have any issue with Clovers (see here for samples) if they were
wiling to live their Cloverish lives as they see fit and
willing to leave the rest of us free to live ours as we see fit.
But of course, Clovers by definition cannot
abide that. The quality the personality defect that
makes a Clover a Clover is his relentless unwillingness to live
and let live. He or she is the sort of person
you cant just walk away from. Because they will follow
may want nothing more than to go about your business, Clover considers
everything you do anything you might do his
If, say, you
have a club and dont want him as a member, he will try to
force his way in (using the law, of course). It would
never occur to him to start his own club, amenable to himself
and those like-minded.
just build his house the way he wants his house to be built. He
insists you build yours the way he wants it to be built.
If Clover decides
he needs an air bag, then you must have one also. If Clover buckles
up, then youd better buckle-up, too.
If Clover wants
a 35.5 MPG car then you will have a 35.5 MPG car.
If Clover doesnt
trust himself to own a gun responsibly, then clearly no one
else can be allowed to own a gun since Clover assumes everyone
else is as irresponsible as he is.
The same goes
for speeding (as he arbitrarily defines it) as well
as swimming without a lifeguard on duty.
If Clover only
feels safe when random and arbitrary searches are the
order of the day, then random and arbitrary searches will become
the order of the day.
decides some public good or other deserves to be funded,
he will lobby and legislate and vote to make sure others
are forced to fund it.
And so it goes.
You know the drill.
it is never sufficient to do what he wants, purchase what he wishes
and leave it at that. Much less leave others free to do as
they wish (and purchase what they wish). Every Clover is
a little Stalin at heart. Collectivizing his life brings
no joy. He must collectivize the lives of others. Only then
is he truly happy. This is the essence of Clover.
How to deal
with such a creature?
the matrix that is, society as currently constituted
it is virtually impossible. Because most people have been so effectively
conditioned (by having had their cognitive faculties crippled or
merely never awakened mostly via government schools) to accept
or at least, never to question Cloverite bromides such as the
public good. This Clover deftly manipulates to achieve and
then enforce his good. Get most people to acquiesce to the
idea that there is such a thing as the public good
in other than purely metaphorical terms and you can get them
to accept being lorded over in the name of a Clovers very
specific ideas about what constitutes that good.
Make sure that
most people never question the idea of democracy (and
its political synonyms, society and we)
and you have the green light not merely to tyrannize millions of
individuals but to get them to accept being tyrannized,
by using morality against them.
most people naturally want to be good and do good. Let Clover
define good in his terms in terms of the
collective and he is unbeatable. If it is accepted
that good is necessarily a collective thing and the collective
is defined by Clovers then no individual stands a
chance. He is selfish. He is unconcerned about the
children or the future. You name it. Clover
has an endless supply of proxy euphemisms for himself.
It can be and
historically has been overtly authoritarian (less successful, as
history has shown us) or subtly and much more cleverly authoritarian,
such as the modern democratic state and so far,
much more successful. Quite possibly, longer lived, too. Chiefly
because the average person labors under the delusion that his freedom
remains intact, that he is governed by representatives freely chosen
and so with his consent. All of which makes him quiescent
even if he grumbles every now and then about the ever-tightening
invisible straight jacket he wears. Even if he is opposed to this
or that new law. The person who would never tolerate a king or Duce
or Fuhrer will almost always tolerate even respect
a president. So long as he is permitted every so often to
choose a new one, he does not notice that he is never offered the
choice to be free of them all. (See here
for more on the democratic con.)
the rest of the article
[send him mail] is an
automotive columnist and author of Automotive
Atrocities and Road Hogs (2011). Visit his
© 2012 Eric Peters
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