Friday, May 21, 2010

The Totalitarian Mindset

When one imagines the totalitarian society, hordes of jackbooted fanatics spring to mind. Soldiers marching lockstep, saluting some mustachioed nationalist leader with a great power chauvinistic "will to power" - this is the norm, particularly in American culture. There is some truth to this illustration, or else it would not be so poignant, or persistent.

The problem with such a montage view of totalitarian societies is that it defuses the question of what preceded this disturbing imagery; how people became putty in some power-crazed dictator's hands. There is only the assumption: These are no more than faceless “others,” and nothing of that sort could ever happen here.

This is a great liberal deception. The totalitarian mindset is the result of a demoralization process that takes place over the course of decades and results in the breaking of a people's spirit. It can happen anywhere, to any people who fail in their vigilance to defend liberty.

Totalitarianism must first take hold in the minds of the people before it becomes political reality. Ideological corruption and subversion is the only path to molding a people who willingly cooperate with their oppressors. The totalitarian dictator does not announce his arrival with a speech proclaiming his intention to enslave a people; he is ushered into power by adoring crowds who glorify him as their savior.

To bring about a totalitarian society, a necessarily subtle form of indoctrination conditions the mindset of a people from the base level of their assumptions, which are the most hidden and obscure of mental heuristics. The prism through which people interpret the world around them becomes fundamentally warped. This foments misunderstanding so profound and obscure to the people themselves that it ultimately leads to the collapse of society; rendering it pliable to narcissistic dictators who desire to erect monuments to their egos.

The fundamental assumption of the totalitarian mindset is simple and potent: It is a zero-sum mentality. It is a worldview that sees no parts in distinction and everything as interrelated. Once this assumption is established in the minds of the citizenry, the totalitarian state follows ineluctably of its own accord.

The totalitarian mindset is the sad state of the modern liberal. Seeing only his beautiful vision of a brighter future, one without war, poverty, or misery, he is driven into an abusive and ultimately destructive relationship with all who oppose him. All history, philosophy, facts, and objections that contradict the modern liberal’s worldview are but justifications of the status quo; residue of capitalist “false consciousness.”

These may all seem like wild claims. But imagine that you are a dictator and you seek control over a nation of individualists, each desiring to go his own way. How do you recombine such rogue actors into a collective whole?

To bring about coalescence, you make everyone’s business the business of everyone else’s. Through the perversions of democracy, group rights, class warfare, and entitlements, you pit each individual against the other. You make it impossible for an individual to “live outside of society”; you drag him into the arena of political conflict, kicking and screaming if needed.

The simplest way to drag someone into the social arena is to confiscate his property, the fruit of his labor, and make his losses someone else’s gain. You then stir up social conflict through race and class warfare, so that people project their resentment on other groups, instead of on the inciting government and its proxies.

This is the secret of Marxism. Karl Marx set out to foster a world revolution and then developed the method to achieve it. The redistribution of wealth, from the “haves” to the “have-nots,” fosters a black-and-white, zero-sum worldview that pits the leaders of industry against their fellow workers, and in the welfare state, the producers against the parasites.

The most decisive way to glean that the current United States government is guided by Marxist philosophy is to examine its incomprehensible and ostensibly self-defeating tax policy. It is generally understood that cutting taxes, according to the Laffer curve, leads in some situations to a boost in employment and tax revenue. Yet the party in power refuses to do cut taxes. Why is this?

Because taxes are not as much about government revenue as they are about individual control, the subjugation of rival bases of power, and the fostering of social conflict. In particular, the progressive income tax, a plank out of the Communist Manifesto’s program for world revolution, penalizes productivity and encourages parasitism.

The welfare state, which is institutionalized parasitism, is assuredly not about promoting a better standard of life. It locks the poor into government dependency and stifles opportunities for meaningful employment through the taxation of businesses, which are accountable to the people in a market. Businesses can only thrive when they satisfy customers, and they spur economic activity through its connections with other businesses; this is the so-called “ten-fold” effect of wealth creation.

Keynesian economics, a Fabian, or incrementalist, innovation on Marxism, pre-empts market accountability through the first step of government theft; this removes market accountability, detaches capital from demand, and artificially re-inserts capital into the economic system. This is another form of wealth redistribution, without the altruistic rationalization of doing it for the lower class. It is no more than a ruse for building clientelism and furthering government dependency.

Keynesian economics, in conjunction with the intentional currency devaluation of the Federal Reserve system, systematically distorts the capitalist system. This leads to accentuated boom-and-bust periods, filling each trough up with capital liquidity, while the economic base is further and further eroded and detached from demand. Essentially, this circumvents the will of the people to produce and consume as they desire, and accumulates power in a political machine that dispenses and withholds favors as it sees fit. When the economic crashes come, with increasing frequency and severity, the people are forced to turn to government to intervene, since the economic structure is unsustainable and not tailored to meet natural market demand. The government’s justifications for further taxation and redistribution become more compelling, and a free people are gradually enslaved to the political class, and to each other.

The distortion and the eventual obliteration of independent economic life and free trade leads to a conflation of the economic, the political, the social, and even the private. Indeed, it is individual freedom that even makes these distinct categories possible.

The term "socialism" thus beguiles a tacit assumption: That all politics and economics can be dissolved within "society"; as if the world can become so immersed in personal relationships that all politics and economic conflict of interests will "wither away." It will become a "worker's paradise" where:

"...nobody has one exclusive sphere of activity but each can become accomplished in any branch he wishes, society regulates the general production and thus makes it possible for me to do one thing today and another tomorrow, to hunt in the morning, fish in the afternoon, rear cattle in the evening, criticize after dinner, just as I have a mind, without ever becoming hunter, fisherman, herdsman or critic." (Karl Marx, The German Ideology)

It is indeed striking to juxtapose Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi's statement regarding health insurance portability:

"Think of an economy where people could be an artist or a photographer or a writer without worrying about keeping their day job in order to have health insurance."

What is striking is that civilizations are built precisely on the division of labor, directed (and in the case of Western Civilization, self-directed) economic activity, and intellectual and political leadership. Yet it appears to be the contention of the liberal intelligentsia that the division of labor, ipso facto, constitutes a conspiracy to oppress the masses. Ironically, liberal elites exempt themselves from inclusion in any such hierarchical view of the societies that they lead. They always claim to be part of "parties," or other collectives; thus denying that they are ruled by self-interest, even as they unabashedly espouse altruistic pretenses.

In the totalitarian's world, all is political. Since power is an existential fact of life, an interrelational concept that is defined by inequality between parts of the whole, power is not something dangerous or evil, but something to be seized and used. It is either possessed by the "good guys," that is, those who fight for social and economic "justice" (i.e. equality), or it is in the hands of the "bad guys," in their eyes, the nationalistic war-mongering oppressors who seek dominance over others.

This is why, regardless of whom America fights, it is automatically the imperialist aggressor. America's relative strength is intrinsically a sign of its oppressive nature, not a hallmark of superior virtue and a civilization harmonious with physical reality and human nature. Its power came at the expense of others; the underprivileged, the underrepresented, the underdeveloped.

Globally, the United States is blamed for the poverty of peoples and civilizations that preceded America by hundreds, even thousands of years. The nation is denounced for a capitalist economic system that produced unimaginable wealth by unleashing the human spirit; yet this is twisted into the exploitation of people in sandy deserts and barren wastelands that most Americans cannot even name, let alone find a map. After all, most Americans are working and minding their own business.

The totalitarian mindset is also why, in the liberal imagination, there is no such thing as a free market (unless you mean a mystical place where everything is "free"). An employer can never be an empowering agency, it must always be an exploiter, or an oppressor. Profits are a physical measure of that exploitation; whatever the employer has that the laborers do not is the hallmark of economic injustice. Never mind that some people are unable to organize an enterprise, develop a product that people want, coordinate the resources to build that product, entice people who can do the best job of manufacturing that product, get the product to people who want it, direct activities to take advantage of new technology and other opportunities, adapt to shifting circumstances, prepare for the unpredictable, compete with rival products, etc.

Such uncertainty and apparent disorganization of an economy that comes with a market, that engine of "creative destruction," as Schumpeter termed it, is a manifestation of individual differences, where true freedom allows people to make of their own lives what they will, to seek what they want, to create with the only restraint being what people deem to have value.

Liberals, as elites who presumably know better what has value, and thus do not seek to be constrained by any "market," believe such a mechanism of economic accountability to be, in any event, an illusion. A market to them is nothing less than a mechanism that leads to a maldistribution of resources from the oppressed to their oppressors. Income inequality is proof of injustice, since men are inherently equal. (Elites, however, see no irony in being paid handsomely for their "public service," since they are "on the side of the little guy." Liberalism is thus a sort of rationalization for hypocrisy.)

The lynchpin of the totalitarian mindset, the venue for its domination and indoctrination, is society. It is in the social realm where values are imparted, emotions are learned, the conscience is formed, and most importantly, where the totalitarian mentality is inculcated.

The importance of society for liberalism, which is to say in the modern era, socialism, is fundamental. Civil society is the arena of communication; we should therefore see no contradiction for liberals to use free speech as a cover to hide behind when espousing their crypto-authoritarian views, yet freedom of speech is one of the first things liberals seek to deprive people of when they are in positions of power.

Liberals use every social tool of intimidation and conditioning to batter individuals into submission. They use shame, ridicule, the manipulation of group dynamics, epithets, personal attacks, and demonization to imprint their values onto their prey. Meanwhile, they defuse judgment, critical thinking, and rationality and ridicule any individual who dares to challenge their narratives. If they have no response, they will merely laugh in a presumably knowingly and arrogant way, usually joined in by their group-thinking audience.

When liberals claim that they seek a society of "freedom," what they really mean is one without order. It is not because they seek to liberate people, but rather that they seek total control over the environment in such a comprehensive way that they are literally omnipotent, and thus everywhere and nowhere at once. This is a utopia of complete domination by invisible elites with the complete and grateful submission of a brainwashed sheeple.

To create a totalitarian mentality, the distinctions that give rise to rationality, and therefore, civilized man, must be obliterated in order to form perfectly malleable savages, able to be controlled and directed without their even knowing that they are being manipulated. Moral relativism, equivocation, rationalization, non-judgment, tolerance, and nondiscrimination are what is needed for a people to be at the mercy of the elites. The successfully indoctrinated are people who operate on a primal level, often spontaneously and inexplicably attacking predetermined targets. What conditions these targets is the zero-sum mentality.

From a social point of view, the zero-sum mentality holds that males are inherently repressive of females; men's relative physical strength is only symbolic of their intent to dominate women. Every good feminist knows that all differences between the sexes are only the result of "gender roles." The totalitarian worldview cannot tolerate inherent natural differences beyond their control.

Furthermore, heterosexuals are inherently "homophobes" if they reject homosexuality. Heterosexuality and homosexuality are simply "lifestyle preferences," after all, and the espousal of monogamous heterosexuality as a value is intrinsically an attempt to dominate the sex lives of others. To a totalitarian liberal, this is true whether a heterosexual is actually interested in others' sex lives or not. If one insists that heterosexuality is natural, he is automatically a bigot.

The same can be said of race. White people are the dominant majority for no other reason than they are the majority. Whether or not "whites" evaluate people on the basis of skin color - that is irrelevant. The "inability" or "unwillingness" to see people in terms of skin color, a de facto aspect of group identity, is a sign of ignorance, not of virtue. It cannot be a sign that people want to "progress" past the true injustices of the past and to live in a society of human beings who are not judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. Such a point of view is impossible in a world where the majority "race" is perpetually the oppressor of the minority race. Totalitarians cannot understand people who see the world in terms of particulars.

In political terms, any power existing outside of the government rightfully belongs to the powerless (democracy supposedly making the government and the people synonymous); the means of the wealthy is rightfully owned by the impoverished; and all prestige rightfully belongs to the underprivileged and underrepresented. It should be noted that “democracy” is only for totalitarians, and not for those who seek to oppose him.

Furthermore, the totalitarian mindset sees the nature of reality as an integrated whole. Totalitarians view the material structure of the environment as deterministic of people's thoughts and behavior; therefore, they seek no less than total control of all resources in order to control the people. This is one reason why liberals believe guns cause violence; people neither have free will nor do some have a natural disposition towards violence. Both implications would frustrate the totalitarian’s ability to remake the world as he sees fit.

More generally, liberals (whom we can classify as people who may or may not know that they are socialists) believe that by removing competition for scarce resources they will be able to remove all sources of conflict. These elitists paradoxically seek to deny people the ability to achieve personal excellence, all in the name of “equality.” Yet they never forego their own resources or privileged positions in the interest of "equality"; once again belying that they are as self-interested as all other people.

It is hidden to the liberal totalitarian that his holistic mindset leads inevitably to dehumanization. Because of his sense of self-righteousness and altruistic mission, he is unable to comprehend that one of the principle organizing tenets of post-communist totalitarianism, radical environmentalism, is destined to unleash a maelstrom of inhumane policies in the interest of "purity." Environmentalism combines the totalitarian's tendency to abstract away individual human beings with a drive for complete control over the material world.

Today’s liberal forces a deadly dance where either you are for socialism (liberalism, progressivism, etc.) or against it. There is no option in the liberal’s mind of sequestration on a deserted island to try, yet again, his failed socialist experiments. Only ever-expanding concentric rings of political control, until the world is under total socialist domination, will quench his lust to remake the world as he sees fit. And the biggest obstacle in his way: The United States of America.

It should not be much of a surprise then that the socialist Democrat Party seeks to “fundamentally transform” the United States and to harness it to unaccountable global socialist bodies. “Progressives” have been systematically undermining the U.S. for decades, if not a full century.

America has been stronger than the progressive (socialists) anticipated, as demonstrated by the threatening tea party movement. But the socialists finally have their man in the White House and the radical wing is tired of waiting. The leftists are growing impatient, and every day brings a new report of some policy or action that threatens to break the nation in two.

The perfect opposition to the liberal totalitarian, the source of his frustration and his target for destruction, is the American Constitution. Private property, expressed and divided powers, checks and balances, individual rights, representation, free trade in and between states, state’s rights, the rule of law, and a free press all frustrate the ambitions of totalitarians. This is why these institutions must be demolished or harnessed for the state’s interests.

Furthermore, American culture, with its family values, rugged individualism, Christianity, firm basis in common sense, respect for the founding, and grounding in objective reality, is a cause of animus for the liberal totalitarian and the forum of his constant corruption.

To defeat liberal totalitarianism, we need to reassert American culture and restore the Constitution. No less that a revolution of ideals, one that sees other citizens as free individuals, and potential collaborators in mutually beneficial joint enterprises, will reestablish a civil society where men can live and work in independent harmony. Through the protection of individuals’ lives and property, we can compete with one another to advance the interests of mankind in the spirit of mutual respect.

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