Last week, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) took center stage to become the withering face of the ongoing Democratic Party push to impeach their great bugaboo, President Donald J. Trump.
As she closed her meandering remarks, Pelosi invoked America’s greatest moderate, Benjamin Franklin, when she reminded audiences that Franklin was asked by an onlooker what kind of government he and the other founders had created during the Constitutional Convention at Philadelphia in 1787. He famously responded, “A republic. If you can keep it.”
Pelosi’s invocation of this quote was meant to signal not only that her cause is one of moderation, but also such moderation means defending the hallowed institutions of our republic from the vile clutches of the orange-skinned brigand, Donald Trump.
Fact is, most Americans remain entirely confused as to what, exactly, Donald Trump did to warrant an impeachment inquiry (other than breathing). What’s more, listening to Pelosi’s comments supporting impeachment, reminded me of the late Christopher Hitchens’ exhortations of irony as well as his abject fear that our society was losing its appreciation for irony. This, too, was a fear of George Orwell, the writer of the prophetic tome on modern tyranny, 1984.
After all, both Hitchens and Orwell believed that the loss of irony would help pave the way for the rise of tyranny.
One of the most important lessons of 1984 is the observation that tyrannical governments co-opt the shared language of the people they rule in order to manipulate their opinions and shape the way they view the world. Very often, the world’s most tyrannical governments will cloak themselves in the thin veneer of egalitarianism and justice. They will proclaim their supposed virtues to the world; justifying any action on the grounds that they represent the sacred institutions of that country—all the meanwhile they are set to work at shattering and hollowing out those institutions as they were designed, in order to better serve the new regime’s will to power.
For three years, the Democrats have groaned that President Donald Trump was a threat to our republic and its storied institutions. Many MSNBC and CNN hosts have lamented what they proclaim to be the rise of fascism in the United States. Yet, President Trump has not abused his position as the country’s chief executive. He did not use his office to concoct a cockamamie collusion scandal that has challenged the very legitimacy and efficacy of the office of the president of the United States.
Yet the Democratic Party did exactly that with its ridiculous Mueller probe.
It was not the Republicans who manipulated the courts into overstepping their constitutional roles in order to deter the Trump Administration from implementing basic policies that any other president, regardless of party, would have had little resistance in implementing. No, it was the activist jurists appointed by Democratic party presidents over the years who have engaged in such unconstitutional shenanigans.
President Trump was elected in an historic electoral victory in 2016 to implement fundamental—sweeping—reform. Yet, for three years that agenda has been blocked at every turn. It has not been stopped by the will of the people. Neither has it been stopped by the power of America’s republican institutions. Instead, it has been halted by a coterie of unelected administrators who have decided their will is more correct than the will of the American people as certified in an election.
Now, the Democrats, the gallant protectors of our sacred institutions, are yet again abusing their power to impeach a president for what amounts to a vague process crime. Apparently, the president, during a three-hour phone conversation with the new leader of Ukraine in late July, mentioned once his desire to root out corruption in the U.S. government, and in so doing, he asked for information related to Hunter Biden.
Democrats argue that he violated election laws, as Joe Biden is the leading Democratic candidate for president, and any information Trump gleaned could have been used to politically damage Biden’s campaign. And so? The American people do not understand or share the Democrats’ concern here. They want to know if Hunter Biden and his father are guilty of these charges.
The Democrats don’t care, though.
Pelosi can prattle on about the sacredness of our republic, yet she, not Trump, is the one who is abusing her immense power by launching an impeachment inquiry to remove a president with whom she disagrees—despite the fact that he was elected fairly. The impeachment train, unfortunately, has already left the proverbial station. Further, there are no brakes on this train. For Democrats, it’s Trump’s removal from office or bust.
Do Pelosi and the Democrats really think this is what Benjamin Franklin and the other founders had in mind when they allowed for the possibility of the legislative branch to impeach a sitting president? Of course not! Fact is, whatever Trump may or may not have done in his conversation with Ukraine’s president, the real totalitarians; the true threats to our institutions are the Democrats and their allies in the federal bureaucracy. These are the people who have supplanted the rule of law and the will of the people with the rule of a few elites against the people.
This is why it’s hard to listen to any Democrat these days excoriate Trump for his possible violation of a minor election law. For decades, the Left has been tearing through our institutions, working overtime to effectively reconfigure our constitutional republic. They would like to see the design of the founders undone and move toward a system of which Marx would approve. They have done this not through popular elections but from behind the iron curtain of the all-powerful administrative state. It is from this insulated perch where the Left will now launch their most brazen assault on America’s republic.
And, as Pelosi has proven, the Left perform this trick using our own democratic institutions to effectively implement an undemocratic outcome.
Orwell would never have believed how prescient his work was.