America as Animal Farm — Again
by Victor Davis Hanson at National Review:
“New commandments replace the old ones on the barn wall.
The socialist essayist and novelist George Orwell by 1944 grew depressed that as a cost for the defeat of the Axis Powers the Allies had empowered an equally nightmarish monster in the Soviet Union. Since his days fighting for the loyalists during the Spanish Civil War, the left-wing Orwell had become an increasingly outspoken enemy of Communism. After the defeat of Nazi Germany, when Stalin renounced all his wartime assurances and steamrolled Eastern Europe, Orwell came to see state socialism under authoritarian auspices as the greatest threat to human freedom. It was not as if right-wing dictators were not equally lethal, but the inclusion of the words “socialist” and “republic” in a left-wing tyrant’s official lexicon tended to fool millions. Indeed, it was precisely the leftist totalitarians’ habit of embroidering their murderous pursuit of power with professions of “equality,” “fairness,” and “egalitarianism” that so often allowed them to employ any means necessary to achieve their supposedly exalted ends. In sum, in Orwell’s eyes, the radical Left’s erasure of historical memory and its distortion of reality through the manipulation of language were the chief threat of the 20th century.
His 1945 novella Animal Farm — initially difficult for Orwell to publish and deeply hated by Western leftists — was an allegorical warning to liberals of the dangers of left-wing propaganda. Words and phrases changed their meanings — again and again — to serve a tyrannical agenda. The assorted creatures of Orwell’s fictional barnyard frequently wake up to new commandments posted on the barn wall by their Stalinesque pig leaders, with yesterday’s edicts crossed out or modified — and soon to be forgotten.
Given the political sympathies and self-interest of the present mainstream media and cultural elite, when the Obama administration came into power in 2009, we crossed out prior, out-of-power edicts and wrote new establishment versions in their place — as if no one would ever quite know the difference, or would soon forget if he did. Many of us at the time wrote about the nearly Orwellian change in liberal mentality required to accommodate Obama’s many contradictions. Rich people were suddenly not all bad blue-stocking Republicans, but also hip, valuable Silicon Valley progressives in flip-flops who, with some reluctance, outsourced and off-shored. In our past eight years of historical revisionism, huge political contributions — like the hundreds of millions of dollars in subsidies given by multi-billionaire financial speculator George Soros — were now helpful for democracy if only they were given to left-wing causes……” Please read on: