A new low in the disgrace of the American political class was reached when Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) took the floor this week to extol the virtues of Cuban communism. A new high immediately followed, as Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) rose to annihilate Harkin, and all the other miserable apologists for left-wing tyranny.
The civilized world continues to pay an appalling price for failing to cast out communism with the same vehement disgust we showed towards fascism. Among other things, the difference in our attitude toward these monstrous evils blinds us to their similarities. Too many Western politicians and academics have been driven mad by the strain of pretending that communism and fascism are opposites. They have been corrupted by the soul-deadening process of justifying, or at least politely ignoring, terrible means to reach ends they approve of… and they take a lot of the evidence for the achievement of those goals on faith, even when it comes from totalitarian liars.
This reflects not just on foreign policy, but on our domestic politics as well. Just about every big political story bubbling in the headlines today involves people who are willing to sacrifice the American system, and the rule of law, to impose their own righteous vision on a populace that grows less free by the day. I’ve never been a fan of the benevolent-dictator model of government, but I must admit it makes me extra-nervous when I look at who the American Left regards as an acceptably benevolent dictator.
How easily the modern Western liberal turns his eyes away from the brutal oppression of Venezuela or Cuba! How readily they ignore the connections between these dungeon states and the fascist horrors no one can deny. How easily they forget everything Rubio reminds them of here. The rest of us should listen, and remember.
It is best to watch and listen to Rubio’s speech, rather than reading his words, but let me give you his closing statement, and urge you to watch him build up to it:
I don???t think we should stand by here with our arms crossed, watching these things happen in our hemisphere and say nothing about them. I can close by saying this: Over the last week, I have tweeted about these issues. I get thousands of retweets from students and young people, until they shut them out, in Venezuela who are encouraged by the fact that we are on their side. What they want is what we have, the freedom and the liberty. That???s what all people want.
And if America and its policy-makers are not going to be firmly on the side of freedom and liberty, who in the world is? Who on this planet will? If this nation is not firmly on the side of human rights and freedom and the dignity of all people, what nation on the Earth will? And if we???re prepared to walk away from that, then I submit to you that this century is going to be a dangerous and dark one. But I don???t believe that???s what the American people want from us. Nor the majority of my colleagues.