The Illusion of Left And Right

What goes where?

You probably think that politics can be neatly divided into two sides, the Left, the Right, and everything else fits in somewhere between. You probably think there is some clear logical principle that will tell you where to put every political persuasion on a simple line like the one below.

A simple political spectrum

Most Americans do. To put it gently, most people haven’t got a clue on the truly meaningful dimensions of politics. That is what I hope to convince you of. It may take a couple posts to cover all the ground that needs to be covered.

I deliberately left everything off of the line above other than “Left” and “Right” because we need to think about what principle we should use to decide where each political persuasion goes. So what principle do you think we should use?

Traditionally Socialists and Communists have been seen as being on the far Left. Democrats and Liberals were also seen to be on the Left, but just not nearly as far to the Left. Republicans and Conservatives have traditionally constituted the Right, although after World War 2 the Left sought to portray Nazis and Fascists as the extreme Right wing opposite of the Communists on the far Left.

The modern political spectrum as the Left sees it

There are serious problems with the above conception. A skeptical observer might see that the Left puts itself on one side (the side of “right” belief you might say) and simply lumps everyone else as being on the Right (“wrong” belief) where they can be conveniently condemned by association with Nazis, Fascists, White Supremacists and other Deplorables.

That was the game plan of the Soviet Communists after World War 2, to portray themselves as the opposite of the Fascists and the Nazis so none of the stink of the Holocaust, the stink of German concentrations camps like Auschwitz and Dachau would rub off on them. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn however refuted that claim in the The Gulag Archipelago . The Soviet Communists had their own concentration camps and methods of “liquidating” those deemed not fit to live.

In terms of repression and mass murder it is doubtful the victims of Nazism and Communism would quibble over whether their murderers were on the Left or the Right. Death has a finality that transcends politics.

Numbers are not exact but the Nazis in World War 2 have been credited with murdering upwards of 17 million people, 6 million of them being Jews in the Holocaust. What is not often remembered is that the Soviets were also mass murderers on a huge scale. They just used lower tech methods like famines and Gulags and had decades to practice their craft unlike the Nazis who were brought to an abrupt halt in 1945.

Estimates of how many died in the Soviet Communist Gulags vary from several million up to 12 million. Another 7 million victims are credited with state planned famines to collectivize agriculture in the Soviet Union between 1932 and 1933.

We will never know the exact numbers but the Soviet Communists were certainly in the same league as Nazi Germany in murdering people. They just had different reasons and techniques for murdering them.

The Communists in the Soviet Union and the Fascists in Nazi Germany were both totalitarian dictatorships that committed mass murder for the purposes of ethnic or political cleansing. If one uses principles of repressive, dictatorial government and mass murder then the Nazis, the Fascists, and the Communists all belong on the same side of any imaginable political spectrum, whatever you choose to call it.

In reality the death toll of Communism also has to include Communist China where it is estimated that the Great Leap Forward (1958-1962) resulted in tens of millions of deaths. Pol Pot, a Cambodian Communist, killed as much as a quarter of the population of Cambodia in an attempt to create an agrarian Socialist society (1976-1979). These are just some of the better known examples of Communist mass murder and genocide.

So do you still feel comfortable placing Communism on one side, the Left, and Nazism/Fascism on the Right? By what principle? Certainly not on any principle of human rights vs genocide and repressive totalitarian government. On that scale they both have to be on the same side. Under both Communism and Nazism you could literally end up very dead for politically incorrect speech or actions – just like in North Korea today.

Defenders of Communism today will tell you that these Communist regimes weren’t really true Communists. They didn’t really practice a true and pure version of Communism (or Socialism). They don’t seem to question if such practice is really possible without repression. Obviously they think so, but history is not kind to that belief.

The word “Nazi” is a shorthand for National Socialism which was the political party of Adolph Hitler. In German it was the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (National Socialist German Workers’ Party). Again defenders of Socialism will tell you that it wasn’t real Socialism. In part they are right, but the part they miss is that given human nature you can’t practice Socialism or Nazism very easily without a powerful government that ultimately arbitrates who gets what, and who lives and who dies. We will talk about that in more detail later.

So where in the heck does this idea that politics can be neatly divided between Left and Right come from in the first place? That is what we will look at next. There is actually a very logical principle involved and there is a context in which it can make sense. It just doesn’t fit the modern narratives of the Left or Right very well.

Big Wins in 2017

United States flag in winter

Last day of the year and like everyone in the U.S. we are preparing for some very cold nights coming this week. Looking back we can see that President Trump and Conservatives had some very significant wins in 2017 – see the first story below on “The 7 Biggest Conservative Wins of 2017.”

Also don’t forget President Trump’s great success in appointing Federal judges in 2017 – the 2nd story below. But not everyone is happy – read the last story below on the still bitter “Never Trumpers.”

Wishing everyone a Happy New Year and may our wins in 2018 be even bigger!


The 7 Biggest Conservative Wins of 2017

President Trump Winning

 

 “Making America Great Again” isn’t going to happen overnight. But, 2017 has surely been a good start. So, before leaping into the new year, let’s take a look back at what Republicans have accomplished.

Judicial Picks, Including – But Not Limited to – Justice Neil Gorsuch …

Pulling Out of the Paris Climate Agreement …

Significant Blows to ISIS …

National Concealed Carry Reciprocity Passes in the House …

Formally Recognizing Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel …

Tax Reform …

Economic Uptick …

Simply put, despite what some may want you to think, this year hasn’t been all that bad. Here’s to hoping 2018 is even better.  

-Erika Haas READ MORE at Townhall


Trump’s Historic Success Appointing Federal Judges in 2017

 Even President Donald Trump’s critics cannot deny his historic success in 2017 in appointed judges to the Supreme Court and lower federal courts, exercising one of the greatest powers of the presidency in a way that will create a lasting legacy shaping the destiny of the nation.
President Trump’s clearest single victory on the judicial front was the successful nomination and confirmation of Justice Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court. It began with the unexpected death of Justice Antonin Scalia in February 2016. For voters, the issue of the courts went from the abstract to the concrete, and judicial appointments became a red-hot issue.  

-Ken Klukowski READ MORE at Breitbart


Rick Manning: ‘National Review Crowd Can’t Admit They Were Dead Wrong About Donald Trump’

Never Trump at National Review

 “The National Review crowd can’t admit they were wrong, dead wrong, about Donald Trump,” said Rick Manning, president of Americans for Limited Government.
Manning made his comments during Friday’s edition of SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Tonight with Breitbart Senior Editor-at-Large Rebecca Mansour.

“[Donald Trump] is the most conservative president in my lifetime, and I include Ronald Reagan,” opined Manning, reflecting on National Review’s ongoing framing of the 45th president as lacking conservative bona fides.

National Review’s 2016 “Against Trump” article derided then presidential candidate Donald Trump as a “philosophically unmoored political opportunist who would trash the broad conservative ideological consensus.”

Manning reflected on National Review’s expressed contempt for “white working class” communities, recalling the magazine’s 2016 cover story by Kevin Williamson which described predominantly white and rural communities as “dysfunctional and downscale.”  

-Robert Kraychik READ MORE at Breitbart


December 31, 2017 InAmerica

President Trump and War?

Again today the more interesting articles were on Townhall where most all front page news is directly or indirectly about President Trump. First Pat Buchanan weighs in on possible consequences of war on President Trump’s chances for re-election. Secondly Leah Barkoukis covers President Trump’s impromptu interview with the New York Times. Finally Matt Vespa highlights 10 sins of the American intelligence community and it anti-Trump activism (and probably criminal violations).


Will War Cancel Trump’s Triumphs?

President Trump

 Asked what he did during the French Revolution, Abbe Sieyes replied, “I survived.”

Donald Trump can make the same boast.

No other political figure has so dominated our discourse. And none, not Joe McCarthy in his heyday in the early ’50s, nor Richard Nixon in Watergate, received such intensive and intemperate coverage and commentary as has our 45th president.

Whatever one may think of Trump, he is a leader and a fighter, not a quitter. How many politicians could have sustained the beatings Trump has taken, and remained as cocky and confident?

But it is in the realm of foreign policy where the real perils seem to lie. President Trump has been persuaded by his national security team to send Javelin anti-tank missiles to Ukraine, for use against the tanks and armor of pro-Russian rebels in Donetsk and Luhansk.  

-Pat Buchanan READ MORE at Townhall


Trump Weighs in on Russia Investigation, AG Sessions, China and More in NYT Interview

 In an impromptu interview with the ‘failing’ New York Times, as he likes to call it, President Trump spoke about the Russia probe, his Attorney General Jeff Sessions, China being caught illegally delivering oil to North Korea, and more.

Speaking to a reporter at his golf club in West Palm Beach Thursday, Trump said he’d “been soft” on China regarding trade to hopefully encourage the country to rein in North Korea’s weapons program. That may change, however, after U.S. spy satellites captured images of China illegally oil to North Korea.  

-Leah Barkoukis READ MORE at Townhall


Sharyl Attkisson Shares The 10 Times The Intel Community Ran Amok

 Since the 2016 election, the intelligence community has been under greater scrutiny—and for good reason. The leaks emanating from this cadre of professionals in D.C. was not exposing government malfeasance from the Trump administration, but classified information that was putting America’s national security interests at stake. It seemed to have been done to hamstring a new administration.  

-Matt Vespa READ MORE at Townhall


December 29, 2017 InAmerica