Maybe the real difference isn't between \”progressive\” and \”conservative\” in the end. Maybe the real difference is between fantasy and reality. Progressives reside in an unreal world, a wish-world. It’s a world of, “Let’s play pretend!”
I'm not referring to old-fashioned political problems with reality: hypocrisy, exaggerations, lies, and such. Reality has always taken a beating of all the side in politics. The standard lying politician knows he's not speaking reality, though, and tries to get away with it. Today's progressives don’t worry about any of that. Why should they, if can wish their most favorite fantasies into reality instead?
That’s a big if, certainly – too large, because it’s utterly deluded. It’s false. It’s foolish. Still they act as if it were true. Let’s take a look at three examples.
Example 1: Joe Biden
Joe Biden is really a sock-puppet. There's no secret there. He’s a pretend candidate. I see it less as a lie, though, and much more as a kind of golem tale, the storyline of an unreal shell animated by other spirits behind the curtain. That would include whoever is writing and running his teleprompter.
It’s all pretense, but on which level? For all I know, Biden may be caught up in it himself. He may believe he's for real. Half the nation acts as if they believe it, too. Therefore the fantasy multiplies upon itself: He's a pretend candidate running for president in an unreal world, with countless loving supporters all pretending they don't know it’s all pretense.
Example 2: Changing Sex
You’ve reached wonder how so many progressives became so confident with such unreality. They have, though. Maybe it's because they've had so much practice in the gender fantasy world. You will find wizards, you see, who can change an individual's sex. They can even alter reality, to ensure that everyone thinks the person’s new sex may be the one that's been real from the start.
These wizards used to exist only in fiction: horror movies and fantasy novels. That’s changed now, though. Now it could be literally anyone. It could be you or me! You have the power, I have the power, everyone has the power. All we need do is declare ourselves another sex, and reality adjusts to complement. The spell covers everyone, because the whole rest of the world sees us this way from then on. It doesn't work on everyone, but that’s only since they are defective. There's something not right about the subject.
Or so the story goes. Amazing, isn't it, how hard that is to differentiate that from fantasy fiction? We have the power! You don't like the reality you reside in? No problem! Just pronounce a new one. Poof! Problem solved.
Example 3: Magic Money Trees
But progressives have had pretend-world practice going back long before that, even. It’s called socialism. Noah Berlatsky articulated it beautifully last week at Mic.com. He was telling us how easy it might be to end poverty in America, and end it soon. I mean, real soon. As in, the following month soon.
All it would take is perfect for the MECSA coronavirus relief bill to pass, and then, \”through some miracle,\” for that coronavirus crisis to end in September. In the event that happened, he says, “each person within the U.S. under the income threshold would receive $20,000. – A family of four, which would receive $80,000 with the program, would be above the 2021 median household income of $75,500.”
So \”with the stroke of the pen\” the government would lift everyone over the median! And in the right kind of fantasy world, the median would remain exactly where it used to be!
Do you see the unrealistic in play here? Coronavirus ending soon? That will certainly be \”some miracle.\” Solving poverty by printing money, though? That will take nothing less than a wizard's magic money tree.
Okay, I admit, that was a cliché, too. I shouldn’t did that. Except it’s not my fault. Berlatsky actually says, without any sign of blushing, \”We do actually have a magic money tree – or, what’s better, a government that issues its own currency.\”
I can’t copy the image mic.com used with his article – copyright restrictions won’t take – but the feel of it is a lot like what you see here: Franklins falling from heaven for us. Now, there’s fantasy for you!
No More Muggle Money?
Governments have been printing currency for hundreds of years, yet poverty is still with us. Maybe we’ve been doing the work wrong. Maybe up till now we've only printed Muggles currency. This author's currency would be real magic-money-tree currency, grown in orchards blessed by elves and gods.
And here's the good thing: This money is so magic, it can buy stuff that no one has to bother making! No one has to go to work, but this incredible cash keeps all of us living above the median. Nobody has to truck stuff to your town, and no one has to show up at the store to sell it to you. All by the power of the government’s issuing wizard money. Oh, as well as with the help of coronavirus – in case this wasn’t fable enough already.
Berlatsky actually wrote this. This is actually the fantasy world progressives think we live in. If they think at all, that is.
The World They Wish They Lived In
But hey, who's to complain? I like the idea of a world where \”mostly peaceful protests\” never meant smashed windows or corpses in the pub.
I love the idea of a world where neither college nor health care costs a person anything. That's fantasy, too.
I'd be thrilled to reside in a world where corporations paid not just some tax, not just more tax, but all the taxes, and every human could pocket all the savings – because no corporation would dream of passing those costs onto consumers.
The difference between conservatives and progressives may be the difference between living in reality and thinking we are able to wish a completely different reality just by the wishing. Or through the voting, which in their minds amounts to the same thing. That leads naturally to the next key difference: Progressivism is deluded and foolish. And unless they find that magical money tree orchard somewhere, it’s also doomed to utterly certain failure.
Tom Gilson is a senior editor with The Stream and the author or editor of six books, such as the recently released Too Good To Be False: How Jesus’ Incomparable Character Reveals His Reality.