Rogue One” is the latest offering for the Star Wars franchise, residing somewhere between “Revenge of the Sith” and “A New Hope.” The setting is a galaxy far far away in a time long long ago groaning under the crushing heel of the Empire, But the Galactic Empire is a comic book villain with its storm troopers, star destroyers, and death stars whose sole purpose is to provide a foe for our intrepid rebel heroes to fight against. It does not resemble most tyrannies, with the possible exception of North Korea. The Empire’s sole purpose is to let loose the storm troopers on restive villagers and star destroyers and death stars on planets.

The purpose of tyranny, in this case, is tyranny.

But, as Jonah Goldberg pointed out in his book “Liberal Fascism,” tyrannies, including the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, and America whenever the Democrats are in charge, have a positive purpose. Nazi Germany has universal health care along with the genocide and world wars. The Soviet Union tried to impose the dream of from each according to his ability and to each according to his need. Progressives in America believe in regulations to control business and high taxes to finance social services. These experiments always go wrong. Top down management of a society always falls apart, as Venezuela proves.

We do not know any of the policies of the Empire regarding health care, regulation of trade (though it seems harsh enough to make smugglers like Han Solo thrive), or restrictions on private behavior.

All we know of the Empire is that it massacres people for no apparent reason other than they don’t want to be ruled by the Empire.

Which suggests an added point. The Empire relies solely on terror to survive. Even the most oppressive totalitarian state tries to use active propaganda to buttress its credibility.

No one knows why one should obey imperial authorities except to avoid being put down via blaster fire. Surely benefits exist for being a loyal subject of the Emperor aside avoiding death. Knowing this, one is surprised to find that the Empire took 20 years from its inception to fall.

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