So when I hear the president state the science is “settled” and that he is prepared to act, he sounds like a Grand Inquisitioner who won’t tolerate heresies such as a round Earth or heliocentric solar system. No science is ever quite settled, as more data is constantly gathered and theories of exegesis rebound off each other.

When Eric Holder announces an endless affirmative action and leaves it at that, I want a classically liberal defense along the lines of something like the following: “We believe that preferences must be accorded to those of particular ethnic and racial backgrounds to compensate for past discrimination, whose legacy still makes it difficult even in the present age for particular groups to be treated equitably. And more importantly, we in the government have the ability to ascertain which groups are deserving of such preferences and which not, and also know how to determine which individuals meet precise criteria that earn them official minority status.” Instead, we get something tantamount to “either support something nebulous called affirmative action or you’re a racist.”

Then there is illegal immigration. Again, examine the philology, always the tip-off to an Orwellian rewrite. First we had illegal alien, then illegal immigrant, then undocumented immigrant, and now just immigrant. Such linguistic hocus pocus is necessary given the the present indefensible system of not enforcing the border, ignoring immigration law, and peddling the untruth that almost all illegal aliens fit the DREAM Act categories. Language must accomplish what reality cannot.

But modern-day liberalism is still stranger than all that: after crafting a system of open borders and de facto amnesty that has allowed millions of impoverished from central Mexico to reside in California, the architects of such a system then shut down almost all means to provide illegal aliens a livelihood: water diversions from agriculture, the near extinction of the timber and mining industries, taboos against fracking and horizontal drilling, a virtual shut-down of new housing construction, and on and on.

The result is that the Bay Area liberal looking down from his cupola has pulled up the stairway to his perch. He has essentially decreed that the impoverished will have very little livelihood in an overregulated state other than welfare and entry-level government jobs, and will live an apartheid existence in the Central Valley and L.A. basin, shut out from the coastal corridor where new housing is permanently on hold to any other than the top 2% of the state population.

We should not use the word “progressive” or “liberal,” given that on issues like abortion, affirmative action, the environment, illegal immigration, censorship, and a host of others, the left is reactionary to the core.

In the spirit of changing words to reflect reality, I suggest that we call today’s liberals “regressives” — fundamentalists who are wedded to self-serving deductive doctrines that cannot sustain empirical scrutiny and exist mostly as fossilized theologies of the 1960s.