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Cobb expanded somewhat on his Peasant Theory yesterday, but I think that while that theory explains a lot of stuff, it has the same problem as a lot of other analysis based on pure economics. There's something missing. In fact, there's a LOT missing, and surprisingly, that something which the Peasant Theory fails to take into account is faith.

Faith doesn't have to be religious, and I would go so far as to say that for a lot of people on the political left, it is in fact anti-religious, since the New Left (like their Progressive and Fascist forebears) sees religion as an annoying impediment to the all-powerful State they are working to create. The New Left believes in the ideology that gives their movement power, or just in the power itself; this is the fundamental difference between the various factions of the New Left. Some factions want power for its own sake, since power will bring you the trappings of wealth -a comfortable life and the ability to act with a fair degree of impunity- while other factions want power so that they can force the peasantry to do tings that achieve their desired ends, no matter how objectively insane, evil or just stupid those ends might be.

On the right, though, the ideology is different. There is an innate respect for the rules of society, grounded in the Constitution, and for many on the right, that respect for the rules is rooted in religious faith, whose social rules complement and reinforce the public law. The right is wary of power and its temptations, and treats it very much like a radioactive substance that will inflict sickness, weakness and (possibly) insanity on prolonged exposure. Thus the recurring call for term limits, which comes from this belief that power ultimately corrupts even the best men. Modern American conservatism is at a place between the old social conservatism that wished to gain power and enforce their social vision on the nation and the new populist libertarianism that wants the overly powerful federal government brought to heel and cut down to size. This is a war, and they are soldiers in it; they are not peasants, but bourgeoisie who see their nation being reshaped by apparatchiks into something they don't recognize, and they don't like it.

This is why I think outsiders like Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, and Sarah Palin have a shot this time around*. Americans are tired of professional politicians, since they see "professionals", the so-called "Best and the Brightest" as being the problem, not the solution. We have spent this Administration being governed by the Harvard elites, and now we want the Boston phone book so we can take the first thousand names and hope they do a better job**, because they can't possibly do worse than this. The peasants are going to stay home in 2012, because politics is boring, and Obama The God-King was a disappointing failure, and as a result, the bourgeoise are going to hold a peaceful counterrevolution instead.

*I admit to supporting Bachmann and Palin partially because I enjoy trolling my liberal friends.
**To paraphrase the late WFB Jr.

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
harvey_rrit
Jun. 28th, 2011 09:27 pm (UTC)
I must demur. Socialism is a religion.

It is in fact a secular form of Christianity.

Charity is enforced by condign punishment.

Questioning dogma is heresy, and is pursued unto death.

And in return for mindless obedience you are promised that there will come a paradise, Someday.
wombat_socho
Jun. 30th, 2011 06:17 am (UTC)
It's not an organized religion, which I thought was clear from the context. In its final stages, socialism (whether wearing red or black ties) is hostile to any religion not submitting itself to the State.
huladavid
Jun. 28th, 2011 11:21 pm (UTC)
"*I admit to supporting Bachmann and Palin partially because I enjoy trolling my liberal friends."

Hell, why'dya think I contributed to your race against Karen Clark? And I'm probably further to the left of most of our liberal friends...
wombat_socho
Jun. 30th, 2011 06:16 am (UTC)
Ha! True!
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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