Saturday, July 04, 2009

Freedom Isn't Free

While surfing a few progressive sites early this morning I saw the "freedom isn't free" cliche and next to the phrase an emoticon vomiting, with the usual remarks about the US being the most fascist regime to ever exist, murdering, torturing, blah blah blah. Yea, I know ... I used to feel the same way and still have issues with the creep of government / corporate control of too many aspects of our lives.

However, rather than spew as the emoticon I saw this morning - I began to really think, I mean really think in the last few years, maybe even had an epiphany a couple of years ago, examining my own life experiences and developing my own opinion - I mean truly my own opinion - not parroting the mantras from the crowd that sounds most like the noise in my own head.

It's a smaller circle jerk when a person begins to really, really think for themselves.

Oh sure, I always thought I had my own opinions but I realized recently that I only mimicked the "left" side of the aisle because my exposure had been predominantly to the American "left." (Oddly, my mom was a Baptist democrat and daddy an agnostic republican but my running circles were socialist, communist.) Being honest with myself, I mean really honest, on inspection, retrospection - I am not a "leftist," not in the sense that is necessary today to be a member of that club.

Now I understand those people over the years who described me as a "traditionalist" or old-fashioned. Merriam gives the definition of traditionalist as "someone opposed to modernism, liberalism, or radicalism."

I'm not sure if such folks were labeling my political beliefs or my core values and social attitude, or all of the above. The folks who labeled me "radical" over the years were Bible bangers - based on the fact that I have no use for organized religion and no desire to find Jesus. The folks who labeled me "liberal" were those who disagree with me on such things as 4 year universities should be free for those who qualify, perhaps funded by profits from any future domestic oil fields. No one has ever accused me of "modernism."

I was disillusioned years ago listening to the endless discussions from the "left" aka "progressives" as they dissect the meaning of what it means to be left/progressive, what it means to be bourgeois or proletariat. The left/progressive debate the meaning of themselves and their creed a lot, and always conclude the world will be a better place once they unite and overcome the nonbelievers - rich people and their sheep people - who impede human progress.

The "left" seems to discuss "meaning" and the latest adventure of their "leaders" who regularly stage events that give the appearance of action and include the word "freedom." And should said leader be arrested or taken into custody for a day - it provides ample reason for blogging exclamation points!! (Code Pink, McKinney, Sheehan, and gobs of colored folk sponsoring a cause célèbre because the "left" has more writer-warriors than gnats on a dog butt.)

And then of course, there is the hard left - basically those left leaners who are willing and eager for revolution by any means necessary - and they will let you know as soon as they get a peoples army who will war to end all wars.

Heaven forbid your butt is sitting in the sand in Iraq this 4th of July. According to the "left" you're part of the impediment, a member of the murdering marauding capitalist system that squashes humanity - and either you have willingly knowingly agreed to work for the oppressors or you were dumb enough to be tricked into joining. Helluva category to choose from.

But I do notice a smidgen of hope - in particular when certain "leftist blogs" posting the typical "progressive" spiel on a topic - the writer will get a drubbing from more than one in the comment section, commenters who are on their way to becoming former "leftists" because they question the validity and honesty of the piece. Light bulb moments. Such comments are usually deleted if on the author's site - freedom of speech a la "left"?

Yea, I guess "freedom isn't free" is a trite phrase, but there is truth in it. Individually, freedom is not free. If you want some measure of personal independence and self-respect, which I associate with freedom, you have to keep your nose clean, work hard, and play by the rules (to some degree) in order to find a modicum of success and happiness.

If freedom were free you wouldn't have to do anything - no personal or social restraints to inhibit, no rules to stifle your impulses, no mundane work to waste your attention - you just wait for BigDaddy Government to deliver your share of free freedom (probably with a tiny Made in China sticker on the bottom).

Hey! You know what Bubba ... no personal or social restraint, guided by impulse, no work, government largesse - I think "freedom" has arrived for most Americans - but don't worry, it's not going to be on your tab - your grandchildren will pay dearly for it.

No comments:

Content © 2005-2020 by Kate/A.