2019 – The Decline of Liberalism

And so we come to the end of 2019. A tumultuous year, in so many ways, in so many parts of the world, and everywhere the nails are being hammered into the coffin containing liberalism.

We’ve become prim, prudish school marms, rapping people over the knuckles for not behaving in the way we have determined they should behave.

2019 brought many things to light. The SloMan would like to review those, if he may. <The question is rhetorical. This is the blog he started and as the Oldest Member he gets to say what he wants on it. You get to ignore it if you wish.>

Where we are today?

In the US, the House impeached the President. A president who has systematically and very, very intelligently dismantled all forms of protest by de-legitimatizing the basic tenets of free speech. This is a calculated and cynical destruction of opposition by ridiculing all opponents, normalizing rude conduct, encouraging attacks on the very basic foundations of democracy. There are still people who call him a buffoon. They are wrong. He is well ahead of the curve in the race to seize control. His opposition? None worthy of the name.

The media has had its credibility systematically destroyed. Democrats are unable to coalesce a union behind a central leader who can oppose the president. With the 2020 elections 11 months away, there is still no leader, no stand, no manifesto. There is, thus, no plan.

In the UK, the Prime Minister, also lied and manipulated his way to a victory aimed at pushing the Brexit agenda. Once again, the opposition had no leader of any charisma, any quality capable of raising an army of supporters.

The sun sets on Liberalism

In India, despite losing state elections, the ruling party won a stronger majority at the central Parliament. The opposition? It was led by the son of a former PM and grandson of another and a great-grandson of the first. Widely ridiculed as “dynastic”, with no discernible leadership skills and backed by a party with barely a voice, it was easy for the average Indian to be shown a picture of a dynastic politics, of wide corruption unable to break free from the family that had given India three Prime Ministers.

What are the common patterns that we see?

Witness the common pattern of the US president’s supporters.

“He is saying things, I’ve been told I cannot say.”

“He is someone who is listening to my side of the story.”

“I’m tired of all this political correctness.”

“People come to the country illegally and stay on to take away our jobs.”

“He is giving me a voice.”

What do we do? How do we liberals react to those comments? First, we call them deplorable. We try to “reason” with them, using “logic”, our idea of logic. Then, we ridicule their grammar, the lack of education. Do we pay attention to what they said and try to understand why they say that? The SloMan can say quite certainly, “We do not even try to listen to them. We shush them and in effect, tell them they’re not smart enough, as we are, to understand and that they should just do as they’re told.” We do not have a plan to address those core issues.

We have weakened opposition unwilling and/or unable to admit that the rules of the game have changed. With that unwillingness, or inability, they are not learning how to use the modern mass media. They talk of conservative talk radio in the US. They talk of the ruling party’s IT cell in India.

What do liberals actually plan to do about it?

So far, they’ve ridiculed it, called it shameful, mocked the grammar, labelled followers as deplorable, lacking in intellect. Have they attempted to even start the business of getting into the game? No.

The issue as The SloMan sees it is this: Liberals, and The SloMan, unfortunately, is one of them, are foolish enough to believe that we can shame those with less thinking ability than us to give us the power to rule over them. We want to make sure that nobody gets offended, that nobody is allowed to offend anybody. We’re forcing people to change the way they talk, the words they use, the gestures they make. Since there are no defined rules, we’re making them up as we go along. Deciding unilaterally what words can or cannot be used, we are creating new words to replace words used in a different time in what we now believe is a derogatory manner. We’re editing books written in a different time, under different social mores in our enlightened and exalted state.

Liberalism has made us into prim, prudish school marms, rapping people over the knuckles for not behaving in the way we have determined they should behave. Liberalism has become a stick to beat people with.

In short, we liberals have determined that we are the master class.

Not content with that, we’ve got into the business of developing levels of liberalism. We chide other liberals for not being as enlightened as us. Instead of forming coalitions of liberal thought and truly moving forward to a compassionate society that we say we want, we show no compassion for fellow liberals we deem not to be at our level. With such a fragmented approach, we should be prepared for a long and exhausting duration in the wilderness in the opposition.

So what lies in store?

In 2016, there appeared on this blog an article that explored the reason for the Trump win in 2016. It seems it was a long time ago, so exhausting, over-saturated and hate-filled these last three years have been.

But in 2012, there was another article, right here on this blog, that foreshadowed what was to come.

Don’t believe The SloMan? Just count the number of candidates for Democratic Nominee with the election ten months away. Look at the spread of support and write into tell him how wrong he is, that liberal thought will somehow coalesce behind a single leader. You know, like they, those horrible deplorables, are doing.

November 2020 won’t be good news for Democrats. And the years after that will be worse, much worse.

Liberalism, thy end is nigh. You heard it here first.

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This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. roughwighting

    Well-written and thought out. But I hope you’re wrong. May those of us who don’t bully, who believe in the rights of all, who are kind and compassionate and believe in journalistic truth – may be find our candidate wins in November.

    1. SloWord

      I sure hope we do find some compassion somewhere and fast. Especially in these fraught times. Right now, though, I’m deeply pessimistic.