Recently in another blog I coined the term “Totalitarian Liberals.” There was some discussion about how that is
a bit of hyperbole. Like the terms, ‘extremist’ ‘radical’ ‘fascist’ etc., they are being used so often now that they are seen as over the top epithets we throw at our enemies. When talking to disinterested people in my circle of friends, using that statist v. individualist analogy does not instantly turn them off the conversation as ‘totalitarian’ or ‘extremist’ does. – David Johnson
Why I am sticking with the term “Totalitarian Liberals:”
What is a Liberal? If you agree with the statement that the defining characteristic of a Liberal is that they want a greater role for government, then the following thinking applies:
A Liberal policy is one that expands government. That is, it moves us towards Socialism. The classical definition of Socialism implies government ownership of production. However, in the modern world, this definition is no longer applicable.
“Statism” is a technically more applicable term than is “Socialism”, because rather than state ownership we now have a hybrid of private ownership but government control, which is what I think of as Statism.
However, because my goal is towards the “sound bite that would appeal to the clueless”, I am going to stick with the term “Socialism” under the new concept that I am referring to Statism, and when I write “Socialism”, you can just mentally substitute “Statism” if that works better for you.
In any case, whenever you have any implementation of a Socialist policy, it fails, for two reasons: (1) it just does not work on the face of it; (2) there are the famous “unintended consequences.”
Examples of these paired failures: the stimulus did not work, but we get Solyndra, plus vast debt. Welfare does not lift the poor out of poverty, but it keeps the poor in a state of dependency. Obamacare does not lower the cost of health care, but causes employers to drop their plans, and doctors to leave the profession. Readers of Oofdah! could easily add dozens of examples; I leave that as an exercise.
However what does work extremely well when a Socialist policy is implemented is that the government does expand and gain additional power over the citizenry.
I am still coming to my point, so please bear with me a bit further!
When the Socialist policy fails to achieve its stated objective (failure 1), there is always, always without exception the response from the proponents of the failed policy that the reason it failed is because it did not go far enough. “The stimulus did not work because it was not big enough.” “Unemployment insurance is not working because it only goes for 99 months” (unlike in some European countries where it has gone as long as 5 years).
That is, when the policy fails, they want more of the same policy! (the definition of insanity – doing the same thing and expecting a different outcome.)
Prominent members of the Austrian School of Economics (von Mises, Hayek, and others such as Friedman and Hazlitt) have proven at length the following property of Socialistic systems: their built-in failures generate additional demands for more government control, more intervention and more Socialism. That is, there is no such thing as “a little Socialism”. It is inherent in the beast that it must grow until it becomes Totalitarian. Thus it is like a cancer, or an addiction.
The road to Socialism cannot end in any other than two ways: one is Totalitarianism; the other is Freedom, when the people wake up and throw off the oppression of the false ideas.
Thus, “Totalitarian Liberals”.