Napoleon Was Right…
in liberty just not for most people.
he reportedly said, are herd-cattle not capable of living as individuals
in society without the external restraint of authority to keep them
from abusing one another. Most men, in other words, are only kept
at bay kept from committing acts of violence and fraud
by the threat of violence in return.
Not by self-restraint;
not because they are morally enlightened.
and only the prod.
In his own
way, the dapper dictator was a Libertarian. A cynical one, perhaps
but also probably accurate in his estimation of the masses
further. I doubt most people even desire liberty.
no matter where they fall on the political continuum, are quite
happily habituated to the omnipresence of government to omnipresent
control in exchange (supposedly) for safety.
How many people
out there would be willing to forgo any claim to a government check
for anything retirement, health care,
unemployment compensation in return for the liberty
to provide for themselves, successfully or not? No, wait,
lets go deeper. To agree with the statement that no one is
entitled to take money from anyone else for any purpose, without
I doubt the
answer is one out of 100. Maybe not even that.
support the emerging police state the universal monitoring,
the mass frisks.
that is, left-leaning statists are of course a lost cause.
Theres no point even trying to speak with the we needs
and society oughts. Even in the abstract, theyre
not for liberty; theyve embraced communal responsibility.
We are all in this together even though some
of us might prefer to go our own way, make our decisions
and just be left alone.
Which of course,
we wont be.
It is interesting
to note in this connection the odd fact that left-liberal statists
are deemed and deem themselves caring
(that is, humanistic) people while anyone who objects to their schemes
of violent control to their talk of helping some
people with other peoples money, taken at the point
of a gun is regarded as selfish and mean-spirited.
But it is conservatives
Republicans who are the most depressing. Because they
claim to love liberty the abstract conception of it,
at least. But down in the mud, theyre as or even more statist
than the left-liberal Democrats they claim to oppose.
Try and find a Republican who will support the elimination
of taxes on real estate so that people can really own their
homes and land. Instead he will talk about our childrens
future and the importance of having good schools
paid for with the liberty of home and land owners
who are in fact feudal serfs permitted temporary and conditional
use of the countys property so long as the annual property
tax is paid. It is as hard to find a Republican who will say that
it is the responsibility of parents to provide for the education
of their children not the parents neighbors
as it is to find a purple Brontosaurus in Central Park. The
Republican conception of property rights and thus,
of human rights is as crippled from the get-go as
the left-liberal Democrat conception of them.
It has been
observed correctly that every major point of the Communist
Manifesto is now a given an accepted part of our everyday
lives from a heavy progressive or graduated income
tax to the centralization of credit in the hands of
the State, by means of a national bank with State capital and an
worse than that; weve also got all the major elements of Mussolini-style
fascism which really ought to be called corporatism
firmly in place, too. The racial-nationalism stuff most people associate
with the term (fascism) is a bogey. The part that matters
and the part we have is the marriage of state with
corporate power; the creation of de facto (and even de jure) industrial
combines that use government power to suck vast riches into the
clutches of (for example) the defense industry, big
finance and so on with the government enjoying vast
regulatory power (in practice, control and micromanagement of individuals)
as its payoff in return.
and conservatives are at best limited statists.
They want government, too. Just directed in the way they think proper.
Which means they are just as eager to put a gun to your head or
otherwise threaten you with violence to provide funds for x
or obey y. Which makes them fundamentally no different
than the Democrats.
Which is why
we find government Cloverism everywhere.
There is no
escape, either. No way out.
Not until it
becomes possible to escape this Earth and try again on some other
Earth, as far away from this one as relativistic physics can take
But even then,
I am not optimistic. The dormant seeds of Cloverism will probably
accompany the intrepid travelers, ready to sprout to life once more
in fresh, momentarily virgin soil. Just as happened here in North
America. Liberty not perfect, but not too far from it
survived on this continent only very briefly before Cloverism came
alive once more, re-establishing itself with even greater vigor.
This is the
real tragedy of the human condition; not just the lust to control
but the desire the need to be controlled.
this and he acted accordingly.
with permission from EricPetersAutos.com.
[send him mail] is an automotive
columnist and author of Automotive
Atrocities and Road Hogs (2011). Visit his
© 2011 Eric Peters
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