The Left is Now Just a Cult of Coercion for its Own Sake

By John Zmirak Published on May 24, 2022

Pro-choicers, for years, tried to get media outlets to label us pro-lifers by their own preferred designation: “anti-choice.” In grad school, I actually had feminists use the term to me in conversation, as in “As an anti-choice activist, John, how do you answer …” yadda yadda.

I found this so staggeringly obnoxious that I’d interrupt them. “I just want to be clear,” I’d say in a sober tone. “I’m a consistent, Seamless Garment anti-choicer. I don’t want people to choose anything, not even what shoes they put on in the morning. Okay?”

Of course I was mocking them, the same as when I say that I oppose “women’s reproductive health care.” Or “Diversity, Access, and Inclusion.” The idea is to show leftists how absurd their language is by taking it seriously.

A Boot, Stamping on a Human Face, Forever

Little did I know I was actually limning out the future platform of the left. We are now seeing among our ruling elites the emergence of an outright authoritarian program, which favors centralized control over hundreds of millions of people by tiny groups of self-appointed “authorities” for its own sake. The power is the point.

Remember the scene in the novel 1984, where Inner Party torturer O’Brien confides to the captive hero Winston Smith the real goal of the regime:

There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always — do not forget this, Winston — always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless.

If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever.

Systemic or Pandemic … Pretexts

I believe that this is the real program of the left today. Everything else, from pandemic to transgenderism, from wealth redistribution to open borders, from “disinformation” to charges of racism, is merely the pretext or the occasion. We no longer face people who differ with us about the necessary or prudent limits to freedom, or even who seek a Utopia which they crave coercive power to impose.

We now confront in our ruling Oligarchy people who oppose freedom in principle. They hate it, deep in their bones. Seeing others exercise it frightens and enrages them, and they yearn to stomp it out. They seem to believe that the human species has long been misidentified. It isn’t really mammalian after all. No, we’re social insects, meant to live in interchangeable order like termites. Or the Borg Collective on Star Trek.

And they’re here to serve the Queen. You will be assimilated.

Suddenly Things Make Sense

That’s the best explanation, I think, for otherwise incomprehensible behavior on the left.

Think about leftists who once claimed to loathe huge corporations, who’d march to “occupy” Wall Street. These same people have no interest in forcing Pfizer to reveal its cryptic testing methods, or the real efficacy numbers for its COVID vaccine.

Or pro-choicers, who claim that a woman’s bodily autonomy extends to killing a fetus who accidentally survives an abortion attempt. But they are happy to force women to document their vaccine status to the hostess if they want to eat at Olive Garden.

Or the so-called civil liberties advocates at the American Civil Liberties Union, who favor heavy-handed online censorship.

Does This Policy Empower the Oligarchy? Then I’m For It

I could really go on all day. There’s little point in confronting such people with their inconsistencies. They will simply shrug. It doesn’t matter that their arguments don’t follow from their premises. What counts is the outcome. Does a given policy increase the power of our oligarchical elites, the people who went to posh colleges, to order around all the others? Then they’re for it, and will just go on pulling pretexts out of their various bodily orifices as needed. (By the way, Catholic sharia Integralists are playing the very same game, as I’ve documented here, promoting coercion as an end in itself.)

Accept my theory, and all sorts of seeming anomalies vanish. Suddenly things make sense.

Can This Crisis Increase Our Control?

For instance, you might be confused about Transgenderism. Was that something that Joe Biden, or Brian Stelter, or Lori Lightfoot, or the executives at State Farm, had given any thought to back in 2015? There’s no evidence of it. But suddenly Bruce Jenner decides to get his plumbing reversed and boom! A whole new civil rights crusade now faces us. Why? Did these people struggle through the arguments, study all the evidence, interview lots of people who claimed to suffer from gender dysphoria?

No. The Transgender cause emerged as from nowhere, but offered opportunities. Suddenly, you could force people to stop using the most basic categories of human existence, and punish them for refusing. You could take control of children away from their parents, and hand it to teachers and counselors. You could bully women and girls into letting mustachioed oddballs into their bathrooms and locker rooms. It was a vast new playground for coercion and control, and that is why the left loves it. For no other reason.

It’s not misguided compassion for an infinitesimal group of people with sexual confusion. It’s another chance to stomp a boot on humanity’s face.

Imagine the Compliance

I believe that the COVID panic was only maybe 15% the sniveling cowardice in the face of death proper to those who don’t really believe in God, or anything else except transitory pleasures. The other 85% was the sheer thrill of bullying, and the bovine satisfaction that joiners, followers, and slackers take in obeying orders — then ratting out those who refuse.

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So don’t be surprised that our elites are on board with granting the World Health Organization the power to override U.S. law and suspend our Constitutional rights (as blue state governors did during COVID).

Nor that they support the billionaire oligarchs at the World Economic Forum eliminating cash and private property rights. Why does this private organization have its own police force? Why did it arrest conservative journalist Jack Pobosiec for drinking coffee in Davos, Switzerland? Because it can. That’s why.

It all makes sense when you realize that the concentration of power into a few, elite hands is the point of the ideology. Everything else is negotiable, which is why black Republicans “aren’t really black,” and men can suddenly menstruate, and political demonstrations are now treated as violent “insurrections.”

The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism

In 1984, Orwell gave this ideology a name, and a manifesto. He called it “Oligarchical Collectivism,” and he wrote truer than he knew.

If you really want to appreciate the kind of human being we’re dealing with, flip back to a 2018 talk by Pfizer CEO Albert Boula at the same World Economic Forum:

“Imagine the compliance,” he said about this pill you swallow which reports on you to your doctor, insurance company, or government.

That’s what the left does all day, every day now. Its fetish is all-consuming. It’s naked except for a raincoat, staring at us in the schoolyard, imagining our compliance.


John Zmirak is a senior editor at The Stream and author or co-author of ten books, including The Politically Incorrect Guide to Immigration and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Catholicism. He is co-author with Jason Jones of “God, Guns, & the Government.”


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