From Deplorables to enemies of the people is a trajectory with which the Chinese are all too familiar according to Habi Zhang in his article, Maoism in America? The Uses of the Capitol Hill Riot, published at the Imaginative Conservative.
Demonizing your political opponents is the first step toward knocking them down and then subjugating them. Yes, the “Scarlet Letter” of early American culture has returned to American society, and the United States is becoming all too totalitarian.
The second attempt to impeach Donald Trump was a calculated tactic, serving multiple purposes. The real point was not to remove a lame-duck president from office or to prevent him from seeking the presidency again. The deeper purpose was to instill in future generations a general pattern of thinking that Donald Trump is the “people’s enemy” and that anyone associated with him is equally diabolical.
It can be done since the Machiavellians in this country have a near monopoly over the “Ministry of Truth.” It has been done before. This is a tactic Mao mastered in all the political purges and mass movements he engineered. Facts and truth aren’t just irrelevant to totalitarians – they are hated by them.
Totalitarians, be they left or right, strive for all-inclusive domination over society and politics thorough control of all fields of man’s life, limitless governmental interference, and the acceptance by all citizens of official doctrine and the government’s infallible authority. The main means to a totalitarian dictatorship are, as history has taught us, propaganda and terror. We are witnessing both these days in the United States.
The totalitarian elites and their adherents are cheering and demanding even more repression. They are branding the opposition not simply as “terrorists,” but “white supremacist” terrorists. The left never lets slip an opportunity to divide. Skillful agitators know how to weaponize crises.
Attempts to confront the totalitarians with their hypocrisy will eventually prove to be a fool’s errand. The totalitarian society, when intoxicated by power, are past all sense of shame. As long as the totalitarians control the networks of power—the mass communication apparatus, schools and academia, technology and finances—the court of morality holds no sway over their conscience.
Few people in the West are aware that the dystopian state depicted in George Orwell’s novel 1984 was a reality in Mao’s China. By 1958, Mao had dissolved 120 million households and incorporated them into 26,425 People’s Communes which have no parallel in modern history. It was a totalitarian rule true to its name. Mao intended the People’s Communes to be the fundamental unit of society that incorporated all activities of agriculture, industry, culture, education, commerce, and the military.
When the People’s Communes movement rabidly swept across the nation, everything that had been private was now declared collective. All production means were expropriated. All Commune members were required to work in the collective farm with a quota on their labor that was much more demanding than quotas in the Russian kolkhoz. The farthest the Soviet communist experiment ever went was to bring the economy under the central control of the state, but in the Chinese People’s Communes, every facet of man’s life was dictated by a central order. Following the military trumpet, members worked, rested, and ate in unison.
The final and also the most radical practice was the annihilation of the family. Homes were confiscated; married couples were separated, and sexual relations were prohibited; children were taken away from their parents at birth and sent to public nurseries. They were no longer the mass man, but a whole other species—a cog in the wheel. When every iota of spontaneous human action is eradicated, thinking perishes, and in its replacement is a survival instinct, pure and simple.
Many have written about the threat to freedom of utopian thinking and totalitarian dictatorship, but I worry more about a spiritual disease that impoverishes civilization under such rule. Not only did Mao destroy the entire economy with grandiose communist projects such as the Great Leap Forward, which led to at least 36 million civilian deaths within 3 years, he also uprooted traditional ethics that for thousands of years regulated Chinese society with codes of conduct concerning right and wrong.
Mao completely shattered interpersonal trust – the most crucial string that holds the social tapestry together. His incessant mass movements and political purges turned husbands against wives, made children snitch on parents, and force friends to denounce each other. Stripped of trust, friends, and family, society became impotent before the powerful state. Mendacity had become the common language and a resort for survival or success.
Absolute power corrupts absolutely. It does not just corrupt great men who wield the power, but it also poisons the whole. Decades of the practice of Maoism in China have shown that when the powerless masses act only upon fear, the most gripping and yet deadly passion of human hearts, civil society can’t survive.
Many already know the totalitarian state takes away freedom, but they have yet to realize that it also destroys in humanity everything that is noble, decent, and ethical.
You can read to Habi Zhang’s article in full at this link.