by Jon Sanders
Director of the Center for Food, Power, and Life, Research Editor, John Locke Foundation
For the life of me, I cannot understand how the spin du jour of the IRS abuse can be embraced by the Left or anyone as a functioning defense. Notwithstanding the fact that it’s a flat-out lie, are we really supposed to think it’s OK if the IRS harassed groups on both sides of the political aisle? As if such extreme authoritarian statism is OK in the United States of America as long as it doesn’t discriminate over whose rights it tramples down. And how does that pacify the Left? Unless they don’t believe it and merely are glad to grasp onto any wisp of justification for tyrannizing their political opponents, who are their fellow Americans.
I keep waiting, desperately and near hopelessly, for the Left and the media to reach a Niemöller epiphany before it’s too late:
[Pastor Martin Niemöller] is best known for his powerful statement about the failure of Germans to speak out against the Nazis:
“First they came for the Communists, but I was not a Communist so I did not speak out. Then they came for the Socialists and the Trade Unionists, but I was neither, so I did not speak out. Then they came for the Jews, but I was not a Jew so I did not speak out. And when they came for me, there was no one left to speak out for me.“
Perhaps there was the beginning of one in The News & Observer’s weekend editorial about President Obama’s reception in Germany. I would hope so, considering that the president’s administration has come for reporters, too. But then again, it might be another of the occasional pro forma editorial protest, essentially meaningless and immediately forgotten by its authors, who will once again demonstrate no fervor lost for the president despite it all. Sincerely meant or not, however, this passage speaks volumes:
Germans are less inclined to trust government leaders who bend principles and the law in the name of national security. They have known the Nazis and endured the omniscient surveillance of Communist East Germany. They have lost freedom and regained it. They know how easily it can slip away even in an enlightened and democratic country.