Rubbing liberals' noses in the D.C. Circuit court's recess-appointment ruling and the Harry Reid capitulation on filibusters, Jennifer Rubin cackles:
It was a bad day for the lefties afflicted with the totalitarian temptation. (Relax: It is a term of art, a well-known one, and I am not calling Democrats totalitarians.)Really? She's not calling Democrats totalitarian? Yeah, not exactly.
If you're don't have a Wall Street Journal online subscription and don't feel like using Google as a back-door route to the link, let me quote it for you: the link quotes the British political philosopher John N. Gray. Here's what Gray wrote (emphasis mine):
One of the features that distinguished Bolshevism from Tsarism was the insistence of Lenin and his followers on the need for a complete overhaul of society. Old-fashioned despots may modernize in piecemeal fashion if doing so seems necessary to maintain their power, but they do not aim at remaking society on a new model, still less at fashioning a new type of humanity. Communist regimes engaged in mass killing in order to achieve these transformations, and paradoxically it is this essentially totalitarian ambition that has appealed to liberals. Here as elsewhere, the commonplace distinction between utopianism and meliorism is less than fundamental. In its predominant forms, liberalism has been in recent times a version of the religion of humanity, and with rare exceptions -- [Bertrand] Russell is one of the few that come to mind -- liberals have seen the Communist experiment as a hyperbolic expression of their own project of improvement; if the experiment failed, its casualties were incurred for the sake of a progressive cause. To think otherwise -- to admit the possibility that the millions who were judged to be less than fully human suffered and died for nothing -- would be to question the idea that history is a story of continuing human advance, which for liberals today is an article of faith. That is why, despite all evidence to the contrary, so many of them continue to deny Communism's clear affinities with Fascism. Blindness to the true nature of Communism is an inability to accept that radical evil can come from the pursuit of progress.So, if I understand correctly, when Rubin links to this, what she's saying is:
If you believe in recess appointments or filibuster reform, you have the blood of all who died in the gulags and the terror-famine on your hands, you filthy hippie. Or, at the very least, it's clear that you're willfully blind to the fact that your desire for filibuster reform and recess appointments is the first step on a slippery slope that leads inexorably to totalitarian genocide.
Thanks, Jen. Got it.