The Rise Of American Totalitarianism: Part One
It is fashionable in some circles to claim the United States of America is well down the path of totalitarianism. Among others it is equally cutting-edge to suggest that any such claim is dangerous hyperbole. In reality an evaluation of our current state of affairs may be conducted with a reasonable amount of objectivity.
The closer a nation moves toward the all powerful state, the more it takes on certain characteristics common to the collectivist society. For instance, in a totalist regime the governing elite believes the highest development of human society is the omnipotent state. They believe they are of a better class than the common man and so have a responsibility to govern the lives of lesser mortals.
While Uber man must take charge and direct the evolution of society, it is necessary for the mass of mankind to be pressed into a common mold, pushed to take on certain beliefs and characteristics beneficial to the life of the collective. These traits are systematically cultivated by the Civil authorities as a means of maintaining control over the masses. Thus, "modern education is in large measure a schooling for impersonality and the submergence of the person into the impersonal group."1 This is required because there is no place for differing opinions in the totalist regime. It is always the good of the collective that takes precedence. Indeed, there is no room for personality or even a morality or code of ethics apart from the pragmatic needs of the Socialist body politic.2
The perfect environment for creating this servile mindset is the institutional education system. "The youngster who passes through its classrooms emerges indoctrinated in a body of secular values as if he had gone to a sort of governmental parochial school. It may not be a very coherent body of values and may conflict with the values of his parents or religion; but that very incoherence and conflict, combined with a general philosophical confusion becomes the dominant frame of mind of the graduate."3 The confused mind is easily swayed. Those independent souls that refuse to be broken are either recruited as mid level managers in the bureaucracy or marginalized as troublemakers.
The goal of controlling all aspects of life is accomplished through a variety of means but in a soft dictatorship the most likely avenue is domination of the nation's economy. Indeed, to master a major portion of the economy is to control it all. And to take control of a country's health care is to have swallowed up everything, for "the health of the people is the highest law."4
In tandem with this grasping for control of the national economy there is often the development of a separate police force designed to reach its tentacles into every nook and cranny of society. This paramilitary body must be broken to the will of the ruling elite. It is necessary that the members of this agency be willing to take orders and to do things contrary to the conventional mores of the culture they are a part of. They must be trained to perform acts they would never consider as a private individual but are encouraged to do as a representative of the collective. The national police agency will naturally attract persons who have a "taste for power as such and the pleasure of being obeyed and of being part of a well functioning and immensely powerful machine to which everything else must give way."5
It is clear our current national leadership (both administrative and legislative branches), is hell-bent on making this nation a "socialist republic." In addition to the attempt to gain complete control of our nation's economy through health care reform there is the ongoing effort to regulate every part of life. For the good of the whole we are told how much to eat, what to drive, how to light our homes and to get used to high gasoline prices. We are told billions of dollars are needed to bail out failing businesses, that drastic measures are required to halt global warming, and that individual states must bow to the federal power on every issue.
In the meantime, the TSA daily humiliates and dehumanizes6 American citizens while a comatose nation sits idly by. And lest we think the power of the TSA is limited to airports and other transportation hubs, we must note that on June 15 of this year, the TSA and several federal, state and local agencies conducted a "scheduled exercise designed to enhance security in the Ohio-West Virginia area. TSA has partnered with local law enforcement to conduct thousands of similar operations from coast to coast."7 This is not to suggest the abuse of police power is limited to the Transportation Security Administration but it is merely an example.
Next: Is there a Christian Response to the current state of affairs?
1. R. J. Rushdoony, The Messianic Character Of American Education, (Phillipsburg: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co. 1963), 239.
2. F. A. Hayek, The Road To Serfdom, (Chicago: The University Of Chicago Press, 2007), 166.
3. Samuel L. Blumenfeld, Is Public Education Necessary?, (Boise: The Paradigm company, 1981, 1985), 3.
4. R. J. Rushdoony, The Institutes Of Biblical Law, (Phillipsburg: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co., 1973), 101.
5. Hayek, 169.
6. Dehumanizing practices are a favorite tactic of totalist police agencies. Consider the treatment of Jews and other "undesirables" in Nazi Germany, long before the establishment of the death camps.
7. See, http://www.mariettatimes.com/page/content.detail/id/536701/TSA-conducting-security-exercise-.html?nav=5002
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