The Real-Time Evolution of ‘Soft Despotism’
Today, many who consider themselves “visionaries” are sounding the alarm about the size and scope of government. From Obamacare to the Right to Bear Arms they decry government over-reach and the bureaucratization of our government. But those who truly understand the agenda of the Progressive Movement in the United States have been sounding this warning for years, explaining that for the Progressive’s agenda to be achieved a strong and authoritative centralized government must exist, unfettered by the interference that a free people, armed with Natural Law rights, would inject. Sadly, even those who brag about understanding these points, do very little about it, choosing to complain while failing to support the foot soldiers fighting the battle.
The frustration among those who are moved to action; who are moved to sacrifice time, treasure and station, is palpable. Further, as Progressives use the many-tiered bureaucracies – at all levels of government – to advance their agenda (and make no mistake, they are advancing), those American citizens moved to defend the freedoms bequeathed to them not only stand alone in their fight, they are often penalized and ostracized in the pursuit of defending their rights.
To wit, the BaltimoreSun.com reports:
The Howard County father whose arrest became a viral web video and a cause célèbre of conservative talk radio won’t be prosecuted for disrupting a meeting on state education standards.
The Baltimore County state’s attorney’s office dropped assault charges Monday against Robert Small, who had been led out of the Thursday night meeting in Towson by an off-duty police officer. Small interrupted education officials, complaining that new standards were aimed at sending children to community colleges…
After a lengthy presentation by [US Department of Education] officials, members of the public were asked to submit their questions in writing. Baltimore County School Superintendent Dallas Dance then selectively scanned the pile of questions and picked out ones to be read aloud…
The Ellicott City father of two wasn’t satisfied that his question would be answered so he stood and interrupted Dance. He said he believed the new standards would lower expectations for students and that teaching would be aimed at “getting students to community colleges rather than Harvard.”
Mr. Smalls was then arrested…silenced…denied his First Amendment Free Speech Rights and his right to redress his government.
Whether or not you agree with the Common Core initiative is irrelevant to the point I am trying to make here, although it should be noted that Common Core, in the form in which it is being implemented, is a dramatic over-reach of federal authority and a mere shadow of what the National Governor’s Association intended for it to be. Textbooks are being geared toward the suggested curriculum standards and Progressives are taking the opportunity to advance their agenda (read here and here) through these textbooks and curricula.
The larger point I am making here is that our government – in the form of those elected to serve the citizenry – has not only gotten too large and too dependent on bureaucrats and the bureaucratic process, but arrogantly totalitarian as well; totalitarian to the point of usurping the rights guaranteed in the US Constitution.
It cannot be denied that Baltimore County School Superintendent Dallas Dance picked non-inflammatory and Common Core sympathetic questions to feature from the pile of questions submitted. Only an intellectual midget would suggest otherwise. And while this is disingenuous at best, it pales in comparison to the panel’s use of force to silence a parent…a taxpayer…the very person who pays the salaries of each and every authoritarian who sits on the panel that silenced him.
Redress of government is a constitutional right, at every level. When a parent – a taxpaying parent and an engaged and educated parent – is denied his or her constitutional right to redress government at the most base level; when a concerned and informed parent is silenced from questioning the implementation of a program he or she feels denies their children a basic education, tyranny reigns. In the Baltimore County School System, tyranny reigns, supported by the oppression only afforded by an oligarchical and corrupt system.
Democrat strategist Pat Caddell opined on this issue saying,
“What we saw here is much bigger than just this. It is the idea that the people work for the…that people are the slaves to the officeholders. Superintendents of schools who won’t take questions…We see this sort of thing with security…We see it when the EPA goes to Alaska and raids with armed people and four agencies going in with guns on gold-mining operations in some little town. The things the government does now to oppress people, the laws we have now…the NSA spying on them…the fear…and imposing of a ‘soft despotism,’ which is, ‘if you get out of line will come get you’…”
Mr. Caddell’s frustration and – dare I say fear-based concern – was palpable, and rightly so.
Make no mistake, as government grows this “soft despotism” with expand, morphing into full-blown oppression: Free speech will be a concept recalled with longing as “hate speech” laws expand; Redress of government will become non-existent, those courageous enough to defend liberty and freedom sequestered for “threatening the government” and/or publicly ostracized to the point of demagoguery. We have witnessed the latter in the despotic treatment of the TEA Party by the mainstream media and Progressive Movement, conciliatory and vulnerable establishment Republicans in tow.
Mr. Smalls not only deserves better, he should bring legal action, not against the Baltimore Police Department, but directly against those who violated his constitutional rights.
The people of Baltimore County deserve better and they should demand that they receive better. But that can only be achieved through action; at the expense of time, treasure and station. The concerned citizens of Baltimore County should stage a recall of their Progressive school board members and then run for those positions themselves. Once elected, they can provide constitutionally conscious oversight of the day-to-day operations of the country school system, including curriculum and textbooks.
And finally, the people of the United States deserve better than the elitist, oligarchical, career-conscious, gaggle of political opportunists currently elected to office. A perfect litmus test for divining the opportunistic among this class is to juxtapose their campaign promises with their chamber votes. If someone ran on defunding, repealing and replacing Obamacare, but now provides politically opportune and cowardly excuses for not doing so, identify him or her as the elitist, political opportunist that he or she is and act accordingly.
Additionally, hold your no- and low-information family, friends and neighbors accountable for their abdication of responsibility to the community; their abdication of responsibility to be informed and engaged. Truth be told, if you are a citizen and you are not informed and engaged, then you are an intellectually lazy and societally narcissistic, willing to benefit from the diligence and hard work of someone else; expecting someone else to provide the oversight to government so sorely needed today. If you are a citizen and you are not informed and engaged then you are societally selfish and deserve neither the Natural Law rights bequeathed to you, nor the protections they afford. If you are a citizen and you are not informed and engaged then you are the problem.
Personally, I will not exist as a slave to an oligarchical government because 41.8% of the US voting population thinks that it’s not worth their time or that they are too good to do the hard work of keeping an eye on their government’s actions, size and willingness to oppress.
I stand with Mr. Smalls. I will not sit like “cattle” as elitist oligarchs destroy our country. How about you?