NOTE: This post is written for serious students of American history and politics and for those who sincerely seek to understand them. Due to the nature of the subject and amount of information I have to provide in order to make my argument, brevity isn’t possible. All I can ask is that you read it through without skimming over anything. Otherwise, you will only shortchange yourself. Others will likely take this as arrogance, but I already know and understand what I am trying to convey because I have already done and continue to do the work necessary to educate myself. This is why I also know it takes time and effort to even start to see the picture I am trying to help you see. You have to take in and process a lot of information before the pieces start to come together. I write now in an attempt to share my efforts with others and to provide a jump start for those who desire to further their own education so that they who wish may start to assemble those pieces and see the bigger picture.
In the past, I have tried to explain why history is among the most important things we can study. Knowing and understanding history is the source of all human understanding of material matters. When you know and understand it, you understand that history drives the present. You also come to understand how and why history repeats itself: because men insist on remaining ignorant to history.
In the past, I have also tried to explain that Fascism is not a political creature of the Right as so many of us have been taught in school. That so many of our teachers actually believe Fascism is on the far right is the direct result of their ignorance of history. The only reason Fascism is thought to be “Right Wing” is because of a successful Communist propaganda campaign from the early part of the 20th Century. Properly understood, Fascism and Communism are both on the Left, differentiated by referring to one as up and the other being down. I wrote about this in The Political Spectrum as it Really is. But I am not alone in my understanding of history. You can find much the same conclusion here (Note: one word of caution regarding the spectrum in this other link. It does not allow for Anarchy, which is on the extreme Right. Consequently, I would strongly suggest you consider the diagram in my own post over that in this other link).
Now, let me show you how this ignorance of history exhibits itself on the far Left by citing part of another web site I found:
The Right has not only captured all branches of our government and much of our media, it has also largely succeeded in defining the terms of our political discourse. A progressive who engages in political debate while failing to appreciate this fact and to deal with it is vulnerable to serious tactical errors. The progressive thus, in effect, carelessly agrees to “play the game” in the opponents ball-park and by the opponent’s rules. Accordingly, casual and uncritical use of terms as “liberal” and “conservative,” and “right” and “left,” as they have come to be understood in the mass media, and thence in everyday conversation, leads one to carelessly concede some of The Right’s basic assumptions. Unfortunately, because most well-intentioned liberal politicians and pundits seem to be unaware of this, they have fallen into the semantic trap. They need not and should not do so.
Language is the constant yet unnoticed current that carries our thoughts. Thus, in the game of politics, the party which controls the language, controls the contest.
Newt Gingrich knows this, GOP strategist Frank Luntz knows this, and George Orwell, their apparent mentor, knew this.
So why don’t the Democrats know this?
I don’t mean to suggest that we are necessarily captive to the currents of language. Like a skilled navigator, one can factor the currents of language into the calculations of one’s judgment. But only if a person or a party takes the trouble to pause and take notice of the language.
Regrettably, the Democrats have not. For a party that is allegedly preferred by intellectuals, the Democrats have been tactically naive and stupid, prisoners of their fruitless habits. To be sure, astute scholars such as George Lakoff and Geoffrey Nunberg have offered the Democratic Party chiefs the keys to their jail cells and have shown them the way out, but they have been told, in effect, “Thanks, but no thanks.” And Noam Chomsky is regarded as “too extreme” and an embarrassment. Never mind that he is the foremost linguist of our time.
Now, I have many issues with the assertions made in this citation, but they are best left to another post (or two). What I want to focus on here is two points that are relevant to the topic at hand. First, this person doesn’t understand that Orwell was a Progressive. Nor does he understand that Liberal doesn’t mean what he thinks it means. He doesn’t know the history of the term or how the Progressives co-opted and later bastardized it as a result. Nor does the author seem to understand that there are Progressives in both Parties. All the writer sees is the Progressive tactic of language manipulation, which brings us to the second point. In Europe, the division is Communist/Fascist, but in America, it is Progressive/Conservative.
Now, assuming the average RNL reader already understands that the open Progressive is on the American Left (up or down, take your pick), let me show you why I have been making the case that the American “conservative” is on the Right (down or up, opposite the Progressives). Either way, they are both to the Left of our founding.
Who started the Environmentalist movement in this country? Do you know? Who started the push for Social Security? How about the push for government by Administration and regulation: do you know who started that? What if I were to tell you these all started as Republican ideas/policy? Well, they were. It’s just that they were known back then by different names. We called them by names such as “conservation” and “social insurance.” Here, read for yourself:
Do your homework and you will find the Republican Party not only helped to found the Progressive movement, that same Progressive ideology still controls the Party’s leadership and direction. This is not to say that those who think of themselves as Barry Goldwater and Buckley “conservatives” have not tried to infiltrate the Party, because they have. It’s just that the Progressives know what to expect and how to stop it, because they took over the Parties the same way. This is why, when you look to the history of the Republican Party in the 20th and 21st Centuries, you will find that the Party leadership has been continually at war with its own membership. Research it for yourself and see if it isn’t true. The trick to seeing our current political scene more clearly and accurately is to learn to filter out the effects of the internal struggle between the “conservative” base and Progressive leadership within the Republican Party. Think of that as a game within a game and try to separate it from the battle between the two camps of American Progressivism and you’ll see more clearly and understand things much better. Now, back to the primary point: that Communism and Fascism are as much to the Left as modern American “Liberalism” (i.e. Progressivism) and “Conservatism” (again, Progressivism) are.
Try this: think of the Democrats as Communist and the Republicans as Fascist (because this is actually accurate). Communism is a collectivist ideology where the State controls all and Fascism is a collectivist ideology where the State controls all in partnership with favored industries, which the State allows to remain in private hands – so long as those private hands do not exceed the boundaries set by the State. Both are collectivist ideologies, so both belong on the Left, only with one up and the other down so as to further differentiate them. Now, once you understand and accept that this is an accurate conceptualization of reality, much of what we see happening in our political arena today starts to make more sense. The Progressives in both Parties recognize each other and, thus, accurately accuse the other of doing what they do themselves but openly deny doing. This is how the author above can accuse the Right of word/thought control without seeing it in his own Party. In fact, once you accept this conceptualization of the American political landscape, you need do nothing more than to research the history of conflict between the Communists and Fascists in Europe during the first half of the 20th Century to see it replaying in America today. The ideas, symbolism and even the criticisms of each camp are the same today as back then.
Let me end by showing you how to look for the connections, because – though they are deliberately cloaked in code words – they are not as hidden as many would like to believe. Take the very word “progressive:’
1a : of, relating to, or characterized by progress
b : making use of or interested in new ideas, findings, or opportunities
How often have you heard Democrat leaders talking about “new” ideas, and “moving forward?” There is one connection. In fact, the term “progressive” was chosen to appeal to the American ideal of progress so that the totally alien ideal of European collectivism could more easily be imported into the American political arena. Now, back to the definition:
c : of, relating to, or constituting an educational theory marked by emphasis on the individual child, informality of classroom procedure, and encouragement of self-expression
Look up some of my old posts on Progressive and card-carrying Communist, as well as the father of the modern American education system, John Dewey. You’ll find a strong connection between this definition and Dewey’s work – which has been continued by men such as William Ayres and now has culminated in the Common Core Curriculum. Finally there is this:
2: of, relating to, or characterized by progression
3: moving forward or onward : advancing
5: often capitalized : of or relating to political Progressives
Need I explain this one anymore than to just show you this?
You might want to watch this series. Remember, do not discount something just because you do not like the source. I have often admitted that there is truth in a lot of what the people I oppose have to say. The reason I oppose them is because their solutions are as wrong as the problems they criticize.