The Worst Are Getting On Top

One of the standard features of totalitarian regimes, particularity Marxist/communist based governments is either the abolition of religion or the substitution of the state as God. We should all be familiar with Marx’s quote regarding religion:

“Religion is the opiate of the people.”

Probably the best-known quotation by Karl Marx, the German economist and Communist political philosopher, the original from the German text, in Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right, 1843 is:

Die Religion… ist das Opium des Volkes.

Taken in context, this quote reveals far more than it appears in a casual reading. This has been translated variously as ‘religion is the opiate of the masses’, ‘religion is the opium of the masses’ and, in a version which German scholars prefer ‘religion is the opium of the people’. The context the phrase appears is this:

“Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. It is the opium of the people.”

I was drinking my coffee this morning and watching the rebroadcast of Hannity on FOX. On Sean Hannity’s show last night, there was a debate about the contraception issue that is raised by Obama’s health care policies. Leslie Marshall, a left wing radio host, yelled out during the debate:

“The Church can’t tell the government what to do!”

The more I thought about this statement, the more I came to realize that we really do have totalitarian statists among us that truly believe that they government is not established to derive its power from the consent of the governed – they believe that government is the ultimate power and exists to tell citizens what to do as the government sees fit. Just like in Marxist ideology, people must become dispensable cogs in the machine of society, none with more value to society than the other. Under such a humanist view, there is no concept of good and evil and the criminal as valuable as the saint. Isn’t that the logical outcome of what these secularists are attempting to do? Does that not inform the beliefs that allow so called “bleeding heart liberals” to explain away and excuse the most heinous of crimes?

In this example, they believe that Church has no power to teach its members what it right and wrong based on its theology, there is only what the government says – there is no morality except for what the government says there is.

This is a perfect example of the F.A. Hayek quote that I posted yesterday from Hayek’s Road to Serfdom and a chapter titled “Why the Worst Get on Top”:

Since it is the supreme leader who alone determines the ends, his instruments must have no moral convictions of their own. They must, above all, be unreservedly committed to the person of the leader; but next to this the most important thing is that they should be completely unprincipled and literally capable of everything. They must have no ideals of their own which they want to realize; no ideas about right or wrong which might interfere with the intentions of the leader.

There is thus in the positions of power little to attract those who hold moral beliefs of the kind which in the past have guided the European peoples, little which could compensate for the distastefulness of many of the particular tasks, and little opportunity to gratify any more idealistic desires, to recompense for the undeniable risk, the sacrifice of most of the pleasures of private life and of personal independence which the posts of great responsibility involve.

The only tastes which are satisfied are the taste for power as such and the pleasure of being obeyed and of being part of a well-functioning and immensely powerful machine to which everything else must give way.

Obama and his cadre of czars are acting as that supreme leader via issuing dictates and his extra-constitutional executive orders.

A “planned” economy and society cannot be implemented unless all citizens are made to be cookie cutter versions of each other – if one drops dead – just assign another to the task – but religion conflicts with that view. Religion teaches that the individual has intrinsic worth. We have value in the eyes of God. Just as Marx saw religion as a roadblock to communism because of its teaching of individual and consistent values coming into conflict with the situational flexibility of the radical humanism of the communist ideology, the secular humanists of today do as well and have adopted his views. They will argue to the death that they don’t – but look past the protestations and you will see that their actions have exactly the same effect. The main argument for Obama in this birth control kerfluffle is that the Catholic organizations won’t have to violate their beliefs because “Obama said so”, when reality says something very different.

Marx at least had the courage of his convictions (although horribly wrong) to state publicly what he was about unlike these cowards today.

I have news for Leslie – shocking though it may be for a Marxist – and make no mistake as I have stated, these people are either pursuing Marxist goals by supporting the Obama administration and the Democrats or they are simply ignorant, a useful idiots with no concept or understanding of the founding principles of the country we live in – but religion does have a trump card. It is called the Establishment Clause of the United States Constitution:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Congress shall make NO law…period. Any law that prohibits the free exercise of individual and personal beliefs is unconstitutional. I know that opens the door to things that we might find repugnant but that is the way it is – we either believe in religious liberty for all or none..

In another Hannity segment, I also heard “progressive” Michael Meyers of the New York Civil Rights Coalition try to make the argument that there are “exemptions” and that this doesn’t apply to the Catholic Church but to “health care organizations”. It is one of the most dishonest parsings of the argument that I have heard, similar to the “it isn’t about religious liberty, it is about women’s health issues” – perhaps it is about “women’s health” but that doesn’t preclude the Constitutional issue – unless you believe that any government policy trumps the Constitution…which the statists do believe.

But it isn’t only a US based constitutional battle; this is a battle that rages worldwide. In an article for The Daily Telegraph, Baroness Warsi, the UK’s first female Muslim Cabinet Office minister, says that to create a “more just society” Britons must “feel stronger in their religious identities”.

The minister, who is also chairman of the Conservative Party, says: “My fear today is that a militant secularisation is taking hold of our societies. We see it in any number of things: when signs of religion cannot be displayed or worn in government buildings; and where religion is sidelined, marginalised and downgraded in the public sphere.

“For me, one of the most worrying aspects about this militant secularisation is that at its core and in its instincts it is deeply intolerant. It demonstrates similar traits to totalitarian regimes – denying people the right to a religious identity because they were frightened of the concept of multiple identities.”

Do not be fooled – these totalitarian statists are following the path of Marx to push out religion and substitute the dictates of the state and as Baroness Warsi stated, these are some of the most intolerant people on the face of planet Earth (again that is the reason that I enclose the word “progressive” in quotes when I refer to the political ideology because this is, and these are, the most regressive movement in the world).  Just as Marx, these “progressive” secular humanists see anything that primarily teaches Christian morality and a code of behavior that is different from their humanist views is something to be destroyed – to be annihilated at any cost.

Atlas Shrugged is real. We are living it. The worst are getting on top.

21 thoughts on “The Worst Are Getting On Top

  1. im not religious but i agree with you…….political correctness is part of the progressive methods …a type of newspeak to prevent you from articulating the truth or a concept…………..and ultimately designed to take away your voice………..

    • You don’t have to be religious to be wary of these people. The EPA can trample your rights and they don’t care if you are religious or not.

    • “political correctness is part of the progressive methods ”
      I agree with you 100%. The problem I seem to run into is that because I don’t play the politically correct game at all, I am called a racist and hater. I know that I am neither, but since I won’t give ANYONE a pass simply because of their race, religion or any other grouping, I get called one. My true guess about this is that since, the progressives can’t live without the PC thing, they need to make me seem as disgusting as possible.

      • yes pc is designed to prevent you saying anything contrary to what they want you to say………even if you disagree with their view the pc method will make it sound like you agree…….the voice of opposition is silenced by demonizing it………..if you have not read 1984 do so…pay particular attention the the chaper in the appendix entitled “the principles and method of newspeak”………….newspeak is very similar to pc…..

  2. This article is making me think of these news stories….a courthouse that wants the Ten Commandments removed, the state park that wants some cross removed, the suing of schools that pray before games…..

    As a side note; thanks for saying the worst are getting on top. You’re really doing a number on my self-esteem this morning.

  3. I shouldn’t have to say this, but…I LOVE THIS PIECE, and I mostly agree with it, but:

    “Atlas Shrugged” is a Godless world, too. We should be careful about using Rand’s philosophy as our model as there is no room for compassion or charity in her thinking. If you will remember, there was a point in the book when the industrialists were living in Galt’s Gorge where one tried to do a favor for another – a simple favor for a friend – but the friend gave him a quarter to pay for the gesture because, as he explained as he handed over the quarter, ALL labor MUST be paid for – no matter what. I do not want to live in THAT society, either.

    I just wish we would stop ignoring the elephant in the room here. We’ve all become victims of the politically correct world in which we live. So much so that few of us will even state the obvious: we are witnessing the battle of good and evil in our world, through the actions of men, yet we dare not point it out lest we be accused of being a “religious nut.” Well, if “democracy” is inherently virtuous, then why do people of faith have to remain quiet when they self-report at numbers at least 2 TIMES greater than atheists? Where is the reason in the anti-God crowed at all? It simply isn’t there, yet those of faith remain silent.

    As long as we continue to do that, we will lose this battle. Utah, this is why I suggested you look at Locke’s defenses of the Christian faith. He is AWESOME in defending how logic and science actually support Christianity. We need to make his ENTIRE argument again, not just tailor parts of it to fit into this PC world. You either kill the bug, or it will eventually kill the host, and you don’t kill the bug by using aspirin to mask a symptom.

    🙂

    • B: I only quoted Atlas because of its anti-collectivist and individualist theme. Rand wrote about individualism (objectivism), not humanism. The former is a philosophy, the latter has become the motivating religion of the institutional left.

      I agree with you on Locke but I what I find missing in the understanding of the Constitution today is that it requires a secular government, not a secular society. It is clear to me that the Founders contemplated that government should have absolutely NO effect on a religion of any description and this is why the Establishment Clause exists.

      You and I are going to get twisted around the axle on my next point.

      The problem isn’t that we aren’t insufficiently Christian in government; it is that government has been allowed to expand into areas that put it into conflict with the very provisions that were designed to prevent this intrusion. For example, if government weren’t involved in health care, there would be no opportunity to compromise religious rights by force feeding birth control to the Catholic Church. If the EPA didn’t exist, there would be no opportunities for it to infringe on private property rights. If the Department of Education didn’t exist, we wouldn’t have conflict over the teaching of “alternative” life styles and the government taking control over our kids.

      “Progressives” would argue that we have made progress under these situations of governmental involvement – I would argue that it has been false progress at the expense of liberty and they can’t show that another, more free, system wouldn’t have worked just as well – some of the highest achievers on standardized tests are home schooled kids, charter and private school kids and kids allowed to escape failing government schools via vouchers – so there are examples of workable systems other than the government controlled model.

      • “B: I only quoted Atlas because of its anti-collectivist and individualist theme.”

        My bad. In this sense, I agree: “Atlas Shrugged” is an appropriate illustration of the struggle between the individual and the collective.

        Now, about that axle… LOL 😉

        Actually, I have no issue with your argument that govt. has caused trouble by meddling in areas where there is no Constitutional authority. I agree. Where I differ with you – strongly – is in this statement:

        I agree with you on Locke but I what I find missing in the understanding of the Constitution today is that it requires a secular government, not a secular society.

        Our govt. was never intended to be secular. That is why I have been urging you to read the full work of Locke, as the founders accepted his full argument in establishing our govt. Read Blackstone and tell me there is a separation between the law and religion. Read the words of our founders and tell me they intended for us to have a secular govt. I offer that you have accepted the most important Progressive lie as a fact: that the Constitution created a secular govt. The founders never intended a Godless govt., they just didn’t intend for a theocracy. There is a difference, and it seems we have forgotten it where our founders perfected it.

        (I held the usual quotes, but I can list a slew of them showing that the founders never intended for us to separate our faith from our actions in the service of govt.)

        • And with all respect, I never said that they didn’t intend religion to be a part of governance. I appreciate all the quotes with respect to intent but again, please direct me to the clause in the Declaration or the Constitution that supports that.

          If it had been that important to them, they would have specifically stated it. They did state that the government should never establish or restrict a religion, so they clearly left it open to the individual to choose but I fail to see an express provision that religion should be included.

          Based on my reading, I still believe that because of the prevalence of religion in their times that the Founders never contemplated a society that could be Godless, therefore they accepted that religion would inform everything that was done in government because it would be done by religious and God-fearing people.

          It is the statists and communists that arrived on the scene in the late 1800’s that sought to drive God from government, to expunge all believers or force them to subjugate their beliefs to the will of the state in order to serve, seizing on an illegitimate interpretation of Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists to do so.

  4. Mike,

    I have no desire to repeat my recent mistakes, so please accept what follows as nothing but suggestions for you to consider. First, there is this:

    “If it had been that important to them, they would have specifically stated it.”

    I would offer that you have accepted “Progressive” logic. If the Constitution does not specifically say something, then it was not intended. Well, my friend, how can you oppose welfare as the Constitution says it was established to provide for the general welfare? Where do you find property rights in the Constitution? I do not remember anywhere in the Bill of Rights reserving a “right to property,” only mandating due process before it can be taken away. Well, if we accept your thinking here, then the govt. can pass a law (not an Amendment) that simply states no one has private property rights anymore and you would have nothing upon which to oppose them as the Constitution does not have plain language protecting that right.

    Now, is this what the founders intended, or is it that they thought it so self evident that no rational person would ever arrive at the point where we now find ourselves? You’ve been in Locke, so I’ll use him. Where does Locke say rights and liberty come from? This should be obvious, but I think we have forgotten it. We have certainly forgotten the importance. Our rights come from God, but if we have a secular govt. we have France and Hobbs, not America and Locke. The founders did know this, and they “thought” they had covered it because they did not see the Declaration as being irrelevant:

    “Before the formation of this Constitution…[t]his Declaration of Independence was received and ratified by all the States in the Union and has never been disannulled.”

    –Samuel Adams

    Now, if you will read the last section of the Constitution, you will see it points to the fact that the U.S. had existed since the signing of the Declaration. This is the act that established this nation, the Const. just established the govt. I have said it before: the Const. is just the “how” of this nation. It is only a map. The Declaration is the “what” and the “why” and tells us where we are supposed to be going. The founders never thought we would separate the two, but we have. This is another Progressive policy because, if you bring these two documents together again – as they were intended to be kept – then you cannot make the case that the Const. is secular (and by secular, I mean Godless). Again, I refer you to the author of the Const. for affirmation of what I am arguing:

    “On the distinctive principles of the Government … of the U. States, the best guides are to be found in… The Declaration of Independence, as the fundamental Act of Union of these States.”

    –James Madison

    John Adams told us:

    “Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

    –John Adams

    Well, if the govt. was intended to be devoid of God and religion, then how did Adams expect the nation to remain moral and religious? Do you not see the contradiction in what you are asserting and the very tenor of the founders’ words?

    In the end, you may be correct, but I simply do not believe the founders saw a difference between how we live our daily lives and how we serve our fellow man – even while in govt. service.

    “I never … believed there was one code of morality for a public and another for a private man.”

    –Thomas Jefferson


    (Humbly submitted for your consideration, and without any intent to presume authority.)

    • Respectfully, if there was to be a specific religiosity intended, they would have written it in. We aren’t debating interpretation here because there is nothing to interpret, there is only the specific admonition for the state to not create a state religion, like the Church of England, and for the government never to meddle in an individual’s right to freely practice whatever religion they wish – or none at all.

      If they had specifically required religious men, why did they not specifically preclude atheists by statute? Atheists were known at the time…and they had the power to codify it if they had wished it to be so.

      I’m not “falling” for anything – “progressive” or otherwise. This is my interpretation based on my own reading of the Federalist Papers and the biographies of Jefferson, Adams and Madison.

      How does your statement of…

      In the end, you may be correct, but I simply do not believe the founders saw a difference between how we live our daily lives and how we serve our fellow man – even while in govt. service.

      …materially differ from mine?

      Based on my reading, I still believe that because of the prevalence of religion in their times that the Founders never contemplated a society that could be Godless, therefore they accepted that religion would inform everything that was done in government because it would be done by religious and God-fearing people.

      I believe in God and I do believe that the government envisioned by the Founders requires decisions made be men who believe in God. I believe that the Founders left out the requirement of religion because they wanted government to be an instrument of God, a vessel to contain his grace, not to become God. I think that they understood that a mandated religiosity instilled in a government of men would eventually make it, and them, act as God.

      Unfortunately, exactly the same thing happens when God is totally excluded from government – with the illegitimate vendetta against religion in government that has so far been successfully prosecuted by secularists, that’s exactly what we have now – a government of men that thinks it is God…as does Obama and his Merry Henchmen.

      So, yes, I believe that they intended religion to be a part of government – but not as a constitutional mandate, rather by the religious character of the individuals serving in it. That’s what Adams was talking about.

      “Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

      • “If they had specifically required religious men, why did they not specifically preclude atheists by statute? Atheists were known at the time…and they had the power to codify it if they had wished it to be so.”

        Ah…but they did! Have you read the State Constitutions from the time? ALL required people holding elected office to be Christian, many even required an oath of office affirming Christ as the Son of God. Once again, we get lost in the facts: in this case, that the Constitution governs the States – not the People. In fact, we have been hitting on the central themes of the arguments between the Federalists and Anti-Federalists for a while, and we’re doing it again here. I would offer that history has been much more favorable to the concerns of the Anti-Federalists as the Federalists faith in Americans to remember and respect their original intent was actually undermined by their own words as to the tendency of govt. to grow.

        As for your interpretation based on the Federalist papers, I can understand it. I even have sympathy for it as Jefferson – originally an Anti-Federalist – specifically said he would abide by the Federalists’ understanding of the Const. while President because that was the side that won the debate. The issue – as I see it – is that we have forgotten the Anti-Federalists’ positions, so we do not have a complete understanding of what the Federalists were saying, or why. To my way of reasoning, we must understand both sides of the argument before we can accept either as the most correct.

        Now, to your final point, and please forgive me, but to a point which I seem to have eternal difficulty getting people to understand. I have never said the founders wanted to mandate religion, I just happen to believe – after reading countless pages of their original writings – that those men simply never imagined we would become a Godless people. But they did address the result if we ever did:

        “Such is my veneration for every religion that reveals the attributes of the Deity, or a future state of rewards and punishments, that I had rather see the opinions of Confucius or Mohamed inculcated upon our youth than see them grow up wholly devoid of a system of religious principles.”

        –Dr. Benjamin Rush (if you know who he is and the role he played int he founding of this nation, then this should be a profound statement for you)

        “But it is objected that the people of America may perhaps choose representatives who have no religion at all, and that pagans and Mohametans may be admitted into office…But it is never to be supposed that the people of America will trust their dearest rights to persons who have no religion at all, or a religion materially different from their own.”

        –Justice James Iredell (appointed to the Supreme Court by President Washington)


        “I do not suppose an infidel, or any such person, will ever be chosen to any office unless the people themselves be of the same opinion.”

        –Richard Dobbs Spaight, signer of the Constitution

        Which brings us back to Adams. If, as a people, we have become Godless, or have even placed God second or third to anything else in our lives – public or private – then we can no longer be said to be a moral and religious people, and our Constitution is no longer fitting to govern us. Rather, we deserve and require a Constitution more in lines with the thinking of Hobbs and those of Europe than that of Locke and our founders.

        I suspect you will disagree, so I will say this now and save you the time (sssh, don’t tell anyone I typed these words 😉 ):

        I suppose we’ll have to agree to disagree on this issue.

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