So said Thomas Friedman on "Meet the Press" today. And the funniest part of him saying that wasn't the horrible vision of America as a dictatorship.... though it must be hilarious to think of America as a dictatorship, because famous funnyman Woody Allen said it too: "It would be good… if [President Obama] could be dictator for a few years because he could do a lot of good things quickly." Nor was it the fact that he said it and at the same time tried to deny that he was saying it with all that "I don't want to be China for a second, OK" business.
No, the funniest part was that he said it right after he deplored the way the political center has been "decimated" in part by the "an Internet where I can create a digital lynch mob against you from the left or right if I don't like where you're going." He's reminding us Internet folk of our lynch-mob powers and then throws us the rope to hang him with that wish that "we could just be China for a day." Come on, everybody, let's destroy Thomas Friedman for saying he knows all the "right solutions" and wishes — or would wish if he could get away with it — that we could have a dictatorship to get it done.
A love of autocracy often lurks beneath the liberal veneer. There's this idea that the right answers are known and the people are just too deluded and distorted to see what they are and to vote for them. And Friedman openly deplores the internet, which decimates moderation because there are people like me who who persecute elite truthbearers like him. Ooh! It's a lynch mob. Ha. Sorry. I don't want the rope. I just want to laugh at you.
It's late now. Let me sign off with a crazy old song that supposed to be beautiful but that's really dreadful, the way Friedman's lament is dreadful:
If I ruled the world, every man would be as free as a bird,Nighty-night.
Every voice would be a voice to be heard
Take my word we would treasure each day that occurred
My world would be a beautiful place
Where we would weave such wonderful dreams
My world would wear a smile on its face
Like the man in the moon has when the moon beams
If I ruled the world every man would say the world was his friend
There'd be happiness that no man could end
No my friend, not if I ruled the world
Every head would be held up high
There'd be sunshine in everyone's sky
If the day ever dawned when I ruled the world