Summary: Our decades of experience with both parties makes this question easy to answer. Neither. They are partners, chopping at the tree of liberty from opposite sides. A harsh reality, which we avoid by seeing it only in our political opponents. The next post in this series identifies The guilty ones responsible for the loss of our liberties.
Looking at the many posts on the FM website describing the erosion of our liberties, one might ask how we got here. This post examines the two political parties that govern our nation. Neither has much interest in our liberty (of course, that’s a broad generalization; some individuals and groups within the parties do). Each has liberties at which they energetically chop away, and some less essential ones they treasure as mementos of what we once were.
What do both parties stand for?
Assassination of American citizens, extensive surveillance, arbitrary seizure of assets without conviction of a crime, aggressive (sometimes murderous) law enforcement (e.g., Ruby Ridge, Waco — and routinely by SWAT teams). And foreign wars, providing a fearfully patriotic public that supports an ever-growing government.
So long as our persons, communication, and assets are subject to arbitrary government assault each party believes we should have as a consolation prize a few inessential rights. For much the same reason Octavius designed the Principate to combine autocratic rule while retaining the outwards forms of the Republic. Rapid change frightens sheep.
Each has a fetish for some aspect of liberty, for much the same reason a teenage girl keeps a favorite doll from her childhood: to remind herself that she remains essentially the same despite her radical changes in mind and body.
What does the Democratic Party stand for?
- They’re happy with undemocratic processes which produce desired outcomes. Hence their fondness for the Courts, even when overturning legislative acts, popular referenda, and ancient precedents.
- They like measures favoring giant unions and corporations, which act as powerful engines of social change on the serf-like workers.
- Building strong regulatory agencies induce a desirable feeling of helplessness in masses, making them easily molded into complacent and passive citizens.
- Ample social services for the poor with limited mechanisms for social mobility keeps the rabble in their place. Constantly threatening the middle class without actually disrupting the class order. Large-scale immigration does this as well.
- So long as we remain quiet subjects, we may enjoy a wide range of rights. About what we read and say. Who we screw. What we do, within the arbitrary and ever-changing boundaries of political correctness. Our society provides bread and circuses, which is all consumer-citizens should want.
- Fetish: the American Civil Liberties Union. Supporting the ACLU provides an illusion that the Party still values liberty. The ACLU gets to have the occasional win during the long erosion of our rights.
What does the Republican Party stand for?
- They’re happy with undemocratic processes which produce desired outcomes. Hence their fondness for the Executive Branch, especially empowered by secrecy in funding and deed.
- They like measures favoring giant corporations and the wealthy, powerful engines concentrating income and power in the upper class — and especially in the top 1%.
- Limited mechanisms for social mobility (e.g., education) keeps the rabble in their place, threatening the middle class without actually disrupting the class order. Large-scale immigration does this as well.
- So long as we remain quiet subjects, we may enjoy the right to start businesses, retain and control property, say what we will (since it has no effect).
- Fetish: owning guns. We may be sheep, subject to overwhelming government control, but we’re armed sheep!
Choosing a party affiliation
Today we get to choose a political party like cattle at the Chicago stockyards get to choose a chute. The cattle (being smarter than us) don’t bother with party identification. They don’t cheer the “left-side” pen, or admire the virtue of its prisoners, the beauty of its fence, the wisdom of their keepers, or the free food. Those in the “right-side” pen don’t wear logos or trumpet their superior intelligence over those in the other pen.
Some posts about American politics
All are posted at the FM reference page Politics in America.
- The USA *after* this financial crisis – part I, about politics, 13 October 2008
- Migration from the south into America: new people, new foods, new political systems, 4 November 2008
- America’s elites reluctantly impose a client-patron system, 5 November 2008
- Immigration as a reverse election: our leaders get a new people, 6 November 2008
- Lilliput or America – who has a better way to choose its leaders?, 19 November 2008
- About campaigns for high office in America – we always expect a better result from the same process, 17 June 2009
- Please read this. For the sake of yourself, your children, and their children, 25 June 2009
- More about the tottering structure of the American political regime, 17 August 2009
- Please put on every milk carton: America’s political class is MIA, 17 November 2009
- The breakdown of the American political system, pointing to a new and better future, 2 February 2010
- Today’s reading: “Let Them Eat Dogma”, 21 March 2010
- Some thoughts on the political effects of a long recession, 27 July 2010
- Programs to reshape the American mind, run by the left and right, 2 August 2010