Dogma – a prescribed doctrine proclaimed as unquestionably true by a particular group; a belief system that remains largely unchallenged.
Sometimes dictionary definitions can seem vague or esoteric. But as it pertains to understanding President Obama and his devotees, it’s best to try and understand them through the lenses of left-wing dogma.
And the Anne Romney has “never worked a day in her life” flap is just the latest example of left-wing dogma colliding with mainstream America. Granted the strategic insulting of Mrs. Romney last week originated from Hillary Rosen, a liberal Democrat pundit, and not President Obama himself (although Ms. Rosen claims that she’s received numerous calls from the White House echoing support for her efforts to malign Mitt Romney’s wife). Yet it in the week prior, President Obama noted at a White House forum on women that in the early days of his marriage and career, he and his wife Michelle didn’t “have the luxury for her not to work.”
To those of us in “fly over country,” it may seem far-fetched to believe that two graduates of elite private east coast universities and an Ivy League law school, and who are stalwarts in what they call the “pro choice” political agenda, were left struggling without any economic choices when they started a family. But this is to view matters in overly literal, concrete terms. On the left side of the aisle, dogma comes first; reality is secondary, and one’s perception of reality is always shaped by that dogma.
Thus, the attitude reflected by President Obama and Hillary Rosen is illustrative of at least a couple of those “prescribed doctrines” understood to be “unquestionably true.” For one, women never freely choose to not be on a career track. Male oppression keeps women out of the marketplace, and, therefore, women who are only mothers are actually victims, and are in need of government programs (think affirmative action, “anti-discrimination” laws, etc..) to correct the injustices done to them.
If you live outside the confines of this dogma as I do, you may be thinking “but wait! Some women actually choose motherhood before career, and some husbands make tremendous sacrifices to allow that stay-at-home mom thing to happen.” But this leads us to another item of “unquestionably true” dogma: any woman who was truly being “herself” would never freely choose motherhood above all else.
On the contrary, a woman who thinks this way is being held hostage to ancient, patriarchal, male-dominated ideas – we’ll call it “ideological victimization” that probably happened within the context of an unenlightened religious setting – and she is need of a swift rebuke, if not more government intervention. Left-wing dogma always tells us that mere motherhood is not really working. That may be painful for some women, but such confrontation is really for a woman’s own good, and certainly adds to the “collective good” of the dogmatic community.
Are you beginning to understand how left-wing dogma works? Here’s another example of it: one should always assume the worst about the U.S. military, except when it is being commanded by a Democrat President and when it is participating in a multilateral mission (U.S. troops deployed side-by-side with troops from other countries).
Because of the “unquestionably true” nature of these assumptions, left-wing America was always going to hold a grudge about having troops in Iraq. The mission in Iraq began with Republican President George W. Bush, and while the “troop surge” was implemented by Barack Obama, it nonetheless was George W Bush’s idea (gasp!).
While not-so-dogmatic Americans may be wondering what is happening to American interests in Iraq since the troop draw-down there, left-wing America is satisfied that our foreign policy is more in line with proper dogma – and current conditions in Iraq don’t matter.
And recall from last month the very dogmatic visit to Afghanistan by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta. Before American military personnel were permitted to enter the room where Secretary Panetta spoke, they were forced to disarm, and leave their weapons outside. The Administration later noted that the reason for this was because there were Afghani troops in the room who were required to disarm, so therefore the U.S. troops needed to be treated equally with the Afghani’s.
The multilateral mission in Afghanistan is, itself, in line with left-wing dogma – Barack Obama said during his first campaign that the mission Afghanistan was the “real war” we needed to be engaged in, rather than Iraq (so it must be true). And by virtue of being “multilateral,” well – suffice it to say that the Afghanistan mission fulfills two dogmatic requirements.
Yet it would violate another component of dogma if U.S. troops were treated as though they were superior, or more trustworthy, than the members of any other military. Thus, the U.S. military was treated exactly the same as the Afghani troops when Mr. Panetta visited, so it was all dogmatically good.
President Obama’s dogma is often met with opposition on main street America. But until we elect a new President, expect the “disconnect” to continue.
Austin Hill is an Author, Consultant, and Host of "Austin Hill's Big World of Small Business," a syndicated talk show about small business ownership and entrepreneurship. He is Co-Author of the new release "The Virtues Of Capitalism: A Moral Case For Free Markets." , Author of "White House Confidential: The Little Book Of Weird Presidential History," and a frequent guest host for Washington, DC's 105.9 WMAL Talk Radio.