Many of us have difficulty understanding how Liberal/Progressives think, so I thought I might share a little of what I’ve learned from several years of reading what they have said and written.
First, it is important to understand that the collectivist sees society as an organism and himself/herself as the doctor. This means that the collectivist is the one who “knows” how to diagnose social ills and prescribe the cure. The patient (i.e. society) is assumed to be unqualified to do either. The patient is simply assumed to be too ignorant to help and more likely to add to her own problems.
Next, the collectivist assumes they are of a higher level of intellect than the patient. While they may acknowledge other doctors (people they consider their peers), they usually still hold an inward assumption of superiority to those other doctors. They believe they understand and have answers for many of the social ills humanity has wrestled with and never been able to understand or resolve, therefore, they assume they have a moral responsibility to ‘save’ the patient (society) – whether the patient likes it or not.
At this point, we need to understand that this is the structure of the collectivist’s understanding of morality. The collectivist sees himself as morally obligated to save the patient because he is smarter than the patient and knows better what is good for the patient than the patient, herself. This is essential to understanding why collectivists seem to have a different understanding of right and wrong than those who see society as a collection of individuals rather than a single organism. Keep this in mind as you read the next part.
Now, as the doctor, the collectivist does not see the individual cells (i.e. people) making up the body of the patient (i.e. society). All the collectivist sees is the patient. What’s more, because the patient is ignorant and self-destructive, the doctor doesn’t bother asking the patient what is wrong or where it hurts. He just “goes to work.” Therefore, if the doctor decides the body of the patient has a boil (let’s say, a person who is trying to assert their individual rights) and the collectivist decides it needs to be lanced, he simply lances the boil and thinks nothing of it. In the mind of the collectivist, he has done a good thing: he has “healed” the patient, thus relieving her of the discomfort caused by the boil. However, in the real world where individuals matter, that boil is a real individual, and that ‘lancing” may have taken the form of denied justice, imprisonment or even the outright killing of the individual who was simply seeking to protect their individual rights and liberty.
Now, let’s suppose that the problem is more serious. This time, the patient (society) has what the doctor (i.e. collectivist) decides is a cancer (i.e. a group of people asserting their right to own and bear arms for self-defense). In this case, the doctor decides that only surgery can “save” the patient, so he tries to cut out the cancer (i.e. ban guns). However, the cancer is stubborn and keeps coming back. Well, the doctor (collectivist) is morally bound to “save” the patient (society), so he performs even more radical surgery (i.e. collects individual weapons). Unfortunately, this causes the cancer to grow wildly (individuals revolt), so the doctor cuts of the limb to save the patient (jails or kills those rebelling). And that is how the collectivist thinks and operates.
Note how this works. The collectivist is the arrogant doctor, and society is the hapless, ignorant, self-destructive patient. Only the doctor knows how to save the patient, so the doctor is morally bound to save the patient whether she likes it or not. The doctor then decides what is wrong with the patient without ever asking the patient what is wrong or where it hurts. Then the doctor prescribes the “best cure,” and again, he doesn’t bother to ask the patient for her input or feedback. If the doctor decides the cure hasn’t worked, he tries something else until he eventually arrives at the need for radical amputation. After all, he is morally obligated to save the patient, and if that means ‘sacrificing’ a limb, well, that’s just the price the patient will have to accept for the doctor’s help and benevolence. And that’s how millions of cells (i.e. individual people) can be amputated (i.e. murdered) and the doctor (collectivist) can still see a good and moral person when he looks in the mirror.
Now, admittedly, I have used the ultimate example, but I could just as easily have painted a similar analogy to explain wealth transfer/welfare as theft and slavery, or any other collectivist ploy to ‘cure’ his perceived social ills. I just chose this illustration because I believe it is the easiest to picture and understand. Once we accept that this is how the collectivist thinks, it becomes easier to understand how they can see themselves as good, moral people.
Finally, there’s one last point we need to understand here. This tendency to view himself as society’s doctor tends to result in a form of group-think among these collectivist elitists. At once, it accounts for why they all seem to think alike while, at the same time, they all seem to have a different ‘cure’ to society’s problems. They all think they are doctors trying to save the patient, but they all think they are Dr. House and their peers are just their ‘team.” As a result, they tend to diagnose different ailments and prescribe different treatments.
And there you have it: the Liberal/Progressive/Collectivist mindset in a nutshell.