerant of dissent opinions that it labels any analysis of dangerous influence from institutions, companies, and so on as “conspiracy theory.” La passion de l’ignorance (the passion for ignorance) is flourishing like never before. And paradoxically, fanatical conspiracy thinking contributes to this problem because it makes more nuanced analyses less visible and more prone to stigmatization. They are tarred by the same brush and guilty by association.

If there is a gap in your reading, you owe it to yourself to fill that gap. Perhaps the 12 steps that follow will encourage you to do so.

But more importantly, consider what actions you are prepared to take when the no-turning-back escalation begins. And much sooner than you think.

_____

Step #1: Corrupt Education

As explained by 1980s-liberal Walter Karp, in 1905 J.E. Russell, then head of Columbia University Teachers College, pointed out, “How can we justify our practice in schooling the masses in precisely the same manner as we do those who are to be their leaders?”

That same decade, Woodrow Wilson, then president of Princeton University, made the point more explicit: “We want one class of persons to have a liberal education and we want another class of persons, a very much larger class of necessity in every society, to forgo the privilege of a liberal education and fit themselves to perform specific difficult manual tasks.”

A corrupt education, controlled by our betters, simply means keeping the larger population as workers and slaves. By taking over the Teachers Colleges, government can ensure that in K-12, children can remain mostly children by denying them the reading, writing, and thinking skills that would liberate them.

By now, the absolute corruption of “public education” by totalitarian ideology is obvious to all. Yet many still believe that such corruption is more due to ideology or ignorance rather than part of a long-term decentralized plan.

State control of education is the core feature of every totalitarian regime. And we have been tolerating it for decades. Talk to any kid in K-12 about what they learned in a public school that day and note how rare it is to hear any answer that relates to reading, writing, mathematics, real science, real history, and critical thinking.

Although written in 1981, Richard Mitchell’s The Graves of Academe (free online) nailed it:

Schools do not fail. They succeed. Children always learn in school. Always and every day. When their rare and tiny compositions are ‘rated holistically’ without regard for separate ‘aspects’ like spelling, punctuation, capitalization, or even organization, they learn. They learn that mistakes bring no consequences.

We now have more than one generation of children living in adult bodies. Children raising children. It is not an accident.

“In short, it is not merely that Johnny can’t read, or even that Johnny can’t think. Johnny doesn’t know what thinking is, because thinking is so often confused with feeling in many public schools.” Thomas Sowell, Inside American Education

CORRUPT EDUCATION
STATUS AS OF 2022: GOAL ACHIEVED

Published in Education
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  1. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    • #1
  2. Mark Alexander Coolidge
    Mark Alexander
    @MarkAlexander

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    Government education must be destroyed and constitutionally forbidden at both the federal and state levels. All education becomes local and best practices shared. IMHO

    • #2
  3. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    Government education must be destroyed and constitutionally forbidden at both the federal and state levels. All education becomes local and best practices shared. IMHO

    Works for me!

    • #3
  4. DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Mark Alexander:

    Hannah Arendt’s The Origins of Totalitarianism

    In an ever-changing, incomprehensible world the masses had reached the point where they would, at the same time, believe everything and nothing, think that everything was possible and that nothing was true. […] under such conditions, one could make people believe the most fantastic statements one day, and trust that if the next day they were given irrefutable proof of their falsehood, they would take refuge in cynicism; instead of deserting the leaders who had lied to them, they would protest that they had known all along that the statement was a lie and would admire the leaders for their superior tactical cleverness.

    Clown World as a Uniform

    Gender ideology and critical race theory (crt) may look like nonsense from the outside, but getting people to agree with nonsense has an impact. As Curtis Yarvin pointed out many years ago:

    “In many ways, nonsense is a more effective organizing tool than the truth. Anyone can believe in the truth. To believe in nonsense is an unforgeable demonstration of loyalty. It serves as a political uniform. And if you have a uniform, you have an army.”

    Wokeness is a powerful way to separate friend from enemy in a culture war. Conservatives may be willing to jump through many ridiculous hoops to stay off the radar and keep their jobs in woke corporations or government institutions, but inevitably, if things get crazy enough they run into a line they cannot cross. Eventually signaling allegiance to the ruling ideology becomes too costly for those who were just going along to get along. Give preferential treatment to employees with the right intersectional status? Okay. Use Latinx on company forms? Sure I guess. Pretend the guy who was named John last week is now they/them? Fine. Trans your kids to show how tolerant and accepting you are? Okay, I’m out.

    As crazy as it may seem, getting someone to commit to the rules of clown world is a powerful tool for the regime. It is one thing for people to begrudgingly comply to get along, another for them to fully embrace and enforce the absurd. If you can get someone to parade around proudly proclaiming nonsense you know you own them. The uniform may be clown shoes and a red rubber nose, but it is a uniform nonetheless. And if you have a uniform you have an army.

     

    • #4
  5. Chuck Thatcher
    Chuck
    @Chuckles

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    Government education must be destroyed and constitutionally forbidden at both the federal and state levels. All education becomes local and best practices shared. IMHO

    Absent intervention by the Almighty, what are the chances of this happening?

    • #5
  6. Red Herring Coolidge
    Red Herring
    @EHerring

    Mark is right. I follow the John Locke Society (NC) and found this explosive story. In SC, our race for State Superintendent of Education. We need all candidates to be asked if they are members of a teachers‘ union and support the union agenda.


    https://www.carolinajournal.com/twitter-blocks-lockes-exposure-of-teachers-union-agenda

    This is on the website of one of the SC candidates. Can you guess which party ticket she is on? Wake up SC. When a state race becomes this political, ideology is involved.

    • #6
  7. Mark Alexander Coolidge
    Mark Alexander
    @MarkAlexander

    Chuck (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    Government education must be destroyed and constitutionally forbidden at both the federal and state levels. All education becomes local and best practices shared. IMHO

    Absent intervention by the Almighty, what are the chances of this happening?

    A good chance. But only if enough people recognize the danger of govt education. Lockdowns helped to spread that awareness far and wide. 

    • #7
  8. Red Herring Coolidge
    Red Herring
    @EHerring

    Per the John Locke article I mentioned in my previous comment, there is this:

    One of the most notable items on the agenda is the NEA proposal to distribute “fact sheets” discrediting 25 organizations that are promoting policies they say are intended to “dismantle public education.” Likely targets would be groups that promote policies like school choice and a Parents’ Bill of Rights.

    Be alert for this stuff, a Marxist “dog whistle.”

    One of the leftie groups  
    https://www.organize2020.com/

    Another

    https://www.organize2020.com/

    Gotta hand it to the lefties, they are open about their efforts, now:

    The social justice protest arm of the N.C. Association of Educators (NCAE), “Organize 2020,” recently sent out an email inviting those “committed to education justice” to join a new coalition aimed at fighting for topics that parents have pushed back on at recent school board meetings — namely Critical Race Theory and saving “banned” books.

    Follow the money:


    https://www.influencewatch.org/non-profit/peoples-action/

    Follow the money even higher and you get to:

    https://www.influencewatch.org/organization/democracy-alliance-conferences/

    The devil is in the details, literally as well as figuratively:

    Democracy Alliance co-founder George Soros spoke at the conference.

    That last one names a lot of names…all the usual suspects. You live in Georgia? Stacey Abrams is named, use her tie and support to defeat her. The wicked witch of the west is there as well as her House hit squad.

    • #8
  9. Red Herring Coolidge
    Red Herring
    @EHerring

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Chuck (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    Government education must be destroyed and constitutionally forbidden at both the federal and state levels. All education becomes local and best practices shared. IMHO

    Absent intervention by the Almighty, what are the chances of this happening?

    A good chance. But only if enough people recognize the danger of govt education. Lockdowns helped to spread that awareness far and wide.

    Sadly, too many on our side woke up too late. The evil left is too entrenched, too well funded, and too well supported thanks to decades of spreading propaganda in public schools. 

    • #9
  10. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Red Herring (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Chuck (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    Government education must be destroyed and constitutionally forbidden at both the federal and state levels. All education becomes local and best practices shared. IMHO

    Absent intervention by the Almighty, what are the chances of this happening?

    A good chance. But only if enough people recognize the danger of govt education. Lockdowns helped to spread that awareness far and wide.

    Sadly, too many on our side woke up too late. The evil left is too entrenched, too well funded, and too well supported thanks to decades of spreading propaganda in public schools.

    We may be coming late to the game, but that just makes us angry underdogs. Watch us fight back!

    • #10
  11. Mark Alexander Coolidge
    Mark Alexander
    @MarkAlexander

    Red Herring (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Chuck (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    Government education must be destroyed and constitutionally forbidden at both the federal and state levels. All education becomes local and best practices shared. IMHO

    Absent intervention by the Almighty, what are the chances of this happening?

    A good chance. But only if enough people recognize the danger of govt education. Lockdowns helped to spread that awareness far and wide.

    Sadly, too many on our side woke up too late. The evil left is too entrenched, too well funded, and too well supported thanks to decades of spreading propaganda in public schools.

    And thus a constitutional convention is required. Or “1776-ing.”

    • #11
  12. Red Herring Coolidge
    Red Herring
    @EHerring

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Red Herring (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Chuck (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    Government education must be destroyed and constitutionally forbidden at both the federal and state levels. All education becomes local and best practices shared. IMHO

    Absent intervention by the Almighty, what are the chances of this happening?

    A good chance. But only if enough people recognize the danger of govt education. Lockdowns helped to spread that awareness far and wide.

    Sadly, too many on our side woke up too late. The evil left is too entrenched, too well funded, and too well supported thanks to decades of spreading propaganda in public schools.

    And thus a constitutional convention is required. Or “1776-ing.”

    A convention doesn’t destroy the ideology, the cancer. I am afraid “refreshing the tree of liberty would only work if we grabbed the Constitution as ratified and didn’t allow the politicians of today to dabble with it. None are as well-read as the founders. I fear few of them could resist the temptation to entrench their own power. They must all be banned from political office for getting us into this mess.

    • #12
  13. Painter Jean Member
    Painter Jean
    @PainterJean

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Chuck (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    A powerful assessment, Mark. And a frightening one, too. The question will be whether we can take back education. Or whether it’s too late. Great post.

    Government education must be destroyed and constitutionally forbidden at both the federal and state levels. All education becomes local and best practices shared. IMHO

    Absent intervention by the Almighty, what are the chances of this happening?

    A good chance. But only if enough people recognize the danger of govt education. Lockdowns helped to spread that awareness far and wide.

    I wish I could share your optimism, but the reality is that government schools are not at all likely to be destroyed. I don’t see the “good chance” that you apparently do. They are entrenched in the culture and are a large and powerful force – I hope they wither and die away as parents recoil from their fare of indoctrination and poor education and seek out alternatives, but it won’t happen quickly or completely, which is what the word “destroyed” suggests. First we have to reform or bypass the current education of teachers. I don’t see that even being discussed much.

    • #13
  14. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot) Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot)
    @ArizonaPatriot

    I don’t find the accusation of “totalitarianism” to be helpful.  I have little idea what people mean by this word.  My general impression is that it is used to mean the enforcement of any law that the person using the word “totalitarian” doesn’t like.

    I also think that you’re wrong about education.  Good public education is a good thing, in my view.  We used to do this, as far as I can tell, though it was before my time.  A radically Leftist Supreme Court drove the teaching of God and faith out of the public schools.  Many people today, who think of themselves as conservatives, agree with that decision, which was based on a legal argument that, in my view, was as erroneous as Roe v. Wade.  The relevant decisions completely ignored our history and traditions, and prior rulings of the Court, adopting a radical view about the “separation of church and state” that was expressed in a private letter by Thomas Jefferson during his Jacobin period.  (Though I’m not sure if his Jacobin period ended before his death.)

    The antidote to bad education is good education.  The idea that we ought to teach children to make up their own minds about moral issues, on the basis of reason, is delusional.  None of you reading this has done so.  No one ever did so.  It is impossible to do so.

    • #14
  15. DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):
    I don’t find the accusation of “totalitarianism” to be helpful.  I have little idea what people mean by this word.

    Perhaps I can explain by example.

    When the same message is broadcast from every institution — the government, academia, news, entertainment, social media, grade schools, churches, your neighbors across the street, your local grocery store, . . . such that this message is completely inescapable and it becomes nearly impossible (or even criminal) to think outside the confines of that message, . . . you have totalitarianism. 

    Pride rainbow gets 'inclusive' makeover – but still not everyone is happy

    • #15
  16. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot) Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot)
    @ArizonaPatriot

    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic … (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):
    I don’t find the accusation of “totalitarianism” to be helpful. I have little idea what people mean by this word.

    Perhaps I can explain by example.

    When the same message is broadcast from every institution — the government, academia, news, entertainment, social media, grade schools, churches, your neighbors across the street, your local grocery store, . . . such that this message is completely inescapable and it becomes nearly impossible (or even criminal) to think outside the confines of that message, . . . you have totalitarianism.

    Pride rainbow gets 'inclusive' makeover – but still not everyone is happy

    I think that you’re completely wrong about this.

    They are teaching an evil ideology.  We used to teach a patriotic Christian Americanism.  I’d like to see that again.

    Instead, your idea seems to be that we should have no common culture and no common values.  If actually implemented, I think that this would lead to anarchy.  I think that this has been the error of the so-called conservatives since Buckley’s “fusionism.”

    I don’t think that the anarchistic libertarian idea ever actually gets implemented, because an alternative religion springs up when the alliance of the Leftists and libertarians drives out traditional religion.  I think that this has been occurring for a good 30 years or more now, and many people are waking up to it as the new “Wokeism.”  Except it’s not new.  It was all there in the late 1980s and early 1990s.  Most people were simply oblivious to it.

    • #16
  17. Mark Alexander Coolidge
    Mark Alexander
    @MarkAlexander

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    I don’t find the accusation of “totalitarianism” to be helpful. I have little idea what people mean by this word. My general impression is that it is used to mean the enforcement of any law that the person using the word “totalitarian” doesn’t like.

    I also think that you’re wrong about education. Good public education is a good thing, in my view. We used to do this, as far as I can tell, though it was before my time. A radically Leftist Supreme Court drove the teaching of God and faith out of the public schools. Many people today, who think of themselves as conservatives, agree with that decision, which was based on a legal argument that, in my view, was as erroneous as Roe v. Wade. The relevant decisions completely ignored our history and traditions, and prior rulings of the Court, adopting a radical view about the “separation of church and state” that was expressed in a private letter by Thomas Jefferson during his Jacobin period. (Though I’m not sure if his Jacobin period ended before his death.)

    The antidote to bad education is good education. The idea that we ought to teach children to make up their own minds about moral issues, on the basis of reason, is delusional. None of you reading this has done so. No one ever did so. It is impossible to do so.

    So have you read even one of the book recommendations I mentioned?

    • #17
  18. DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic … (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):
    I don’t find the accusation of “totalitarianism” to be helpful. I have little idea what people mean by this word.

    Perhaps I can explain by example.

    When the same message is broadcast from every institution — the government, academia, news, entertainment, social media, grade schools, churches, your neighbors across the street, your local grocery store, . . . such that this message is completely inescapable and it becomes nearly impossible (or even criminal) to think outside the confines of that message, . . . you have totalitarianism.

    Pride rainbow gets 'inclusive' makeover – but still not everyone is happy

    I think that you’re completely wrong about this.

    They are teaching an evil ideology.

    That doesn’t mean it’s not totalitarian.

    Instead, your idea seems to be that we should have no common culture and no common values. If actually implemented, I think that this would lead to anarchy.

    Huh? What do you think I was saying above?

    I’m giving you the perfect example of totalitarianism, I’m not recommending it.

    • #18
  19. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic … (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic … (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):
    I don’t find the accusation of “totalitarianism” to be helpful. I have little idea what people mean by this word.

    Perhaps I can explain by example.

    When the same message is broadcast from every institution — the government, academia, news, entertainment, social media, grade schools, churches, your neighbors across the street, your local grocery store, . . . such that this message is completely inescapable and it becomes nearly impossible (or even criminal) to think outside the confines of that message, . . . you have totalitarianism.

    Pride rainbow gets 'inclusive' makeover – but still not everyone is happy

    I think that you’re completely wrong about this.

    They are teaching an evil ideology.

    That doesn’t mean it’s not totalitarian.

    Instead, your idea seems to be that we should have no common culture and no common values. If actually implemented, I think that this would lead to anarchy.

    Huh? What do you think I was saying above?

    I’m giving you the perfect example of totalitarianism, I’m not recommending it.

    This was, in fact, obvious. 

    And the idea that what the left is engaged in today is not totalitarianism is just wrong. 

    • #19
  20. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot) Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot)
    @ArizonaPatriot

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    I don’t find the accusation of “totalitarianism” to be helpful. I have little idea what people mean by this word. My general impression is that it is used to mean the enforcement of any law that the person using the word “totalitarian” doesn’t like.

    I also think that you’re wrong about education. Good public education is a good thing, in my view. We used to do this, as far as I can tell, though it was before my time. A radically Leftist Supreme Court drove the teaching of God and faith out of the public schools. Many people today, who think of themselves as conservatives, agree with that decision, which was based on a legal argument that, in my view, was as erroneous as Roe v. Wade. The relevant decisions completely ignored our history and traditions, and prior rulings of the Court, adopting a radical view about the “separation of church and state” that was expressed in a private letter by Thomas Jefferson during his Jacobin period. (Though I’m not sure if his Jacobin period ended before his death.)

    The antidote to bad education is good education. The idea that we ought to teach children to make up their own minds about moral issues, on the basis of reason, is delusional. None of you reading this has done so. No one ever did so. It is impossible to do so.

    So have you read even one of the book recommendations I mentioned?

    Well, no.  I haven’t read an entire book since your post this morning.

    I am somewhat familiar with the work of Arendt, Solzhenitsyn, Chambers, and Dalrymple.  Dalrymple seems to favor the teaching of traditional morality.  I’m less sure about Solzhenitsyn about this, as he seemed primarily concerned with the evils of Communism.  Chambers was also anti-Communist, after being a Communist himself, and seems to have returned to Christianity.  I have not been very impressed by Arendt, based on what little I have read.

    All seem to be opposed to Communism.  Good.  I’m opposed to Communism too.  But why muddle this up with a discussion of Totalitarianism, whatever that is. 

    Arendt, again based on what little I know, seemed to consider Communism and Nazism to be extremely similar, and focused on world domination.  I don’t think that Hitler wanted to conquer the world, though the Communists appeared to desire this end.  As far as I can tell, Hitler wanted to dominate northern Europe, Poland, the Baltic States, Ukraine, and the Caucasus, to create an expanded German empire with adequate food and energy resources.

    I will end with a question.  Do you think that any of the authors that you cite managed to construct a complete, coherent moral system, based on pure reason?  I’ve never seen anyone do so, and the typical claims about those who supposedly did so — Ayn Rand and John Rawls come to mind — are obvious failures.

    • #20
  21. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot) Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot)
    @ArizonaPatriot

    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic … (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic … (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):
    I don’t find the accusation of “totalitarianism” to be helpful. I have little idea what people mean by this word.

    Perhaps I can explain by example.

    When the same message is broadcast from every institution — the government, academia, news, entertainment, social media, grade schools, churches, your neighbors across the street, your local grocery store, . . . such that this message is completely inescapable and it becomes nearly impossible (or even criminal) to think outside the confines of that message, . . . you have totalitarianism.

    Pride rainbow gets 'inclusive' makeover – but still not everyone is happy

    I think that you’re completely wrong about this.

    They are teaching an evil ideology.

    That doesn’t mean it’s not totalitarian.

    Instead, your idea seems to be that we should have no common culture and no common values. If actually implemented, I think that this would lead to anarchy.

    Huh? What do you think I was saying above?

    I’m giving you the perfect example of totalitarianism, I’m not recommending it.

    Drew, what I thought that you were saying above was what you said:

    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic … (View Comment):

    When the same message is broadcast from every institution — the government, academia, news, entertainment, social media, grade schools, churches, your neighbors across the street, your local grocery store, . . . such that this message is completely inescapable and it becomes nearly impossible (or even criminal) to think outside the confines of that message, . . . you have totalitarianism.

    I took this as a statement of principle, not limited to the one example that you provided by photo (Wokeism).  I thought that you meant that it was always bad when “the same message is broadcast from every institution,” and that when this occurred, “you have totalitarianism.”

    Thus, I inferred that if a patriotic Christian Americanism was the message broadcast from every institution, you would think that such a society would be totalitarian.

    If I misinterpreted you, my apologies.  It seemed to be what you were saying.

    But if I misinterpreted you, then what you mean, as far as I can tell, is that “totalitarianism” occurs when a message is broadcast by all institutions and you don’t agree with it.  Which gets back to my original point, I guess, that people seem to use the word “totalitarian” as a slur to delegitimize the enforcement of any rule that they don’t like.

    • #21
  22. DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    Thus, I inferred that if a patriotic Christian Americanism was the message broadcast from every institution, you would think that such a society would be totalitarian.

    If I misinterpreted you, my apologies.  It seemed to be what you were saying.

    But if I misinterpreted you, then what you mean, as far as I can tell, is that “totalitarianism” occurs when a message is broadcast by all institutions and you don’t agree with it.  Which gets back to my original point, I guess, that people seem to use the word “totalitarian” as a slur to delegitimize the enforcement of any rule that they don’t like.

    More like “You’re not allowed to think any other thoughts.” It is a punishable offense to disagree with the message.

    Arguably, a “totalitarian” message of freedom would be okay, although if there was freedom to depart from the totalitarian message, it wouldn’t be totalitarian. It’s a bit of a paradox.

     

    • #22
  23. Mark Alexander Coolidge
    Mark Alexander
    @MarkAlexander

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    So have you read even one of the book recommendations I mentioned?

    Well, no. I haven’t read an entire book since your post this morning.

    I am somewhat familiar with the work of Arendt, Solzhenitsyn, Chambers, and Dalrymple. Dalrymple seems to favor the teaching of traditional morality. I’m less sure about Solzhenitsyn about this, as he seemed primarily concerned with the evils of Communism. Chambers was also anti-Communist, after being a Communist himself, and seems to have returned to Christianity. I have not been very impressed by Arendt, based on what little I have read.

    All seem to be opposed to Communism. Good. I’m opposed to Communism too. But why muddle this up with a discussion of Totalitarianism, whatever that is.

    Arendt, again based on what little I know, seemed to consider Communism and Nazism to be extremely similar, and focused on world domination. I don’t think that Hitler wanted to conquer the world, though the Communists appeared to desire this end. As far as I can tell, Hitler wanted to dominate northern Europe, Poland, the Baltic States, Ukraine, and the Caucasus, to create an expanded German empire with adequate food and energy resources.

    I will end with a question. Do you think that any of the authors that you cite managed to construct a complete, coherent moral system, based on pure reason? I’ve never seen anyone do so, and the typical claims about those who supposedly did so — Ayn Rand and John Rawls come to mind — are obvious failures.

    Fear not. I will not mess with your certainties.

    • #23
  24. Charlotte Member
    Charlotte
    @Charlotte

    Mark Alexander:

    Theodore Dalrymple’s The Wilder Shores of Marx

    Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.

    Ooof.

    Yes.

    • #24
  25. Charlotte Member
    Charlotte
    @Charlotte

    Jerry, I honestly can’t even figure out exactly what you’re objecting to here. Normally I understand what you’re arguing even though I hardly ever agree. But this time you’ve completely lost me.

    • #25
  26. DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Charlotte (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander:

    Theodore Dalrymple’s The Wilder Shores of Marx

    Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.

    Ooof.

    Yes.

    Havel was all over that, too.

    • #26
  27. Charlotte Member
    Charlotte
    @Charlotte

    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic … (View Comment):

    Charlotte (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander:

    Theodore Dalrymple’s The Wilder Shores of Marx

    Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.

    Ooof.

    Yes.

    Havel was all over that, too.

    That might be what caught my eye. The bit about humiliation sounded very familiar. Thanks.

    • #27
  28. DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Charlotte (View Comment):

    DrewInWisconsin, Unapologetic … (View Comment):

    Charlotte (View Comment):

    Mark Alexander:

    Theodore Dalrymple’s The Wilder Shores of Marx

    Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.

    Ooof.

    Yes.

    Havel was all over that, too.

    That might be what caught my eye. The bit about humiliation sounded very familiar. Thanks.

    I’m starting to think humiliation is the point of much of what we’re seeing in the actions by our ruling class. Rubbing our faces in it, knowing that they’re untouchable.

    • #28
  29. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):
    Arendt, again based on what little I know, seemed to consider Communism and Nazism to be extremely similar, and focused on world domination.  I don’t think that Hitler wanted to conquer the world, though the Communists appeared to desire this end. 

    Hannah Arendt only thought that because it was true.

    As far as I can tell, Hitler wanted to dominate northern Europe, Poland, the Baltic States, Ukraine, and the Caucasus, to create an expanded German empire with adequate food and energy resources.

    All Hitler wanted was Austria. Then the Sudetenland. Then 50% of Poland. Then Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Norway, and 65% of France …

    Meanwhile, the Comintern was dominated by the Soviets – by Russians in particular. In practice Communism was nothing more than Russian fascism. When Tito got fussy, Yugoslavia got the boot. Ditto Mao and the Chinese.

    The primary difference between the Nazis and the Soviets was terminology. That and the Krauts had the snazzy Hugo Boss uniforms.

    • #29
  30. Red Herring Coolidge
    Red Herring
    @EHerring

    Explains a lot. Also, the leftie Dems are totalitarian and Marxist. 

    • #30
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