by Michael Dennin
At some point, most grassroots conservative and libertarian activists have discussed the need to reach out to the public and have engaged in some form of community outreach themselves. Many of us have rallied one another on the Right while many of us have taken our case to the Center in order to win over swing voters. Some have gone so far as to reach beyond the middle ground and engage the Left on its own territory in the hope of waking up those who have fallen under the sway of the charismatic neo-socialist con man who currently occupies the White House. However, as we enter a new year and look to the future, this would be a fitting time to consider reaching out to another particular segment of our society – America’s youth.
We’ve all talked about the neo-socialist Left’s long march through our nation’s institutions – our schools, the media, the entertainment industry, our government, etc. – and it took them about 25 years, from the riots at the Chicago DNC in 1968 to the election of the first New Left president in 1992, to take over the Democratic party and get one of their own elected to the highest office in the land. If we look back on the civil and political movement that our Forefathers developed, it took them 10 years to get from the resistance to the Stamp Act of 1765 to the Battle of Lexington and Concord, and then another 6 years to achieve victory at Yorktown. Using those time-frames as a reference point, grassroots conservatives and libertarians might achieve similar results somewhere between 2025 and 2033, assuming we make similar progress in the face of the hysterical resistance we are already encountering from the Leftists who have penetrated and overrun our nation’s institutions. Despite the incredible progress the grassroots Right has made since we first took to the streets to counter the “anti-war” Left in the mid-2000s, it’s obvious that we have a long road ahead of us and that we must start preparing the next generation to finish the work that we have begun. We’re going to have to teach them what we’ve learned about the spectacular failure of socialism in the 20th Century and that socialism is not cool – it is the ultimate conformist Group Think ideology that has always been and always will be violently at odds with free-thinking and free-spirited human beings. The Gulag, the Laogai and the “re-education” camps that were ubiquitous throughout the Communist Bloc are all testimony to that fact. Young Americans have never seen what many of us witnessed and even fought, and I’ve seen little to no indication that they are being exposed to what the unfortunate people who were trapped behind the Iron and Bamboo Curtains were subjected to during the Communist/Socialist reign of terror. On the other hand, they are being exposed to the rank communist/socialist propaganda of Old Left Stalinists such as Howard Zinn, whose A People’s History of the United States has become required reading in many schools by their neo-socialist “educators”. Good luck finding Aleksandr Solzhenitsin’s The Gulag Archipelago, Vaclav Havel’s The Power of the Powerless, Ludwig von Mises’ Socialism or even David Horowitz’s The Politics of Bad Faith on the syllabus. In this day and age, it might be considered a miracle that Boris Pasternak’s Doctor Zhivago has received the attention it has received, but then again, that novel and its beautiful film adaptation aren’t a product of this day and age, are they? When was the last time Hollywood produced an anti-communist/socialist film of that caliber, or any caliber for that matter?
We’ve seen how Democrats and their supporters in the media have targeted grass roots conservatives and libertarians in their ongoing smear campaign against the “extremists”, “terrorists” and “arsonists” who promote individual freedom, limited government and fiscal responsibility, so what are we to do? When the government and its sympathizers in the media turn against you, you do what our Forefathers and the anti-communist freedom fighters of the 20th Century did – you create your own media, your own content and your own distribution networks. In the case of the Founding generation, they took to writing letters to existing newspapers and publishing their own pamphlets, of which John Dickinson’s Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania (1767) and Thomas Paine’s Common Sense (1776) were amongst the most famous and widely circulated publications of their time. In the case of the anti-communists, they created their own underground samizdat media/content/distribution network to fight against their socialist oppressors. Today, the Internet provides us with an advantage that those anti-establishment activists never had, but we cannot rely exclusively on the Internet to get our message out. We are still going to have to rely on the ages old method of creating our own publications and distributing them and other people’s publications ourselves. The Internet isn’t going to stick a copy of Ayn Rand’s Anthem, F.A. Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom  or any other subversive “reactionary” material into the hands of young Americans for us, nor will the media and educational institutions that the New Left has overrun. It has fallen to us to personally inform and educate our youth about these works and the ideas contained within them.
“We are five days from fundamentally transforming the United States of America.”
— Barack Obama, October 30, 2008
From The Politics of Bad Faith: The Radical assault on America’s Future
by David Horowitz  ©1998
pp. 29-30
“Critical theory” – the coy self-description of the ideological Left – self-consciously describes itself by the totality of its rejection of the existing social order, in identical fashion to old-style Marxists (Marx himself was a “critical theorist”). The explicit agenda of critical theory is to undermine the credibility and authority of the status quo in order to prepare its annihilation. The task of undermining communal assumptions and stabilizing faiths is not incidental to the radical critique, but is its corrosive essence. It is what the theory intends. Yet, like the Marxist-Leninists of the past, critical theorists never confront the moral issue posed by their destructive agendas: What can be the rationale for weakening and ultimately destroying a system as liberal as the existing one, if no better has been devised?
Without its adherents noticing, the theoretical argument of the Left has been emptied of content by the failures of socialism. For what is the practical meaning of a socialist critique in the absence of a workable socialist model? In fact, there is none. By adopting an impossible standard, it is easy to find fault with any institution or social system under scrutiny. The ideal of socialist equality, for example, may or may not be admirable. But if social equality cannot be realized in practice, or if the attempt to realize it necessarily creates a totalitarian state, then the idea of such equality can have no significance except as an incitement to destructive agendas.
To raise the socialist  ideal to a critical standard imposes a burden of responsibility on its advocates that critical theorists refuse to shoulder. If one sets out to destroy a lifeboat because it fails to meet the standards of a luxury yacht, the act of criticism may be perfectly “just”, but the passengers will drown all the same. Similarly, if socialist principles can only be realized in a socialist gulag, even the presumed inequalities of the capitalist market are worth the price. If socialist poverty and socialist police states are the practical alternative to capitalist inequality, what justice can there be in destroying capitalist freedoms and the benefits they provide? Without a practical alternative to offer, radical idealism is radical nihilism – a war of destruction with no objective other than war.
* * *
Additional Comments
by Mike Dennin
In the passage above, David Horowitz observes that the radical nihilism of the socialist Left is “a war of destruction with no objective other than war.” To this could be added that the objective of this war of destruction is destruction itself. Horowitz alludes to this in his observation that “the explicit agenda of critical theory is to undermine the credibility and authority of the status quo in order to prepare its annihilation.”  This theme is also explored at length in Russian writer Fyodor Dostoevsky’s  novel Demons, which was published in 1871-72. In this novel, Dostoevsky tells the story of a group of Russian Nihilists who actively attempt to undermine the credibility and authority of the status quo in order to destroy it. Like modern day socialists who have no working alternative to offer society, Dostoevsky’s Nihilists neglect to provide one themselves. They are only interested in destruction for destruction’s sake.
This brings us to Barack Obama’s shockingly candid admission that his agenda is to fundamentally transform the United States of America. This is not the pragmatic agenda of a moderate who wants to improve his country – it is the radical project of a nihilist who wants to destroy his country without providing a viable alternative to what has produced the freest, strongest and most prosperous nation on earth. Once again, it is an agenda of destruction for destruction’s sake. However, this does not mean that Obama and his neo-socialist co-travelers are not interested in waging war for war’s sake. They have made it clear that they are not interested in cooperation and compromise and are notorious for demonizing their “enemies” in the most slanderous terms (“terrorists”, “arsonists”,”anarchists”, etc.). The raw, naked hatred at the black heart of their nihilism has poisoned our body politic, debased our public discourse and created an unprecedented level of divisiveness in this country. Thus, their greatest legacy will not be the harm their destructive policies have inflicted on America. It will be the harm their nihilism has inflicted on America’s soul.
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