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This article is a pre-amble to the main point. Authoritarianism in America is becoming more like authoritarianism in Communist China. This first phase has focused on using government power against conservatives. If the present trends continue, those who used the system of government against conservatives will soon find themselves becoming victims. To be smarmy, swatting will increasingly look like American authoritarianism with Chinese characteristics. What that begins to looks like is described below.

The lockdowns in China during November 2022 over covid were a replay of what an authoritarian government can do to you. Has anyone learned anything? No. Politics trumps facts, science, and reality. Worse, in this case, this insistence on baseless lockdowns crossed a line. The protests were surprisingly large and spread across many cities. There is, though, a different point to make than just the oppression that was going on. The law of unintended consequences kicks in here.

There is a video from China which shows the door to an apartment building being welded shut so the residents are trapped inside. Reportedly, it was done on the basis of a tip called in that a family in the building had covid. How is this different from prank 911 calls in America that call out SWAT teams? Neither would have made any determinations or followed any “proper” procedures other than simply taking action.

Whoever did that in China may or may not have had a way of knowing whether the family had covid. It could have been done out of sheer spite. Such free use of “snitching” on a neighbor we can now see has unintended consequences. This would have been the same decision made which led to the death of ten people in an apartment building fire in China which is claimed to have set off the riots in China over lockdowns.

Also, unknown from the mere video is whether or not other residents in the apartment building were removed for their safety. There is a claim that as a matter of course, every family in these buildings are expected to have at least 14 days of food and water. Whatever the circumstance, the very idea that someone could just make a phone call and cause a family to be locked in a building in order to quarantine them is fundamentally outrageous.

However, it would appear there is a limit to this. The riots made clear that swatting CCP style will lead to pushback by the populace. What the reader needs to do is hold up two thoughts: Unjustified and random lockdowns versus public rage. At this point in time, it has been nearly three years where the CCP has alternately locked down and lifted lock downs only to reimpose them all over again. Why the CCP does also not see the secondary effect on their economy remains a mystery.

The failure to see secondary effects also suggests Premier Xi thinks too highly of his capacity for control. Instead he needs to consult the wisdom of Plato in The Republic. He noted in the back of the book that among the several types of government, a dictatorship is the most fragile. When power is concentrated in a few hands, it does not take a lot of people to topple a dictatorship – hence the authoritarian rule. However, there is an argument to be made that there are two types of authoritarianism ultimately feeding off of each other: American and Chinese.

American and Chinese Authoritarianism

The basic violation of your God-given rights is the first mark of authoritarianism. Now, in Communist China you have no rights. But the actions taken by American and Chinese authoritarians are indistinguishable from each other. Whether it is the local police or a Chinese communist official, the reaction to a piece of actionable information is the same. The local police get a tip about drug dealers in a house. They don’t bother to check, they just bust in. Also think of the many trumped up charges by the FBI to break into the homes of conservatives. American authoritarians have done everything they can to work around existing “law”. They will tell you “we don’t need no stinkin’ search warrants.” The Chinese communist official gets a tip about a family in an apartment having covid. They don’t bother to check anything. They just weld the doors shut.

This failure to check themselves first defines the authoritarian mindset – “We can do whatever we want to you.” The political thickets in America continue to stymie efforts at real reform. The journey to justice in China will continue for a long time. At least in America, the call to action is to continue to point out these transgressions and fight them. Fight them by embarrassing the transgressors in the press, and in public, If necessary, sue them too.

The take home message for the reader is that our Founding Fathers understand the drift of authoritarianism in any government. The U.S. Constitution is supposed to slow them down. It is up to We The People to take care of the rest.


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