Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Are We There Yet (at the T-point)?

We seem to forget that Tyranny can come from both the right* and the left:*
• from the right via anarchists, or perhaps even more dangerously, via non-governmental persons/organizations/corporations, whose wealth/power/influence is so great that they make and play by their own rules, including circumventing the rule of law and lawful consequence; and
• from the left via dictators/totalitarians and other control-mongers who are generally out-of-control in pursuit of ideological agendas.
From all appearances we seem to have these two extremes—excessive individualism to the right and excessive collectivism to the left—bearing down against democracy from opposite directions heading for the tyranny-point. Neither extreme seems inclined to re-evaluate and take the “centrist-way” of balance, reason, constitutional guide, or democratic representation. Are we at or near the T-point? You decide.

At the right:
• Massive government failure to appropriately regulate that which is within its mandate (under both Republicans & Democrats, it mattereth not!).
• Massive corporate/collective lobbying and influence peddling that sideline democratic values and citizen participation.
• Massive corporate/collective lobbying and influence peddling in pursuit of favored-status, subsidies, and mergers/acquisitions that increase power by lessening competition and consequence.
• Massive corporate/collective disinformation and propaganda campaigns to manipulate election results.
• Privately-owned collectives that consistently defraud taxpayers via government contracts by massive overcharging for goods and services without meaningful penalty, and too often, with continuing contracts even when criminal conduct is revealed.
• Framing objectives of the public good as incompatible with democracy, individualism, and free-markets.
• Etc.
At the left:
• Massive government involvement beyond its mandate (under both Republicans & Democrats, it mattereth not!).
• Torque-ing of constitutional checks and balances and subverting the rule of law.
• Planned, centralized, or command economies that stifle individual initiative and private enterprise.
• Expanding the culture of secrecy, including secret prisons and trials.
• Torturing of suspects.
• Spying on citizens.
• Denying habeas corpus.
• Intimidation or attempts thereat of dissenters and journalists.
• National Security Letters and gag orders.
• Etc.
Tyranny, whether originating in the public or private sector, destroys democracy; so whether our allegiance favors individualism or collectivism, the weight of each increasing excess will bend inexorably downward toward tyranny.
* Not to be confused with conservative/liberal, Republican/Democratic designations as the sins of tyranny always presents its beleaguered citizens with a mixed bag of left and right excesses, despite the rhetoric. In recent years, in addition to their natural preferences, conservatives have co-opted many leftist excesses and liberals have fallen victim to the anarchy of private power and influence.
Creative Commons License
Déjà Vu ~ Times blog by SMSmith is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.