Perpetuation versus Success: Why Sanguinocracy Lingers
One of the very greatest advantages about America, one of the reasons people give for doing whatever they have to for a chance to live here, is that there are few structural obstacles to success. Arguably the best result to come out of the Civil War was the demolition of the largest artificial obstacle to success; our nation's holding people in bondage. Denying people the chance to succeed is not what this country is about. When explaining the economic, artistic, cultural, technical, military, and scientific dominance of this country, it is hard not to point to this aspect of our national character. While this is not an absolutely open country without barriers to success, it is head and shoulders above anywhere else.
Many of the other nations of the world operate their governance with a different agenda. The most important function of government for most of the world is perpetuation of power. Regardless of whether the form of power is trade unionism or secret police, the continuation of that authority has a price and one of the first penalties imposed is freedom to innovate and succeed. In many instances, self-perpetuation operates through informers and commissars. All that is needed to get imprisoned or killed is to become the subject of an informer's envy, hostility, or fear. This is the reason why commissars brutalize regardless of consequence; to admit fault would cause your superiors to fear you.
At its worst, in places like North Korea and Iran, and formerly in Iraq, the Soviet Union, and the First French Republic; the government devolves into sanguinocracy. Blame for the myriad failures of a system structured against success is assigned to anyone other than those in charge. The best way to prevent awkward testimony is to eliminate any possibility of a trial where opposing evidence is heard, and then permanently silence the suspicious person.
While the radical intellectual left has not gotten control of a government lately, they have extensively shown their willingness to use the methods of the sanguinocrats in public discourse. Socialists in the UK who dispute the party line are "tried" for their lack of unity to the Communist Party. Michael Moore claims that all the facts in his book are true, despite the well documented lapses in accuracy. Green Party scare tactics regarding genetically modified foods are centered on irrefutable public spectacle, not open debate. The anti-war demonstrations of the last year was run by an openly Stalinist wing of the Communist Party. These people are not interested in the environment, national success, or development; they are interested in perpetuation and expansion of their power.
We do not see the organized left condemning Robert Mugabe, Kim Jong Il, Saddam Hussein, or Khamenei and the Mullahs because they are using exactly the same methods. The bloody handed dictators empower the commissars of the radical left and validate their choices. By dressing their rhetoric in revolutionary drag, they ease the suffering of would-be commissars through their frequent failures. This sick co-dependency has shown tremendous resiliency in the face of all peaceful efforts to hold it morally accountable. Arguably the best argument for the War in Iraq was how shockingly weak it showed the commissars to be. When confronted with reality at the barrel of a gun, sanguinocracy folded.
NOTE: Posted in response to Cara's post here.