The rise of (conservative) class consciousness
“The state is…an organ for the oppression of one class by another.”
“The state is an organ of the rule of a definite class which cannot be reconciled with its antipode.” —Vladimir Lenin, The State and Revolution
Elite hypocrisy revealed the unspeakable truth: America has two classes, rulers and ruled. This awakening was hard for America and the rest of the West. The sense of democracy and popular sovereignty lulled the people. It was only the blatant hypocrisy of our elites that awoke us to the reality of our class system. Nowhere was this more evident than in lockdown and masking rules.
One can see in the masking hypocrisy of Stacey Abrams the entire rotten system exposed. She demanded everyone mask and she appeared with the little people maskless.
She attempted to wiggle out of the controversy by resorting to the tired trope of “Republicans pounce.” She accused critics of attacking a Black History Month reading. In desperation, Abrams attempted to divide the ruled by race.
“It is shameful that our opponents are using a Black History Month reading event for Georgia children as the impetus for a false political attack, and it is pitiful and predictable that our opponents continue to look for opportunities to distract from their failed records when it comes to protecting public health during the pandemic,” the Stacey Abrams campaign said in a statement released on social media.
Of course, this is an old way of attempting to maintain control. If the ruled are divided based on ethnic grounds, they cannot unite to hold elites accountable. Marx noted this tendency in capitalist and colonial societies. He cited the rivalry of English workers and Irish workers—which he asserted worked to the benefit of capital. Marx was a nutcase; however, history does illustrate his point. Empire thrives on dividing those under its control. After all, the Declaration of Independence makes this a key complaint against the Crown: “He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.”
Of course, Stacey Abrams was only one example of Elite hypocrisy. Gavin Newsome, Eric Garcetti, and many others likewise show there is one set of rules for the Elites and another set of rules for the people. For example, all the mask fanatics do it.
America’s Failed Institutions
With the somnambulant public beginning to awaken to the reality of being ruled rather than sharing in the rule, the elite response is to declare a new emergency. This time the emergency is Misinformation. In fact, it is the subject of a new terrorism alert from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
A key claim is that misinformation undermines America, the DHS warns. However, is misinformation undermining our institutions or is their failure to advance the interests of the masses to blame? Could foreign wars draining American power and the opioid crisis be greater problems than misinformation?
Patrick Deneen’s critique of liberalism shows no matter which political party wins an election the cause of liberalism advances. This is because, as Deneen notes, that each party is dedicated to a different element of liberalism (radical sexual liberation for Democrats and free trade for Republicans). This is true. Also, no matter which party wins, the entrenched bureaucracy in Washington continues to push its agenda—which is the agenda of America’s Elites. Thus, winning control of Congress or electing a President does little to no good when America’s institutions continue to pursue the interests of the ruling class and mostly done as the expense of the rest of us.
This ruling class is nicely detailed in Coming Apart. It views itself as the ultimate expression of a meritocracy. These are the “experts.” Trust them, they demand.
These new Elites gained power over the masses through reform–specifically, Progressivism. The reforms of America’s bureaucracy to eliminate vestiges of the spoil system created a class of unelected experts.
Francis Fukuyama explored the reform movement in his work on Political Order and Political Decay. Fukuyama notes that the push to Civil Service reform in the US was driven in part by highly educated, intensely moralist New England families. These groups were resentful of the populist control of the political system.
According to Fukuyama, “They bitterly resented the fact that less-educated politicians held real political power and that they did not; their education and technical knowledge got little respect from the existing political class. So while many of them sought advancement of their material interests, the passionate moralism of the movement was generated by the demand for recognition of the values of education, merit, organization, and honesty that this class of individuals believed they themselves embodied.”
It was through these efforts that the bureaucracy was insulated from democratic control.
Cunningly, Progressivism empowered the bureaucracy while weakening federalism through an appeal to the masses with the direct election of Senators. However, slowly and in stages more and more power moved to the experts like the Federal Reserve or the Interstate Commerce Commission.
Experts govern based on scientific principles, the system claims. Yet, the mask guidance seems to undermine such claims. Elites ignoring the rules further highlights the failure of the system to govern for everyone.
Why do elites govern in such a hypocritical manner? They feel, as the Progressive Reformers of old, a moral superiority to the uneducated masses.
This smugness makes the new Elite insufferable. The new elite’s self-righteous right to rule is predicated on their status as “Experts.” They recite mantras like “The Science” as if it magically confers power. This new meritocracy is no different than a ruling class based on Divine Right.
Experts and divine right kings rule based on something unavailable to the masses. Legitimacy either comes from some special gnosis (inaccessible to the rest of us) or a dispensation of God. Neither of these bases of power are subject to question. The Science is settled! Questioning places one in opposition to the orthodoxy of Twitter or in rebellion against God.
Yet in America, it is not supposed to be this way. America claims that the legitimacy to rule arises from the People.
Elites in the West mock the masses. One of the best examples is the Canadian response to the Trucker Convoy.
Protests lockdown commerce, claimed one state sycophant, apparently without noting the irony of how lockdowns lockdown commerce. He continued whining those truckers were threatening democracy by weaponizing liberty.
The supporter of state tyranny writes, “More recently, political leaders, and others, with an unprecedented megaphone in the form of the internet and social media, have used the call for ‘freedom’ to promote bigoted, racist and anti-democratic ideas.”
One’s right to protest is now anti-democratic.
These claims highlight how Elites have shifted the entire definition of democratic in some weird Rousseau-like transformation into a general will. Or, not to put too fine a point on it, that today’s definition of democracy looks more like a People’s Republic than what the Founder’s envisioned.
Now that we know we are a class of serfs
Now that we all know there are two classes in America: ruler and ruled. What should the serfs do?
We should attempt to Make Federalism Great Again–though this is a topic for another essay. Immediately, we must focus on doing what the Elites most fear. And that is–protest.
Support the protests. You can give to the truckers at GiveSendGo. As of this morning, over $7.2 million had been donated. Consider your own ability to strike a blow for liberty. Could you organize a strike or protest? Could you participate in one?
Seize the initiative.
This is a pivotal moment in time. With supply chains weakened, prices unstable, and Elites shocked by a groundswell of criticism, peaceful protests pressing on the neuralgic points of the system could bring accountability back to the West.