Twilight of Authority Redux – Ed Kilgore | Washington Monthly | September 26, 2014

“I’ve been wanting to say something about the bizarre vision of American liberalism displayed at a recent Heritage Foundation event, as described by Suzi Khimm for MSNBC. It apparently centered on the hypothesis that liberals are engaged in a Faustian bargain with government whereby in exchange for total sexual freedom The State is given total power over every other aspect of life.”

There is some truth to the notion of a Faustian bargain both for liberals and for conservatives. It is better framed as a negative for each side.

Simply stated, liberals wish to regulate social violence. Be it the proliferation of firearms, the recognition and public chastisement of bullying, or the railing against the militarization of law enforcement departments; liberals hold that there is too much unrestrained anger and violence in the world.

On the other hand, conservatives wish to monitor and suppress sexual appetites. Human nature, unfettered, will destroy polite society, be it the recognition of same sex marriage, easy access to birth control or the unregulated availability of abortion. So say the conservatives.

Broad brushed generalities, as useful rules of thumb.

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