Tuesday, May 12, 2009

From George Will's Column

In "Democracy in America," Alexis de Tocqueville anticipated people being governed by "an immense, tutelary power" determined to take "sole charge of assuring their enjoyment and of watching over their fate." It would be a power "absolute, attentive to detail, regular, provident and gentle," aiming for our happiness but wanting "to be the only agent and the sole arbiter of that happiness." It would, Tocqueville said, provide people security, anticipate their needs, direct their industries and divide their inheritances. It would envelop society in "a network of petty regulations -- complicated, minute and uniform." But softly: "It does not break wills; it softens them, bends them, and directs them" until people resemble "a herd of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd."

Sound familiar?

1 comment:

clzuhde said...

Like herding sheep. At first they scatter, but provide them with food and they will follow you anywhere. Eventually, as soon as they see you they will come running for the handout. They no longer scatter. They are so trained to getting what they need, when you are ready to butcher them for food all you need to do is show up. They will stand patiently waiting for food, only to get a bullet to the head.