You, know, I try so hard to see the other side. I try my damnest.
And, then a comment from Brad Torgersen at Sarah Hoyt’s blog makes me wonder–what the hell is the point. I am quoting the whole thing, andlinking to it:
Brad R. Torgersen | August 13, 2015 at 3:36 pm | Reply
Lately, I have thought this: if conservatives believe the purpose of government is to preserve liberty, liberals believe the purpose of government is to perfect the human condition. One of these goals is achievable. The other is a well-intended road to Hell.
The Futurians were an egg-headed bunch of ambitiously political chaps who thought the purpose of science fiction should be to proselytize Marxism, and extoll the virtues of a Marxist future. Many of them went on to be important writers and editors in the field. The consciousness of the field is therefore strongly shaped by these overtly politicized beginnings — to include the Marxist mindset that art should serve the project of improving society.
Now, these weren’t cynically malevolent Stalinists. Rather, they were starry-eyed Walter Duranty-type believers in the inevitability of the redistributive “scientific state” which would end poverty, end wars, end classism, and other “isms” as identified during the Long Struggle to make the world be “better.”
The Futurians — in 1939 — did not have our 20/20 hindsight of the Soviet Experiment, with its gulags and mass graves.
The rage-inducing part is that the great-grandchildren of the Futurians do have that 20/20 hindsight, and they learn absolutely nothing from it. They want to repeat the horror: the intrusive and omnipresent state control, the armies of Cheka police enforcing state-mandated doctrine, the unpersoning, the ritual Mao-style shamings and reeducation, the use of “fair game” tactics against designated targets; and the associates and families of same. Destroying businesses. Destroying lives. A mass chilling effect. And so much worse.
People think gulags can’t happen here.
Most of the Commissars of the new Cheka — the Political Correctness zealots — would happily see camps opened and filled to overflowing. They’ve already figured out how to manipulate campuses with political courts that operate in place of the actual law. They are actively working within the political framework of cities and states and the federal government, to get the laws perverted so that political courts can operate with full state authority. “Hatred” is the new enemy, and HATRED is the label that is applied to “Anything and anyone we don’t like,” according to the Commissars.
Columnist Cathy Young, who saw the Soviet system from the inside, recently excerpted a startlingly grotesque — and increasingly familiar — chapter from a novel, regarding the days of the Soviet world at its terrifying zenith.
This is the passage that caught my eye the most:
what sort of things was he saying before? No, comrades, expelling Shevchuk is easy, but it’s not enough. Not enough! We have to investigate the entire teaching staff and the school administrators, we need to find out how the school could have allowed an unhealthy environment to thrive in which this Shevchuk could operate with impunity. I think, comrades, that we need to send a Party commission to the school. And to identify all the unhealthy elements that may be present.
Let me re-fiddle that for you:
What sort of things were they saying before? No, expelling Correia or Torgersen is easy, but it’s not enough. Not enough! We have to investigate the entire science fiction field and the publishers, we need to find out how the field could have allowed an unsafe environment to thrive in which these cisnormative, sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic authors could operate with impunity. I think, comrades, that we need to send a Hate Crimes commission to Worldcon. And to identify all the unsafe elements that may be present.
So, the field is essentially returning to its Marxist roots. But the starry-eyedness is mostly gone. Now we’re down to the raw hate of the thing: the vengeance-minded outliers and weirdos, determined to punish wrongdoing and wrongthinking and wrongfeeling. Which means, of course, smoking out all the wrongfans having all the wrongfun with their wrongstuff.
If they could clap us in shackles, put us into the boxcars, and send us to the icy wastes to die, they would do it in a heartbeat.
Because — by golly! — somebody has to make things be safe!