This is a post that was lost in the great pub crash of 2009.
In light of recent events, the media’s reaction, and the comments left by various people here who support Obama, I think it is still topical. A few additions are in brackets.
December 24, 2008
The Perfectibility of Mankind and the Left
One of the basic differences between the Progressive Left and Conservatives/Classical Liberals is on whether or not humans can be, or be made, perfect in this world. The perfectibility of mankind.
To Conservatives humans can never be perfect in this world. For the religious conservatives man achieves perfection only when joined with God. In this world perfection is to strive for, but will never be achieved. Failure happens to all and is forgivable. One should acknowledge ones failures. Vow to not have it happen again. Apologize to those injured. Seek forgiveness. Show remorse. Make amends. Be punished if society deems it necessary. In politicians, as in others, perfection is not sought. The perfect not being possible then Conservatives seek the best available in an imperfect world of choices.
On the Progressive Left, the Socialist Left, humans are perfectible. The imperfections seen are explained as due to, the circumstances that people are in, how they were brought up, how they were educated, how they were treated and seen by society. To the Left people would be perfect if the world around them could be adjusted to not destroy their innate perfection. This is the Utopia sought. The world must be perfected so all humans will be perfect.
Politics is the means used so as to bring this perfect world into existence for all humans. Force being necessary to change all the world to the perfect state so all will live in perfection. This brings up an interesting thing.
To change the world so that humans will be perfected someone must know/discover the method that will perfect humans. That person will have to be perfect. They will have either lived a life where the circumstances of their life allowed their innate perfection to exist unchanged and thus their whole life is the method to perfection. Libraries of books are devoted to minute examination of the immaculate life of the â€œDear Leaderâ€ in these cases. Or they discovered the way to adjust their imperfect life to be a perfection of life. This leads to books written about the way to perfection. Either way they are the perfection of humans. Being perfect they will naturally rise to the leadership of those seeking to perfect humans, the Left.
All charismatic leaders on the Left are assumed to be that perfection of humans, incarnated. They cannot do wrong. They are infallible. And must always be perceived as that, always, every time, everywhere. If shown to be fallible, then their leadership must be rejected. Failure, in a leader, is not an option on the Progressive Left. Any failures brought up by their political enemies must be vehemently, even violently rejected as lies. [The failure surely lies further down the leadership chain with some minion who will be chastized and summarily dismissed. ed] Any acceptance of a fallibility is sure cause for that leader to be tossed aside in the search for â€œThe Oneâ€ who will lead mankind to perfection.
This also leads to the belief that asserting or proving the fallibility of leaders on the Conservative side will cause those leaders to be rejected by Conservatives. When this doesnâ€™t happen, because Conservatives donâ€™t consider their leaders to be other than fallible humans, the Left finds it inexplicable. We must be in line with every move, every position, every word spoken by Bush, McCain, [Limbaugh, Glen Beck, ed] or any other person seen as a leader on the Right. When we arenâ€™t, and find it amusing that they think we should, they are flummoxed. Much as we are about their rejection of any imperfection in whoever is the perceived leader on the Left. Obama at this time, Bill Clinton in the 90â€™s. So much time and energy of the Left is spent rewriting all of reality to conform with the belief in a leaders perfection. It is the main occupation of many academics, journalists, and most trolls.