A Journal for Western Man




Saint Hillary: Hero of the Faith

Martin Kraegel III

Issue LX- May 24, 2006


"It is a truism that almost any sect, cult, or religion will legislate its creed into law if it acquires the political power to do so..."

- Robert A. Heinlein

            The great libertarian scholar Murray Rothbard hated Hillary Clinton, and with good reason. You see, over a decade ago, Rothbard had Clinton nailed far better than anyone else who has opposed her. Rothbard despised Clinton because she is a "religious nut," but not of the stereotypical variety.

            Usually religious nuts are considered to be those on what is known as the religious Right. But to Rothbard, their threat was overblown. The true nemesis to freedom, thought Rothbard, is not the religious Right, but instead the religious Left, a pernicious group with much influence and under little scrutiny. And on the religious Left, Hillary Clinton is one of the patron saints.

            What is the religious Left? The religious Left has its origins in Christian heresies of the Middle Ages and, particularly for the American variety, various strands of Protestantism. The common theme throughout all these religious factions is the belief that the Kingdom of God is of this world, and not of the next. An elite vanguard of "saints" must use the coercive power of the State to promote an egalitarian paradise of complete equality, where private property is abolished, and all humans are shorn of their petty problems and interests, living for the collective and not for themselves. Thus the goal of religion, the universal salvation of man, will be achieved. Young Clinton was converted to this position by a Methodist minister, Donald Jones, who preached the "Social Gospel." Clinton learned that any action is appropriate for advancing this "Good."  Later in time, this ideology lost its overtly Christian flavor, but the religious fervor has remained ever since. For instance, socialist philosopher Karl Marx took a similar approach, but used dialectics and historical forces to replace the hand of providence.

            With the failure of the U.S.S.R to produce heaven on earth, the religious Left has changed its manifestations, but not its core beliefs. Radical environmentalism, "humanitarian" wars for democratization, pantheistic Earth worship, one world government, political correctness, and social democracy are some mutations of the same germ. For example, novelist Michael Crichton has noted that radical environmentalism has all the trappings of a religion: "There's an initial Eden, a paradise, a state of grace and unity with nature, there's a fall from grace into a state of pollution as a result of eating from the tree of knowledge, and as a result of our actions there is a judgment day coming for us all. We are all energy sinners, doomed to die, unless we seek salvation, which is now called sustainability. Sustainability is salvation in the church of the environment. Just as organic food is its communion, that pesticide-free wafer that the right people with the right beliefs, imbibe." Of course the truth is just about the opposite, but you can't
argue with deep-seated religious beliefs.  Now, instead of the "hard" totalitarianism of the Gulag, they favor the "soft" totalitarianism of the therapeutic state (think Brave New World as opposed to 1984). Perfection will now be obtained through piece-meal social engineering. All of us "sinners" will be taxed, regulated, regimented, and controlled for our
own good in a secular theocracy. Most Americans have no idea how much of this thinking is already endemic in their lives, from public schools, to speech codes, to Prohibition, to confiscatory taxation, wars for democracy, and much more.

            While President Bill Clinton was simply a cynical, amoral, political opportunist, who triangulated his positions to win elections, his wife Hillary is a "true believer." She really believes deep down that politics and State action can yield the vision of the "Social Gospel" that has influenced her since childhood. And in a way reminiscent of Antonio Gramsci, she has worked her way through the institutions, always concealing her true motives: from lawyer, to congressional aide, to First Lady of Arkansas, to First Lady of the United States, then finally to the U.S. Senate. And now Hillary is poised (as of this writing) to be the Democratic Party nominee for president in 2008. I am certain that, if he were alive today, Rothbard would be horrified.

            I want, very badly, to believe that Americans will not elect this religious nut to the White House. However, if history is any guide, I'm not encouraged. It seems to this writer that American presidents over time have gotten more and more despotic, arrogant, and mendacious. On average, 19th-century presidents seem better than those of the 20th, and Bush is not setting a good precedent for the 21st-century slate. Nor are any of Clinton's putative Republican opponents giving me cause for optimism. Will 2008 be another presidential election between the two evils? I'm afraid so.

            But anyone who believes in freedom ought to oppose Hillary Clinton by telling her: Don't impose your religious values on me!

(Originally published in The Hillsdale Forum, April 2006 edition).

Martin Kraegel III is a contributor to The Rational Argumentator.

This TRA feature has been edited in accordance with TRA’s Statement of Policy.

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Learn about Mr. Stolyarov's novel, Eden against the Colossus, here.

Read Mr. Stolyarov's new comprehensive treatise, A Rational Cosmology, explicating such terms as the universe, matter, space, time, sound, light, life, consciousness, and volition, at http://www.geocities.com/rational_argumentator/rc.html.