Ed Driscoll

Victor Davis Hanson on Peak Orwell

“America, of all places, is becoming Orwellian,” VDH writes:

The nightmare societies portrayed in the George Orwell novels 1984 and Animal Farm gave us the word “Orwellian.” That adjective reflects a vast government’s efforts not just to deceive and control the people, but also to do so by reinventing the meaning of ordinary words while rewriting the past itself.

America, of all places, is becoming Orwellian. The president repeatedly reminds the American people that under his leadership, the U.S. has produced a record level of new oil and natural gas. But didn’t Obama radically curtail leases for just such new energy production on federal lands? Have the edicts on the barn wall of Animal Farm been changed again, with the production of new oil and gas suddenly going from bad to good?

Does anyone remember that the Affordable Care Act was sold on the premise that it would guarantee retention of existing health plans and doctors, create 4 million new jobs, and save families $2,500 a year in premiums, all while extending expanded coverage to more people at a lower cost?

Only in Orwell’s world of doublespeak could raising taxes, while the costs of millions of health plans soars, be called “affordable.” Is losing your existing plan and doctor a way of retaining them?

The Congressional Budget Office recently warned that Obamacare would “keep hours worked and potential output during the next 10 years lower than they would be otherwise.” That nonpartisan verdict should be bad news for workers.

Not in our brave new world. The Obama administration says it is pleased that workers will now be freed from “job lock.” What is job lock — a made-up Newspeak word right out of 1984? Work fewer hours, make less money, and create fewer outputs — and be happy.

Oh, and speaking of Orwellian imagery, as Ed Morrissey writes at Hot Air, “Senate Democrats aren’t interested in fixing the campaign-finance system.  They’re interested in getting the IRS to intimidate their opponents and fix their own electoral woes in the midterms. That’s just pathetic, especially for a party that controls one chamber in a branch of government that should be on guard against usurpation of legislative power by the executive.”

As Ann Coulter said yesterday, “We’re living in a different country now, and I can’t recall moving!”

Peak Orwell isn’t sustainable, but as Orwell himself warned in 1984, its corrosive effects bring lasting — possibly irreparable harm to a once liberal — in the traditional definition of the word — nation. Set aside the fictional and militaristic 1984, just compare the Britain of today to the Britain of 1941, as Orwell described in “England Your England.”

Exit question:

Update: Good news — the chocolate ration’s been increased to 25 grams this year!