I wrote Progressivism: A Primer to explain certain anomalies in the behavior of progressives that I had noticed over a number of years. For example, I found that progressives were rarely amenable to rational persuasion. Facts, logic and even experience rarely changed their minds. You couldn’t really argue with a progressive. You would argue; they would fight. They would get angry, insult and change the subject. They never stopped proposing new government programs, spending and laws, though they appeared to lack a grand vision of what they were trying to accomplish.
To explain all this and more, I propounded an eight-part definition of progressivism. Thus, “progressivism is:
- a mindset about politics;
- that has no rational basis;
- is utopian;
- favors the use of democratic government force to solve human problems;
- holds that government force will produce a better result than voluntary society and the market;
- has no theory of costs, or denies or minimizes the costs of its proposed solutions;
- is a form of self-help therapy against existential angst; and,
- has no limiting principle and therefore tends toward creeping totalitarianism.”
That being the case, progressivism can be seen as a self-imposed mental disability in which the progressive filters out of his perception and cognition any facts that disturb or disrupt the therapeutic function of his political mindset and, at the same time, highlights or exaggerates any facts that would appear to buttress the notion that government action can solve any particular problem.