The View From 1776
Friday, April 10, 2015
The Struggle Dividing Our Nation
Increasingly frequent presidential executive orders and arbitrary bureaucratic regulations make it abundantly clear that liberal-progressives aim to conquer and to impose their will upon the rest of us, making the Constitution all but meaningless.
The following is from the introduction to my book, The Liberal Jihad: The Hundred Year War Against The Constitution
For more than a century, liberal-progressive-socialists have waged a secular religious jihad against the Constitution and the ethos of personal morality and individual responsibility upon which the Constitution was based in 1787.
That liberal jihad is, like Islamic jihad, a matter of conquest and militant rejection of Judeo-Christian morality and principles of social order. Liberal-progressive-socialists are not content to have the freedom to express their views. They want laws and regulations that will compel the rest of us to conform to their secular religious ideology, just as the Islamic jihad seeks to impose sharia law on everyone.
In simplest terms, liberal-progressive-socialist ideology is what Karl Marx called scientific socialism: the belief that human nature is plastic, that it can be reshaped and perfected by the political state. The ideology of socialism is a secular religion in which the political state, guided by intellectual and bureaucratic planners, takes the place of God, whose existence is explicitly denied. In that ideology Judeo-Christian morality, which focuses upon individual responsibility to work hard and to do unto others as you would have them do unto you, leads to private property rights and to unequal distribution of income and life status. The capitalistic system, a product of individuality and innovation, in that perspective is nothing more than a rationale for greed and savage competition in the marketplace.
If liberal-progressive-socialists are to reshape human nature and to perfect and harmonize society, Judeo-Christian individuality must be destroyed. The Constitution of the United States, which is based on Judeo-Christian individuality, must also be perverted and subverted. Only then will liberal-progressive-socialist economic planners be able to impose their ideological vision. Hence the liberal jihad.
Many recent books have warned us about one or another of the divisive social policies that menace American society and have denounced the social-engineering activists pushing them. The Liberal Jihad differs from these books in a several ways.
First, it is a big-picture book that aims to pull pieces of the jigsaw puzzle together so that you can understand how the different attack points of liberal-progressive-socialism are connected.
Second, it aims to go beyond describing symptoms of social illness and to identify the virus causing them, as well as to suggest the cure.
Third, to do this, The Liberal Jihad sketches the historical movements in the Western world that explain the origin and nature of this virus, which is the secular and materialistic religion of socialism worshipped by American liberal-progressives and their fellow-travelers.
Much of this is simple common sense, yet the larger picture remains beyond the reach of most people. The reason is that understanding the nature of socialism and its profound threat to civilization requires knowledge of history. Few people in America today have such knowledge, because one of the basic policies of liberal-progressive-socialists since the beginning of the 20th century has been to distort and falsify the teaching of Western history and its traditions. A main purpose of The Liberal Jihad is to fill the blanks so that you can have a complete picture of what is going on in politics, education, and the law.
This is not a book about Democrats vs Republicans. The secular religious virus of socialism has infected the liberal wings of both parties. Nor is it a book that simply defends what is generally regarded as the conservative position. It is a book that aims instead to give you a clear picture of the political and moral traditions that were the common understanding among people of the thirteen colonies of British North America in 1776.
Describing today’s social activism as a jihad may strike you as a sensationalist exaggeration. This book will lay out the factual basis so that you can decide for yourself.
Part I of the book describes the social and political views that unified the United States in 1776 and contrasts them with the religious and social doctrine of present-day liberal-progressive-socialism. Part II describes the nature and origin of the virus of socialism and how it was transmitted to our society. Part III describes the battlefields of religion, education, and the law, in which the liberals are waging their jihad. And Part IV provides a summary and conclusion.
The events of September 11, 2001, were like a bolt out of the blue for most of us. We knew about Islamic terrorism in the Middle East, but we thought that it wasn’t part of our world. We were living in blissful, but dangerous ignorance of Western European history and didn’t know that today’s terrorism is just a continuation of the relentless warfare that Islam had waged for a thousand years against all of the Christian West. From the beginning of Islam in 622 AD until repulse of the last attack on Vienna in 1683, there was never a decade when Islam was not invading and conquering the Christian territories of the former Roman Empire. Knowing nothing about Islam’s militaristic convert-or-kill nature, we thought of Islam as just another religious view to be tolerated along with Judaism and the various Christian denominations. Destruction of Manhattan’s World Trade Towers and part of the Pentagon were a wake-up call.
In the same way, our ignorance about the history and traditions of the Western world leaves us unprepared to fight the liberal jihad effectively. The fury among liberal-progressive-socialists unleashed by the election of President George W. Bush and by our response to terrorism was a wake-up call for everybody who cares about preserving the Constitution and the American traditions upon which it is based. Current liberal venom is just a flare-up of the relentless struggle by secular religionists that began in the middle 1700s to obliterate personal moral responsibility and spiritual religion.
Many people still assume that the hostility erupting from liberal-progressive-socialists is just a matter of differences here and there that can be worked out by political compromise. Most of us, having been kept in ignorance by a liberal-dominated educational system, know nothing about the secular religious nature of socialism and its relentless drive to conquer and destroy all spiritual religions, political systems, and cultural values that stand in its way. If the United States is not to continue along the socialistic path of France, Germany, Russia, China, and Cuba, we have to get an understanding as quickly as possible about the broad and deep currents pushing liberal-progressive-socialism in the United States.
The book’s principal points are:
The United States was founded on the Judeo-Christian ethic that historically was the substance of Western civilization. Ours was a specifically English conception of individual morality and individual responsibility that, only in England and its North American colonies, had produced a government of laws, not men, a government in which even the king is subject to the statutes of the land and to a higher moral law.
This conception of government necessitates a citizenry self-regulated by moral precepts that are preserved and taught by spiritual religion. The government must similarly be restrained by the limits of natural law, which say that no legitimate government may infringe any individual’s rights to life, liberty, and private property. Both religion and natural law, and their relation to human nature, are part of God’s creation.
No society can survive without a consensus about right and wrong, about what constitutes moral conduct. That consensus is the unwritten constitution of society, the content that gives meaning to a written constitution, the meat on the bones of the structure of government. Without that consensus there can be only disparate special-interest groups; such is the multi-cultural jumble into which the United States has blundered since the late 1960s.
Opposing our original conception of government is the liberal jihad, driven by the ideology of socialism, sometimes called The Religion of Humanity or secular humanism. This religion was formalized in the 1789 French Revolution, the same year that our Constitution was ratified.
Socialism is a secular religion. Like Islamic suicide bombers, liberals are so firmly persuaded that their cause is right, good, and just that they are prepared to go to any lengths necessary to destroy the Judeo-Christian ethic of individual morality and replace it with a rigidly regulated National-State collectivism, of which Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia were extreme examples.
The religion of socialism is being taught unconstitutionally, at your expense, in public schools and colleges receiving Federal aid. Teaching the religious doctrine of socialism as “scientific fact” amounts to making liberal-progressive-socialism the unconstitutionally established religion of the United States.
The way, and it necessarily will be laborious, to stop the liberal jihad is to force schools to present both sides of the story, traditionalist, as well as liberal-progressive. Publicly funded schools now teach only the amoral, secular materialism of the socialist religion. Schools no longer present true versions of American history and of our original ideas of civic virtue and personal morality that are historically the substance of Western civilization. Penetrating the shield of socialist teachers’ unions and the politicians whom they help elect is a very long-term project, but a vital one.
The largest volume of immigration in the nation’s history, both legal and illegal, coupled with liberals’ relentless efforts to destroy America’s original traditions of individual morality, leaves us with no core values and a diminishing will to defend ourselves against foreign enemies.
What Jefferson said of his writing the Declaration of Independence can be said of The Liberal Jihad. It is not an effort to create a new theory or to say things never before expressed. It is simply an affirmation of the hard-won wisdom and experience of thousands of years. It is simply a recounting of history and ideas that were well understood in 1776, ideas that have been forgotten or deliberately erased from text books and teachers’ lesson plans by liberal-progressives who control our educational system.
The Liberal Jihad offers no magic cures for the ills of the world. It’s the liberals who believe in the superstitions and ignorance of socialism and are confident that they can make everything perfect, if we just put them in charge of our lives. Nobody will ever make the world or a political society perfect. The message of The Liberal Jihad, however, is that it is a worthy goal to work for a society in which each individual is taught community standards of decent and civilized conduct and in which each individual is expected to obey his own conscience and to strive always to do the right thing. A government of limited powers, giving maximum rein to individuality under a common ethic of morality, is a far better world than the despotism and moral relativism of the liberals’ social-engineered dream.
In the long run, education is the most effective weapon to defeat the liberal jihad. To use an out-worn expression, we are struggling for the hearts and minds of our own citizens, particularly the young students who are bombarded with socialistic propaganda from kindergarten through college.
We must do our best to get equal time for presentation of the historical traditions, Judeo-Christian moral principles, and constitutional individualism that motivated the colonists in 1776. We must abandon multi-cultural education and go back to the concept of the American educational system as a melting pot in which everybody became an American. If students are to make wise decisions as adults, they must have the opportunity to learn the original ideas that created the United States, not just a distorted picture of our history and the dogma of liberal-progressive-socialism. The Liberal Jihad is written with the idea that, given a full understanding, students will prefer the individualism and limited government intended by our Constitution. Given an understanding of the mythological, unscientific ignorance that is the basis of liberal-progressive-socialism, they will become as scornful of what they are now taught as liberals are of American traditions.
This is not a matter of restricting free speech or academic freedom, but of enforcing the First Amendment’s anti-establishment clause. It is a matter of thwarting the unwavering goal of the liberal jihad, which is overthrowing our Constitutional government and establishing socialism as the official religion of the collectivized National State.
Constitutional Principles • Political Theory • Tradition & Morality • (3) Comments
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Saturday, March 28, 2015
Liberal-progressivism and its subset environmentalism are both secular religions. They are, along with Lenin’s and Stalin’s Communism, Hitler’s National Socialist German Workers Party (the Nazis), and Mussolini’s Fascism, merely denominations within the church of socialism.
With regard to environmentalism, quoted in the Wall Street Journal, 3/15/15:
From a speech by the late novelist Michael Crichton to the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco, 2003:
Today, one of the most powerful religions in the Western World is environmentalism. Environmentalism seems to be the religion of choice for urban atheists. Why do I say it’s a religion? Well, just look at the beliefs. If you look carefully, you see that environmentalism is in fact a perfect 21st century remapping of traditional Judeo-Christian beliefs and myths.
There’s an initial Eden, a paradise, a state of grace and unity with nature, there’s a fall from grace into a state of pollution as a result of eating from the tree of knowledge, and as a result of our actions there is a judgment day coming for us all. We are all energy sinners, doomed to die, unless we seek salvation, which is now called sustainability. Sustainability is salvation in the church of the environment. Just as organic food is its communion, that pesticide-free wafer that the right people with the right beliefs, imbibe. . . .
There is no Eden. There never was. What was that Eden of the wonderful mythic past? Is it the time when infant mortality was 80%, when four children in five died of disease before the age of five? When one woman in six died in childbirth? When the average lifespan was 40, as it was in America a century ago. When plagues swept across the planet, killing millions in a stroke. Was it when millions starved to death? Is that when it was Eden?
With regard to the overarching secular religion of liberal-progressivism. in March 2004 I wrote the following:
Socialism: Our Unconstitutionally Established National Religion
Federal education funding to teach socialism amounts to establishing the secular religion of socialism as the official national church.
The following letter was mailed to Supreme Court Justices Rehnquist, Scalia, and Thomas:
Dear Mr. Chief Justice:
This letter is in regard to the Court’s recent decision in the Washington State religious scholarship case. The purpose is not to disagree specifically with the Court’s decision, but to question what constitutes a religion, the establishment of which is prohibited by the First Amendment.
It can be demonstrated that secular and materialistic socialism is a religion. That being the case, any use of Federal funds by public schools and universities for the teaching of socialistic doctrine constitutes a prohibited establishment of a specific religion.
That socialism is a religion:
Socialism’s codifier, Henri de Saint-Simon, himself called socialism a religion. His last major work was entitled The New Christianity. Saint-Simon said that the highest socialistic regulatory council should control education so that nothing but the catechism of social justice might be taught (e.g., Darwinian evolution, multiculturalism, Keynesian economics, deconstruction, legal realism, and critical studies).
Saint-Simon’s more famous colleague Auguste Comte went so far as to create The Religion of Humanity as part of his materialistic philosophy of Positivism.
Comte’s Religion of Humanity was approvingly cited by John Stuart Mill in his Chapters on Socialism, in which he mused that the educational system should be changed to indoctrinate the people with the principles of socialism.
The late Bertrand Russell, one of the world’s most prominent spokesmen for socialism, said of the World War I German socialist party, “For Social Democracy is not a mere political party, nor even a mere economic theory; it is a complete self-contained philosophy of the world and of human development; it is, in a word, a religion and an ethic. To judge the work of Marx, or the aims and beliefs of his followers, from a narrow economic standpoint, is to overlook the whole body and spirit of their greatness.” (from Lecture One, German Social Democracy).
Irving Howe was, as you know, a leading New York socialist intellectual after World War II, as well as the founding editor of Dissent magazine. In A Margin of Hope: An Intellectual Autobiography, he wrote, “Call it liberal, call it social democratic, a politics devoted to incremental reform even while still claiming a utopian vision, how can such a politics satisfy that part of our imagination still hungering for religious exaltation, still drawn to gestures of heroic violence, still open to the temptations of the apocalypse? Perhaps it was recognition of this fact that led the leadership of the European social democracy in the years just before the First World War to maintain some of the “revolutionary” symbols and language of early Marxism, though their parties had ceased to be revolutionary in any serious respect. Intuitively they grasped that the parties they led were not just political movements but, in some sense, branches of a “church” “
In A Yippie Manifesto, published in May 1969, Jerry Rubin wrote, “America and the West suffer from a great spiritual crisis. And so the yippies are a revolutionary religious movement.A religious-political movement is concerned with peoples souls, with the creation of a magic world which we make real.We offer: sex, drugs, rebellion, heroism, brotherhood. They offer: responsibility, fear, puritanism, repression.”
To round out the liberals’ own characterization of socialism as a religion, start by comparing the similarities in structure between socialism and Christianity. Each has a theory about human nature that prescribes conditions of daily life and holds forth a promise of future redemption for all of humanity, a vision of future perfection that becomes a controlling factor in the daily lives of Christians and socialists. Christians look to salvation and life after death. Liberal-socialists look to The Religion of Humanity’s promise of perfection of man and society, here on earth, by means of materialistic structures planned and administered by intellectuals.
For liberals, there being no God, the ultimate source of legitimacy and authority is the ever-changing ideas of social justice in the minds of intellectuals. Applying that view to our Constitution is the process of judicial activism.
Christianity, like it or not, was the sole unifying structure of Western Europe after the fall of the Roman Empire. For the Judeo-Christian tradition, Original Sin was humans over-reaching to become God-like by eating the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge in the Garden of Eden. The message was that humans are God’s creatures and must obey God’s Will. Neither Salvation, return to the Garden of Eden, nor eternal bliss, is possible within this world.
Socialism exhibits all the same elements: a Garden of Eden (the State of Nature), original sin, and a promise of salvation revealed in sacred texts delivered by revered prophets. For socialists, Original Sin was the invention of private property and the resulting scramble of individuals to amass property, which introduced greed, avarice, aggression, crime, and wars. But unlike Christianity, socialist salvation is attainable without divine intervention, through the political state, by future generations here on earth.
Socialist salvation, however, is not an individual matter. It applies to the collective masses, in which individuals have no political significance beyond their class identity. Be it noted that our nation was incontrovertibly founded on principles of individualism, not secular and materialistic collectivism.
To be considered true religions, doctrinal beliefs must achieve multi-national and cross-cultural acceptance. Socialism clearly qualifies, having spread from Western Europe to all parts of the world. It has been adopted by countries in the Middle East, Africa, and the Far East, including three of the most populous nations in the world: Russia, India, and China. Great religions commonly are associated with the lives and teachings of larger-than-life individuals such as Moses, Buddha, Jesus, or Mohammed. Socialism qualifies in that respect also. Henri de Saint-Simon, Auguste Comte, Karl Marx, and Charles Darwin delivered their revelations of materialistic Truth in the first sixty years of the 1800s.
Marx has become a mythical, god-like figure to billions of people around the world. American school children are taught that Darwin was the embodiment of science and truth, despite the fact that there exists not a single proof of his speculative theory (see Cal-Berkeley law professor Phillip E. Johnson’s Darwin on Trial and Gertrude Himmelfarb’s Darwin and the Darwinian Revolution). Thomas Huxley and American socialists like John Dewey used Darwinian evolution theory as a battering ram against morality and spiritual religions, particularly Christianity.
John Adams said that the Constitution was made for a moral and religious people, self-constrained by individual morality; that it would work for no other. Darwin’s “bulldog,” Thomas Huxley, said that there is no such thing as sin, merely the struggle for survival. Dewey taught that there is no morality, because material conditions are the sole source of human nature, and those conditions change continually in Darwinian fashion. Their fellow socialists Hitler and Stalin found nothing to quibble about in those doctrines.
The prophets of the socialist religion proclaimed that human nature could be returned to its State-of-Nature benevolence by the abolition of private property. Political societies, indeed all of humanity, could be perfected here on earth by restructuring government to place it in the hands of intellectual planners. The state-planner, the minister of socialist religion, sees himself as a modern-day Moses uniquely qualified by his knowledge about the so-called Immutable Law of History to guide humanity to earthly perfection, back to the Original State of Nature.
That the secular and materialistic religion of liberalism (the American sect of the international religion of socialism) is antithetical to and wholly incompatible with the fundamental principles of our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution; proselytizing with Federal funds for the religion of socialism is therefore unconstitutional:
The American War of Independence was based philosophically upon John Locke’s Second Treatise, which was founded entirely in natural law. The legitimization for both the ouster of James II and George III was that each had broken the natural-law compact that postulated inalienable, individual natural-law rights to life, liberty, and property. “No taxation without representation.”
Jefferson’s references in the Declaration to “The Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” are meaningless except in the context of natural law. Ditto with regard to the Bill of Rights.
Natural law, since Aristotle, has been identified with the teleological, intelligent-design paradigm of the cosmos. Aristotle’s natural law, via Aquinas’s Summa Theologica, opened the field of European medieval law to the concept of separation of church and state into political and spiritual realms. One dealt with making people good citizens, the other with making people good humans. Both were rooted in natural law, and natural law was God-given. This was the entire foundation of everything that we now call Western civilization.
Everyone from Franklin to Washington continually invoked the Deity’s blessings for the success of the American cause of independence, and later the Constitution. But American liberal-socialism demands that only the secular doctrine of socialism and Comte’s Positivism be taught in our schools. Because of support from our Federal courts, socialism has been established as the only scientific truth. The natural-law, spiritual-religion foundation of our nation has been dismissed as ignorance from a pre-scientific age. If that position holds, then the Declaration and the Constitution are meaningless drivel that “evolves” in Darwinian evolutionary fashion, subject only to random, chaotic materialistic forces.
As our first socialist Supreme Court Justice, Oliver Wendell Holmes, repeatedly wrote, there is no such thing as a higher law of morality, merely whatever a particular judge thinks that the law ought to be. As you know, Holmes opined that, if secular materialism changed public opinion to the belief that we should scrap the Constitution and institute Bolshevism, then neither the Court not the Constitution should stand in the way. That contempt for tradition and precedent, for the entirety of Western civilization, has, too often since the 1920s, informed Federal judicial practice, making the Constitution into a Rorschach ink-blot.
The materialistic and secular doctrine of socialism, pushed by the ACLU (e.g., the Scopes monkey trial), liberal-socialist politicians, and the teachers’ unions, in effect decapitates Western civilization. We see this daily in denigration of subject matter produced by “dead white men” and John Dewey’s maxim that “dead” history has no place in the Progressive Education curriculum. William F. Buckley, Jr., documented it in his 1951 God and Man at Yale, and Alan Charles Kors and Harvey A. Silverglate have updated it in The Shadow University: The Betrayal of Liberty on Americas Campuses.
Saint-Simon and John Dewey were correct in perceiving that control of education is the most effective way to destroy the essence of Western civilization and replace it with the secular and materialistic religion of socialism. We may hope that education will be rebalanced to require fair presentation of the doctrinal foundations of our Constitution, as well as the dogma of liberal-socialism.
May we hope that the Federal judiciary will abandon its suicide pact with the liberal-socialists?
Thomas E. Brewton
Constitutional Principles • Political Theory • Tradition & Morality • (14) Comments
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Saturday, March 21, 2015
The Fed’s Latest Bubble Creation
The Wall Street Journal reports that the Fed’s continuing policy of artificially depressing interest rates is creating yet another asset bubble, this time in exploration and production (E&P) of petroleum and natural gas.
The Fed’s loose money policy, expressed in very low borrowing costs and highly inflated securities prices in the stock market, is fomenting an over-expansion of business investment in hydro-fracking. This same process created the over-expansion and collapse of the housing market leading up to the collapse of our financial market in 2007 - 2008. Lending institutions already are struggling to collect on bad loans to over-expanded petroleum exploration and production companies.
The repeated economic pattern since the start of the Federal Reserve system in 1913 has been loose money that artificially stimulates sectors of the economy, leading to expansion of production facilities in excess of sustainable longer-term demand. The mischief lies, not in temporary blips of consumer demand, but in over-building basic production facilities that take long periods of time to come into production and which can’t be quickly and temporarily shut down when projected demand fails to materialize.
Producers and sellers of consumer goods can quickly curtail production and liquidate excessive inventories. But home building companies acquire large tracts of land and increase their borrowing in anticipation of continued or rising demand for new housing. When consumers finally are tapped out by rising debt (encouraged by the Fed’s policies), home builders are stuck with non-productive land and unsold houses, leaving no way to service the debt undertaken to acquire the land and to expand their operations.
The Wall Street Journal notes that, “Rising U.S. oil supply is the big factor weighing on prices. And that supply is largely a function of exploration-and-production companies enjoying access to capital to fund drilling budgets that frequently outpace cash flow.
“Witness the rush by several E&P firms to issue shares, especially during the brief rally in oil prices during February. So far this year, the sector has accounted for almost 12% of U.S. equity issuance, the highest proportion by far in at least two decades, according to Dealogic. Even on the debt side, E&P issuance to date is running at the same pace as the past five years.”
Keynesian economics, the secular, socialistic religious doctrine to which the Fed adheres, treats the economy as a series of monolithic blocks that will react in computer-model, predictable ways to spur the economy. The Fed and Keynesian economics deal with aggregate demand, making no allowance for unpredictable reactions and actions by the hundreds of million of individuals who comprise the nation’s economy. In the Keynesian religion the Fed has only to create billions of dollars of fiat money via bookkeeping entries, and the economy, responding like a theoretical socialistic machine, will automatically recover lost economic momentum. As the stock market rises, consumers will be duped into resumed spending, thinking that they are again wealthy (Fed chairman Bernanke’s “wealth effect”).
Unfortunately for the Fed and for liberal-progressive-socialists everywhere, once again Keynesian economic doctrine has disappointed expectations. Our economy, in the real, non-Keynesian world, has suffered the slowest economic recovery in modern times. The only big beneficiaries of the Fed’s Keynesian policies have been stock market speculators, take-over artists, bankers, hedge fund operators, and private equity groups. Being able to borrow unlimited amounts of phony dollars at historically low interest rates, these financial sector players have made a killing in the stock market since 2009. Meanwhile, the average citizen has been left to pick up the scraps. Wage rates and employment, in some areas of the nation, are lower than they were in 2009. Factoring in consumer price inflation, consumers below the level of stock market speculators are in worse economic shape than before the financial collapse.
In sharp contrast, the Austrian school of economics focuses almost entirely on the real-world actions and reactions of individuals, rather than on the theoretical aggregates of Keynesianism. The Fed’s Keynesian economists failed to anticipate severe sectoral dislocations of the sort that occurred in the 1990s dot.com stock market boom, or in the vast over-expansion that occurred in the housing market and the fatal decline in lending standards employed by mortgage lenders.
The Fed’s record, in fact, is abysmal. Only a couple of months before the financial collapse of 2007 - 2008, Fed chairman Ben Bernanke opined that the economy was in good shape and that the only real problem was an excess of saving (at a time when governmental, corporate, and individual debt was soaring to all-time highs).
Given the intuitively and pragmatically established fact that no small groups of experts anywhere can manage an economy as large and complex as that of the United States, Austrian economics is the only sensible approach to policy-making. Austrian economics is aimed, not at managing the economy, but a preventing over-expansions such as the housing market, the stock market, and the now levered-up investment in petroleum E&P. Outside a command economy like the USSR, individual consumers and business executives will always try to game the system to their own advantage. The only effective policy for the Fed is to maintain a stable value for the dollar and to allow interest rates to seek a real balance between demand for money and the real supply of money (savings by businesses and individuals, not fiat money created by the Fed).
Under Austrian economic policies, increased demand (in excess of real savings) for debt or equity to finance basic production would drive up interest rates and force businesses to examine more closely the long-term feasibility of their capital asset investment plans. Without a flood of fiat money sloshing around the economy, banks would again be turned toward realistic evaluations of business and consumer creditworthiness.
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Tuesday, March 10, 2015
The Information-Closed Universe of Liberal-Progressivism
Worshippers of the secular, materialistic religion of liberal-progressivism, particularly since Darwin’s 1859 Origin of Species, accept as an unquestioned article of faith that there is a one-on-one relationship between edicts of the political state and results of such political action. If liberal-progressives conceive it, it is an accomplished fact.
Liberal-progressives have been energized by their doctrinaire certainty that God, through His externally imposed intelligent design, is no more than ignorant superstition. Their corollary faith is that all of life on earth is the product of random collisions of material force. This leads liberal-progressives to assert that, their superior intelligence having discerned this supposed reality, they are enabled by their superior knowledge to conquer nature and to structure political society in ways that guarantee perfection of humanity.
This faith in secular, materialistic religion, however, blinds them to the fact that matters seldom work as they predict.
We have seen this in spades during the past eight years in the Federal Reserve’s dogged adherence to Keynesian economics, the product of an economic theory that posits the political state as the primary, if not sole, source of the nation’s economic wellbeing. Ditto with regard to the entirety of President Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society entitlements programs and the president’s ObamaCare.
As countless commentators have noted, liberal-progressivism excludes the possibility that individuals may know, better then the political state, what is best for them. Also banished from public square discussion is the age-old truth that the spiritual realm, most evident in the West’s Judeo-Christian heritage, is ultimately more powerful than the political state’s secular and materialistic religion.
Read Seth Mandel’s There Is No Such Thing as a Secular Politics, posted on the Commentary website.
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Friday, February 20, 2015
Restoring The Unwritten Constitution
Liberal-progressivism, exemplified in President Obama, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, is aimed at destroying the essence of constitutionalism that gave birth to the United States.
Intellectuals since the so-called Age of Enlightenment have theorized that political societies are merely projections of ruler’s minds and that a ruler, or ruling intellectual elite, can make of a society whatever it wishes. Liberal-progressives’ atheistic materialism leads to their faith that whatever exists is the product of rational minds and, therefore, rational minds can change things at will in order to perfect them.
In the materialistic world view dominating society today, no weight is given to the essentiality of spiritual matters expressed in religion and societal cultures, from the tribal level to national states. Liberal-progressivism emanating from the corrupting continental European so-called Aage of Enlightenment propounds the faith that reality is only what is perceptible by human sensory organs. From this flows the hubristic assurance that intellectuals, having transcended the ignorance and superstition of the Judeo-Christian foundation of Western civilization, have conquered nature and are able to shape it to their vision of societal perfection.
Lenin envisioned the brutal force of collectivized tyranny as creating the New Soviet Man, a creature who would selflessly give his all for society, asking in return only what he needed to live in a classless society. Today we see the same hubristic certainty expressed in liberal-progressive collectivism evidenced in regulatory homogenization ranging from President Johnson’s Great Society to ObamaCare and President Obama’s regulatory assault on production and use of coal, petroleum, and natural gas. Resistance from half or more of voters persists, because liberal-progressivism ignores the essentiality and power of spiritual religion as a primary source of morality, respect for constitutional authority, duty to family, community, and national patriotism.
No weight is given to historical precedent. There is no sense that political order is the product of centuries of accumulated adjustments and understandings among people who constitute the society. There is no sense that societies do not survive without a set of core beliefs and principles to which almost everyone subscribes.
Nations don’t survive because government welfare programs provide them material goods. Nations survive because people share a common vision and are willing to work hard and, if necessary, to fight for that vision.
The statement of purpose for this website puts it this way:
The View from 1776 presents a framework to understand present-day issues from the viewpoint of the colonists who fought for American independence in 1776 and wrote the Constitution in 1787. Knowing and preserving those understandings, what might be called the unwritten constitution of our nation, is vital to preserving constitutional government. Without them, the bare words of the Constitution are just a Rorschach ink-blot that politicians, educators, and judges can interpret to mean anything they wish.
In the United States, immigration abetted by multiculturalism is corrupting society’s unwritten constitution, which is the positive embodiment of the spirit that animates a society and gives it a driving force of unity in belief and national aims.
No society can survive without a consensus about right and wrong, about what constitutes moral conduct. That consensus is the unwritten constitution of society, the content that gives meaning to a written constitution, the meat on the bones of the structure of government.
Without that consensus there can be only a disparate group of people with little or no attachment to their new homes. That is what we see increasingly, here , under the impact of a tsunami of immigration from alien cultures and religions.
It’s not immigrants who are undermining the unwritten constitution, however. The source of corruption is liberal-progressive beliefs, endlessly preached in our multicultural educational system and the mainstream media, that the United States is, and has always been, a corrupt, oppressive society conceived by the rich to plunder the American public and the rest of the world.
Accommodating immigration is both a major means of survival for the United States and a device for liberal-progressives to recruit new voters (including illegals) for the Democrat/Socialist Party. Immigrants have become a major source of new business and employment creation and the source of the higher birth rate needed to keep the United States from becoming a replica of western Europe: an aging society of dwindling numbers of young workers to support the burden of rising welfare-state obligations.
Combining the huge flood of immigration with a liberal-progressive ethos of rootless multiculturalism sets the stage for disintegration of American society more effectively than terrorist attacks by Islamic jihadists. No longer is education viewed as a melting pot to teach our history and the principles of our government.
Without the pre-existing unwritten constitution of 1776, which Jefferson said was the source of his words in the Declaration of Independence, our written Constitution has become vulnerable to destructive distortion by activist judges and liberal-progressive educators.
Judeo-Christian traditions of right and wrong underlie the unwritten constitution that prevailed in 1776. Those traditions taught generations of Americans that every person should always do his best to do the right thing, even if doing so did not benefit him personally. A flood of judicial decisions since the 1950s reveals, however, that doing away with precepts of right and wrong is one of the primary objectives of liberal-socialism.
The “me” generation of the Baby Boomer era were taught that the only standard is immediate gratification of their sensual urges. Hence today’s generally accepted belief that sexual promiscuity, murdering babies via abortion, drug abuse, biological fathers abandoning partners and the children they father, and living off the welfare state are acceptable life styles.
Myron Magnet expands upon this theme in What Must We Think About When We Think About Politics? appearing in the City Journal website.
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Friday, November 21, 2014
Traditional Virtues Perish Under Onslaught Of Deficit Spending And Federal Reserve Loose Money
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Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Understanding Why Our Enemy Is Our Enemy
Frank Madarasz alerted me to this article:
Neither wishful thinking nor politically-correct suppression of free speech in the public square will alter the reality of the brutal aims and methods of Islamic Jihad.
Foreign Policy • Political Theory • Thought Police & PC • (1) Comments
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Monday, September 22, 2014
Today’s Secularity vs. Constitutional Liberties
In his latest book, Professor Ellis Sandoz explores the origins and nature of personal freedoms in the Western world, especially as those freedoms came to be embodied in the Constitution of the United States.
Professor Sandoz is director of the Eric Voegelin Institute at Louisiana State University. The first portion of his book (Give Me Liberty: Studies in Constitutionalism and Philosophy, St. Augustine Press, 2013) , is devoted to exploring the grounding of Western civilization in individuals striving toward religious and political rectitude, exemplified in the American founding experience. In the later portion of his book, Professor Sandoz relates these matters to the philosophy of Eric Voegelin, who is generally regarded as one the 20th century’s greatest philosophers of history.
As Professor Sandoz writes in the preface to his work, “The drift of [the book] is to show the connection of the individual consciousness with Liberty in persons and in politics as this has emerged in Western and endured in Anglo-American civilization…In the teeth of our witheringly secularist times, the argument raises the banner of human nobility through participation in the infinite Good as the foundation of all we hold dear and worthy of devotion…”
The book’s back-cover copy tells us, “The Liberty for which Patriot Patrick Henry was willing to die was more than a rhetorical flourish. The American Patriots and Founders based their ideas about Liberty upon almost 200 years of experience on their own as well as the heritage of English Common Law and even back to the natural order of Thomas Aquinas, not to mention the philosophy of Aristotle and the Biblical Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt.”
Of particular importance was John Adams’s claim for the origin of political liberty: “Rights antecedent to all earthly government - Rights that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws - Rights derived from the great Legislator of the universe…” Needless to say this conception stands in diametric contrast to the secular and materialistic position advocated by liberal-progressive-socialistic government. Think of President Obama’s assertion that “You did not do that yourself,” with the clear meaning that what individuals possess is given to them by collectivized government, things which liberal-progressive-socialistic government is therefore entitled to take from individuals to satisfy government’s vision of social justice. Think also of President Obama’s abrogation, through ObamaCare, of individuals’ religious liberties that, in the past, were guaranteed by the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights.
This decadent, liberal-progressive-socialistic conception of human nature and of mankind’s place in the order of being grew to crisis proportions in 19th century Europe and was imported into the United States after the Civil War by newly secularist major universities. Darwinian evolutionary theory and the philosophical doctrine of materialistic determinism led, on the one hand, to a view of humans left adrift, without spiritual sustenance, and, on the other hand, to the proclaimed necessity of heavy-handed, collectivized government as the only source of people’s well-being. Hence Nietzsche’s observation in the late 1800s that God was dead. As Thomas Huxley, Darwin’s champion of the evolutionary hypothesis, earlier had asserted, evolution “proves” that there is no good or evil, just the struggle for survival. Powerfully collectivized, arbitrary government thus is both obliged and entitled to regulate the populace into conformity to preconceptions of the self-anointed elite.
In contrast, as Professor Sandoz notes, the historic American tradition was a politics of aspiration, in Jefferson’s phrase in the Declaration of Independence, “the pursuit of happiness.” This aspiration, in the Declaration, was enumerated under God-given, inalienable rights. But under the now regnant paradigm instilled by our education establishment, individual pursuit of happiness is merely an excuse for selfishness and, worst of all, the pursuit of business profit. Our callow youth are schooled to believe the Marxian doctrine that profit is money stolen from the workers and that government’s job is to confiscate profits and redistribute them to the working masses. Unfortunately, as we know too well, membership in the employed, working masses has sharply dwindled under the tender mercies of liberal-progressive-socialistic government.
Professor Sandoz explores in considerable detail the philosophical understandings of Eric Voegelin, one aspect of which was, Professor Sandoz writes, “For while the physical safety of a society may be the cardinal political priority, the spiritual health nurtured by truth and justice in the public order and civic consciousness is essential to the happiness of individuals and to the thriving of the societies they compose.” He quotes Voegelin, “…the divine reality lets the light of its perfection fall into the soul; the illumination of the soul arouses the awareness of man’s existence as a state of imperfection; and this awareness provokes the human movement in response to the divine appeal.”
In contrast, liberal-progressive-socialists, in some quarters, deny the existence of the human soul, and in all quarters dismiss the spiritual realm and human relationship to Divinity as ignorant superstition that impedes the progress of materialistic socialism, which is explicitly an atheistic ideology.
Professor Voegelin was among the first philosophers of history in modern times to understand that liberal-progressivism in all its forms - American liberalism, Marxian socialism, Mussolini’s Fascist state capitalism, and Hitler’s National Socialism - is a gnostic, secular religion. The unbridgeable difference between liberal-progressivism and the Constitutional ethos of our founding generations is liberal-progressivism’s conviction that it is the sole possessor of ultimate knowledge. Professor Sandoz notes that, “…Voegelin insists, the philosopher is a lover of wisdom, never its possessor, for only God is wise and can have knowledge of the Whole.”
In Voegelin’s analysis, a gnostic, secular religion such as liberal-progressivism hubristically claims exclusive, secret knowledge of the proper ordering of political society. Since only the elite have such knowledge, they are entitled to regiment the rest of us, compelling conformity to their vision of society. The views of traditionalists and conservatives, and most of all believers in Judeo-Christian morality, are properly subjects of ridicule and suppression.
Liberal-progressivism’s gnosticism leads to the view the world is a fallen version of the Garden of Eden’s perfection and to interpret society’s fall as resulting from the advent of private property. Property rights, of course, were among the rights that formerly prevailed under the Constitution’s Bill of Rights, hence the continuing attacks on the Fifth Amendment.
The Judeo-Christian tradition postulates that only God has knowledge of perfection and that perfection cannot be created by man here on earth. Salvation is a matter for transcendent reality. Voegelin noted that however much liberal-progressives and other gnostics yearn to create an earthly society of perfect social justice, reality remains unchanged. Liberal-progressivism cannot change reality, but it can dangerously derange political and social order.
Professor Sandoz remind us that, “Now as always before, resistance and conviction form the sine qua non of any Liberty worthy of the name.”
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Saturday, September 06, 2014
Liberal-progressivism prides itself on being scientific and ridicules as ignorant superstition the Constitution’s foundation in our Judeo-Christian heritage. In fact, liberal-progressivism is a ramshackle collection of inconsistent hypotheses that never in human history have worked as predicted by liberal-progressivism’s self-appointed elite.
The nub of the matter is how one views human nature. Is human nature, as the word nature implies, fixed by God’s creation of man in His own image? Or is human nature figuratively a bundle of soft clay that can be molded to perfection by material circumstances, most importantly government controls in the hands of an all-knowing governing elite?
The following is an excerpt from The Liberal Jihad: The Hundred Year War Against The Constitution.
Darwin vs Morality
Incorporation of Darwin’s work into the philosophical framework of liberal-progressive-socialism in this country was done by John Dewey. Professor Dewey’s Reconstruction in Philosophy (1905) called for scrapping all existing ideas of morality, philosophy, and religion, because he regarded them as impediments to the advancement of science and to the socialist ideology of social justice.
Dewey pointedly rejected the ideas of natural law and individualism that were the philosophical foundation of the Declaration and the Constitution. For roughly fifty years he propagandized in lectures, books, and magazine articles (including general circulation magazines) for the utopian theory that the Federal government could create a just society simply by establishing the proper regulatory bureaus and by imposing crushing taxes to re-distribute individual wealth.
He used Darwin’s evolutionary hypothesis to discredit Judeo-Christian precepts of timeless moral principles and to add a “scientific” rationalization to Marx’s thesis that human nature is altered by changing material conditions.
Darwin, Dewey said, had proved that everything is continually evolving. That included moral principles, as well. Lenin at the same time proclaimed the abstraction called New Soviet Man, whom socialism would change into a selfless person thinking only of the common good and social justice.
The ultimate nonsensical extension of Darwinian evolution was Karl Marx’s doctrine that human nature would be permanently changed by passage through the inferno of bloody revolution, out of which would emerge a selfless being ready to give his all for the collective cause, asking for nothing other than his basic needs. Once such conditioning of human nature had occurred, government would wither away, and everyone would live in perfect harmony, with wars and crime relegated to history.
Socialism at War With Itself
Ironically, there is a glaring, irreconcilable contradiction between evolutionary theory and the religion of socialism.
American liberal-progressive-socialists talk about “fairness,” which means forcibly redistributing income. Their only basis for considering this to be of high moral purpose is their secular religious faith that an egalitarian society is both the best possible society, and the inevitable result of the course of history.
Darwinian evolutionary theory says no such thing.
Darwinian evolution says that there is no order or design in the universe; things happen by random chance. This means that no one can predict what life forms, or what social organizations, will appear in the future. Oxford University’s Darwinian biologist Richard Dawkins describes it thusly:
Natural selection, the blind, unconscious, automatic process which Darwin discovered, and which we now know is the explanation for the existence and apparently purposeful form of all life, has no purpose in mind. It has no mind and no mind’s eye. It does not plan for the future. It has no vision, no foresight, no sight at all. If it can be said to play the role of watchmaker in nature, it is the blind watchmaker. (“The Blind Watchmaker,” Chapter 1)
In diametric opposition, liberal-progressive-socialism also pays homage to The Immutable Law of History, which theorizes that society has evolved under the governance of scientifically discoverable laws. In that conception, human societies have passed through three great stages over thousands of years, into the final stage, which is to be scientific socialism.
As proposed by the post-Revolutionary French philosophers Henri de Saint-Simon and Auguste Comte, this tripartite division of historical progress was employed by Karl Marx to predict the inevitable triumph of socialism via Hegel’s system of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis.
These two fundamental doctrines of present-day liberalism are at loggerheads with each other. Liberal-progressives can’t have it both ways. Yet they insist that both doctrines be taught in our public schools as part of the secular religion of socialism.
Either all life on earth, in the Darwinian view, is without design or purpose and therefore pointless. Or, in the Gnostic, socialist view, human society is progressing along a path determined by the sociological laws of history toward ultimate perfection, figuratively, a return to the Garden of Eden.
If Darwinian evolution is correct, socialism might triumph purely by chance. But what happens thereafter, purely by chance? What new form of government, responding to changes in material conditions, may appear to succeed socialism? Socialism, in evolutionary theory, can have no more independent validity than any other form of government that might emerge, via natural selection, in response to changing material circumstances in the future.
Reconciling liberal-progressive-socialists’ Darwinian materialism with their claims of socialism’s high moral purpose is somewhat difficult.
Darwinian apologist Thomas Huxley opined that there is no sin, no morality, just the struggle for survival. In that paradigm, there was no higher law of morality to stop Lenin and Stalin from murdering tens of millions of Russians to impose the socialist state.
Totalitarianism is the End Point of Darwinian Materialism
Jonathan Judaken, history professor at the University of Memphis, in his review of Richard Weikart’s From Darwin to Hitler: Evolutionary Ethics, Eugenics, and Racism in Germany, wrote:
… Weikart focuses “primarily on [the] Darwinian influence on eugenics, euthanasia, racial theory, and militarism in Germany” (p. 9). The basic premises that governed social Darwinist positions on these points were clear and coherent. They were encapsulated in the oeuvre of Ernst Haeckel, the most famous and influential social Darwinist in Germany from the publication of Darwin’s “The Origin of the Species” (1859) until the early twentieth century. Haeckel—and many of the prominent scientists, physicians, psychiatrists, economists, geographers, anthropologists and philosophers whose creed was akin to his—believed that everything, including human consciousness, society and morality was a function of natural cause and effect. These natural laws could be known through scientific investigation and science was “the arbiter of all truth” (p. 13). Since individual subjectivity was a function of the laws of nature, Darwinism implied determinism. It undermined any mind-body dualism or the notion of a soul distinct from the physical body. Social Darwinism claimed that human behavior and moral character were the product of hereditary forces.
The mechanism that drives heredity is natural selection (in particular group selection) and the struggle for existence. This struggle has resulted in a variety of moral standards within the human species and over time; Darwinism thus implies moral relativism (p. 25)….
If we believe Weikart, the impact of evolutionary theory on ethics was revolutionary. It overturned the moral codes of what he repeatedly calls “traditional” Judeo-Christian and Enlightenment ethics, legitimating eugenics, “inegalitarianism, scientific racism, and the devaluing of human life” (p. 10).
Morality is thus reduced to primitive might-makes-right, to the cold and inhuman forces of nature that Darwin described as the process of evolutionary natural selection, i.e., the survival of the fittest.
Changing conditions invalidate or destroy previously accepted dogma. It’s in that vein that liberals talk about “evolving” public opinion as amending the original Constitution. It’s in that vein that Hitler proclaimed the right of the Aryan race to rule the world.
Totalitarianism is an almost inevitable political outgrowth of Darwin’s amoral natural selection, coupled with the theorizing of Arthur Gobineau, another of the troublesome French philosophers.
Gobineau’s four-volume work entitled Essay on the Inequality of the Human Races asserted the superiority of the white race over others and labeled the “Aryans,” or Germanic peoples, as the summit of civilization.
In Gobineau’s thesis the evolutionary struggles among different races over the ages of history had concentrated beauty, strength, and intelligence to a superior degree in the Aryan races, i.e., the Nordic-Germanic types. This process of implacable nature meant that the Aryans deserved to be rulers and that pragmatic political policy should be directed toward purifying the race and keeping it pure.
Gobineau’s works were published between 1853 and 1855 , when Comte, Marx, Darwin, and John Stuart Mill were preaching the gospel of secular materialism and undermining the Judeo-Christian foundation of Western civilization. Darwin’s Origin of Species was published in 1859.
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Tuesday, September 02, 2014
Spiritual Representation In The Modern World
Liberal-progressives assert that God definitely is dead and that liberal-progressivism is the earthly embodiment of truth and power.
Under the ultimately all-encompassing power of liberal-progressive rule, Judeo-Christian morality is to have no role in public life, other than as an object of ridicule by intellectuals, who hubristically claim to have dethroned God and, on their own, conquered the material world. Since the latter days of the 19th century, secularists in education, science, and politics have worked hard to rid society of religious belief, which they see as ignorance and, above all, a road block to political and social progress.
That aim has gained increasingly widespread acceptance since student radicalism in the 1960s and 1970s. By now, we have a couple of generations of Americans who have been inculcated by our educational system to dismiss the idea of God and to worship the political state as the only source of beneficence and benevolence.
Political leaders increasingly have ignored the restraints imposed by the Constitution’s Bill of Rights. Instead, the tyranny of the majority (Rousseau’s general will), as interpreted by mainstream media and liberal-progressive politicians, is to prevail, no matter what the Constitution ordains (see Nancy Pelosi’s incredulous reaction that anyone should question Congress’s unlimited power to impose the massive, socialistic income-redistribution program known as Obamacare). Obamacare and other government regulations forbid exercising the right to personal morality in the public square. Liberal-progressives have no qualms about forcing religious Jews and Christians to act against their personal moral convictions. Failure to kow-tow to the political state becomes anti-social, possibly criminal, behavior.
Today in the United States, public opinion is heavily steered by the media toward the secularity and amorality of socialism, expressed in the welfare state. More than seventy percent of media reporters, writers, editors and producers are self-identified liberal-progressives.
Liberal-progressives make much of the Darwinian “evolving” Constitution. Since the 1920s, Federal courts increasingly have adopted the view that interpretation of the law and constitutional principles ought to reflect what the judges believe to be the correct sociological viewpoint, as articulated in the pages of the New York Times and in the sociology departments of Ivy League universities.
Yale law professor Bruce Ackerman is widely cited by the liberal-progressive media as an authority on Constitutional law. He teaches the doctrine that the writers of the Constitution “must” have intended that changing public opinion alone effectively amends the Constitution. The writers of the Constitution, Professor Ackerman asserts, surely didn’t really mean to restrict amending the Constitution to the procedures set forth in Article V of the Constitution, because those procedures are, in the words of Princeton’s Edward S. Corwin, “well nigh impossible” to implement.
Power backed by public opinion of the moment was the only standard recognized by liberal-progressive icon, Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. If the people decide that they prefer Communist Bolshevism to our Constitution, he said, then the Supreme Court should not stand in their way. Apparently, in his view, upholding the law of the land and the Constitution itself is not part of a Supreme Court Justice’s duty.
Abandonment of our original Constitutional ethos can be seen clearly in the person of Supreme Court Justice Benjamin Cardozo. In 1932 President Herbert Hoover nominated Cardozo, then chief justice of the New York State Court of Appeals, to succeed the retiring Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. Cardozo was an appropriate choice to carry on the socialist principles and moral relativism espoused by Justice Holmes.
Cardozo wrote that, whenever possible, legal cases should be decided on the basis of what the social-justice principles of socialism envisioned as the appropriate outcome. What the law or legal precedent directed was less important than using the judicial power to reshape society. This necessarily implied antagonism towards both Judeo-Christian moral principles and English constitutionalism upon which the Constitution was founded.
In the analysis of Eric Voegelin (as I understand it), we have experienced a re-divinization of political, temporal rule: a reversion to the divinization of Roman emperors prior to the gradual roll-back of that power grasp after Constantine’s adoption of Christianity as the unifying religion for the empire.
From the time of Caesar Augustus, more or less contemporaneous with the birth of Jesus Christ, the Roman Emperor laid claim to being the representative of God on earth. As such, the Emperor claimed arbitrary power to impose Roman rule, as he wished it, upon the entire Mediterranean world, suppressing many local customs, religions, and systems of morality.
The early Christian church over time countered that conflation of imperial political and religious power, establishing the church as the representation of God’s will on earth, understood in the life, teaching, and crucifixion of Jesus Christ. As initially proclaimed by the Apostle Paul, the role of Christianity was to make access to Divine guidance and earthly help available to every individual believer on earth through the intercession of Jesus Christ. The Jews remain the chosen people of God, but their understanding of God as the source of moral righteousness guiding the actions of every ruler and every individual subject was henceforth to become available to anyone in the world who accepted Christ as Savior.
The critically important aspect of the rise of the Christian church was the responsibility thereby imposed upon every person as an individual. Every individual was expected to study the Gospels (Old and New Testaments) and to open his soul to the two most fundamental commandments of Judaism and Christianity: have no god other than God, and do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
That understanding, since the mid-18th century with the advent of French socialistic philosophers, has been turned upside down, resulting in re-divinization of the political state and its earthly rulers as the sole source of guidance for personal conduct and the sole source of economic and social well-being. Note, for example, claims by Obama and Senator Elizabeth Warren that no individual can claim to have been successful in business or otherwise; all of it comes from the socialistic political state.
Almost every sentence in an Obama speech features “I will” or “I have done.” More than any president in recent decades, Obama apparently envisions himself as an imperial ruler ordained to transform American society, to calm the world’s oceans, restore tranquility to nature, and to instill political and social harmony domestically and in the wider world. A particularly damaging thrust for America’s economic survival is Obama’s crusade to impose the fiction of man-made global warming in order to gain control of the world’s sources and uses of energy and thereby to regulate every action, 24/7/365, of every individual in the world.
The bottom line is that abandoning God and re-divinizing the political state, under Obama, Lenin, Stalin, or Hitler, leads inexorably towards political tyranny. That is the essence of liberal-progressivism.