As Liberty Goes Out of Style, Only Tyranny Will Replace It

“Tyranny,” wrote Ayn Rand, “is any political system (whether absolute monarchy or fascism or communism) that does not recognize individual rights (which necessarily include property rights). The overthrow of a political system by force is justified only when it is directed against tyranny: it is an act of self-defense against those who rule by force. For example, the American Revolution.”

At what point do we conclude America is a tyranny? It’s hard to say. Generally speaking, I would call tyranny the point where government overtly controls freedom of speech and/or the right to physical self-defense (including against the government, if necessary). It all boils down to free speech and guns. If one or both are gone, then we’re living under a tyranny.

The Obama administration has taken us in that direction. By trying to censor the 911 tape with the voice of the Orlando shooter, because it made favorable references to his Muslim beliefs, the government has sent the people of America a powerful message: “We know what’s best for you to hear; and we intend to edit it accordingly.”

American colonists rebelled for less; yet Americans of the early twenty-first century seem more than willing to take it in stride.

Let’s get real: Liberty and individual rights are on their way out in America. People will not hold on to what they do not want or appreciate.

Hillary Clinton is strongly favored to win the presidency, at this time. Look at the national polls and look at the Electoral College; both are overwhelmingly in her favor. In her first year of office, she will fill the vacant Supreme Court seat along with possibly the seat of conservative Clarence Thomas, who is considering retirement, at least according to conflicting reports. Regardless, Clinton’s presidency, if it happens, will end the reign of semi-conservatism on the Supreme Court, and likely usher in a decisive 6-3 majority for leftist judges. Kiss the Second Amendment good-bye.

Hillary Clinton does not make headlines when she says something like, “Just like [Donald Trump] shouldn’t have his finger on the button, he shouldn’t have his hands on our economy.”

“Our” economy?  What is an economy, anyway? Does one entity own it? Will Donald Trump be the owner of the American economy if he wins, and will Hillary Clinton own the economy if she wins? It sure sounds like she views it that way.

The economy does not refer to a piece of property. It’s not some gigantic corporation or business. It’s way too vast and complex for that. The economy simply refers to the millions of transactions which human beings undertake every day. From the smallest purchase to a multi-million dollar deal, it’s all economic activity. From your bicycle to your pet to your modest home to a mansion – it’s all privately owned property, or at least should be.

Government is not the economy. It’s not supposed to “run” the economy. It could not intervene in the countless, millions of small and large economic decisions made every day by human beings if it wanted to. The fact that so many want the government to try is a sickness, a twisted form of “control freakism,” and it’s as doomed in America as it was in every other nation – Communist, fascist, royalist, socialist, nationalist – who ever attempted it.

When in the world will human beings ever learn?

Hillary Clinton does not object to Donald Trump’s policies because he advocates a free market, or even a liberalized market. It never occurs to her that there might, or should be, such a thing. She’s too concerned with shaping the world into her image. To be fair, so is Trump. They have different visions for how to control the economy, but they both seek to control or manage it.

If Trump wins, we have absolutely no idea what he will do. Some insist he will be a socialist-leaning Democrat, while others  claim he will surround himself with free market leaning types. But nobody who claims to know can know. He has made a range of contradictory statements throughout his campaign. He has favored everything from socialized medicine to lower taxes to shutting down the EPA and the Department of Education. He has been fairly consistent in his support of the Second Amendment.  He spouts the party line on social issues but at heart does not seem to be a social conservative.

We do know what Hillary Clinton stands for: unequivocal, unrelenting expansion of government involvement in the lives of people, economically but otherwise as well. And more of the dangerous political correctness in foreign policy, appeasing Muslims as they seek to destroy the West from within. Free speech will wither further under her reign, and the right to own weapons of self-defense will probably end, particularly with a Supreme Court to back her up.

Liberty no longer sells in America. Why not? The United States was the country with the greatest heritage of freedom in the history of mankind. Thomas Paine, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison. What happened? Societies are made up of individuals. Somewhere along the way, the hearts and the minds of the American people changed. They’re less concerned with things like personal responsibility and more concerned with being cared for; they’re more willing to listen to the control freaks like Hillary Clinton who promise them the moon than they are to someone who will say, “It’s your life, you own it, step up and live it!”

As recently as 20 years ago, when Hillary’s husband Bill was president, he got by politically by pretending to be a Reagan conservative half the time. Often he lied, but sometimes he did do Reagan-like things, such as signing welfare reform and cutting capital gains taxes. His wife was always considered decisively to his left. Today, Hillary Clinton almost lost the Democratic nomination because she’s not far enough to the left. As for the Republican Party, it’s not clear that Ronald Reagan himself could win the nomination today, much less the presidency in a landslide. In Reagan’s time, Jimmy Carter was a failed and disgraced one-term president for weakening America, economically, militarily and morale-wise. In 2016, we’re about to give Jimmy Carter his fourth term.

America has changed.

Although, as it stands now, Hillary Clinton will defeat Donald Trump (or any Republican who ran), it does not mean that she’s popular. She isn’t, and she will become even less popular over time. But that’s precisely my point. People have so lost their love of liberty that they’ll install people whom they know are corrupt, and for whom they have little respect. Why? To preserve the myth that someone else is in charge. So they won’t have to be. This is the root of America’s decline; politics is only the symptom.

“Take care of me, corrupt woman. Help me ignore the fact that it’s my nature and birthright to be free.” Sooner or later, people will be forced to discover that no one person controls the economy. Government-run medical care, education, currency, banking and all else constitute a precarious house of cards. And it won’t be pretty when it comes tumbling down.

Human beings have free will, so reversals and course corrections are always possible. But once our First and Second Amendment rights are gone, it will be the same uphill battle in America it was for past nations who sought to overcome tyranny. In America, it never should have happened.

Follow Dr. Hurd on Facebook. Search under “Michael  Hurd” (Rehoboth Beach DE). Get up-to-the-minute postings, recommended articles and links, and engage in back-and-forth discussion with Dr. Hurd on topics of interest. Also follow Dr. Hurd on Twitter at @MichaelJHurd1

Check out Dr. Hurd’s latest Newsmax Insider column here!