May 10, 2017 at 7:40 am, by Carl

“We must here return for a moment to the position that precedes the suppression of democratic institutions and the creation of a totalitarian regime.  In this stage it is the general demand for quick and determined government action that is the dominating element in the situation, dissatisfaction with the slow and cumbersome course of democratic procedure which makes action for action’s sake the goal.  It is then the man or the party who seems strong and resolute enough “to get things done” who exercises the greatest appeal.  “Strong” in this sense means not merely a numerical majority–it is the ineffectiveness of parliamentary majorities with which people are dissatisfied. What they will seek is somebody with such solid support as to inspire confidence that he can carry out whatever he wants.”


Hayek wrote this in 1944 for the excellent economic book The Road to Serfdom, but he could have written this in the past two decades of US history.  Of course, he wasn’t simply writing about us, but rather looking at the historical evidence on human nature.  From the time of the Greeks and Romans, introducing Democracy and Republic (two DIFFERENT governing styles…yet both centered on a form of “government of the people”), we’ve seen that most often people are drawn to the speed of decision rather than the slow process of compromise once anyone brings in more than a few voices to the decision.


Yet, as we look at the USA in the 2000s, sadly we see exactly what Hayek warns against.  This grew into a loud crescendo under President Obama as more and more of his followers wanted him simply to act.  And, at a few moments, act he did to loud cheers…and helping move our Republic toward further destruction.  Now, President Trump’s supporters equally want him to act and move, wanting “action for actions sake.”  We can only now sit back and watch as the Democrats first led us here and it seems the Republicans are determined to push us even further.  In the end, when we elect…or allow to take over…”someone with such solid support as to inspire confidence that he can carry out whatever he wants,” we can only look in the mirror with sadness to realize that it was us to encouraged such a conclusion.