Friday, January 23, 2009

...individualism is what, again?

WaPo columnist E.J. Dionne, in this morning's Chron:

President Barack Obama intends to use conservative values for progressive ends.
He will cast extreme individualism as an infantile approach to politics that must be supplanted by a more adult sense of personal and collective responsibility. He will honor government’s role in our democracy and not degrade it. He wants America to lead the world, but as much by example as by force.

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, over? Individualism IS an adult thing. Hell, you could say it's the very essence of being an adult. As far as this "collective responsibility" bushwa goes, that would imply collective punishment as well, which, again, evokes the words of L. Neil Smith: "Didn't you lay aside the infantile notion of group punishment when you left public school—or the military? Isn't it an essentially European notion, anyway—Prussian, maybe—and certainly not what America was supposed to be all about?" I think that question would apply to all aspects of treating people as a collective as opposed to individuals. So again, I must ask — is there any real chance of leftists like E.J. Dionne being rehabilitated as far as the acceptance of the Founders' ideals go? I just can't help but think the answer is no. I don't know that I look down on people like Dionne as being inferior to folks like us — maybe just alien beings — but I wonder why they want to drag us along on their ride to hell on the road of tried-and-failed ideas. And I guess perhaps Obama will "honor government’s role in our democracy"...but what he really should be doing is honoring government's role in the Founders' representative republic. Yeah, I know a lot of folks see that as nitpicking...but there are substantive differences between the two that really need to start being taught and respected again if there is going to be any REAL hope for America — as opposed to the fleeting, ephemeral type offered by the new president and his minions.