George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four was published in 1949 as a novel depicting a dystopian future ruled by a powerful federal government that controlled nearly every aspect of its citizen’s lives. Popularized by conservatives who want smaller government, the book is often referred to in pop-culture and politics for its eery similarity to the current growth of government in the United States. On March 7, U.S. Senate democratic primary candidate, Kathleen Williams, attended a play of Nineteen Eighty-Four at the Warren Miller Performing Arts Center near Big Sky.
Williams’ campaign website indicates that she desires gun control, larger entitlements, and a stronger federal government, all things portrayed as tantamount to the power of ‘Big Brother,’ the antagonist in Orwell’s novel. Big Brother is depicted by Orwell as the epitome of a powerful surveillance state that has removed the citizenry’s ability to protest, either in thought or deed. The story ends sadly, with its protagonist, Winston, successfully brainwashed by Big Brother to sympathize with the powerful government rather than question it.
Williams attended the event after raising cash at a fundraiser hosted by Barbara Rowley and Taylor Middleton in Big Sky. Rowley is the director of Big Sky Broadway, a philanthropist and money-raiser, and freelance writer for the uber-leftist environmentalist organization, the Sierra Club. Middleton is the general manager of the second largest ski resort in the United States, the Big Sky Resort, worth somewhere between 600 million and a billion dollars.
Orwell, understanding well the threat of unlimited government, was no fan of gun control. Orwell wrote…
That rifle hanging on the wall
of the working-class flat or labourer’s cottage
is the symbol of democracy.
It is our job to see that it stays there.
Williams, on the other hand, desires more gun control for the American people, a very 1984-type idea. Regarding Orwellian gun bans, the politician said, “High-capacity magazines and military-style assault rifles need to be confined to controlled environments, like machine guns are today. In Congress, I will support assault weapon controls designed to keep military-style weapons off our streets while protecting responsible owners such as antique collectors and sportsmen.”
It is unknown if Kathleen Williams learned anything about the danger of her views from watching Orwell’s words play out on stage.
Williams is running against Tom Winter in the democratic primary and, if successful, will face one of six Republicans in the general election including Joe Dooling, Timothy Johnson, Debra Lamm, Matt Rosendale, Corey Stapleton, or Mark McGinley.