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Explaining the Progressive Mind

Updated on August 13, 2020
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Jack is a volunteer at the CCNY Archives. Before retiring, he worked at IBM for over 28 years. His articles have over 120,000 views.

Introduction

Having written an essay on the Conservative mind, it behoves me to write a similar essay on the Progressive mind. This is based on my interactions with my colleagues. Only they can verify or deny what I say here. I think I have a pretty good picture but I will let the reader decide.

- Aug. 2020

Background

In my other essay, I made the claim that progressives are ruled by emotions. That is to say, they are all about feelings. They think they are the smartest person in the room, and that their compassion for the poor and the down trodden is the epitome of goodness. They are for "progress" while conservatives are for regression to the good old days...

Progressives have a tendency to project their own behavior onto their opponents. Despite evidence to the contrary, they continue to believe that conservatives are racist, bigoted, selfish and uncaring people. Thus, they have every right to call them out, denigrate them, cuss them and call them all kinds of names. Because, that is how they would behave.

Progressives are simple minded. They see many issues as only two sides, Their side is the right one, anyone disagree with them are by default on the "wrong" side.

Progressives are devious. They will use their opponent's belief system to attack them and turn around and tell them, they are not living up to their faith. How arrogant is that?

Progressives are socialists. They see the world as a fixed pie. If one person have a larger slice, the other person must have a smaller slice. This is called the zero sum game. They fail to understand that capitalism is about growing the size of the pie. When the pie is larger, everyone wins.

Some Common Progressive Beliefs...

  • Everything is about Race, the classic struggle between the haves and the have-nots.
  • Progressives belief in an equality system where everyone should have the same outcome.
  • Progressives believe in collectivism and down play individualism.
  • Progressives believe in the State as the ultimate arbiter.
  • Progressives do not believe in God, or are atheists or agnostics.
  • Progressives are robin hoods. Rob from the rich and give to the poor.
  • Progressives do not like to be judged. They believe any behavior is good as long as no one gets hurt. That is a broad spectrum.
  • Progressives do not believe in our Constitution. They think it is antiquated and needs to be modernized.
  • Finally, progressives adopts the tactics of Saul Alinsky, his book ""Rules for Radicals" is their bible. They accuses their opponents of tactics that they use themselves. An insidious projection, like the pot calling the kettle black.

Example of A Progressive Argument - On God, Religion and Caring For the Poor

Here is a specific example of a debate I had with one of my progressive colleague. He claims that if Jesus was alive today, He would be a progressive.

He is not a Christian, but he studied the Bible and read the Scriptures and selectively pick out a few nuggets and think he understand it all.

In this case, he used the parable of the Good Samaritan, to justify big government programs to help the poor.

He failed to understand the parable and teachings of this passage. Jesus was a radical of his times, but that is as close as he got to being a progressive. You can be a radical of any political party.

He believe that God, Jesus, is telling us to be good citizens of our community by taxing the rich to give to the poor. Spread the wealth around.

This parable was to teach people to be kind to our neighbors. Regardless who he is, a friend or a fellow of the same faith...everyone should help his neighbor. The good Samaritan at that time was not a Jew. In fact, they were the outcast. This parable points out some of the hypocrisy of the people living at the time of Jesus. A rabbi, who is a religious person, chose to walk past the injured while a Samaritan stopped to help. The moral of the story has to do with individual behavior as a Christian. It does not mean we should use our government to tax the rich to distribute to the poor.

My response to him was to instruct him that God is apolitical. That is to say, "render to Caesar what is Caesars, and render to God what belongs to God."

This means that God do not take sides. He is neither a Republican or a Democrat. He is in charge of the human side and not the political side. He is taking care of the human soul and not concerned about how Caesar rules...with taxation, or building roads.

Jesus was sent here to pay a debt. His death on the Cross paid for our sins. In the eye of God, we are all sinners. Our redemption cannot be paid with good works or indulgences. It can only be paid by someone who is without sin.

The Good Samaritan

Summary of Rules for Radicals - Saul Alinsky 1972

The Rules

  1. "Power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have. Power is derived from 2 main sources – money and people. 'Have-Nots' must build power from flesh and blood."
  2. "Never go outside the expertise of your people."
  3. "Whenever possible go outside the expertise of the enemy."
  4. "Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules."
  5. "Ridicule is man's most potent weapon. There is no defense. It’s irrational. It’s infuriating. It also works as a key pressure point to force the enemy into concessions."
  6. "A good tactic is one your people enjoy."
  7. "A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag."
  8. "Keep the pressure on."
  9. "The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself. Imagination and ego can dream up many more consequences than any activist."
  10. "The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition."
  11. "If you push a negative hard and deep enough it will break through into its counterside. Violence from the other side can win the public to your side because the public sympathizes with the underdog."
  12. "The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative."
  13. "Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it. Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions."

Summary

In this essay, I have given you a glimpse of how a Progressive thinks. How he acts and how he deal with his fellow man. The question is, is progressivism the answer to our worldly problems? Issues after issues, progressives take a position contrary to God. They don't even believe in a God. However, they will try and use your faith to defeat you. They are the smarter one you see. They have all the answers. Anyone who may disagree with them, are automatically cast out as the enemy.

Progressives are the least inclusive. They claim they are the party of the big tent. Their tent have no place for whites, or people of faith, or anyone disagree with their orthodoxy.

Postscript

I don't want to leave the reader without the proper counter argument. How do we take care of the poor in our country?

Here are several alternatives to this problem that existed since day one.

It was Jesus who said..."the poor you will always have with you..." - Matthew 26.

What he meant by that is he recognizes in our current world, there is no heaven or utopia. Our world will always have inequities. Some will always be smarter, and stronger, or more athletic, or prettier..than another. The answer is very simple. We as human beings should help our family, our neighbors, who are in need. It is not the role of government. Government should be limited. It has a specific set of functions and they are to keep our borders safe, and to maintain law and order, and keep a level playing field.

Everyone has freedom to choose, They are given the same opportunity to try and succeed or fail. When they fall down, it is up to their family members and friends and neighbors to pick them up. In the long haul, this is the best way forward. Everyone feels grateful for the people who help them. When the time comes, they are in a position to help others, they will pay it forward. This in a nutshell is the Christian philosophy. There is nothing wrong with organizing a community or a group to perform such services. That is why there are so many charities. In general, those who are closest to the problem, are in the best position to help solve those problems. A big government program, one size fits all, is often not the answer. Bureaucracy, fraud, abuses, and waste kicks in.

Given a choice, I prefer individuals helping their family members. Local churches helping their congregations. Only a last resort, when all else failed to materialize, the government steps in with the safety net.

Another Parable - Matthew 25

The Parable of the Three Servants
14 “At that time the Kingdom of heaven will be like this. Once there was a man who was about to leave home on a trip; he called his servants and put them in charge of his property. 15 He gave to each one according to his ability: to one he gave five thousand gold coins, to another he gave two thousand, and to another he gave one thousand. Then he left on his trip. 16 The servant who had received five thousand coins went at once and invested his money and earned another five thousand. 17 In the same way the servant who had received two thousand coins earned another two thousand. 18 But the servant who had received one thousand coins went off, dug a hole in the ground, and hid his master's money.

19 “After a long time the master of those servants came back and settled accounts with them. 20 The servant who had received five thousand coins came in and handed over the other five thousand. ‘You gave me five thousand coins, sir,’ he said. ‘Look! Here are another five thousand that I have earned.’ 21 ‘Well done, you good and faithful servant!’ said his master. ‘You have been faithful in managing small amounts, so I will put you in charge of large amounts. Come on in and share my happiness!’ 22 Then the servant who had been given two thousand coins came in and said, ‘You gave me two thousand coins, sir. Look! Here are another two thousand that I have earned.’ 23 ‘Well done, you good and faithful servant!’ said his master. ‘You have been faithful in managing small amounts, so I will put you in charge of large amounts. Come on in and share my happiness!’ 24 Then the servant who had received one thousand coins came in and said, ‘Sir, I know you are a hard man; you reap harvests where you did not plant, and you gather crops where you did not scatter seed. 25 I was afraid, so I went off and hid your money in the ground. Look! Here is what belongs to you.’ 26 ‘You bad and lazy servant!’ his master said. ‘You knew, did you, that I reap harvests where I did not plant, and gather crops where I did not scatter seed? 27 Well, then, you should have deposited my money in the bank, and I would have received it all back with interest when I returned. 28 Now, take the money away from him and give it to the one who has ten thousand coins. 29 For to every person who has something, even more will be given, and he will have more than enough; but the person who has nothing, even the little that he has will be taken away from him. 30 As for this useless servant—throw him outside in the darkness; there he will cry and gnash his teeth.’

Progressives...on The Parable of the Three Servants

Progressives cannot reconcile what was in this parable with their socialism philosophy. The world is not equal and can never be equal in the sense they wish. We have equality of opportunity, and freedom and liberty which is guaranteed under our Constitution. We don't have equality of talents and we certainly don't have equality of outcome. Otherwise, we would be like robots.

A Scene From the SciFi Movie - I Robot

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Jack Lee

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