Reagan knew, as we must, that God matters
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Leftism, in many ways, is simply rebellion against God. Conservatives are overwhelmingly more religious than leftists, and there is a reason for this grand divide. Conservatives know that “governments” are simply gaggles of morally flawed humans whose natural lust for power tends towards corruption and expediency.
Conservatives trust individual freedom and market economies not because we think people are naturally good but because we know that systems which allow choice provide a natural counterweight to men who would be gods. Freedom lets us gravitate toward less oppressive governments, more variety and quality and bargain in goods and services we consume, to happier relationships with our fellow man, and to all the other possible benefits of life itself.
Our system of limited government, “ordered liberty” as Supreme Court decisions used to describe it, simply maximizes the positive role of government in society: it can do no more. Heaven protect us from those who would banish all human misery through the whip of government and Heaven lead us to family, friends and neighbors content to make the world a little better.
Heaven and Hell are both very much concerns of even the agnostic conservatives on Earth. Those who try to make Heaven on Earth, as modern history shows so clearly, always make Hell on Earth, whether it is a Workers’ Paradise or a Thousand Year Reich or the Brave New World which seems the motif of modern leftism, no human efforts to banish and to replace God ever fail to collapse into misery and shame.
God matters, a truth which we must hold firmly
God matters, a truth which we must hold firmly. Our lives, even the existence of our species or, indeed, the existence of any life at all have no firm foundation in this strange gallery of asteroids and black holes. We all die and despite the desperate, almost comic, attempts of aging beauties to preserve sex appeal forever, the mocking truth “Man, thou art dust and to dust thou shall return” haunts all our medicine, science and technology.
The universe itself will either die from ubiquitous hypothermia or it will collapse into a gravitational singularity of unfathomable darkness. We can do nothing about it except watch and wait. All our recycling programs and environmental jihads, all our social justice and redistributionist notions, all our megacities and our college empires, every single thing we cling to in this fleeting life will end utterly, remorselessly and forever.
This is why so many conservatives have entered politics so reluctantly and so late. Where leftists see government as a way to create utopia we see only pigmy futility in the machinations of legislatures and bureaucracies. There is one true hope in life and there is one pure light to guide us: God. Conservatives are flabbergasted that leftists behave like six year old boys wearing Superman costumes who fancy they can fly. The debris of these foolish children – isn’t that just exactly how most leftists behave – is proof that we are much more capable of doing harm than good when formed in military ranks for the collective good.
Yet when we insist that politically inconvenient life, like the unborn child of an unwed mother, has the same value as a Hollywood producer or Washington powerbroker, the whole world gets a little better. When we treat people as if they had immortal souls, then it becomes harder to treat people as angry members of competing social tribes. When we seek the divine, much of our ordinary life here on earth becomes happier.
God is our anchor, the only anchor, which saves us from destroying other and from self-destruction. It is no accident that horrid and brilliant dystopia novels like Fahrenheit 451, 1984, Brave New World and Swastika Night, have no God except the party or the state. The 1937 novel, Swastika Night, describing the world after centuries of Nazi rule, has only one surviving group which is outside the vile Nazi regime are the pariah, Christians, who have food rations and no rights.
This also ought to provide us who are motivated to act because of faith in God with infinite hope. Despite the trials of life, despite our certain death, despite the snarling mendacity of furious leftism, all is truly well. The world is in infinitely good hands. Leftists will sneak, steal, and snarl but in the end God will win.
Conservatives pine, almost pathetically sometimes, for the “Next Reagan.” Does anyone recall how Ronald Reagan began his crusade to save the world from godless communism and American from rogue leftism at the 1980 Republican Convention? He was right on everything and prescience on much. Then, right before the end of this great speech, in paragraph 73, our noble American added: “I have thought of something that is not part of my speech and I’m worried over whether I should do it.” (You can go to the last three paragraphs of his acceptance speech for what this fearless man was almost too timid to say.)
Eight years ago, this June 5th, Ronald Reagan died. He had been out of public life for many years and out of office for 15 years. Leftists did not dream that this “amiable dunce” would prove more revered at his death that FDR or JFK or any other secular saint of the left. Boy, were they wrong. Some say – I would say, too – that this disorientation of the left in the middle of a presidential election kept the creepy Kerry out of office. Of this I am sure: Reagan knew, as we must, that God matters.