James Leroy Wilson Reviews Cultural Revolution, Culture War

Review by James Leroy Wilson
14th June 2007

We never see Big Business, or prominent rich people, fund or get involved with the Libertarian Party, even though that party promotes the free market. Why is that?

Because the Libertarian Party would smash the Ruling Class to pieces, and Big Business is part of the Ruling Class. The Libertarian Party Platform calls for a free market, but Big Business doesn't want a free market. Big Business doesn't want open competition from Small Business. Big Business doesn't mind extensive regulations and the complicated tax code; Big Business can afford the accountants and legal fees to comply with The State, and Small Business can't. Big Business also loves Big Government because of the big government contracts.

It is often said in the alternative media that there is no meaningful difference between the Democrat and Republican parties. That's because both parties are controlled by the Ruling Class, and their purpose is to increase the power and wealth of the Ruling Class. That's why both parties constantly increase the size of government.

If the Ruling Class had any interest in the smaller political parties, it is only to obstruct their efforts through restrictive fund-raising and ballot access laws. Again, the Democratic and Republican Parties can afford the legal fees, but Small Parties can not.

The Ruling Class, and the means to defeat it, is the subject of English libertarian Sean Gabb's latest book, Cultural Revolution, Culture War: How Conservatives Lost England, and How to Get It Back . Gabb defines the Ruling Class as "that loose coalition of politicians, bureaucrats, lawyers, educators, and media and business people who derive wealth and power and status from an enlarged and active state." Gabb's focus is on English society and politics, and many of his insights apply to the United States. In many instances, merely substituting words like "Republican" for "Conservative" would make Gabb accurately describe the American scene. Gabb's book is highly recommended, especially for libertarians, Main Street conservatives, and others who seek to be, as Gabb put it, "free citizens of an independent country." The thoughts that follow reflect on the American scene, strongly influenced by Gabb's analysis of England.

Multiculturalism, open borders, and global hegemony (that is, endless war) are in the interests of the Ruling Class. Because the Ruling Class does not believe in the old Constitutional order that would limit its power and thus its wealth, the Ruling Class promotes values that keep the people ceaselessly divided against themselves – constantly suing each other for "discrimination" – drowning by falling wages and inflation, and working for the government or for companies contracted to the government. If you see a preachy or politically correct episode of an otherwise quality television show, chances are it was put in at the insistence of the Ruling Class.

Even when the values promoted by the Ruling Class appear to be mutually exclusive, what they have in common is that they benefit the Ruling Class. For instance, President Bush calls Islam a "religion of peace," and Homeland Security policies prevent airport security from profiling Arab-looking males. Instead, even celebrities and old ladies are randomly searched, along with everyone else, so that the government won't discriminate. At the same time, the U.S. starts wars against Muslim countries abroad and threatens more because "Islamic Terror" is supposedly the great threat to Western Civilization. Neither the Politically Correct domestic policy nor the World Police foreign policy actually protects Americans from terrorism. But they enlarge The State's powers and budget, and the wars bring profit to numerous contractors.

The Ruling Class has contempt for the will of the people, and neglects its interests. But it also maintains its own hold on power, and the appearance of legitimacy, by swaying public opinion through control of the major media outlets. Notice, for instance, how not only the Wall Street Journal but also the "liberally-biased" New York Times and Washington Post all lined up behind the invasion of Iraq. Even "major differences of opinion" are really differences on how to enlarge government. For instance, most of the Ruling Class has by now turned against the War on Iraq, but they're clamoring to nuke Iran and "save" Darfur. In other words, they are likely to make similar mistakes – and reward their friends with rich weapons and construction contracts along the way. To the Ruling Class, President Bush is merely incompetent in execution, but unprovoked war against impoverished overseas peoples is not wrong in principle.

But how do we fight the Ruling Class? The first question is, how would we destroy the Ruling Class if we had the chance, for only then do we know the specific goals for our purpose. To Gabb, it means abolishing the governmental tools the Ruling Class uses to maintain and increase its power. If Gabb had his way in England, he would repeal all sorts of laws and shut down all kinds of government programs in one bill, and ram it through Parliament before the Ruling Class could mobilize opposition. Government buildings will be sold off and the records of abolished government agencies would be destroyed. This way, if the Ruling Class gets back into power, it will take many, many years to re-establish the bureaucracies. But the country would have enjoyed the fresh air of freedom, and wouldn't want to give it up.

What Gabb would not do, however, is get rid of government education, National Health, or welfare. They would be reformed, so that the people are freed from controls and bureaucracy, but will still be fully funded. While libertarians and conservatives are often portrayed as scapegoating the poor for the nation's economic and social problems, this would no longer be the case. The goal would not be to ignore the poor, but to smash the Ruling Class.

Would a similar strategy work in the United States? Certainly, it must be the President's agenda, and he must have the backing of the majority of both Houses of Congress. Through Executive Order, the President can order the non-enforcement of unconstitutional laws, and compel government agents to follow the Bill of Rights. He could propose the abolition of the Departments of Special Interests, that is, Agriculture, Commerce, Labor, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation. Departments dedicated to tyranny, harassment, and obliteration of the Constitution could also go: Justice, Homeland Security, and other law enforcement agencies. The Department of Defense could be cut in half. Agencies such as the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities, and the Corporation of Public Broadcasting would be abolished. Any legitimate federal responsibilities in law enforcement and the environment could be placed in the Department of the Interior. Foreign aid programs would disappear, and the United States would claim independence in setting her own defense, trade, and immigration policies. The Middle East would be forced to work out its problems without America's diplomatic meddling and war crimes. Thousands of laws and regulations would be repealed, regulatory agencies abolished, and the tax code greatly simplified. The Federal Reserve System would be put in direct Congressional control, and Congress would regulate the value of the dollar.

In line with Gabb's vision, the poor will not be cut off. While they should be reformed, Education, Health and Human Services, and various welfare programs like Social Security will be funded so that those most dependent on them won't suffer.

After a few short years, the people will realize they won't need Big Government, and the Ruling Class will be discredited. The whiners on the New York Times editorial page will be laughed at. Anyone who graduated from Harvard Law or Yale Law would be treated with suspicion, not respect. The smaller burden of government on the economy will open up all kinds of jobs and opportunities. Only the intellectuals who received government research grants will miss Big Government.

It seems like a distant dream, to be sure. But a decade of libertarian Internet activity and the creation of popular websites like Antiwar.com and LewRockwell.com have made it possible for a Presidential candidate like Rep. Ron Paul to have a platform, build a national following, and raise funds. This is certainly progress. If the Small Government message is framed as opposition to the Ruling Class and justice and liberation for the poor and middle class, victory may be sooner than we think. 

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