The fall of the Soviet Union was a vindication for the strategy of the first civilian Director of Central Intelligence, Allen Dulles. His plan to bankrupt the Russians through an arms race, a space race, and any other competition the adversary could not afford, eventually made it possible for Ronald Reagan to successfully challenge Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin wall.
Pitting a deep economy against a shallow economy, while effective, had significant costs beyond the economic. There was no shortage of individual stake holders in the old Soviet order that were outraged, including one Vladimir Putin. They found ways to make themselves feel better by indulging in grudges as they worked to redirect certain new equities, intended for Russian citizens, while enriching themselves.
The United States still struggles to manage the monetary debts it incurred over the course of the cold war, we are also paying the high reputational cost for impetuous behavior such as the 1953 coup d’état in Iran together with the 1954 coup d’état in Guatemala. While these events typically go unacknowledged over the course of our high school history classes, many U.S. citizens are surprised when, while traveling abroad, they discover our country is not seen as an honest broker in those regions of the world.
The reputational cost is exacerbated by the least intelligent and most boisterous within the MAGAlomanic factions. People around the globe have come to believe that if you are Asian, African, or Central American you will never gain the approval of the most inbred SOBs occupying the North American continent. And they’re not just talking about genetics. As master propagandist of the Nazi regime and dictator of its cultural life for twelve years, the selective inbreeding and hate mongering of Joseph Goebbels, was achieved through an earlier manifestation of the big lie. He said:
“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”
While MAGAlomania may be defined as Goebbelian twist on statecraft, the state of denial has now manifest on an epidemic scale within the USA. Of course, the big lie did not originate with Stephen Miller, Joseph Goebbels, or Adolf Hitler. They may have summoned it and embraced it, only to become subservient to it. It is the legacy woven throughout human history that was best encapsulated by the Rolling Stones with the lyric: “Just as every cop is a criminal and all the sinners saints; when heads is tails just call me Lucifer cause I’m in need of some restraint.”
Unbridled liberty is the legacy of Lucifer. It is, in effect, the license to rape, pillage, and plunder. It is always a matter of subjugating someone else. Liberty that is unintelligent, unconditioned, and uncontrolled invariably leads to the abject bondage of someone. To differentiate between true and false liberty, we must learn to balance freedom with self-control, to develop self-mastery.
At issue is truthfulness. Is it ever ok to mislead someone who may rely upon your word to their detriment? Those who participated in the racist riot of January 6, 2021 in Washington, are now using reliance on the alternative facts from faux news as an affirmative defense in courts of law. Pseudo-Christian pastors are actively deceiving the masses. When, in the Book of Job, God asked, “Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge?,” one might reasonably conclude that he was talking about the anti-immigrant, anti-mask, anti-vaccine pretenders that are turning their congregations into death cults.
Now that Putin’s harem is out of the White House, he is protecting the big lie in his own country by, as Goebbels prescribed, repressing dissent. Anyone sympathetic to Alexi Navalny is now an outlaw within Putin’s domain. Here, in the United States, Liz Cheney or anyone else advocating for a more traditional conservatism or republicanism is similarly subject to attack by the hoards of Hell, absolute enemies of our constitutionally grounded democratic republic. When every cop is seen as criminal, they are bludgeoned on the capital steps with flagpoles. When all the sinners are saints, they corrupt the likes of Liberty University. When heads is tails, voter suppression is sold as voter integrity.
A scholar’s parrot may talk Greek and rehearsing those that have traded their Christian witness for a masquerade is simply a matter or rote learning. This phenomena, where the most ignorant are quite literally the most arrogant, is not unique to the United States. But the USA has no excuse. It has a public education system where critical thinking skills are increasingly moving front and center.
Whether we will actually use the intellectual disciplines, to build a more perfect union, remains to be seen. In the meantime we can avoid the contagion and those intent on spreading it through their reckless indifference to the truth.