Liberal Negativism

by Thomas E. Brewton

Liberals see the natural world as flawed and presume hubristically to restructure nature to fit their artificial, intellectual blueprint for perfection. In contrast, religious Jews and Christians are instructed to take joy in God's marvelously created cosmos, to recognize that the world is complex far beyond the capacity of any human minds to comprehend its entirety.

Liberals look to Marxian economics. Religious Jews and Christians seek God's guidance.

Liberal Republicans and Democrats, along with the media that follow the lead of the New York Times, are ceaselessly intent upon criticizing everything about life in the United States. This is true not just during political campaign season, but unendingly so.

Perfection, from liberals' viewpoint, would be a theoretical world-society with equal distribution of income in a socialistically regulated economy, under a one-world government led by socialist intellectuals in the UN.

If a liberal sees anything that differs from his idea of perfection, his knee-jerk reaction is to demand a new law to regulate or correct it. The implicit assumption is that everything in society is the product of materialistic forces emanating from the political state. Hence the harping, for example, on income gaps, and the presumption that the Federal government can, and should, run the economy to eliminate income discrepancies.

David Limbaugh's new book "Bankrupt" (see Brent Bozell's review in the Washington Times) documents this fundamental posture of negativism.

Seeing the world as all wrong, while confidently believing that you can fix everything if you are put in charge, is a basic characteristic of the gnostic doctrine of liberal-socialism.

As I wrote in The Da Vinci Code: Liberal Gnosticism:

Gnosticism is the belief that intellectual elites have secret knowledge about the structure of human society and about the relationship between humans and the cosmos. These elites are thereby empowered to direct human affairs.

A characteristic common to all the varieties of gnostic socialism is the belief that human conduct, indeed fundamental human nature, can be manipulated by controlling and changing the the conditions in which people live. This will be found in all of the 19th and 20th century varieties of socialism, from Henri de Saint-Simon and Auguste Comte, to Charles Fourier and Robert Owen, to Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, Benito Mussolini, Adolph Hitler, and Franklin Roosevelt."

Eric Voegelin in his 1959 "Science, Politics & Gnosticism" describes the salient characteristics of gnosticism, all of which apply to the doctrines of American liberalism.

First, the gnostic liberal is dissatisfied with the world as he finds it. He rejects the evidence of history that there always will be strife, wars, inequalities in ability and station, and some degree of poverty. And he is confident that he has the knowledge (gnosis) to make things perfect, which he defines as equality in all things.

Second, the gnostic-liberal attributes the problems of human life to poor organization of the economic and political realms. Evil and hardship must therefore arise from some identifiable source (capitalism? ownership of private property?) that deforms the proper structure of society.

Third, the gnostic-liberal has a deep faith that earthly salvation from the world’s tribulations is attainable, a trait markedly evident in the theoretical models of Soviet Russia and Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal.

Fourth, the gnostic-liberal believes that this salvation is attainable through the process of history (which , of course, he uniquely understands). Auguste Comte’s 1820s gnosis was his discovery of the "immutable law of history," according to which there are three ages of human social development, the third stage in the 19th century being the new scientific, socialistic age into which only knowledgeable intellectuals could lead the masses.

The same three-phase philosophy of history reappears in Hegel and Marx. Note that Hitler’s National Socialism was consciously called the Third Reich to identify it with the gnostic millennium of earthly harmony and peace.

Note also that the nature of gnosis is that its secret knowledge is available and comprehensible only to a select few. This has always implied in socialism a vulnerability to dictatorial concentration of power in the collectivized state. In Italy and Germany of the 1920s and 1930s it was expressed as the Leader Principle Il Duce and Der Fuhrer.

Fifth, the gnostic-liberal believes that, having discovered the secret meaning of history, he can implement and control the process of history by political and economic means, i. e., via socialism.

And, finally, the gnostic-liberal’s core belief is that salvation, the perfection of social relations and human conduct, is attainable via human action, here on earth. This is the source of Lenin’s mystical concept of the dictatorship of the proletariat that would bring peace and harmony to the people and would lead to a gradual withering away of formal government, leaving the Soviet people living in a modern Garden of Eden from each according to ability, to each according to need.

We see the manifestation of this mystical, gnostic vision every day in liberal politicians’ belief that individuals are incapable of fending for themselves, that only the national political state can do the job. There is always something wrong with society and always a politician confident that one more set of regulations or one more welfare-state program will make everything OK.

Thomas E. Brewton is a staff writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc. The New Media Alliance is a non-profit (501c3) national coalition of writers, journalists and grass-roots media outlets.

His weblog is THE VIEW FROM 1776

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