Exra Klein, the left-wing editor of the left-wing Vox.com, thinks China’s one-party authoritarian state is a more inspiring model for aspiring countries than America’s loud messy constitutional Republic.
Imagine you’re a small country charting a path between Chinese-style autocracy and American-style democracy — which many are right now. How appealing does our model look to you at the moment?
Certainly, if you’re part of the ruling, political class in those countries and you want to crush your opposition and send them to camps, China looks pretty good. If you’re not part of the ruling class and you aspire to improve your condition and take control over your destiny, America would look better. It’s bitterly clear which of these Mr. Klein identifies himself with.
Mr. Klein loves authoritarianism because Democracy keeps thwarting the Grand Vision of the coastal elites; which for someone like Ezra Klein means imposing one-party progressivism on the entire country: A centrally-planned political economy, Canadian-style bureaucratized health care, a “social justice” based legal system, open borders with instant citizenship, outlawing the private ownership of firearms, and all the other elements imposed from above by those who think they know what’s best for everybody.
But their dreams keep getting thwarted or at least compromised because too many people don’t want to live in their progressive utopia. Some people like the opportunities of the free market and have seen how planned political economies have failed. Some people think that their culture is worth preserving against an onslaught of third world migrants importing theirs. Some people just resent bureaucratic busybodies telling them what to do; it’s what most of our ancestors left other places to get away from.
The place in America that has come closest to realizing Ezra Klein’s Authoritarian Progressive dream is the state of California. Through the mass import of third world culture coupled with progressive authoritarian power grabs, California has effectively become a one-party ultra-progressive state. And the authoritarian impulse runs strong, such that the California Attorney General has declared his intention to prosecute citizens for aiding the Federal Government in enforcing democratically enacted immigration laws. Authoritarian progressives in California are also scheming to confiscate the proceeds from the recent Trump enacted corporate tax cuts.
The type of authoritarianism espoused by Mr. Klein has never resulted in the utopia of his dreams; rather it tends to produce conditions allegedly described by President Trump in a colorful metaphor used in a private meeting on immigration policy.