Progressive. Just the prefix, ‘Pro’ tends to convey a positive association to this term which has become a more politically correct substitute for titles such as ‘liberal’ or ‘socialist’. When someone claims to be a progressive the response is often different from what they might expect if they claimed to be a Liberal, a Socialist or (if they have the courage), a Marxist or Communist. The truth is that the only difference is the name. I know I am stating the obvious and I would not even waste the time with this article if it had not come to my attention that a large number of political and media figures have abandoned the title of liberal for the more “acceptable” progressive.
So, what is the progressive problem. And, perhaps more importantly, where are they progressing to?
For the definition of a political progressive I take the following from Merriam-Webster online:
a : one that is progressive b : one believing in moderate political change and especially social improvement by governmental action -emphasis added
I added the emphasis on the word moderate because, while that is the 'historic definition', the politics and ideology of the persons claiming the title certainly are NOT moderate. In the past progressivism was rooted in the middle class, unlike the earlier populist movement of struggling farmers and workers. Perhaps as a result of their class status, their usually high level of education, and their resulting influence, progressives were also more successful at getting their reforms passed into law, even if some of those reforms failed to accomplish all that the progressives hoped they would. Because of the whitewashed history of the movement liberal socialists are usurping the title of Progressive as a more ‘politically correct’ alternative. Not only is this gutless but it is disingenuous and it plays on the poor knowledge Americans have of their own history.
Progressives past and present have always pursued the same thing. They desire the socialist/Marxist type of centralized government and society that is antithetical to our Constitutional Republican Democracy. Whatever the vision or rhetoric of the progressive era, its practice was a never-ending expansion of the arbitrary powers of the federal government. The truth about Progressivism is that the movement embraced Imperialism, at home and abroad, they were the authors of Prohibition, the Palmer Raids, eugenics, loyalty oaths, wealth re-distribution, price fixing and the removal of God from all forms of Government.
President Woodrow Wilson and his administration are held up as the 'gold standard' for progressivism. During the
Wilson administration the government dramatically
expanded in size while the constitution was regarded as outdated and
unnecessary. In fact, President Wilson so restricted free speech during his
time in office that it resulted in a landmark Supreme Court decision restoring
the first amendment. As is so typical with liberals, with one hand they hold
themselves up as the light keepers for freedom while silencing the voices
of opposition with the other. US
The true fascists are those liberals who are so certain of the mandate to control others for their own good that they forget to question whether or not what they are doing is anything other than making themselves feel good. Modern day Progressives are just a liberal/socialist package with a different label.
For a hard hitting fact based look at what Progressivism means check this out.