Good shall prevail – or evil – but for sure, one shall prevail
TEA PARTY vs. OWS: Good vs. Evil?
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If you want to understand the game you have to understand the players.
If you want to understand the players you have to be prepared to understand Good and Evil. Yes, Good and Evil.
Those individuals and organizations possessed of either a good or evil nature exist – not unsurprisingly – within all spectra and all layers of the ideological spectrum – there is no location immune from either good or evil.
Even so, the most comprehensive understanding of the players results from an awareness of the vast and singular chasm separating the two all-encompassing political philosophies of our time: Conservatism and Liberalism/Statism.
This chasm separates two entirely incompatible philosophies, two entirely different “realities” within which people work, play and recreate. These realities color the way each person within them sees the world, themselves and the rest of humanity. But these two realities are not equal, nor are they equally valid. One is Right. One is wrong.
Understanding the Great Divide between Conservatism and Liberalism/Statism
Understanding the Great Divide between Conservatism and Liberalism/Statism, and the presence of good and evil on both sides of the Divide, there remains the question of the measure of “goodness” in a person or movement and the question of “evil.” Our shared experience informs us that good and evil are clearly ‘variable,’ though certainly not ‘relative.’ The evil serial killer is not killing all the time. The evil office back-stabber is not backstabbing all the time. The pious parishioner is not guiltless all of the time. As important as is the concept of ultimate or absolute evil, in general affairs it is the “likeliness” or “predisposition” to good or evil that is most important.
Certainly, the unfolding drama of the Occupy Wall Street movement suggests that, as a movement, OWS is certainly not predisposed to “good.”
Beyond good and evil, there exists an equally important issue of whether or not good “intentions” sanctify evil outcomes. For example, it is now widely accepted that the “well-intentioned” War on Poverty led to the impoverishment of millions and the destruction of the family in impoverished communities.
Similarly there is the issue of whether “evil” intentions are sanctified by good outcomes. For example, it is not so widely understood that even though Capitalism is based upon self-interest (selfishness, if you must), Capitalism nevertheless invokes a benevolent force for good: Adam Smith’s “Invisible Hand” transforms so-called “selfish” intentions into greater wealth for all. By such lights one must ask whether the disparate “good intentions” of the OWS movement predispose it to evil, or to good.
Also missing from our analysis of the players so far is the measure of foolishness in a person, i.e. the potential for a “good” person to do irreparable harm because of his/her own foolishness. (It is presumed that foolishness only accidentally leads to a “good” outcome). The examples of foolishness resulting in unimaginable harm are endless. Simply consider the historical fact of those Germans who voted for the National Socialists in 1933, or the OWS gang-members now inhabiting Zuccotti Park.
Surely, there were many “good” German citizens voting in 1933. The result of the vote, nevertheless, was catastrophic not only for the German people but for the entire world (and the rest of the world didn’t get a say in the matter). There are certainly many “good” OWS gang-members in New York and other cities around the globe.
Who could imagine that in 1933, only fifteen years after the Great War, the stout, responsible, hard-working, church-going German voter would enthrone the most aggressive and destructive evil force ever known to Man?
How is it that such well-meaning folk were capable of so thoughtlessly unleashing a decade of worldwide horror and suffering? Are they accountable? Having wrought such evil, even inadvertently, are they still accounted “good?” Can the well-intentioned Wall Street gang-members be accounted “good” if their acts, or the results of their acts, are not?
What should a reasonable man, say, the apocryphal Man on the Street, perhaps Wall Street, think about the goodness of a Stimulus, a Bail-Out, International Affairs Equivocation, or Socialism? Would he not inquire whether these sorts of policies have led to good or evil in the past? Accordingly, should we not inquire likewise of those who propose such policies in our time? Should we not ask how a person would claim “goodness” whilst simultaneously knowingly pursuing policies having already resulted, repeatedly, in evil outcomes in the past?
How long should we debate the “goodness” of any particular policy given sufficient historical record delineating it to be “bad?”
Horrific results of Liberal/Statist policies to be overlooked merely because the Liberal/Statist “means well”?
Are the inevitably horrific results of Liberal/Statist policies to be overlooked merely because the Liberal/Statist “means well”?
And now, in our time, it is not fair but it is true that we ourselves, all of us, face an election one year from now that is no less momentous than the German election of 1933. Our nation, and the world, hang in the balance. Everything we believe and everything we hold dear is at stake.
In our hearts we know that the coming election is a defining moment in the history of America, no less so than those we faced in 1776, 1860, and 1940. Our conflict is bloodless – for now. Nevertheless, the challenge we face is no less significant. In terms of lives at risk – 6 billion – our conflict is far more significant; one must always keep in mind the countless megatons of MIRVs in the world’s arsenals.
In 1858, Abraham Lincoln declared, prophetically, that the agitation of his time would not cease “until a crisis shall have been reached and passed. A house divided against itself cannot stand.” We are indeed at a similar crossroads. In concrete terms, either the Tea Party movement will prevail or the OWS movement will prevail. Only one will prevail.
Our nation can no longer endure half Conservative and half Liberal/Statist, half Tea Party and half OWS. We will either become “all one thing, or all the other.” We will either experience a resurgence of Constitutional governance and Free Markets, or we will enjoy the fruits of an all-powerful State.
Good shall prevail – or evil – but for sure, one shall prevail.