Nobody here but us progressives
By Bruce Walker
What have we learned from the Democrat debates? Well, one thing that we have learned is that Hillary Clinton is not a "liberal." She is a "progressive." Leftists play with labels and language all the time. When was the last time you heard a politician get up and say "I am a liberal, and proud of that label?" But isn't Hillary very much a liberal? Does she not proclaim proudly those issues most associated with modern liberalism? Of course she does!
Then why the problem being called a "liberal"? Sixty percent of Americans, according to every bi-partisan Battleground Poll in the last five and a half years, call themselves "conservative" or "very conservative." Only about thirty-seven percent call themselves "liberal" or "very liberal." What about the "moderate" so beloved of punditry? Only one or two percent of Americans, given that as one of their choices, choose that. Only one or two percent of Americans, given choice of "undecided" as one of their choices in the Battleground Poll, choose "undecided."
Besides just polls, Americans have evaluated the political ideology the way we have been brought up to think of it, and they have overwhelmingly rejected "liberal," "very liberal," "moderate," and "undecided" for either "conservative" or "very conservative."
Americans have also seen how the Great Society was not so "Great," the New Deal was not such a good "Deal," and how every entitlement and every bureaucracy has an inherent life of its own, independent of budget constraints or common sense. All of those were "gifts" of liberalism, which liberalism dared call itself by its old name.
That old name, "liberalism," never fit. It is connected with the Latin word for liberty, which is the last thing, in any area of life, that modern liberals want. School choice? No! Lower taxes? No! Right to work? No! Right to pray in school? No! Right to smoke outside a café? No! Right to use your land the way you want? No! Liberalism resembles the Soviet Union in the Security Council, and the infamous Ambassador Nyet! (Meaning that anything the democracies could agree upon, the Soviet Union would oppose.)
So in this age in which history seems to have vanished, those politicians once known as "liberals" are now "progressives." Great. Let us here their notion of progress. Do they believe that the spiraling trend of sexually transmitted diseases is progress? Do they believe that allowing misogynist Moslems to create thousands of communities within America is progress? How about when the first American Moslem girl is a victim of "honor killing," because she was raped – would that qualify as progress?
Is the increasing burden of entitlements and national debt which we are leaving to our grandchildren progress? When three quarters of their income goes to support us in our old age, will that be progress? What about when they revolt against this generational slavery and we have to get off our eighty year old behinds and take orders at McDonald's – will that be progress?
The whole idea of progress is silly. Life was once much better for us, and that includes all of us. Thomas Sowell has noted that once black nuclear families were the norm and that blacks in New York City schools performed better than other New York students. Blacks were rapidly entering the middle class before liberal social programs destroyed them.
Television – for those who felt that they had to watch it – was humorous, decent and sensitive, not the vulgarity and viciousness of today. Hollywood did produced films which we could take our kids to see with us. Schools taught students to read and to write as well as the elements of our governmental system and history.
We have not moved backward, but we should wish that we could. There was a time, a few decades ago, when America was much happier and the free world was much happier too. The demographic trends of nations like Germany show that, thanks to progress, many people have simply given up on life. Huge numbers have given up on God as well.
Progress, in the political sense, seems to be the same sort of progress that one experiences in a physical sense when falling out of a ten story building or the same sort of progress that one experiences in a medical sense when one is suffering from a degenerative disease. Progressives, in the political sense, seek only want liberals sought: power. They do that by calling themselves something other than liberals.
Bruce Walker has been a published author in print and in electronic media since 1990. He is a contributing editor to Enter Stage Right and a regular contributor to Conservative Truth, American Daily, Intellectual Conservative, Web Commentary, NewsByUs and Men's News Daily. His first book, Sinisterism: Secular Religion of the Lie by Outskirts Press was published in January 2006.