The Conversation

Obama's Majoritarian Tyranny

Ann Althouse elegantly describes the essence of the problem at the heart of the Obama presidency. It’s what Alexis de Tocqueville described two centuries ago in Democracy in America as the “tyranny of the majority”--when the majority uses its democratic power to take away the rights of the minority, and to destroy limits on government power such that future, continuing abuses of other minorities and individuals become inevitable.

Obama contends that such tyranny is impossible because the people themselves are in charge. It is impossible to overstate how foolish that claim is. 

Today, the U.S. is facing off against North Korea--a country whose full, official name is the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. It is only the worst example of a totalitarian communist dictatorship that claims to rule in the name of the people, with their consent and within their wishes.

The reason conservatives worry--absurdly, to many of the same liberals who likened George W. Bush to Hitler--about Obama’s totalitarian potential is that Obama does not seem to understand these very elementary facts about politics and history. 

Instead, he merely comforts us that he is not a dictator, and that he is determined to live within the Constitution’s constraints, however much he (and the people!) might wish otherwise.

Obama and the left avoid admitting their true nature by interposing themselves--as a party, or as individuals in Obama’s case--as the people’s ultimate protection against any real constitutional danger, such as a “war on women” etc. But their true intent is there in Gramsci and Alinksy. 

I'm not sure how Althouse can see through Obama's imperial pretense but not his imperial prerogatives--but that's an argument for another day.


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