Why America is becoming a Nation of Liars

In her commentary, "Is America an Idiocracy?" Ashley Herzog argues that Mike Judge's dystopian fantasy 'Idiocracy' (2006) is already here. In Judge's film, the main character Joe Bauers, "...undergoes a suspended-animation experiment and wakes up in the year 2505. He’s unable to communicate, because “the English language had deteriorated into a hybrid of hillbilly, valley girl, inner-city slang and various grunts.” The degenerate morons who occupy this brave new world amuse themselves with vapid, vulgar reality shows like “Ow, My Balls!” (Which, by the way, is exactly what it sounds like.)" (Is America an Idiocracy?, Herzog, Townhall.com, Jan. 15, 2013)

Herzog notes that it is her generation, the intellectually and morally dumbed-down 18-29 year olds who "have more opportunities for cultural and intellectual enrichment than any previous generation.." but don’t take them because they prefer willful ignorance and vapid, vulgar, even inhumane entertainment instead.

Willful ignorance is not this present generation's only moral failure. According to Jean Twenge, Ph.D. and Keith Campbell, Ph.D., 18-29 year olds suffer from narcissism. In "The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement" Twenge and Campbell write:

"...the United States is currently suffering from an epidemic of narcissism..." "American culture's focus on self-admiration has caused a flight from reality to the land of grandiose fantasy." (How Evil Works, David Kupelian, p. 80)

"The evidence Twenge and Campbell have compiled is compelling and appalling," summarizes Holly Brubach in the New York Times. "Never mind the (narcissistic) celebrities; their arrogance is equaled if not surpassed by the grandiosity of so-called average Americans." (ibid, p. 81)

"Does the narcissism of this man (Barack Obama) know no bounds?" asks Charles Krauthammer, a former psychiatrist and Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist. (ibid, p. 80)

"Our work suggests that contemporary culture has become fixated on a group of stars whose narcissistic tendencies appear to be approaching personality-disorder levels," reported the Journal of Research in Personality, Oct. 2006. (ibid, p. 79)

According to the Mayo Clinic, narcissistic personality disorder is,

"a mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance and a deep need for admiration. They believe that they're superior to others and have little regard for other people's feelings." (ibid)

Back in the early 50's conservative intellectual Anthony Harrigan foresaw the rise of our present generation of narcissists and aptly described them as barbarians completely unchecked by moral principles and fueled by destructive impulses. Harrigan blamed our ruling elite who even at that time were purposely demoralizing, dumbing-down, deceiving, degrading and lying to Americans in preparation for the acceptance of Communism. Toward this end they were forcing the acceptance of meaningless, ugly ‘art,’ discordant noise as music, abnormality (i.e., sodomy), and pornography intentionally mislabeled as,

“….medical science, filth as artistic realism, and abnormality as a mere difference of opinion…Americans are in the hands of a cultural ruling class which…is conducting us to ruin.” (The Conservative Intellectual Movement in America, George H. Nash, pp. 39-40)

During Harrigan's day America's ruling class foolishly believed that they could commit the monstrous evils required for the destruction of our Christian-based Republic without themselves becoming stupid and evil. But you cannot commence a career of lying without becoming a liar, nor can you purposely lay traps for others to fall into without yourself falling into them. Just so, you cannot commit yourself to an agenda of evil without eventually becoming evil and stupid.

Thus today's ruling class is a darkly distorted mirror image of our present generation of narcissistic barbarians. They are malignant narcissists who worship themselves as gods and stupidly deny their own proclivity for evil. The delusional self-conception they hold of themselves is of faultlessness and/or moral purity as befits gods. But in reality they are:

"...lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient...ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God..." 2 Tim. 3:3

In "The Ruling Class: How They Corrupted America and What We Can Do About It" professor Angelo M. Codevilla observes that while most Americans pray to the living God Who created all men in His spiritual image, Americas' ruling class:

"...prays to themselves as saviors of the planet and as shapers of mankind in their own image (p. xix)

Calling our attention to the amorality and hypocrisy of the Ruling Class, Codevilla notes that since any:

"...standard of right and wrong (is) beyond the Ruling Class'....self-conception, its greatest concern has been to denigrate the American people's devotion to God, because the Ruling Class accepts no standard it cannot control." (ibid, p. xx)

Like our present generation of narcissists, the ruling class stupidly view themselves as faultless while in reality their conscience is depraved, and a depraved conscience is the most destructive force in political, social, economic, and cultural life. This is because though the intellect remains intact, reason is warped, disordered and given to paranoia, dark fantasies, uncontrollable outbursts, wild imaginings and other pathologies thus useless for pursuit of the good, the just and the true. In short, guided by a depraved conscience, reason is used in pursuit of self-gratification and the preservation of self-image at any cost. This is sophistry.

In a penetrating analysis of sophistry, J. Budziszewski observes that the sophists' view of reality is paradoxical because it ultimately denies reality. Sophists are shock troopers of evil says Budziszewski, and according to their satanically-inverted view of reality:

"Man is the measure of all things, but man has no fixed nature. Man measures all things by his words, but words have no fixed meanings. Language is not an instrument for finding truth, but for changing it. Those who can master it, master all. It is a good creed for rogues, and commends itself to tyrants in every age." (What We Can't Not Know, Budziszewski, p. 167)

Sophistry is the religion of both our destructive generation and depraved Ruling Class. Sophistry says autonomous man is a free-thinker, thus the inventer of his own truth and morality even though sophistry denies the reality of both truth and morality. It says depraved man can unmake and then remake himself. Thus man is free to divinize himself as in days of old. Males can be females and females can now be males, or they can be androgynous---both male and female at the same time.

Sophistry's' favorite Scripture is "judge not." The only judgment is the judgment against moral judgment. The only sin is the idea that sin exists. The only truth is the idea that truth does not exist. Evil is the idea that evil exists. The greatest evils of all however, are to look the wrong way at or otherwise hurt the feelings of our destructive generation and stand in the way of whatever thing the Ruling Class wants.

Also known as subjectivism and moral relativism, sophistry is all the rage in contemporary America.

In “The Poison of Subjectivism,” C.S. Lewis warns that moral relativism,

“…will certainly end our species and damn our souls.” (A Refutation of Moral Relativism,” Peter Kreeft, Ph.D., professor of philosophy at Boston College and at the King’s College)

As a Christian, Lewis agrees with the fundamental teaching of his savior, Jesus Christ, as well as the Old Testament prophets that salvation presupposes,

“…repentance, and repentance presupposes an objectively real moral law. Moral relativism eliminates that law, thus trivializes repentance, thus imperils salvation.” (ibid, Kreeft)

Lewis sees farther than most, thus he speaks of the end of our species rather than the end of Western civiliation. This is because Lewis saw that the entire human species is becoming increasingly Westernized, therefore relativized. This poison, said Lewis, was concocted right in the heart of Christendom during the time of the Enlightenment, and today as Lewis said in his novel, “That Hideous Strength” it has been spewed over the entire planet. A great black wing covers all of Telus, said Lewis through his character Ransom.

The irony said Kreeft, is that America is both the primary source of relativism and by extension pornography, sexual perversions, sex-slavery, drugs, violence, and death (i.e., abortion, euthanasia) in the world today but at the same time is also the world’s most religious nation.

If America is the world’s most religious nation, and opposition to relativism is the duty of the Church, how do we make sense of the fact that America is the primary source of relativism?

In answer Kreeft writes:

“…according to the most recent polls, Catholics are as relativistic, both in behavior and in belief, as non-Catholics. Sixty-two percent of Evangelicals say they disbelieve in any absolute or unchanging truths, and American Jews are significantly more relativistic and more secular than Gentiles.”

Only a remnant of Orthodox Jews, Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholics and Evangelicals seem to be resisting the culture,

“…but not by converting it, but by withdrawing from it.” (ibid, Kreeft)

As a consequence, our age is an eerie time in which the things that everyone really knows to be true, good, decent, and right, are treated as unheard of, as intolerant, hateful, bigotted, racist, and homophobic.

America is quickly becoming a regime of lies because Americans themselves are becoming liars, thus the problem is not just Obama and our politicians, for they came from us. We elected them. It is not just liberals, gays, and abortionists. It is that the majority of us have succumbed to moral relativism, both personally and publicly. We are not a people who want to hear truth because we have become comfortable with lies of every size.

@Linda Kimball