UGLY FACE BEHIND THE MASK OF LIBERALISM
July 2, 2009
has been interesting watching the response to the Honduran military’s
recent ousting of its nation’s president, Manuel Zelaya. Barack
Obama called the action “not legal” and Hillary Clinton
said that the arrest of Zelaya should be condemned. Most interesting,
perhaps, is that taking this position places them shoulder to shoulder
with Fidel Castro, Daniel Ortega and Venezuelan’s roaring mouse,
Hugo Chavez, who is threatening military action against Honduras. Now,
some would say this is an eclectic group — others would say, not
so much — regardless, what has gotten them so upset?
with what they say. They are calling the ouster a “coup”
and claim that Zelaya is still Honduras’ rightful president. Some
of them say we must support democracy. But they have said little, if
anything, about the rule of law. And most of what they have said is
First, it doesn’t
appear that Sunday’s ouster was a military coup but a law enforcement
action. It is not a military strongman who sought extra-legal control,
but Zelaya himself. Here is the story.
Zelaya is a leftist, a less precocious version of Chavez, sort of like
the Venezuelan’s Mini-me. And, like Chavez, it’s seems that
Zelaya was bent on perpetuating his rule and increasing his power in
defiance of the rule of law. That is to say, the Honduran Constitution
limits presidents to one four-year term, and this wasn’t quite
enough to satisfy Zelaya’s ambitions. So he sought to amend the
constitution, which may sound okay, except for one minor detail. Mary
Anastasia O’Grady in the Wall Street Journal explains:
However, like so
many apparent megalomaniacs, Zelaya greatly overestimated his popularity.
The groundswell of citizen support he had counted on didn’t materialize;
thus, his law breaking could not be sanitized by consensus making. The
military then arrested him, acting under orders from legitimate civilian
authorities and in defense of the rule of law. The good guys won . .
. at least for now.
Also note that
the military confined itself to its prescribed police action and is
not running the country. The new president is 63-year-old Roberto Micheletti,
a member of Zelaya’s own Liberal Party. Moreover, elections are
still planned for this November.
enjoys wide support, ranging from the rank-and-file to the those breathing
rarified air in elite institutions. As for Zelaya, while you may not
be able to please all of the people all of the time, he certainly seems
to have been able to displease them. He not only alienated the Congress,
Supreme Court, the people and the attorney general — who also
declared the referendum illegal and vowed to prosecute anyone facilitating
it — he is opposed by the Catholic Church and many evangelicals
as well. Really, no one seems to like him.
No one, that is,
but Hugo Chavez, Fidel Castro and Daniel Ortega.
Oh, and let’s
not forget Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.
Tell me who your
friends are and I’ll tell you who you are, anyone?
In fact, Obama’s
position is striking. More than almost anything else —
almost anything — this dance with the Devil reveals his true colors.
Sure, he was criticized over his handling of Iran, but even I will say
there are two sides to that story. After all, you could make the case
that overt support for the protesters would provide the clerics and
President Ahmadinejad with invaluable propaganda material. And Obama
looked foolish when he paraded about the world issuing mea culpas
on behalf of big bad America, but, hey, that’s a reflection of
the standard liberal America-as-villain narrative. I don’t think
it surprised too many people. But, as bad as Obama has been, his position
on Honduras occupies a different realm all together. And I think most
fail to appreciate the gravity of what I will not even call a policy,
but an offense.
Obama has sided
with a thug, a man who — for completely self-serving reasons —
sought to subvert his nation’s constitution. Obama has sided with
a man who — like Pancho Villa on a cross-border raid — led
a mob in an effort to execute this illegal scheme. And Obama does this
while paying lip service to democracy, even as he imperils it; he claims
to stand for freedom, even while supporting those who would extinguish
it. It is un-American. It is ugly. It is, in a word, evil.
Yet it doesn’t
surprise me. Some may think the issue is simply that, although Obama
despises Zelaya’s tactics, he is driven to support a fellow traveler.
Others may think that Obama wants to support a fellow traveler and is
indifferent about the tactics. Neither analysis is entirely correct.
Rather, Zelaya has certain tactics. Obama has certain tactics.
And they are largely
In fact, they are
shared by virtually all leftists.
Ignoring the rule
of law, manipulating the Constitution, acting as if the end justifies
the means . . . . Sound familiar? This is standard liberal doctrine.
further, let’s look at two comments Obama and H. Clinton made
about Honduras. Obama said that the U.S. would “stand on the side
of democracy” and Clinton said, “we have a lot of work to
do to try to help the Hondurans get back on the democratic path . .
. .” These comments reflect a common theme. There is gratuitous
emphasis on democracy, but what of the rule of law? What of recognition
that, technically, Honduras and the U.S. are not democracies but constitutional
republics? We don’t hear much talk about these things from liberals,
and I have a theory as to why.
Of course, such
comments are often simply rhetoric, but they can reflect something deeper
as well. Democracy, in the strict sense of the word, refers to direct
rule by the people. Another way to put it is that it’s rule based
on the people’s whims. Now, liberals are relativists, which means
they don’t believe in Truth, in natural law, in anything beyond
man that determines morality. Instead, relativism involves the idea
that what people once called morals are merely values, which, in turn,
are just a function of a people’s consensus opinion. It then follows
that the impositions of values known as civil laws cannot be based on
anything outside of man, either; they also are simply a function of
opinion, be it the consensus variety or that of those with clout. In
other words, liberals believe as the ancient Greek philosopher Protagoras
did, that “Man is the measure of all things.”
say you accept this. When constitutional mandates, or laws, then contradict
that “measure of all things,” that democratic body,
with which will you likely side? This explains why liberals find it
unfathomable that anyone would let “a piece of paper” stand
in the way of a popular — or politically correct — social
change. “Why, you have to be a simpleton to let a law forestall
progress!” is the idea. And from their simplistic, shallow perspective
it makes sense. If laws originate with opinion, anyway, why would you
let them stand in the way of the dominant opinion when the latter changes?
Yet, in reality,
liberals aren’t any more beholden to popular will than to laws,
as they scoff at it when it contradicts politically-correct will. And
there is a good reason for this. Liberals don’t view democracy
as an absolute because there is no such thing in a relativistic world,
but they do at least view it. That is to say, they know popular will
is real but believe God’s will (Truth) is imaginary. And what
exists takes precedence over what does not.
But in a world
without absolutes, what takes precedence over all? Well, without any
unchanging yardstick for making moral decisions — without Truth
to provide answers — liberals have only one thing to refer to:
Their mercurial master, feelings. But whose feelings shall hold sway?
They may sometimes be those of the majority of people (expressed as
“values”), especially insofar as their feelings influence
liberals’ feelings. But, then again, the dominant feelings might
also be those of most liberals’ favorite people — and the
ones they fancy the smartest — themselves. This is what engenders
the elitism that justifies trumping popular will; after all, liberals’
own feelings always feel more “right” to them than other
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Put simply, it’s
a question of whose will shall prevail, the popular, politically correct
or personal? When man is the measure of all things, the man in the mirror
usually trumps your fellow man.
Speaking of feelings,
one that could be instrumental here is fear. What I mean is, we all
understand the power of precedent. And along with Chavez, Obama seems
to dislike the idea of a military upholding its nation’s constitution
and ousting a would-be tyrant. I wonder why?
© 2009 Selwyn Duke - All