Thursday, November 4, 2010

Liberal Government as Secular Theocracy

If you give conservatives a chance, says the Angry Left, they will create "theocracy" and "legislate morality."

That was the way in the 2000s that our liberal friends experienced the Bush administration, led by a self-confessed Christian. And that is how our liberal friends experienced the Bush administration decision on embryonic stem-cell research.

Theocracy, as defined in Wikipedia, means the rule of the priests, or a society in which the church and the state are more or less unified into a single organization. Using Michael Novak's three-sector analysis of modern society, we could say that a theocracy occurs when the moral/cultural and political sectors are pretty well unified. Obviously, any such organization would quickly get itself into the business of legislating morality--the moral system of the church implemented in the legislative output of the legislature full of priests and ministers.

That's exactly the model of the administrative welfare state run by our liberal friends. There is only one difference. When liberals complain about "legislating morality" they are talking about laws that attempt to regulate personal sexual morality. But the whole point of liberalism is to translate their views on social morality into law.

Liberals experience unregulated capitalism as fundamentally immoral. They see poverty, they see economic exploitation, and they call it immoral. They demand that society do something about it. And what do they demand? They demand that everyone be forced to support their moral vision of government programs to ameliorate the social evils of capitalism.

What can you call this but legislating morality? Liberals emphatically reject the idea of laws to regulate individual morality. But they emphatically support the idea of laws to regulate social morality. They call it "social justice" or "economic justice." What is that other than legislating economic morality?

In liberalism, the functions of moral commentary and political action are combined, collapsed into a single operation. The liberal intellectual experiences himself as both moral arbiter and political strategist. The classic liberal intellectual product is the political manifesto, identifying a moral outrage in society, analyzing it, and proposing a political, legislative, big-government solution.

It's really pretty simple. Liberal government is a "secular theocracy."


  1. Perfect column! Liberals are masters of inserting their religion (Statism) into government and calling their demands "progressive," as if that makes everything alright. But....

    We have to harp on this for a decade before we take it to the courts and demand separation of their religion from our government.

  2. There is an inherent danger that the religious-nonreligiousness brings upon us and that is a vacuum filled with relative morality. Humans legislating collective human behaviour are victims of their own subjectivity. This subjectivity projected, and moreover imposed on the masses, it transforms the latter into a flock of sheep. Personally, I've been there, I've done that, for half of my life I lived in a country under communist dictatorship. All I can say that that's sinister (from Latin = left) and a sure recipe for disaster. Doesn't make much of a difference if this left-wing orientation reaches Stalinist proportions, or a milder form of European social-democracy. The outcome is the same: a free pass for Islam to march in and take over. Islam is the imposition of Allah's will to rule the world. Can we stop them by preaching humanistic humanism?

  3. Rather pointless commentary. First you mistate the objection to theocracy. It is not per se the legislating of morality that is objectionable. Many laws find their origins in societal views on morality. The objection to a theocratic government, or one based on a particular religion, is that it would attempt to force that religion's particular dogma upon all. Unless you are willing to say that a particular religion is the one truth, which you can't, then you do not have a legitimate basis to impose that dogma on all. Religions are after all based books, albeit very old books, written by men.

    No my problem with a theocracy, like that which might be imposed by certain "true believers", is that it would ignore scientific reasoning in favor of blind faith in one of those very old books.

    ALthough I am not religious,I do understand the importance of religion modern society. I have nothing against anyone who wishes to practice their religion, I just do not want my government to be run based upon someone else's interpretation of a very old book, especially since there are several of these very old books that a myriad variety of different "rules to live by".