Why Liberalism Fails, Part One

(This post has been divided into two videos. I will get them in the left column as soon as YouTube allows. In the meantime, you can watch the first video at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TQBduPAn4t8 and the second video at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CUHb9HpRitM. Watch them. You can see my handsome face that way.)

Liberalism fails for a lot of reasons and I can’t go into all of them. But I can establish the most important. I would like to begin this two-part post by sharing with you a passage from historian Will Durant, in his book, Our Oriental Heritage, p. 381, regarding the fall of the Persian empire in the 4th century B.C.:

“It is in the nature of an empire to disintegrate soon, for the energy that created it disappears from those who inherit it, at the very time that its subject peoples are gathering strength to fight for their lost liberty. Nor is it natural that nations diverse in language, religion, morals and traditions should long remain united; there is nothing organic in such a union, and compulsion must repeatedly be applied to maintain the artificial bond. In its two hundred years of empire Persia did nothing to lessen this heterogeneity, these centrifugal forces; she was content to rule a mob of nations, and never thought of making them into a state.”

Folks, success does not happen by accident. There are reasons why people succeed—collectively and individually. The principles are the same. Those nations—and individuals—who have certain qualities and characteristics will, nearly always, be rewarded positively for their efforts; those who lack those qualities will almost always fail. History teaches this repeatedly and it is no surprise to wise, knowledgeable historians when a nation, or an individual, rises, and then collapses. They will have walked time-proven paths.

I want to analyze the Durant quote above in two parts, the first being the initial sentence: “It is in the nature of an empire to disintegrate soon, for the energy that created it disappears from those who inherit it, at the very time that its subject peoples are gathering strength to fight for their lost liberty.” Empires—and individuals--“rise” because of a strength of character and determination that is lacking in other peoples. As we study the past, we can see that people who are industrious, frugal, self-disciplined, sacrificial, and virtuous will nearly always succeed; people who are lazy. shiftless, self-absorbed, pleasure-loving, and wasteful will fail. What happened in Persia has happened countless times in history—a strong people, determined, disciplined, and industrious built a great empire. They weren’t perfect, no people are. They committed gross crimes and abuses, but still, they never would have gotten where they were if they hadn’t had some decisive attributes that drove them above and beyond their peers. You’ve heard of the Persians; you probably haven’t heard of the Girgashites. Why did Persia prosper and grow mighty while the Girgashites were consigned to the dustbin of anonymity? Persia had something that the Girgashites didn’t. And while resources help, there have been a lot of peoples who have been blessed with excessively wealthy geography but have failed miserably to do anything with it. Greatness lies in character, not in dirt.

And yet, Persia collapsed. Why? “The energy that created it disappears from those who inherit it.” A man—or a nation—works hard. He sacrifices, he builds, he sweats, he saves, he practices those virtues that produce a successful business. And succeed he does. He gets wealthy, having been rewarded for his efforts. But unless he continues practicing the same attributes that led him to glory, he will see his empire crumble. Too often, an individual—and especially a nation—gets rich from the hard labor of those who have gone before. But hey, when you get rich, you want to enjoy it, right? So what do you do? You get a little lazy, indulgent, careless, selfish—and somebody with a hungrier mouth, practicing the virtues you once practiced, come and steals what you built. How many once-successful businesses have folded because those who inherited it did not continue to execute with the same diligence their forerunners had? The fat, lazy, undisciplined, and indulgent will always be defeated by those who are leaner, hungrier, and work harder.

America grew strong because her people were strong. We became the wealthiest, most powerful nation on earth because our forefathers worked hard, were frugal, strong, industrious, virtuous men who sacrificed so that they and their families might prosper. Yes, they made mistakes, of course, and they didn’t always practice perfect Christian morality; not in the least. But they weren’t lazy and shiftless, either. If they had been, the United States would be a third-rate banana republic right now. Cast thy gaze southward...

So let me reiterate. As we look back in history, we find incontrovertible evidence that success is at the end of a long, hard road called industry, frugality, self-discipline, sacrifice, virtue. And failure comes to those who get lazy, covetous, indulgent, and wasteful. It happens almost without exception. And if we want the United States to continue to succeed—or to “re-succeed”—we must go back and once again study history, apply those qualities that lead to triumph, and shun those traits that produce disaster.

Liberalism fails on this very point. There is nothing sacred to the liberal. Everything is to be challenged, everything that does not meet the test of his “reason” or “logic” must be rejected. No tradition, no virtue, no quality is above suspicion; it is to be accepted or denied wholly or in part due as his on personal judgment dictates. “Change” is his watchword, and that too often means “change” from that which has proven to be enduring, good, and successful.

Again, study history and see what works. If we go back to what works, we will see “progress.” But the liberal must revise history. Notice what they have done with our own. According to the liberal “scholar,” the Founding Fathers were not great men who built a solid foundation for a successful country. They were “terrorists,” “elitists,” “racists,” “slave owners,” who oppressed other people and exploited resources for their own selfish aggrandizement. The liberal must tear down in order to build up what he wants. Condemnation of the men who established this country is absolutely necessary to establish the revolutionary society that the modern leftist wants to build. Why are we flabbergasted that liberals despise our Founders and the Constitution? I’m not surprised at all. It is perfectly in harmony with their philosophy.

One of the most important institutions in all of history is the family; if one studies the longest sustaining empires the world has ever known, he will always find, at the bottom, a strong family foundation. Persia had it. Rome had it. China had (and has) it. Japan had it. Egypt had it. They endured because no empire, no building can long survive without a strong foundation. But look what liberalism—feminism—has done to the American family. The family is not sacred to these people; they don’t even know what a family is if they think that homosexuals can get married. But the point I’m making is, the liberal does not look back and see what has been successful and build upon it. The liberal doesn’t care about the past; its lessons are to be drawn upon only if they meet certain ends that the liberals has in mind—usually self-centered. So family, religion, culture, tradition are there for the acceptance or—mostly—rejection as whim determines. Change, not preservation, is the watchword. And while some change, from time to time, is necessary, it must always, and only, be constructed on the virtues and principles that history teaches direct us to success.

Let me ask you something. When was the last time you heard a liberal praise hard work? Get off your lazy backside and get out and get a job? Have you ever heard Barack Obama talk about self-discipline, self-sacrifice, frugality, and virtue? When do you ever hear a liberal praise the family or the church, or express consternation and grave concern over the breakdown of the American family and the loss of the morality that fashions a self-controlled life? You never hear a liberal talk of these things for the very reason that they do not believe in them. The liberal rejects the lessons of the past because he thinks he’s smart enough to lead his life, and rule others, without them. And so, liberalism attempts social engineering—a restructuring of society on the basis of modern human reason, with no attempt to imbibe the lessons the ancients have been trying to teach us for centuries.

Folks, it is not the least bit surprising, to an historian, that the more liberal this country has become, the more we see the moral foundations collapsing, the family being destroyed, our economic system in tatters, our leaders corrupt, wasteful, irresponsible curs. Men who think they can create without standing upon the wise shoulders of those who have gone before are the most arrogant—and stupid—people in existence. We live in a pleasure-oriented society today, resting on the laurels and hard work of those who have gone before us. And there is nobody more self-indulgent than a liberal. That’s where his political power comes from. Indeed, it is in the interest of the liberal, and government, that people not be self-disciplined, moral, and industrious, because if they were, what would they need government and liberals for?

And yet, for all the world, the liberal has the unmitigated gall to call himself “progressive.” There is nothing “progressive” about dragging people into a dung heap.

If this country—if any individual—wants true progress, they’ll look back. To history. See what happened in days of yore. Learn those qualities that lead to growth and achievement and mimic them. And reject with disdain those human attributes of folly and vice that can only lead to poverty and despair. Liberalism will fail every time because of its failure to do this.

I shall examine the second portion of Will Durant’s quote in part two of this series.