When I was growing up in the 1950s and 1960s, Victorianism was getting a black eye. To be Victorian was thought to be prudish and enslaved to tradition. For, we were becoming progressive. Every day and in every way we were getting better and better. New anything was better than old, even to the point of believing with absolute certainty that it was the right thing to do to ignore anyone over the age of thirty.
Every year’s model of automobile was new and improved, even the tinny, huge boat-like creations of the sixties and seventies. Even now, there are more intact and serviceable pre-nineteen-sixties cars on the road than newer models. Even new Coca-Cola had to be quickly abandoned in favor to old Coke. And AMF, new owners of Harley Davidson Motorcycles, almost put the brand out of business in the twelve years they owned the company. Their first order of business was to gut quality control in trying to stave off competition from Japanese Honda, Kawasaki, Yamaha and Suzuki, British Triumph, German BMW, Italian Ducati. In particular, Japanese bikes were less expensive and of higher quality. A buyout by Harley engineers and executives in 1981 rescued the brand from death by restoring and increasing quality assurance.
The rush to the bottom starting in the sixties and accelerating throughout the following years, destroyed manufacturing, retailing, education, art and religion, manifesting itself in our culture, civility and music. Families deteriorated, quality of life declined, warfare grew in brutality and destructiveness. Hate very much displaced benevolence, erasing much apparent progress humanity had experienced since the “dark ages.’
I dearly loved my maternal grandmother, a four foot eight or nine inch towering figure. She was very much a Victorian, despite having had three cast husbands prior the one I knew as Grandpa. Even though she had been three times a widow, she was somewhat negatively seen as, how shall I say, less that completely pure.
But we were better than that, even though all of us had divorced and had remarried, as had all of our acquaintances. We were all young and improved whereas our parents and grandparents were all old and in need of improvement, but clung to their guns, Bibles and prejudices.
Perhaps that is what led to the growing refusal to self-critique, or even to receiving instruction. The likelihood of error to overtake us is unthinkable. Hubris gone viral.
It’s not just wishful thinking that is blinding progressives from the truth. It’s their blinkering of themselves to any point of view other than their own. Whether in shouting down those with different views, in banning them from public view, in burning their books and in suing them into bankruptcy, and, yes, in using all means at their disposal, legal or not, to force election outcomes in their own favor. Their willful blindness, even ignorance, in concert with their elbowing themselves into virtually all leadership positions, makes certain that they will lead their blind followers into the ditch.
And the crowd replied:
Ach tung! You’re trying to force religion down our throats, quoting Jesus. We crucified him and his followers two thousand years. And we’ve proven, SCIENTIFICLY, that, if he even lived at all, he was an ignorant fool, drawing ignorant fools to follow him. We’ve proved that God doesn’t exist and wasn’t needed to plan, create or uphold the universe, let alone to tell us how to live our lives. We’re extremely capable of running ourselves. Shut up and leave us to our own devices! Just look at how we’ve made our lives better.
Sorry, I was wrong. Yes, you have won your wars on poverty and drugs. Culture is so much better without Christianity, than with beautiful art, music and morality. Men, women and children are so much happier in the absence of restrictive family life. Our children are so much better behaved, educated and more peaceful than while disciplined and expected to excel. Nations are at peace now that they are blessed by uniting together. People are much wealthier with debased currency, much healthier with state provided and supervised health care by central governments. Highway deaths and destruction has been so reduced by superhighways, draconian traffic control, and plastic electric and electronic cars. We are much freer now that governments track our every move. Give us more technology, more surveillance, and especially, give us more drugs. In short, continue progressing.