Monday, February 20, 2017

Progressivism: It's a Jungle Out There

As I described in Religion of the Secular West, Progressivism is the de facto religion in our society. To be successful a religion needs an enemy, or an antagonizing force. In the Old Testament that was the immediate competitors of the tribes of Israel. In Christianity Satan is the corrupting force, who schemes to lead souls to eternal suffering. In Islam the enemy is all who do not submit, be they infidels or the apostates within their own ranks.

Progressivism needs an enemy to thrive. There are some requirements on what would make a suitable enemy. First, they can't be too abstract. Christianity had success with the devil, which worked well in superstitious eras. Today it does not have the same effect. Also Progressivism is largely derived from Marxism, which was all about oppression of the ruling class. Progressives need a group of oppressors.

Counter-intuitively, the evil force can't actually be that oppressive. Let's imagine a scenario, using characters from The Jungle Book. Imagine Mowgli wants to create a religion, to increase his own power. He needs an adversary. Someone to point out as evil, to unite his following. The obvious choice would be Shere Khan, who is the evil force in their world. Except Shere Khan is extraordinarily dangerous. Provoking Khan would be extraordinarily risky. A better choice might be Kaa, who in the Disney movie is like a secondary antagonist. Kaa is less capable than Shere Khan, but is dangerous nevertheless. If Mowgli was wise, and somewhat brave, Kaa should be his target. If he can destroy Kaa he both removes a direct threat but also an ally to his real nemesis. It would still work towards isolating Shere Khan.

But if he is cowardly then he will choose Baloo. Baloo is large and physically capable of destroying Mowgli, but is of such a gentle disposition that we can never imagine him being a threat. If Mowgli wants to craft an enemy, with very little chance of retribution, Baloo is whom he would demonize.

Similarly Progressives target not Muslims, who actually tend to be oppressive, but white Christians. Think of how thoroughly they demonized the Christian baker in Indiana for refusing to bake a gay cake. How brave to attack an oppressive Christian baker!! Can you imagine anyone in the world who is less threatening than a Christian baker? What's interesting is that Muslim bakeries also refuse to make gay wedding cakes.

Why is it that a Christian bakery refusing to do a gay wedding cake is a national outrage, but a Muslim bakery doing the same is not? This is why. And this. Also this.

Liberals don't condemn Muslims as oppressive because Muslims might show up and shoot them. They've taken the cowardly route. They don't dare say a mean word about Shere Khan. They attack Baloo. He is a big scary bear! An in truth Baloo is much bigger and more powerful even than Shere Khan. But it is safe to attack him. Attacking Shere Khan is likely to invoke a violent response. So they generally don't. Attacking Baloo gives them the feeling of great moral conviction ("look at us stand up to oppression!") without the nasty side effects of provoking someone who is actually oppressive.

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