I really don’t want to be or to come across like one of those black helicopter conspiracy theory nuts, but we have been down this road of unfettered Federal government control before.
It was not pretty then and it will be less so now due to the lack of the restraining hand of a shared semi-christian culture.
Any time a group of people who are convinced that they are smarter than everybody else and that they care more than everybody else assumes reins of power (incidentally, with the white house, the house of representatives and now 60 votes in the senate, make no mistake, the power of these “do-gooders” is completely unfettered), then the rest of us will pay the price for their hubris.
Here is an excellent post summarizing some of the greatest hits of centralized American government in the past and how they are connected to now.
To an outsider, the Fernald school in Waltham Massachusetts looked like any other educational institution. During the school’s hay day in the 1920’s and 30’s, few passers-by would have guessed the dark secret lurking behind the brick walls – a secret penetrating to the heart of American liberalism.
Fernald was no ordinary school. Set up in 1848 with funds from the Massachusetts State Legislature, the institution was designed for the incarceration of “feeble-minded” children. Throughout the early 1900s, hundreds of thousands of low-intelligence (though not necessarily retarded) children were warehoused at Fernald in unspeakable conditions. Treated like animals and denied any affection, these “human weeds” were considered genetically inferior from the rest of society.
In his book The State Boys Rebellion, Michael D’Antonio shows that one of the purposes behind the Fernald school was to prevent these “idiots” from reproducing and diluting the gene pool. Margaret Sanger, icon of the American left and founder of Planned Parenthood, put it even more succinctly: “The undeniably feeble-minded should, indeed, not only be discouraged but prevented from propagating their kind.”
It was not until the 1960s that the school began releasing their children to live in the outside world.
Although contemporary left-wingers have tried to hush it up, it is a fact of history that the National Academy of Sciences, the American Medical Association, the National Research Council, Planned Parenthood and the pre-1960’s Democratic Party, all supported the right of the US government to engage in Eugenic selection, while thirty states adopted legislation aimed at compulsory sterilization of certain individuals or classes. Conservatives, orthodox Roman Catholics and radical libertarians, on the other hand, were routinely ridiculed for their opposition to such policies.
The underlining premise behind the American eugenics movement was the view that irresponsible individualism in breeding would act as a cancer on the human gene pool, harming posterity. Government held the future of the human race in its reigns and could improve the evolutionary direction of the nation – and indeed the world – through strategic intervention.
Nevertheless, the ideological coordinates behind these abuses remain as intact as ever within the minds of American left, although they have found a myriad of different expressions.
Consider, for example, the widespread assumption that the state has the vocation to act as a supra steward of the human race. In January, James Hansen of NASA (known as the “father” of the global warming movement), told the Guardian that Obama “has only four years to save the world.” Hansen painted a chilling picture of the apocalyptic future awaiting us if government failed to assert drastic measures like the “carbon tax.”
It is not hard to see the continuity Hansen’s remarks have with the eugenics politics of the last century. In both cases, the underlying premise is that the state holds the future of the human race in its reigns, and unless significant freedom is surrendered over to them, irresponsible individualism will destroy our chances – or our children’s chances – on this planet.
The American left has not departed from this basic utilitarian criterion. Consider the justification liberals are constantly giving for using taxpayer money on embryonic stem cell research (which involves the destruction of humans at the embryonic stage). They tell us that such research is justified because it can save lives. In other words, the end justifies the means when the end is the greater good of the human race. We see this same callous utilitarianism in the other ethical debates over killing innocent human beings: whether the killing of innocent humans occurs at the embryonic stage (certain forms of stem cell research), the foetal stage (abortion) or the elderly stage (euthanasia), these practices are defended by an appeal to the greater good either of society or (in the case of euthanasia) of the individual who elects to kill himself. As with the social Darwinism of the 20th century, the casualties of this utilitarian approach are inevitably the weakest and helpless members of society.
Go read the rest of the post and also get the book. I am telling you that Jonah Goldberg’s book, Liberal Fascism, is one of the most timely and important things you can read to understand the current political moment.
Have you noticed that the treasury department is taking over banks and not letting them pay back the money that gave the treasury control? have you noticed that GM and Chrysler are being unceremoniously delivered over to ownership by the government and the United Auto Workers Union? Do these things worry you any at all? they should.
We are on a very bad path. a very bad path indeed.
hat tip to vitamin z
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