Totalitarianism In Our Time

Totalitarianism In Our Time, by Rod Dreher.

I hear from readers and others who lived under communism, and who now see some core aspects of life under communism beginning to manifest in the West. This morning at a Notre Dame conference, I met a professor who emigrated from an Eastern bloc country as a younger man. I told him about this phenomenon, and asked him if it fit his own experience.

Absolutely yes, he said. He explained that the militant ideologization of daily life here is all too familiar to him, from his past under communism. We weren’t talking on the record, so I won’t mention in detail the things he said. They basically had to do with the determination to destroy people, professionally and personally, for standing in the way of the ideologues. …

Case in point:

Here’s a link to the original Portland Mercury story about this Enemy Of The People. …

It is impossible that the woman they’ve dubbed “Crosswalk Cathy” could have known the race of the owners of a car parked illegally in a crosswalk, with no one sitting in it.

Muhammad and Khan filmed the woman on the phone with the authorities, and posted it to the Internet. The Portland Mercury amplified it by identifying the white woman — with whom they did not speak to get her side of the story — as a racist Enemy Of The People.

This is an example of a totalitarian mindset. Thanks in part to the Portland Mercury, the face of this poor woman is now all over Portland, and all over the Internet, identified as a racist harasser of black people, when in fact she is no such thing.

Why do people hate the media? This is part of it. Let’s be mindful that this kind of thing is by no means bog-standard “liberal media bias” stuff. This crosses the line into the totalitarian mentality. The facts do not matter to the Portland Mercury. All that matters is that this Enemy Of The People is identified as an ideological criminal, and that her life be destroyed.

hat-tip Stephen Neil