Lessons of Evil

In "The High Cost of 'Free," Lloyd S. Pettegrew and Carol A. Vance report that in the Denver arena where Mr. Obama gave his DNC 2008 acceptance speech,

"...a woman in the audience became overwhelmed by the speech and said that she no longer needed to worry if she could make her car or mortgage payments because he would take care of it for her. In Cleveland, a woman claimed that she was going to vote for President Obama again because he gave her a free cellphone (along with a litany of other entitlement giveaways)."  (Ludwig von Mises Institute, June 5, 2013)

There is no 'cash tree' growing in Washington D.C. yielding the millions of dollars handed out by politicians for 'free' cell phones, 'free' house payments, 'free' education, 'free' condoms,  ‘free’ abortions, 'free' healthcare and other 'entitlement' giveaways.    Money doesn't grow on trees---it has to be earned the hard way by people who work.

The allure of "free" is so powerful, so overwhelmingly seductive that an alarming number of people, both citizen and noncitizen alike, willfully choose to become wards or 'slaves' of Big Brother's entitlement/welfare state rather than captain their own destiny:

“Economist Nicholas Eberstadt of the American Enterprise Institute believes that Americans have become a nation of takers, threatening the self-reliance that has long characterized our national psyche. Eberstadt (2012, p. 4) presents data showing that entitlement payments to Americans, since 1960, have risen annually by 9.5 percent..... This has resulted in 49 percent of American households receiving one or more government transfer benefits (Eberstadt 2013); this amounts to 18 percent of all personal income and a burden of $7,400 for every American." (ibid)

Under the pretense of compassion, fairness, equality, 'rights,' fighting poverty, protecting the environment, and granting 'choice' to abortion activists our 'broken' law forcibly takes property from one person and gives it to another.  It takes the wealth of the many and gives it to a favored few.  It gives the power of death to the self-serving few over the lives of the inconvenient and unwanted.   This is legalized murder and plunder and  is common to socialists, communists and others of the totalitarian bent of mind who see plunder  and murder together with forcing everyone to be miserable as a way of putting an end to all conditions that make for envy/covetousness, their own first of all.

The Founders fully recognized that in light of man's sin nature, covetousness/envy could easily become a driving force in politics, so they designed the Constitution to protect our God-given rights of life, liberty and property from the grasping hand of a tyrannical government.  They never intended for law to assume the role of Big Brother granting man-invented 'rights' 'privileges' and 'entitlements' to certain favored groups or individuals:

"The Constitution is a chart of negative liberties, (it) says what the states can't do to you, says what the federal government can't do to you, but it doesn't say what the federal government must do on your behalf." (Who Poses the Greater Threat? Walter Williams, Townhall.com, Mar. 3, 2010)

"Envy is rottenness to the bones" (Proverbs 14:30), and whether it is the genocidal socialism of the former Soviet Union, the version espoused by the Nazis or the Americanized socialism that is emerging here, the overarching sentiment is the very same cold-blooded deadly sin---covetousness/envy:

"Marxism has been described as a blood cult, with envy its abiding stimulant, fuel, and motive."  (Joseph Epstein, former editor of The American Scholar, quoted in "Truths About Socialism," Coral Ridge Ministries, p. 66)

Where the Church promised the remission of original sin, regeneration by the Spirit of God and salvation in paradise or eternal damnation in outer darkness, Marxist Communism held a redemptive belief in the Promethean destiny of mankind.  This was the messianic dream of the Workers’ Paradise where all conditions making for envy/covetousness would be put to an end by liberating libido and by seizing all 'sinful' property---including wives, daughters and sons coveted by the libidinous---and by liquidating all state 'enemies,' (i.e., the human objects of envy, dissidents).  'Enemy' was a totally elastic category that expanded or contracted to meet political needs, libidinous desires, whims and caprices of the moment:

"The enemy is the great justification for terror, and the totalitarian state needs enemies to survive.  If it lacks them, it invents them.  Once they have been identified, they are treated without mercy."   Being an enemy is enough, "there is no need actually to have done anything at all."  (The Black Book of Communism, Courtois, Werth, Panne, Paczkowski, Bartosek, Margolin, . p. 747)

The methodology of evil begins by labeling the hated and envied an 'enemy' (i.e. in America--- homophobe, racist, bigot, pro-lifer, traditionalist or anti-Muslim) and then declared a criminal (hateful bigot), which leads to his exclusion from society.   Where power is total, exclusion very quickly leads to arrest and then extermination:

"The leaders of totalitarian regimes saw themselves as the moral guardians of society and were proud of their right to send anyone they chose to their death."  (ibid, p. 748)

If not death then deportation---and no trial necessary:

"But when you were deported, what was it for? What was the charge?" "Why bother to think up a charge? 'Socially harmful' or 'socially dangerous element'--S.D.E.', they called it. Special decrees, just marked by letters of the alphabet. So it was quite easy. No trial necessary."  "And what about your husband? Who was he?" "Nobody. He played the flute in the Leningrad Philharmonic. He liked to talk when he'd had a few drinks." “…We knew one family with grown-up children, a son and a daughter, both Komsomol (Communist youth members). Suddenly the whole family was put down for deportation to Siberia. The children rushed to the Komsomol district office. 'Protect us!' they said. 'Certainly we'll protect you,' they were told. 'Just write on this piece of paper: As from today's date I ask not to be considered the son, or the daughter, of such-and-such parents. I renounce them as socially harmful elements and I promise in the future to have nothing whatever to do with them and to maintain no communication with them.”    (Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn,   Cancer Ward)   

 As envy really is rottenness to the bones, the reduction (dehumanization) of the hated and envied to pig, weed, dog, filth, bigot, homophobe, or socially harmful element for example, occurs as a matter of course to the darkened burning mind of the envious, especially to the soulless husks void of empathy and conscience.   Just as dehumanization precedes branding  as 'enemy,'  legalized plunder and exclusion from society, so it precedes the death of the envied, as was the case with Cain before he murdered his brother.

The systematic murder of millions of people in the former Soviet Union was primarily facilitated by two things.  First by scientifically animalizing  'others,' the objects of hatred, resentment and envy.   This was achieved by application of the Darwinian biological and zoological strain of thinking that ultimately enabled Marxists to justify their monstrous crimes against humanity.   Second, by maliciously whipping up and enflaming covetousness/envy within the hearts of the 'oppressed.'

In 1956, Ludwig von Mises exposed the rottenness of envy and resentment fueling the paradoxical reasoning of people who are favorably disposed toward socialism rather than capitalism:

"It is paradoxical indeed that the leaders of these Oriental peoples, while casting longing glances at the prosperity of the Western nations, reject the methods that made the West prosperous and are enraptured by Russian communism that is instrumental in keeping the Russians and their satellites poor. It is still more paradoxical that Americans, enjoying the products of capitalistic big business, exalt the Soviet system and consider it quite "natural" that the poor nations of Asia and Africa should prefer communism to capitalism." (Reactionary Socialism, Mises Daily, Dec. 12, 2011)

Those who prefer the legal plunder or redistributionist policies of socialism,

"...are blinded by envy and ignorance. They stubbornly refuse to study economics and spurn the economists' devastating critique of the socialist plans because, in their eyes, economics, being an abstract theory, is simply nonsense. They pretend to trust only in experience. But they no less stubbornly refuse to take cognizance of the undeniable facts of experience, viz., that the common man's standard of living is incomparably higher in capitalistic American than in the socialist paradise of the Soviets." (ibid)

At the end of WW II, dispirited atheist, communist, socialist, progressive and Christian thinkers began to analyze the crisis the war had precipitated and to reconstruct the civilization it had threatened.  Out of these efforts arose the "new conservative" or traditionalist wing of the postwar conservative intellectual movement in America. (The Conservative Intellectual Movement in America, George H. Nash, p. 30)

Their penetrating analysis of the ideas underlying and fueling communism and socialism such as the total immanent society (omnipotent, all-knowing society), Social Darwinism, positivism, rationalism, naturalism, materialism, collectivism, atomistic liberalism and underlying them all, atheism, led many of them to declare that evil ideas working through the minds of men had ultimately unleashed the catastrophic evils that had enveloped much of the world.  Upon this realization many of them either returned or converted to orthodox supernatural Christian theism.

For example, Douglas Hyde, an English ex-Communist and convert to Catholic Christianity emphatically declared:

"The sanest things on earth are those for which the allegedly reactive, unscientific, obscurantist Church stands and for which she is doing battle." (ibid, p. 52)

"Christianity is the most complete and perfect revelation of the nature of God and of God's will for man," wrote John Hallowell in 1950.   Orthodox Christianity was the unifying thesis of Hallowell's interpretation of modern scientific/ political philosophy:

"....the basic insights of the Christian faith provide the best insights we have into the nature of man and of the crisis in which we find ourselves.  That crisis is the culmination of modern man's progressive attempt to deny the existence of a transcendent or spiritual reality and of his progressive failure to find meaning and salvation in some wholly immanent conception of reality....Only through a return to faith in God, as God revealed Himself to man in Jesus Christ, can modern man and his society find redemption from the tyranny of evil."  (ibid, p. 53)

The Christianity which Hallowell, Buckley, Hyde, Vivas and others defended was not the liberal or modernist evolutionary Christianity of the Social Gospel and Gnostic immanent Protestantism.   It was a supernatural Christianity grounded in what for many early conservatives was the deepest, most terrifying lesson of WW II: the lesson of evil, of original sin:

"We must restore to our vocabulary a word discarded long ago, namely sin," asserted Hallowell.  To Richard Weaver, no concept gave deeper insight into the "enigma that is man" than original sin.  Evil was not just a "bad dream" an "accident of history," or "the creation of a few antisocial men."   Evil is a "subtle, pervasive, protean force," and original sin was a "parabolical expression" of this "immemorial tendency of man to do the wrong thing when he knows the right thing."   (ibid, 53)

Eliseo Vivas concurred.   Inside every man and woman he said, lay "brutality" and a "natural tendency" to define value in his own interests (moral relativism).  And this is precisely what powerful, amoral socialists, progressives, and others of the Social Darwinian mindset do, thereby liberating themselves and their malignant allies to maliciously fan the flames of covetousness/envy and hate in the hearts of our youth:

"Atheist teachers in the West are bringing up a younger generation in a spirit of hatred of their own society. Amid all the vituperation we forget that the defects of capitalism represent the basic flaws of human nature, allowed unlimited freedom together with the various human rights; we forget that under Communism (and Communism is breathing down the neck of all moderate forms of socialism, which are unstable) the identical flaws run riot in any person with the least degree of authority; while everyone else under that system does indeed attain 'equality'--the equality of destitute slaves. This eager fanning of the flames of hatred is becoming the mark of today's free world. Indeed, the broader the personal freedoms are, the higher the level of prosperity or even of abundance--the more vehement, paradoxically, does this blind hatred become. The contemporary developed West thus demonstrates by its own example that human salvation can be found neither in the profusion of material goods nor in merely making money.”   Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

The social implications of original sin were obvious to early conservatives who believed that if the West and America were to have any chance of surviving rather than finally erupting in flames and blood, then there must be a revival of traditional Christianity along with the restoration to our vocabulary of a word discarded long ago, namely sin.

Peter Hitchens, author of "The Rage Against God" agrees.  The living, supernatural God of the Bible is the chief rival of global socialist utopians whose power has grown enormously due to the trivialization of sin by the submissive, irrelevant contemporary church and through an alliance with radical Muslims and the cult of unrestrained libido unleashed into the Western world by Freud, Reich, Kinsey and Marcuse,

".... promoted by the self-pitying anthems of rock music, and encouraged by the enormous power of 'progressive' education in which so many cultural revolutionaries work."  (p. 135)

Echoing the cautionary advice of early conservative intellectuals, Hitchens  warns that only the concepts of sin,

".....of conscience, of eternal life, and of divine justice under an unalterable law are the ultimate defense against the utopian's belief that ends justify means and that morality is relative.   These concepts are safeguards against the worship of human power." (p. 135)

Without these safeguards America and the West will be overcome by a tyranny of evil.

@Linda Kimball