Tom Licata: Progressivism and constitutionalism are irreconcilable

This commentary is by Tom Licata, a resident of Burlington.

Progressivism is a euphemism for socialism, and in Marxist theory socialism is the bridge between capitalism and communism. And while socialism’s ends remain the same — the domination of the individual soul by the State — its means have evolved in response to its failure.

After World War II, it became ‘self evident’ to the academic socialist left that Karl Marx’s vision of socialism failed. That vision included the ‘proletariat’ overtaking the ‘bourgeoisie’ and instituting a kind of shared and communal existence that would replace the competitive free-market system. Instead, post-World War II capitalism gave many of the supposed ‘poor’ a comfortable middle class, if not rich, lifestyle. Marx’s class conflict theory failed.

Tom Licata

The academic socialist left began to retool their means to achieve their ends. This project is fully on display within today’s progressive-Democrat party, our academic institutions and the vast majority of our media complex.

Today’s ‘means’ are what I would describe as a kind of postmodernist, neo-Marxist, critical theory ideological amalgamation. They are postmodernist in the sense that they reject large portions of Enlightenment thinking such as reason, rationality, open debate and liberalism writ-large — they’re now essentially illiberal; neo-Marxist in the sense that class conflict of rich versus. poor has been replaced with conflict of race, sex and sexuality; critical theory in the sense of using constant criticisms and outright lies to deconstruct American’s founding principles and institutions in order to start anew from year-zero — a kind of redo of the French Revolution.

You cannot defeat the ideology of progressivism without comprehending its philosophic ends, nor succeed over it without knowledgeable conviction of your defense.

Progressive ideology derives from the philosophy of history (recall President Obama’s ‘arc of justice’) with its ends in the rational-scientific, near-unlimited Hegelian Administrative State. American constitutionalism derives from the philosophy of natural law and rights, with its ends in the individual soul and requiring a limited government necessitated by God and nature.

John Dewey, Vermont born and educated and probably the foremost Progressive public thinker of early 20th century, flaunted contempt for the philosophy of natural rights, writing, “Natural rights and natural liberties … exist only in the kingdom of mythological social zoology.”

And then there was this quote from President Woodrow Wilson in 1908: “No doubt a great deal of nonsense has been talked about the inalienable rights of the individual.” And Wilson perfectly capture’s progressivism’s metaphysics or essence of mankind with this paraphrase: Man is first a member of the community and only secondarily is he an individual.

And then there is this from President Franklin Roosevelt in 1932: “The Declaration of Independence discusses the problem of government in terms of a contract. … Under such a contract rulers were accorded power, and the people consented to that power on consideration that they be accorded certain rights. The task of statesmanship has always been the redefinition of these rights in terms of a changing and growing social order.”

What follows from this progressive ideology is that intelligence becomes “a social asset,” and because it is society — and not the individual or his God-given talents — that makes the mind, it is society that is the rightful owner of that human intellect and the property derived from it. This is the philosophy behind the “you didn’t build that” dictum of Elizabeth Warren’s failed presidential campaign.

These statements indict themselves in derisively refuting the principles that American constitutionalism was founded on. FDR is most explicit in remaking the whole meaning of the Declaration into positive rights granted by all-powerful “rulers,” with these rights redefined in the philosophy of history “in terms of a changing and growing social order.”

So, no eternal law and no natural law — only “changing and growing” human law.

This is where the shift into postmodernism enters, where reality itself is socially constructed through language, discourse and power-hierarchies. Say something enough times with mass coercion and media saturation, and this is how men can become women and women can become men; this is where racism doesn’t derive from the individual heart, but from the American air that you breathe.

Without meaningful debate or refutation, progressivism has nearly delegitimized natural rights philosophy and constitutionalism to near obsolescence.

And on this Dewey was ominously prescient: “intellectual progress usually occurs through sheer abandonment of questions … that results from their decreasing vitality and a change of urgent interest. We do not solve them: we get over them.”

“Everything in the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state” defines totalitarian society. And this reveals the ends of progressivism’s deceptive gradualism.

At Gettysburg, President Abraham Lincoln called for a constitutional rebirth — as we should now — when he said: “That this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom.”

This freedom is at risk, as progressivism and constitutionalism are irreconcilable. And herein lies our House Divided — and America’s existential choice.

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/Benjamin Morawek
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14 thoughts on “Tom Licata: Progressivism and constitutionalism are irreconcilable

  1. The enemy of mankind attempted a coup d’etat in heaven – to overthow God. So while he failed to do so succeeeded in establishing own parallel kingdom of darkness by taking with him one third of the angels – so God maintains landslide-level of his Kingdom. Effective? Sure but so what not much of an accomplisment to receive the minority lol.

    Lucifers take consists of “powers, principalities, spiritual wickedness in high places and rulers of the darkness of this [whatever present tense] age”. Includes echelons of political power which represents a definitive heirarchy operating behind the scenes via humans aiding and abetting evil emissaries.

    There are calm rational folks who are Luciferians. They are not necessarily Satanic cult members but simply believe Lucifer is the light as opposed to Christ. So they and atheists a natural fit for Progs, some Libertarians, voting under the banner of the DemocratMarxist Party as it stands today, as opposed to former leadership old-school JFK Dems, and as such the enemies of our constitutional rights and freedom.

    It is now the party of the godless as evidenced by their works primarly the Maoist takeover of our nation and use of CRT as Maoist takeover our youth, which we see in realtime every day incessently working against the good of mankind to enslave us all.
    FBI raid on mom: Bracelets, battering ram and tactical gear – oh my
    https://vachristian.org/it-begins-fbi-raids-house-terrorizes-family-of-mom-who-protested-local-school-board-elections/

  2. Below, quotes two founders of Critical Race Theory. They acknowledge what I wrote in my commentary here. They do not hide their intentions. I found this in an excellent and brief article on CRT: https://americanmind.org/salvo/denying-crt/

    “Critics of Critical Race Theory are concerned with its radical revisionism—and rightly so. Kimberlé Crenshaw, credited as a founder of CRT, says the quiet part out loud: CRT’s roots, she writes, are a mix of “neo-Marxism, postmodernism, liberal integrationism, radical feminism, leftist Black nationalism and the like.” Regarding their aims, Richard Delgado—co-author of the authoritative textbook on critical race and legal theory—wrote, “Critical race theory questions the very foundations of the liberal order, including equality theory, legal reasoning, enlightenment rationalism, and neutral principles of constitutional law.”

  3. The progressive mantra of the Left is a “re-write” of that of the failed program out of Nazi Germany through WW II from whence it came. Not sure about that? Check out the “West Coast” over the past year and see if you can’t ID the “brownshirts” resurrected. Give ’em enough “breathing” room and they’ll keep coming. Control lies in the “breathing part” – if we eliminate that, the problem goes away. That is what the Constitution demands for its own consequences for such behavior… Take no prisoners.

  4. “There is no difference between communism and socialism, except in the means of achieving the ultimate end: communism proposes to enslave men by force, socialism by vote. It is merely the difference between murder and suicide”. AYN RAND

  5. Saul had a conversion, engineered by God, and ultimately became ST Paul. St Paul’s ministries were conducted through out Corinth and Rome and the area around Israel, when the whole world needed a replacement for Jesus after The Savior’s death.

  6. “The very first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom was Lucifer.” Saul Alinsky

    If they can kill God, they kill our freedom

    • Saul of course is wrong yet again. Lucifer didn’t win anything, but if you follow him, you will be miserable and a loser. Christ has won, he will never be defeated.

      Saul on the other hand….

      If one reads the bible they will see what is good about America and where our success came.

      If one reads Rules for Radicals and The Smear….you see why we are in the predicament we are. Those who follow Alinsky follow the quest for power and money….which is ruled by his friend Lucifer

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