Sharp:The story of my political awakening Pt2
November 9, 2012 in Politics
There are moral absolutes. Even the most complex moral dilemmas can be distilled down a choice between black or white; right or wrong. It often takes great patients, wisdom, and disciplined (sometimes even painful) intellectual honesty to discern what is right from what is wrong. It then takes courage either to do what is right, or stand against what is wrong. But, once the right course of action has been determined, there is a moral imperative to act. Inaction then becomes immoral.
This commitment, within the United States’ educational system, to moral relativism is only one aspect of an ideological cancer that infects the American body politic. This cancer is an insidious movement encompassing the world. It casts disdain on those who base their life on morality and strive for wealth and greatness. It has many forms and many names: socialism, communism, fascism and, its current politically correct and misleading name, progressivism. Although each of these forms of government has slight ideological differences from one another, they all invest all political and legal power in the State. This base ideology is most accurately called statism.
Whatever name it takes; it always seeks to enforce equality among people through subjugation. It has no legitimacy other than force and no function other than the accumulation of power. In statism the political State is god; a god that does not offer salvation to the individual, but only to the collective. To stand out from the collective is an unpardonable sin; to disagree is blasphemy.
Statism sees those with drive, ability, and moral clarity as threats to those who possess less of those qualities. Worse, it sees the distribution of natural ability as being unfair to those who may not have been blessed with such ability. It seeks to oppress anyone who uses their talents to better themselves. It seeks to award mediocrity and punish exceptional ability. Those that create wealth are to be robbed to enrich those that create nothing. In the name of social justice and equality statists want to destroy the type of people that make America great. They see America’s purpose as making everyone equal; even if they are equal only in poverty. For the statist slavery is the only way to ensure equality.
Statism destroys the individual drive to create and achieve by demonizing the creators and achievers. Statism confiscates what is produced through the effort of the producer to subsidize the mediocrity of the less motivated of society. Under the guise of law and regulation for the public good the statist seeks to make it impossible for the individual to achieve. It teaches moral relativism so its own amorality becomes unapparent. It questions the morality of those who have created wealth while justifying the robbing of the wealthy as morally imperative. With this pretense, the state confiscates not only the property of the wealthy, but all private property, even what little property the poor might own.
All of this eventually brings private production to a halt and the State attempts to fill the gap; making the people dependant on the State for all goods and services. The State claims sole right to create and produce. But the State has no creative spark; no purpose other than to perpetuate its own existence. It cannot create anything. Creativity is a trait to be found only in the individual motivated by the desire, through his own action, to better himself and, as a direct or indirect consequence, others. But, because the individual ability to innovate and create has been crushed by the forced equality of the State’s collective, the State cannot fill the production gap. Society then stagnates, regresses, and eventually dies.
A statist collective inevitably breeds corruption. Although it expounds equality for all, a hierarchy always develops. Since the State has exclusive power to allocate resources, it must invest bureaucrats with the authority over how those resources are dispersed. These people, who the members of the collective are now dependent on for the necessities of life, then find themselves in positions of almost unlimited power; and power corrupts. A system of bribery for survival evolves. Those who are of value to the bureaucrats get a greater share of the available resources; those who are not of use go without. Equality, while being the droning mantra of the statist, is not the goal of the statist. The goal of the statist is the accumulation of economic and political power and the concentration of that power in a very few hands.
All men are not equal. They all have certain God-given rights under the laws of both God and man, but there will always be those that work harder, those who are more intelligent, and those who are willing to sacrifice more to achieve whatever purpose drives them. Such people will always succeed to a greater degree than those who are not as gifted or as driven. It is such people that create prosperity for themselves and those around them. They are the makers and the producers. They are the doers. They may not actively help people of lesser ability or resources, but they do not actively harm them either. They work toward their goals and hope others work successfully toward theirs.
I am speaking here, of the iconic self-made man. I speak of the man who started out mining coal, and later came to own the coal mine, or the man who invents a revolutionary new device in his garage. It is these people who epitomize the individuality and self-reliance that I revere. I am not speaking of corporations which are another type of collective and succeed only when they allow and encourage individual drive and initiative. A corporation, like a collectivist state, withers and dies when individual initiative is suppressed.
We all benefit from the doers’ activity rather they want us to or not. This is because they do not redistribute wealth; they create it. They make more where there was less. Their purpose is to better and enrich themselves but, in doing so, they create conditions that provide opportunities for others to improve their own situations. To try to force the doers into equality with those that are less talented and driven is to defy nature and provoke a predictably devastating reaction. These people have vision and purpose. They point the way for those who do not.
I do not count myself among the doers. I have failed at every career I have ever tried and am even now dependent on the good will of friends and family for my livelihood. I lacked the drive to fulfill my chosen purpose. My current impoverished situation is my fault and mine alone; I can blame nothing but my own lack of purposeful will. But I have had an epiphany recently. I have resolved to become a doer. My purpose is to bring my nation back from the brink of the dark pits that are progressivism and statism. I will oppose anything that seeks to crush individual potential, drive, and ability under heel in the name of equality and social justice. I shall do this by enriching myself and accumulating as much wealth as possible without apology or shame. I will use these resources to fight stateism in all its forms.
While in college I lost my sense of purpose. I was swept up in the same purposeless apathy that caused me so much concern in others. I saw my country falling apart around me and becoming morally indifferent; feeling powerless to stop it. Americans, as a people, have no clear direction and, like a person with idle hands, we fall into folly. Our national pride has faded almost entirely, our leaders are corrupt and feckless, our freedom is being eroded in a false exchange for safety, and no one seemed to care. To my shame, I ceased to care as well.
I saw the failing of the country so clearly and looked for someone who saw it too. There were a few who did and we tried to make other people see. But, to our frustration, most people did not want to see. Worse, some were perfectly aware of the decline that was all around them and chose to ignore it. Worse still, when I spoke of the decline, I was met with hostility.
I discovered that there was an insidious, pervasive form of cowardice infecting the American people. If they refused to acknowledge the problem, then they did not have to solve it. Now used to being purposeless, they feared having purpose again. I became dejected. If almost no one else cared, then why should I? My sense purpose was murky and nearly gone. I began to decay just as the nation was decaying. I had nothing to drive me; no reason to do more than simply exist. I fell into profound depression.
I had made a dangerous mistake. I had become so lost in the various reasons for the withering of my country that I had forgotten that all my studying and efforts to mobilize resistance against statism were intended to give the people of America a chance to save the nation. I had begun to think only in terms of institutions and agencies; of powers and principalities, and not of the individual people that the evil that I so hated would harm most. I had fallen into the ideological trap of collective salvation; the group was supreme, the individual unimportant.
Even among my own family and friends; even among those who shared my political views, I felt as though I was alone. No one saw the evil as clearly as I did, or shared my zeal for its destruction. I had isolated myself from those I wished to protect; and from those who would protect me.
With the help of family and friends I have found purpose again. It is for them that I continue to make feeble efforts to help the nation turn away from its headlong rush to becoming a collectivist state where freedom would be only an often-repeated lie, and achievement would be measured only by one’s capacity to conform. I write essays like this one, I write letters to public officials that go unanswered save for polite but dismissive form-letters, and expound my views to anyone who will listen. I do not know if I make a difference or not, and I do not truly care. It is the action itself; in the ability to take action, any action, that I find satisfaction. I have purpose. As my financial situation improves I will make other, hopefully, more effective measures to battle stateism. I know there are others like me now.
I broke my Grandpa’s knife after carrying it for a few years. It had served me as well as it had my Grandpa. I collect knives now, and carry one almost everywhere I go; leaving it behind only when I go somewhere where carrying it is not permitted. I use it for common tasks and am always glad that, when I need it to perform its designed function, it can be counted on to do so. I never let it get dull so it becomes less useful. It has a purpose and therefore value. If I keep it sharp it maintains that usefulness. A dull knife is not good for anything.
I have the same view about the nation. If we maintain a focus on a purpose that is clear and moral we, as a nation, are sharp and therefore useful for the world. If we lose that focus and clarity of purpose, we will become dull and useless. If we become useless it will because we have allowed ourselves to be worn down by the assault on the individual and the inspiration draining effect of statist collectivism.
So, as an individual, I will remain sharp. I will do my best at everything I do and not accept failure lightly. I will seek out those that can produce and achieve and give them the respect they deserve. I will unapologetically seek to enrich myself and achieve as much success as possible. I will stand unyielding and uncompromising for what I believe is right. I will be useful and sharp. I will never again give into despair.