Not-a-Lemming

Never run with the crowd. They're probably headed over a cliff.

Mr. Obama, Don't Build That Wall!

This week we are celebrating the 20th Anniversary of one of the 20th Century's most shining moments - the Fall of the Berlin Wall. A barrier that represented far more than an edifice of concrete and steel. The Berlin Wall represented a rift across Europe and a major ideological divide between East and West. And as long as that wall remained, so loomed the specter of war. And when it fell, though it signaled the beginning of much work, it also spelled a major victory for the democracies of the West.

The Berlin Wall separated not just familes in a city but an entire nation. And as I mentioned in the preceeding paragraph, it also represented, in a much broader sense, an ideological gulf. A gulf in how cultures had decided to treat the human condition. The Soviets on the east side of that wall were led by the Russians and the philosophy of Marx which claimed it could elevate the common man to his rightful place in society while punishing the greed of the wealthy. In this philosophy the State was represented by the Communist Party which viewed human rights as secondary to the needs and aspirations of the State. In the Soviet Union humans were granted rights at the whim of the State.

Opposing this philosophy, The West, spearheaded by the United States, was armed with a much different view of human rights that was backed up by a unique Constitution. In America's Constitution it is the State that derives its power from the People and there is no sanctioned Party. The west, for the first time in history, viewed human rights as the center of our world view, codified in the precepts of freedom and liberty, and indeed superceding the wishes of the State. The State, in fact, was granted power from the people. These two governments had evolved along much different paths and by 1989 had arrived at vastly different places.

The Soviets, in their attempt to place the entire service and manufacturing sectors under the authority of their government in the hopes of being 'fair', had reached an unsustainable level of corruption and inefficiency. While their government promised retirement and health care to every citizen, both were services in name only. The fastest way to die in the Soviet Union was to check yourself into a state hospital - the only legitimate hospitals in the country. And pensioners had become paupers, living out their 'golden' years in crumbling tenements, entirely reliant on increasingly slim government subsidies. The only people with access to useful services were Communist Party members who used technically illegal private hospitals and doctors. And with their hands in the government coffer Party officials skimmed enough funds to fuel private Swiss accounts that ensured their golden years would indeed be golden.

In contrast, across the sea In America, hard work was being rewarded with stability and security. Wise investment resulted, over time, in net return. Those with the energy and tenacity to pursue the American dream nearly always found it. Sure, there was no free lunch, but Americans knew that a free lunch wasn't worth eating. There was, and remains, a poor class with little desire to work. And as a reward for their laziness they received little. Those putting in the time and energy were not punished for their achievements but rose to the middle and upper classes. Perks for fortitude were comfortable retirement, quality health care, and security. It was understood by many and for the most part, backed up by laws, that if you didn't work, you were going to pay the price. The result was a vibrant growing nation whose philosophy spread to the far corners of the globe and elevated those nations it touched with booming economies and strong middle classes.

And those behind the wall could only look across and dream. Little did they know that their dreams would soon become reality, and with the fall of the Wall in 1989 their own economies exploded. Nations like Poland, Germany (East), Hungary, The Czech Republic, and others have experienced unprecedented growth and affluence in the last 20 years. Sure, their people don't have the promise of free retirement and health care, but at least they now have the opportunity to pursue these goals since the promise was never anything more than a cruel lie. The fall of that Wall, more than any other event in history, proves the wisdom of the Founding Fathers and their vision of limited government.

So why, 20 years later, is the United States, brick by brick, rebuilding that Wall? The ideologies of the East proved the greatest social failure of all time. Never had so many people been so oppressed and deprived for so long, relative to their neighbors, throughout all of recorded history! And the very country that paved the way for the destruction of that heinous barrier is now adopting the ideologies that smothered those trapped behind it. If anything proves that health care, retirement, manufacturing, banking, and economic planning have no business in government, the Berlin Wall is it. Yet the United States, after spending trillions of dollars to first halt the expansion of that Wall, and then ultimately see its destruction, is step by irrevocable step, taking over health care, retirement, manufacturing, banking, and economic planning! We are building that Wall. And the two major political parties, neither of which is endorsed in our Constitution, are making it happen. The Democrats (aided by their willing accomplices in the media) through direct action and the Republicans (aided by their willing accomplices in the upper class) through direct inaction. And once that Wall is in place, as the one in Berlin showed us, it is incredibly difficult to dismantle and often comes at great pain and only after generations of oppression.

Will we as Americans be the next generation of oppressors? Will we make the Soviet mistake even while those crushed by that terror, and those who corrected it are still alive? Many of whom are still in power? Will we doom ten generations of Americans to misery and corruption? Or is the mass suicide of the lemmings unavoidable? Lemmings, lacking a written word, a spoken language, and a culture, can be forgiven for their gullibility. Even if a lemming manages to survive being herded over a cliff by an overeager film maker, it can't warn its kin of the danger the next time around. But humans. Humans have no excuse. And should we decide to codify this path in law, not even our children - much less history - will remember us kindly. "You had a golden age and you threw it away." That's not me. Is it you?

Futbol Guru - www.not-a-lemming.com

"Any man who will trade liberty for security deserves neither." - Benjamin Franklin

Comments

DD5 said:

Republican could have capitalized the moment and link obamacare as a clear step back into the socialist economic policies of Eastern Europe and Soviet Russia.  

I heard nothing!  Nothing that would link the irony of the 20 year celebration of the wall with the Universal health care this nation is embarking on.

# November 10, 2009 11:25 AM

FutbolGuru said:

DD5,

That is why I, the FutbolGuru - IQ 150+, had to say it. Party apparatchiks, regardless of affiliation, either start stupid or end up that way. Just because Republicans are running the opposite direction of Democrats doesn't mean they aren't headed towards a cliff too.

You and I, we are not lemmings.

# November 10, 2009 1:56 PM

Marty Yost said:

A wonderful analysis (and analogy) of where this nation is headed. The Fabians have slowly, steadily, since FDR’s New Deal, been creeping into our schools, the mainstream media, and our federal government. So, here we stand on the brink of that cliff, being steadily forced to the drop off point.  Now what do we do?  You have pointedly identified the problem. What can we do at this late stage to stop this madness?

Obama is a Marxist socialist/communist. His plans for America are clear now. He campaigned as a moderate, and the majority of the voters bought that lie. Within days of being in office he began rolling out his radical agenda, the most malignant being his proposed health care program. It has now been forced through the House of Representatives despite its lack of public support and all efforts to suppress it. Obamacare represents the most hideous encroachment of government to ever infect this nation. I feel it is the beginning of the end of our liberty, as we know it.

So I put the question to you Futbol Guru, with your 150+ IQ. What can we do to save a nation from a Marxist who plans to sink us into the depths of ghastly socialism? Again I commend you for your analysis of where we are headed. Now, please show us a way out.

# November 11, 2009 12:31 AM