Last month we published, “The left’s suicidal insistence on political purity.”
The post compared the right-wing’s easy acceptance of Donald Trump’s lies, criminality, hate-mongering, infidelity, nepotism, conspiracy theories, incompetence, bigotry, and ignorance, vs. the left’s demand for purity.
The right’s lust for power is prompted by its fear and loathing of the poor. It’s called “Gap Psychology,” the psychological desire to distance oneself from those “below” on any status measure and to approach those above.
Because money is power, those of the right-wing ultimately care only about money — gaining it, keeping it, and preventing those “below” from having it.
Cutting healthcare for the poor is a money/power example. Right-wing bigotry against blacks, browns, immigrants is about money. Anti-semitism is about money. Even the anti-abortion movement is about money; the rich always can get abortions.
For the right, whites don’t have enough power, i.e. money. Despite owning the Presidency and the Senate, it is not enough.
By contrast, the left’s lust for power has to do with purity. In an earlier text, I termed it “political purity,” but on reflection, I should have called it “moral purity.”
For the left, no one is moral enough. The left finds pleasure in digging for unpunished sinners, like paleontologists digging for undiscovered fossils.
Trump is a psychopath, so his immorality and amorality lie on the surface as the obvious foundations of his being — so obvious, in fact, that some on the left feel obligated to search for other, less apparent examples.
Ulysses S. Grant owned a slave, whom he later freed, and he was not opposed to slavery. The same is true of Francis Scott Key, the lyricist for our national anthem. Tear down their statues and find a new national anthem written by someone pure of heart?
And as a Jew, I might remind you that several American Presidents were anti-Semites, even the sainted Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Shall we destroy his memory?
I once again was reminded of the left’s demand for purity, by this tweet from Colin Kaepernick:
What? The 4th of July, the date of the Declaration of Independence, is a “celebration of white supremacy”? Is that a fair analysis? And what does he visualize as “liberation”?
I greatly respect Kaepernick. He talked the talk and he walked the walk — by taking a knee — when the monetary and emotional costs to him proved to be enormous.
He is correct to feel especially aggrieved when his protest against white bigotry was mischaracterized by many whites and even by the POTUS, to be a protest against America’s armed forces and the flag.
Even the cowardly and bigoted National Football League owners joined in by blacklisting this good man.
So, I get it. I really do. I agree, for instance, with Germany having no statues of Adolf Hitler.
But in addition to expressing well-deserved moral outrage, you must understand how to to make your point without turning your allies against you.
Fight the fight that matters. Winning a meaningful battle advances a cause more than heroically losing a symbolic battle. Or does it?
Yes, tear down any Hitler statues, Mussolini’s, too. But shall I also demand that every statue of every anti-Semitic politician in European history also be torn down, along with every American slave owner’s statue?
Shall we dishonor every imperfect human being?
What about the bigoted popes, who loved Jesus but murdered Jews? And what about history’s Jew-hating artists who created anti-Semetic pieces showing Jews with horns. Shall I set out to destroy all their artwork? The great impressionist, Edgar Degas, was a notorious anti-Semite. Should I demand that all his artworks be destroyed? Where do we draw the line?
What is seen as extreme in one decade might very well be acceptable in another.
Giving women the right to vote once was unthinkable. Mixed-race marriages. Voting by Blacks. Legal marijuana. Online porn. Shooting an unarmed man if you feel “threatened.” A POTUS cheating on multiple wives.
All once were outrageous, now are acceptable by some, to varying degrees.
There are, to my knowledge, no statues of the notorious traitor, Benedict Arnold, but we countenance statues of an even greater traitor, Robert E. Lee.
Again, where do we draw the line?
Think of street names, town names, school names, and county names, all over America, so many of which honor politicians. Do you know of any perfectly moral politicians? Or perfectly moral people?
Shall we change all our street, town, school, and county names because they honor imperfect people? Yet again, where do we draw the line?
Today, the statue of Christopher Columbus? Tomorrow Columbus School? The next day Columbus, Ohio?
Shall we destroy any memory of those who voted against suffrage or against abolition?
Virtually all advances in the arts and sciences, including philosophy, are initiated by the extremists.
Bob Dylan wrote, “The times, they are a’changin’.” It’s true that times change, but someone has to change them. The times don’t change by themselves. And changes often seem extreme, especially to conservatives, whose fundamental belief is the conservation of the past.
Now, we have a psychopathic President, whose followers rant about “extreme liberals.” You know, those liberal “extremists” who kneel during the Star-Spangled Banner or who want the poor to have health care, or who created Social Security.
It all leaves me with many questions about Kaepernick, not the man, but the symbol for resistance against white bigotry:
- As a symbol, is Kaepernick so “extreme” that his efforts actually will aid the right-wing bigots, and lose independent voters for Biden?
- Or, will Biden not be extreme enough, causing the emergence of a 3rd party, even more liberal candidate, whose “extremism” will pave the way for a Trump win.
- Or, will “extremism” accustom us to thinking about bigotry in a new way, so that future bigotry will be less or more tolerated?
- Can any person be pure enough to satisfy the demands of anti-bigots?
To the left, one cannot be pure enough. That is the left’s voting weakness. To the right, one needs only to be anti-liberal. That is the right’s voting strength.
The right will stay consistently anti-poor and anti-middle class. It has no competing ideology. Trump will continue to promulgate hatred to his bigoted followers, and the GOP leaders will follow. There will be few compromises of doctrine among the faithful.
Will the left find common ground within itself, or will it eat upon itself, like an auto-immune disease, for lack of perceived ideological purity?
The coming election will be a moral and philosophical test for the American left. Today they lead the polls. But will their demands for moral purity manage to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory as they did in 2016?
Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty Twitter: @rodgermitchell Search #monetarysovereignty Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
THE SOLE PURPOSE OF GOVERNMENT IS TO IMPROVE AND PROTECT THE LIVES OF THE PEOPLE.
The most important problems in economics involve:
- Monetary Sovereignty describes money creation and destruction.
- Gap Psychology describes the common desire to distance oneself from those “below” in any socio-economic ranking, and to come nearer those “above.” The socio-economic distance is referred to as “The Gap.”
Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics. Implementation of Monetary Sovereignty and The Ten Steps To Prosperity can grow the economy and narrow the Gaps:
Ten Steps To Prosperity:
The Ten Steps will grow the economy and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.