The late Angelo Codevilla, author of the must-read book The Ruling Class: How They Corrupted America and What We Can Do About It also published an essay with great relevance to divining what the future holds for the American experiment in constitutional liberty.
In “Our Revolution’s Logic” a 2018 essay that should have been a wake-up call to every conservative in America, Codevilla applied the "logic of revolution" to the escalating “Resistance” to the results of the 2016 election and concluded that the spiraling volume and intensity of opposition to Donald Trump and the demonization of his supporters eliminated any possibility of “stepping back.”
Fast forward to today and we see that not only was Mr. Codevilla correct in his 2018 assessment of the situation, but thanks to the COVID pandemic, the pace and intensity of the spiral toward revolution is increasing exponentially.
As Mr. Codevilla explained:
The logic that drives each turn of our revolutionary spiral is Progressive Americans’ inherently insatiable desire to exercise their superiority over those they deem inferior. With Newtonian necessity, each such exercise causes a corresponding and opposite reaction. The logic’s force comes not from the substance of the Progressives’ demands. If that were the case, acquiescing to or compromising with them could cut it short. Rather, it comes from that which moves, changes, and multiplies their demands without end. That is the Progressives’ affirmation of superior worth, to be pursued by exercising dominance: superior identity affirmed via the inferior’s humiliation. It is an inherently endless pursuit.
The logic is rooted in disdain, but not so much of any of the supposed inferiors’ features or habits. If it were, the deplored could change their status by improving. But the Progressives deplore the “deplorables” not to improve them, but to feel good about themselves. Hating people for what they are and because it feels good to hate them, is hate in its unalloyed form.
And, the pandemic has given Democrats and their allies a new and even more frightening set of tools with which to oppress their hated enemies.
Democrats in New York have passed out of committee a bill to force Americans who refuse to comply with vaccine mandates into concentration camps: Assembly Bill A416 grants the state permission to remove and detain someone defined as “a significant threat to public health.” The bill also says the government can, “require an individual who has been exposed to or infected by a contagious disease to complete an appropriate, prescribed course of treatment, preventive medication or vaccination.” That seems like this bill gives the state the right to detain anyone they want and forcibly vaccinate them.*
And the test for who gets locked-up and why is “the opinion of the Governor.”
While Democrat elected officials and their self-appointed elite progressive allies in the media, entertainment and business routinely flout pandemic mandates, those outside the elite who resist are fired from their jobs, barred from participating in civil society and in some cases dragged from their homes or places of business and imprisoned.
And expressing hate and wishing death upon those who resist forced vaccination and mask mandates has become an accepted form of social engagement on the Left. So, we get this sentiment from dyed in the wool Democrat Twitter user John Harmer @DeltaRambler:
Eventually enough of the Covid deniers, vaccine resisters and hoax disinformation spreaders will die off, killed by their own stupidity so the pool of infected will become smaller and less of a threat to those willing to follow the basic public health precepts. My hope at least
Is there any hope that an election, or any amount of civil conversation about constitutional liberty can persuade someone with Mr. Harmer’s views to accept those who disagree with him as equals entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?
If history is any guide, the answer is no.
As Mr. Codevilla observed, the urge of the Left to impose the rule of “experts” upon their fellow citizens has its roots in views that came to dominate Democratic Party politics and academia over 100 years ago. Progressives since Herbert Croly’s and Woodrow Wilson’s generation have nursed a superiority complex, posited Codevilla:
They distrust elections because they think that power should be in expert hands—their own. They believe that the U.S Constitution gave too much freedom to ordinary Americans and not enough power to themselves, and that America’s history is one of wrongs. The books they read pretend to argue scientifically that the rest of Americans are racist, sexist, maybe fascists, but above all stupid. For them, Americans are harmful to themselves and to the world, and have no right to self-rule. That is why our revolution started from a point more advanced in its logic than many others.
That Americans are harmful to themselves and to the world, and have no right to self-rule is a theme that runs strongly through Leftwing social media, for example:
BatNatMad @ResistersUniteX Tweeted on Dec 12
idiot Chris Sununu insists getting vaccines is individual responsibility, get pesky gov interference out, too STUPID to grasp keeping gov/regulations out has made US#1in1st world in uninsured, shortest life, infant & maternal mortality, obesity, diabetes, medical error, highest cost; USA#1!
That none of those claims are true makes no difference to progressives.
The inevitable result of this campaign of hate is that Democrats and their so-called “Progressive” allies demand that former President Trump, Republican Members of Congress, conservatives, and even their lawyers, be locked-up for newly created “crimes” that are in reality mere policy differences or matters that in former times would have been settled through civil litigation.
Thus, we saw Roger Stone and others locked up as a result of the Trump impeachment proceedings. Now, we see in the current U.S. House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol a classic decapitation operation through which the leaders of the opposition, such as Steve Bannon, Mark Meadows, and lawyers John Eastman and Jeffrey Clark are indicted, and if Democrats have their way, soon will be locked-up and bankrupted through extra-judicial processes.
In happier and more civil times elections and the institutions of our democratic republic would have been the corrective for Democrats run amuck with COVID mandates and congressional witch hunts, but since 2016’s Trump Revolution, Democrats are no longer willing to risk their hold on power to elections.
Thus, the hundreds of millions of Zuck Bucks poured into local elections offices to bend the rules of the 2020 election to their advantage and the “For the People Act of 2021” and the “John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2021” have been proposed to institutionalize universal vote by mail, outlaw voter ID requirements, expand unsecured ballot drop boxes and the other means of enabling the vote fraud necessary to guarantee Democrats remain in power forever.
In 2018 Angelo Codevilla asked:
Were the Democrats to win the presidency in 2020, even Republican Congressional majorities—made up as they are of substantial “soft” elements—would be no barrier to an agenda about which no speculation is necessary. The revolution would flow along classic, predictable lines.
The consequences would depend on the extent to which the conservative side of American life rejected that presidency’s and its agenda’s legitimacy—and on how the ruling class would abide “resistance” to itself. What would a fully re-empowered ruling class that had tasted the possibility of dis-empowerment do to preclude anything like that ever happening again? How would it use the massive power that defines it and by which it defines itself? How would it marshal corporate power? How would it use the educational system? To what levels of demonization and repression would it descend? What license would it give to its affiliates to do what, to whom?
Trump had reacted to the post 2016 “resistance”—mainly by Tweets. Were the Left returned to power after 2020, it would not tweet about resistance—it would crush it, officially and by inciting unofficial violence. How would the crush-ees react? At what points would clashes occur? With how much violence? Sooner or later, somebody is going to get killed. Then what?
I think we’ve already seen how the Democrats and their progressive ruling class allies will use the massive government power that defines them, how they have marshalled their corporate power and how they have used the educational system to crush those who disagree with them. And we have certainly seen the levels of demonization and repression to which they will descend to stay in power.
As the 2022 election looms Democrats aren’t running because they are committed to “public service’ or to improving life for the American people; they’re running to make you do things you may not want to do, and they want to use all the power the government has to bend you to their will.
Mr. Codevilla posited that one way to avoid the logic of revolution making the final turn to violence was a great sorting out among the states, where progressives and conservatives might find accommodation by respecting our federal system of government.
However, recent experience suggests that, even though millions of people have fled Democrat-run woke states, like California, Illinois, and New York, for freer Republican-run states like Texas and Florida, the DC-centric ruling class can brook no pockets of liberty, even on the periphery of its domain: forced vaccination and mask mandates will be nationwide and elections will be federalized to make sure Democrats maintain their hold on power.
No one knows what event will force the next turn in our revolution’s logic, but the record purchases of guns and ammunition and the current purges of conservatives and lovers of individual liberty from the military and the police suggest that both sides recognize it is not far off.
*A special thank you to our friends at the Conservative Treehouse and National Pulse for alerting us to this bill. https://theconservativetreehouse.com/blog/2021/12/18/new-york-state-assembly-advancing-legislation-to-create-involuntary-covid-quarantine-camps/
New York Assembly Bill A416