The dismantling of the Canadian trucker convoy protest by Trudeau and his henchmen has exposed the agenda of the Western elite. What we are witnessing in Canada is emblematic of the sociopolitical and economic condition of the US and the West more generally.
The abrogation of natural and legal rights, the “legal” prohibition of dissent, the cancellation of small, independent producers (to the benefit of monopolies), the increasing penetration of state and corporate surveillance, the implicitly approved hacking of the names and addresses of dissenters and their supporters, the exposure of dissidents by the press and social media, the confiscation of the property of those who hold “unacceptable views”—these are not only facts in Canada; they are the near future, if not the present, in the US and beyond. Together, these represent the Chinese state model writ large and rolled out across the world, a model engineered, unwittingly or not, by Western elites in the first place.
Now that the mask is off, the naked and effete face of tyranny has been exposed. It is a tyranny of leftist authoritarian patsies—a tyranny of the state, of course, but also of leftist foot soldiers among the so-called intelligentsia and activist base. The latter groups are comprised of those whose values “the clique in power” supposedly represents—the “diversity, equity, and inclusion” crowd with their crowd-sourced opinions. They have been trained by their overlords to view divergence from the orthodoxy of race-baiting and identity politicking über alles as manifest evil. Ironically, along with the powers that be, they deem dissent the equivalent of fascism while statespersons and their servants display their fascistic attitudes and actions at every opportunity. Their disdain for the unwashed is matched only by (and is predicated upon) their own insecurity, given that the basis of their upward socio-occupational adjustment is a special identity status or an unwavering fealty to the agenda. Holding the correct opinions has been lent a moral status denied truckers and the rest of the hoi polloi.
The ironies continue to multiply. Justin Trudeau and his fellow statespersons have likened the protesters to the followers of totalitarian regimes of the past, even while enacting totalitarian measures in the present. “Honk honk” is, don’t you know, “an acronym for ‘Heil Hitler,’” not a trucker’s signal to clear the way for precious cargo and for those who carry it or a symbol of protest against enforced immobility. Such “reversive blockades” and inversions of reality are the sure symptoms of totalitarianism.1
Even socialists parrot the establishment view of the truckers and their protest, a real working-class movement if there ever was one, but not the right kind, as far as they are concerned, because not based on the right creed. “Freedom” is not only not a worthy object—it is the cry of the “far-right,” white supremacist neo-Nazi. “Freedom from necessity” is what the socialists and their comrades extol, as if all economic activity were not predicated on fundamental lack. And necessity is exactly what the truckers represent, a necessity that those the truckers and other workers cater to must deny without reservation.
Freedom has been deemed a nonessential commodity. The US Bill of Rights and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms have been effectively cancelled, revealed as nonbinding palimpsests to be overwritten by the “Emergencies Act” and other state-of-emergency decrees. These “sacred” documents indeed have the status of religious scriptures in a secular state—held by some to be true but inapplicable outside of privately held belief. The principle that the rights these documents acknowledge do not proceed from governments but preexist them has been dismissed with derision. The ruling elite have granted to themselves the prerogative to nullify them on command.
Conspicuously missing from the recent rhetoric and dictates of unfreedom is any mention of concern about the spread of covid. In case any doubt remained, one knows unequivocally now that one was never locked down for one’s “own good,” but rather from a predetermined desideratum to restrain, forbid, and extract obedience from the willing or unwilling subject. Those who saw covid-19 as a pretext for the administration of coercion have been vindicated, whether the lackeys say otherwise or not. Yes, covid-19 can be a serious disease, but the mitigation of disease was never the ultimate object of the covid regime. And those who believed that the rationale for the supposed mitigation measures was earnest must now admit that “the state of exception” will be permanent, as the Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben suggested almost twenty years ago.
Many nevertheless continue to exercise a modicum of self-determination, so long as they are granted the necessary leeway. But with the incessant pull of the establishment overlords and their bureaucratic executors, the noose continually tightens around most necks (despite the apparent remission of covid’s latest variant)—if only psychologically for now. In any case, at every step, one is admonished to consider what is allowed and what is forbidden, whether in terms of economic and political expression, mobility, or even one’s innermost thoughts.2 The existential crisis of freedom is acute, as the state and corporate responses to the truckers’ protest have made eminently clear.
**By Michael Rectenwald