HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » hifiguy » Journal
Page: 1 2 Next »

hifiguy

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Minnesota
Home country: US
Current location: Minneapolis
Member since: Fri Mar 11, 2011, 02:20 PM
Number of posts: 16,444

Journal Archives

Depends on what they believe.

Nearly every significant philosophy, including many that are secular, such as Buddhism and Confucianism, has expressed the basic thought of treat others as you would wish to be treated. Follow that. The rest is just invented, obfuscation, justification and dogma.

I am a big fan of Sam Harris and the late physicist/philosopher Victor Stenger, Stenger's God - The Failed Hypothesis lays out all the reasons and physics explaining why a god is neither likely nor necessary. His reasoning is flawlessly logical and supported by the science.

I am a hopelessly logical and evidence-based thinker - I am Asperger's. But if people want to believe in something "out there" as Jefferson observed it neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg. A lot of believers are peaceable and reasonable people who try to live according to the above maxim. I spend zero time worrying about those people. But many others are not.

The inescapable problem is that the "holy books" are all soaked in the blood of innocents, non-believers and other-believers. Exterminating those inconvenient folks as a matter of purifying and propagating the "true faith" is woven into the woof and warp of those books. Which will provide justification for religious war as long as those books are looked to as some authoritative guide to the way humans should act. It is time to move on.

A repost/expansion on the fall of Madison's Republic

At the request of several DUers I am reposting an expanded version of an earlier post. It's a long piece.

The New Fascism – A Primer

We are confronting ever more rapidly creeping fascism in the United States. It's not your father's or grandfather's fascism but it is fascism all the same. Fascism, like all ideas, has evolved with the times and makes use of the technologies and methods which are most efficacious at any given time. It is no longer necessary to use the methods that Nazi Germany used to obtain a like hold on the population and implement a fairly hard form of fascism, say a 7.5 or 8 on a scale where fascist Germany represents a 10. I set out the reasons why I believe this to be true herein. This is NOT intented to be anything more than a description, and shorthand terms are used to express concepts that should be readily apparent to anyone on this board. Do not waste your time nit-picking individual words or arguments as I will NOT respond to you. Nor do I have any suggestions at this time about how to forestall or prevent what seems as an inevitable descent into open New Fascism. This is a think piece about how we have come to be where we are, which I wrote in a couple of hours and nothing more.

The Project And Its Historical Antecedents

What the corporatists have in mind for their endgame might be best described as an unholy fusion of fascism and feudalism. Feudalism can be accurately defined as a system based on the preservation of a small number of aristocrats against the poverty of the masses of peons and peasants. Feudal lords did have, at least in theory, certain obligations to their peasants based on the religious mores of the times. It was considered bad form to let one's peasants starve. Though these theoretical obligations were honored as often in their breach as not, the obligatio was at least theoretically there. Fascism could not be better defined than it was by Benito Mussolini's collaborator, Giovanni Gentile, who statedin “The Doctrine of Fascism” that "Fascism should more properly be called corporatism, since it is the merger of state and corporate power." (This quote was later and erroneously attributed to Mussolini himself.) Mussolini himself also believed that fascism “has a religious element” in that it is a pure belief system not open to question.

These are the two models the plutocracy in all its parts, including but not limited to international high finance and the military-industrial-intelligence complex that has given rise to the total surveillance “security state” of the last decade or two, has fused as the model for the system they are imposing step-by-step on the US with the active collaboration of both the Democratic and Republican parties. The latter is more open about its allegiance to the New Fascism, but it is abundantly apparent that the institutional Democratic Party has drifted into open pursuit of the same goals over the last thirty years. The one and only difference between the two is one – the Democratic New Fascists will boil the peasantry – the frogs in the kettle – a bit more slowly, but boil them they will. Make no mistake about that.

Where the founding fathers thought that the goal of proper governance was the facilitation of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, the New Fascists believe that the peasantry – in other words everyone not them or in their immediate service – is entitled to strife, squalor, puberty and the freedom to expire. The nominal obligations of feudalism assuredly do NOT exist in the New Fascism. The “people” are nothing but a mass of fungible, easily replaceable serfs whose sole purpose is to serve and enrich those at the top – the plutocrats and warmongers. Everyone else is utterly disposable and their very existence depends on the whims of the New Fascist leadership class. And your individual number may come up at any time once the project has been fully implemented.

The Mechanisms of Implementation

Control mechanisms and media psyops are generally much more subtle now than they were in 1930s Germany. They are not always, but the craziest and most Nazi-like elements of the propaganda – right-wing talk/hate radio and Fox News – are reserved for the stupidest and most low-information elements of the populace. They are the best targets because they are the most susceptible and the least likely to possess even rudimentary critical thinking skills. They are also the most xenophobic elements of the population. That they distrust intelligent people, science and facts makes them a perfect audience for such materials. To draw a not-perfect but accurate enough analogy, those media elements are the counterpoints to the NSDAP's Volkischer Beobachter, Der Angriff, and Die Sturmer. They exist to rile up the rabid animals.

It is necessary to understand and accept the cold fact that this is a deeply stupid country and for the most part always has been. Read the late Joe Bageeant's “Deer Hunting With Jesus” if you doubt me. Bageant wants to love, and in a way does love, his own “Scots-Irish mutt people” as he describes them, but cannot forgive them their self-willed ignorance and profoundly self-destructive natures.

There is, then, a huge pre-existing audience for the kind of propaganda the New Fascists are using to pave their way. A significant share of the populace – I've read estimates as high as 40% - is in effect functionally illiterate. Needless to say these people have literally zero critical thinking skills. They believe what their opinion leaders – talk radio, Fox, preachers – tell them to believe and question nothing. These people exist in a paranoid, twilight world where they have already internalized these messages and the Limbaughs, O'Reillys, Hannitys and Savages serve as constant reinforcers of these already-accepted concepts.

The US has always been, in large part, a bigoted and insecure place. As constitutional scholar and theorist John Hart Ely observed decades ago, tar, feathers and running people out of town on a rail is every bit as much a part of the American cultural heritage as the declaring of inalienable rights. It has also been a profoundly stupid place. Distrust of educated persons, indeed of education itself and the very process of critical thinking, has been a part of this country's zeitgeist as long as it has existed. And as the late humorist and razor-keen observer of the human zoo George Carlin once observed, think of the “average person” and remember that half of the population is dumber than that.

The more insidious propagandization comes through the “major news media”, especially television, which is controlled by a handful of companies owned by, surprise!, the corporatists and tenth-percenters. The propaganda that comes from these outlets is quite a bit more sophisticated than the openly racist, homophobic and flat-out paranoid/schizophrenic “information” put out by the above sources. It is carefully nuanced to reflect the opinions of the corporate masters. Concepts like “centrism” “bipartisanship” and “expert opinion” are pushed constantly and defined within limits that are exceedingly narrow and which have been shifting ever more rightward for the last 35 years. The Democratic party is now, as an institution, somewhat to the right of the Republican parth of the pre-Reagan 1970s. That is no accident. Those messages are not directed at the sub-literate cave trolls that make up the base of the voters the New Fascists are seeking to woo; they serve to reassure the slightly brighter low-to-moderate information populace and reassure them that things are really alright while the skids are being slowly but inexorably greased for the final descent into operationalized New Fascism. It is all meant to distract the frogs from the increasingly hot water in which they are being cooked. And it works, which is not surprising. Billions are spent on it, and it is extremely skillfully packaged. Mainstream propaganda ihas slowly lulled the non-crazy masses into a state of unquestioning acceptance, if not the Absolute Belief of the troglodytes.

The other primary tool for the propagandization manipulation of the masses, particularly the cave trolls described above, is religion. It is ungortunate in a way that there never was a state religion in the United States. Centralized state religions were easily written off as the accompanists of corrupt regimes in the 18th and 19th centuries. Intellectuals from Marat and Voltaire to Adam Weishaupt rejected them out of hand as rationalizers of the misery of the masses. Few Western European countries are religious in significant ways today, and they are certainly not religious in anything resembling the way the US. The identification of the state with a church served to breed a deep and justified cynicism about both.

The religious freedom guaranteed with the best intentions by Madison and Jefferson in the Bill of Rights foresaw that freedom being exercised by the likes of Quakers and the Roger Williamses of the world, not by inbred snake-handling morons or jet-owning, faith-healing charlatans using mega-”churches”, the media and the internet as a tool for the twin purposes of fleecing the gullible of their last dime while converting them to a belief system that is, essentially New Fascist in nature though clothed in lily-white Republican jebus. Any nut could and did, under the protections of the First Amendment's Religion Clauses, pick up a bible and declare themselves a preacher handing down "authoritative truth." Say what you will about the Catholic Church, it at least required its priests to be educated in a meaningful way. American hucksters and charlatans immediately picked up on something Frank Zappa said in 1981 - “It is easy with the bible to pretend you are in showbiz” - and ran with it all the way to their Cayman Islands bank after stopping off at the Mercedes dealership.

But people believe the obvious bullshit these swindlers sell because they are, to repeat, basically stupid and have nothing in their heads to use in the critical evaluation of claims of any kind, be they those selling beer or jebus. And people, especially people who aren't bright enough to get their heads around the nature of the universe as it is want to believe. And when they offered something simple in which to believe be it phony religion or the evil of the scary other: the poor people/African-Americans/Latinos/uppity women/loudmouthed queers and f*****s, they lap it up like a cat does cream. Particularly when their authority figures encourage and reinforce a belief that “those people” are responsible for all the evils of the world and their own inability to advance their positions in life.

Scapegoating is, of course, as old as politics. The New Fascists have built not a different kind of machine than has been used in the past but a far slicker, well-funded, and omnipresent machine that exists in every corner of modern life. Its more sophisticated manifestations are subtle enough to seem plausible to those in the middle who don't pay a lot of attention. And it works. Leave the equivalent of “The Eternal Jew” for the Limbaughs, the Robertsons and the Hagees, The New Fascists have bigger fish to fry by propagandizing the middle. That's where the power is and they have made their methods work. (Yes voter disenfranchisement is part of the plan, too, but that is beyond the scope of this essay and will be increasingly unnecessary as the propaganda convinces more).

What is remarkable is that many in the mushy middle have been converted into true believers, largely by the combination of secular and religulous propaganda. It seems safe to opine that around 40% of the populatin of the US has been intentionally and deliberately reduced to a state so pathetic they would happily vote to liquidate themselves if they were told it was the will of lily-white, blue-eyed, Caucasian Republican Jebus and the almighty R party that they do so.

Offer them a 50% pay cut and a subsistence existence to get those ever-evil, parasitical “others” back where they're "supposed" to be in the eyes of Republican/New Fascist jebusand they'd be on it like a duck on a june bug as long as they could keep their guns. They would drink the Jim Jones koolaid and beg for, indeed demand, more. Never before has there been so carefully manufactured such a huge group of people who are such seelf-annihilating zilches they will destroy themselves with a smile on their faces. That is terrifying and has no real precedent in human history of which I am aware. These people aren't like the masses of Germans who "went along to get along" - this is a huge base of lemming-like "people" whose true-believing minds function at about the same level of a six-year old that still believes in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. The belief is absolute and the critical faculties are ZERO, facts be damned.

The ironic and amusing part of this is that the New Fascists do not give one damn about most of the issues that so excite and arouse the cave trolls. If anyone is stupid enough to believe that a Lloyd Blankfein type cares whether gay couples can get married or people smoke weed legally you are living in a fool's paradise. The New Fascists are concerned only with Money and Power. Though if in time the cave trolls are given their head as a payoff by the NF Powers That Be – and it just might happen – then all bets are off.

Another reason that the New Fascists are so successful is that they hold absolute power over all the major media, as noted above. This absolute control is carefully calibrated and infinitely careful to systematically marginalize everything and everyone that doesn't serve their corporate fascist vision not by eliminating them but by making them completely invisible in the mass media. And if they are not covered by the mass media, it is obvious to all but the questioners that such individuals are obviously not Serious Persons whose opinions need to be considered. Dissidents electronically disappear rather than literally disappearing, as was the methodology of fascists past, but the effect is exactly the same. Nothing can be allowed to interfere with the media propaganda, which as Goebbels proved, is by far the best and most cost-effective way of controlling the masses. Were there a great beyond, Doktor Goebbels would be smiling down therefrom and rubbing his hands together in glee. He would be immensely proud of his intellectual heirs.

The Crucial Differences: Why The New Fascism Will Work, At Least Over the Next Twenty Years

The New Fascists don't need concentration camps, which might attract public or international attention, which might be Bad For Business. They already possess the technologies and willingness necessary to spy on everyone in the country. Dissent need not be stamped out on by massive shows of lethal force when small shows of non-lethal force are just as effective in communicating the central message – resistence is utterly futile – via their propaganda outlets. The message that even small-scale mobilizations such as Occupy can be effortlessly be brushed aside and dismissed, combined with the media selling of the mobilized as borderline or fringe “nuts” can do the job, why wast the money building concentration camps. The desired effect is obtained for less of the holy grail and Only Thing That Matters: MONEY (take your hat off and kneel when the Holy Word is spoken, pigs!). Effective mobilization is a thing of the past. There's a damned good reason the police departments have been militarised into Super-Gestapos and this is it. Individual dissenters, even giants like Chomsky, pose no threat at all, so why bother publicizing them by arresting them? Media erasure is much easier and cheaper.

The New Fascists also don't need messy, hard-to-hide, smelly death camps. The new mechanisms of implementation make them far too noticeable even if only to the marginalized Chris Hedges of the world. It is far easier to passively cull the herd by making health care and the necessities of life inaccessible to the "undesirables." Then they can just die off naturally with no awkward questions being asked. Better yet, they can be blamed for their own deaths. They were failures, and we don't want parasites as free riders on the grand and glorious experiment that is 'murkin' capitalism now, do we? And if necessary Goldman and its ilk can always engineer the necessary commodity shortages to facilitate starvation as an adjunct, and do it all in the name of free-market capitalism. Nothing can be done about the omniscient "free market." Suck it up or die, preferably the latter.

The final piece of the New Fascists' machinery is the freshly emerged doctrine of War Now, War Forever. There are uncountable trillions of dollars to be squeezed from the sheeple, at least for a few more decades, by the military-industrial-intelligence complex. And they will extract every last penny. There will always be a new, trumped-up or in some cases actively created enemy, (and just roll that concept around in your head for a moment or two to realize what it implies about the amount of control the New Fascists already have) the most dangerous since the last one, and if all else fails, drag out Zombie Hitler in a new costume like His Chimperial Highness did with the essentially harmless, save to those under his actual rule, Saddam Hussein. It will never end.

Perhaps you think I am overstating the case? I don't think so. Duer woo me with science assembled this terrifying list of monstrosities on which the two 'contesting” parties agree in full upon. Read it and tell me that the road to the full implementation of The New Fascism is not already paved. We already live in a soft fascist kleptocracy//kakistocracy. They just haven't put the eyebrows on it yet.

Maybe Hillary can finish the job. She certainly seems up to it.

Nothing will change until planetary catastrophe intervenes - and it will via global climate change, comet/asteroid strike, or nuclear exchange - and clears the way for humans to consider ways of thinking that do not involve capitalist exploitation, the worship of money and the belief in gods which can be demonstrated to not exist.

The List compiled by DUer woo me with science

Mass spying on Americans? Both parties support it.
Handing the internet to corporations? Both parties support it.
Austerity for the masses? Both parties support it.
Cutting social safety nets? Both parties support it.
Corporatists in the cabinet? Both parties support it.
Tolling our interstate highways? Both parties support it.
Corporate education policy? Both parties support it.
Bank bailouts? Both parties support it.
Ignoring the trillions stashed overseas? Both parties support it.
Trans-Pacific Job/Wage Killing Secret Agreement? Both parties support it.
TISA corporate overlord agreement? Both parties support it.
Drilling and fracking? Both parties support it.
Wars on medical marijuana instead of corrupt banks? Both parties support it.
Deregulation of the food industry? Both parties support it.
GMO's? Both parties support it.
Privatization of the TVA? Both parties support it.
Immunity for telecoms? Both parties support it.
"Looking forward" and letting war criminals off the hook? Both parties support it.
Deciding torturers are patriots? Both parties support it.
Militarized police and assaults on protesters? Both parties support it.
Indefinite detention? Both parties support it.
Drone wars and kill lists? Both parties support it.
Targeting of journalists and whistleblowers? Both parties support it.
Private prisons replacing public prisons? Both parties support it.
Unions? Both parties view them with contempt.
Trillion dollar increase in nuclear weapons. Both parties support it.
New war in Iraq. Both parties support it.
New war in Syria. Both parties support it.
Carpet bombing of captive population in Gaza. Both parties support it.

Don't think they wouldn't if they could, but they don't NEED to anymore

It is no longer necessary to use the methods that Nazi Germany used to obtain a like hold on the population and implement a comparatively hard form of fascism. I set out the reasons why I believe this to be true herein.

Control mechanisms and media psyops are much more subtle now than they were in 1930s Germany and a significant share of the populace - possibly as high as 40% exists in a paranoid, twilight world of pre-brainwashing/conditioning. Pre-existing bigotry and the impossible-to-overstate effects of religulous dumbing-down have already pushed that segment of the population into a willingness to believe literally anything they are told by their authority figures. They have been reduced to a state so pathetic they would happily vote to liquidate themselves if they were told it was the will of lily-white, blue-eyed, Caucasian Republican Jebus and the almighty R party that they do so to get the uppity blacks, latinos, women and gays back where they're "supposed" to be. Offer them a 50% pay cut and a subsistence existence to realize that goal and they'd be on it like a duck on a june bug. Never before has there been so carefully manufactured a group of people who are such absolute zilches they will destroy themselves with a smile on their faces. That is terrifying and has no real precedent in human history of which I am aware. These people aren't like the masses of Germans who "went along to get along" - this is a huge base of lemming-like "people" whose true-believing minds function at about the same level of a six-year old that still believes in SANTA CLAUS and the Easter Bunny. The belief is absolute and the critical faculties are ZERO, facts be damned.

Another reason that TPTB are so successful is that they hold absolute power over all the major media. Which systematically marginalizes everything and everyone that doesn't serve their corporate fascist vision not by eliminating them but by making them invisible in the mass media. They electronically disappear rather than literally disappearing and the effect is the same. Nothing can be allowed to interfere with the media propaganda, which as Goebbels proved, is by far the best and most cost-effective way of controlling the masses

They don't need concentration camps, which might attract public or international attention - they can already spy on everyone in the country. Dissent need not be stamped out on a mass level when it cannot mobilize effectively, and the responses to Occupy showed that effective mobilization is now a thing of the past. Individual dissenters, even giants like Chomsky, pose no threat, so why bother publicizing them by arresting them? Media erasure is much easier and cheaper.

They don't need messy, hard-to-hide death camps - they can passively cull the herd by making health care inaccessible to the "undesirables." Goldman can always engineer the necessary commodity shortages to facilitate starvation as an adjunct, and do it all in the name of free-market capitalism. Nothing can be done about the omniscient "free market." Suck it up or die, preferably the latter.

Two actual similarities do need to be mentioned. (1) The militarized police are starting to look an awful lot like a super-Gestapo, accountable to absolutely no one; (2) "War Forever" is now the official state policy.

Why the Republican/fascist analogy is both right and wrong

It is no longer necessary to use the methods that Nazi Germany used to obtain a like hold on the population and implement a comparatively hard form of fascism. I set out the reasons why I believe this to be true herein.

Control mechanisms and media psyops are much more subtle now than they were in 1930s Germany and a significant share of the populace - possibly as high as 40% exists in a paranoid, twilight world of pre-brainwashing/conditioning. Pre-existing bigotry and the impossible-to-overstate effects of religulous dumbing-down have already pushed that segment of the population into a willingness to believe literally anything they are told by their authority figures. They have been reduced to a state so pathetic they would happily vote to liquidate themselves if they were told it was the will of lily-white, blue-eyed, Caucasian Republican Jebus and the almighty R party that they do so to get the uppity blacks, latinos, women and gays back where they're "supposed" to be. Offer them a 50% pay cut and a subsistence existence to realize that goal and they'd be on it like a duck on a june bug. Never before has there been so carefully manufactured a group of people who are such absolute zilches they will destroy themselves with a smile on their faces. That is terrifying and has no real precedent in human history of which I am aware. These people aren't like the masses of Germans who "went along to get along" - this is a huge base of lemming-like "people" whose true-believing minds function at about the same level of a six-year old that still believes in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. The belief is absolute and the critical faculties are ZERO, facts be damned.

Another reason that TPTB are so successful is that they hold absolute power over all the major media. Which systematically marginalizes everything and everyone that doesn't serve their corporate fascist vision not by eliminating them but by making them invisible in the mass media. They electronically disappear rather than literally disappearing and the effect is the same. Nothing can be allowed to interfere with the media propaganda, which as Goebbels proved, is by far the best and most cost-effective way of controlling the masses

They don't need concentration camps, which might attract public or international attention - they can already spy on everyone in the country. Dissent need not be stamped out on a mass level when it cannot mobilize effectively, and the responses to Occupy showed that effective mobilization is now a thing of the past. Individual dissenters, even giants like Chomsky, pose no threat, so why bother publicizing them by arresting them? Media erasure is much easier and cheaper.

They don't need messy, hard-to-hide death camps - they can passively cull the herd by making health care inaccessible to the "undesirables." Goldman can always engineer the necessary commodity shortages to facilitate starvation as an adjunct, and do it all in the name of free-market capitalism. Nothing can be done about the omniscient "free market." Suck it up or die, preferably the latter.

Two actual similarities do need to be mentioned. (1) The militarized police are starting to look an awful lot like a super-Gestapo, accountable to absolutely no one; (2) "War Forever" is now the official state policy.

It is still fascism, without question, but it is a subtler fascism that has learned the lessons of history all too well.

Why do we not hear political rhetoric like this anymore?

“Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.” Abraham Lincoln

“The essence of any struggle for healthy liberty has always been . . . to take from some one man or class of men the right to enjoy power, or wealth, or position, or immunity, which has not been earned by service to his or their fellows.

The Constitution guarantees protections to property, and we must make that promise good. But it does not give the right of suffrage to any corporation. The true friend of property, the true conservative, is he who insists that property shall be the servant and not the aster of the commonwealth, who insists that the creature is of man's making shall be the servant and not the master of the man who made it. The citizens of the United States must effectively control the mighty commercial forces which they have themselves called into being.

(The people must insist on) complete and effective publicity of corporate affairs

I rank dividends below human character. If our political institutions were perfect, they would absolutely prevent the political domination of money in any part of our affairs We need to make our political representatives more quickly and sensitively responsive to the people whose servants they are . . . It is particularly important that all moneys received or expended for campaign purposes, not only after election, but before election as well . . .”

Theodore Roosevelt, The “New Nationalism” speech, Denver, Colorado, 29 August, 1910

One of the principle features of TR's New Nationalism was a call for “a judiciary that favored individual over property rights.” Edmund Morris, Colonel Roosevelt, p, 109 (2010).

Republicans and Frankenstein movies

It is now readily apparent to anyone living in the reality based world that the Republican party now resembles nothing so much as the last act of a Frankenstein movie. You know how it goes - Doctor Frankenstein creates a monster from mis-matched cadaver parts and a criminal mind and proceeds to imbue it with a sort of artificial life. In our little scenario the part of Doctor F. is played by KKKarl Rove, the Kochroach brothers, Sheldon Adelson and their ilk. The monster is played by the religulously insane, the Randians and the tealiban.

The problem is always the same in Frankenstein movies: the monster winds up running amok, causing all sorts of holy hell, often killing a few villagers in the process. Eventually said villagers - played in this case by the voters of the US - wise up and head for the good doctor's castle, let's call it the Republican party, with pitchforks and torches, to end the havoc. Which is the point we are at today.

So what is Doctor Frankenstein to do? The monster is now knocking down the castle around his ears and the mob is at the gates. Does he kill the monster? If so, how? Does he blow up the castle and run for his life, in the probably vain hope that he can escape from the furious mob and that the monster will be killed? If he stays, the monster will knock down the castle and kill him.

There are no good solutions, Doc. You are terminally fucked. Kiss your ass goodbye.

The Republican Party is now a Frankenstein movie.

They created this monster, which is now blind yet immensely angry and strong and is slowly destroying the Baron's castle that is the Repuke party. They have two choices - kill the monster before it destroys the castle completely and brings it down around their heads, or blow up the castle themselves and run like hell, hoping that they get away and the monster gets killed.

They are completely fked either way.

The 1%ers created and revved up the bigot/tealiban/fundy wackadoodle wing thinking it would somehow benefit them. Which proves the 1% ain't near as smart as we sometimes give them credit for being.

Style and Substance - What it means to be a Democrat

I am posting this here because it seems the only safe place to do so. Not because I use any forbidden words, but because of the poisonous atmosphere that has been generated by a small group of posters across the rest of DU. Intelligent and thoughtful comments appreciated.
_____________

There is a certain group of people of DU - and everyone knows who they are - who have made a logically fatal miscalculation in their tactics of constant disruption and attempts to sow the seeds of division at this site, and that is a pathetically misguided confusion of window-dressing with structure.

I have been a left-wing Democrat since I was old enough to understand politics. I have never failed to support and vote for the most liberal Democratic candidate available as a choice in every election in the last thirty-plus years. I supported the ERA back in the day, and support for it was a litmus test for getting my vote. All the candidates I have supported have been staunchly pro-choice, pro-equal rights, pro-pay equity and for the expansion of health care and on those issues the candidates for which I have voted share my ideals, convictions and goals. As one DUer recently posted, we must always continue to “work on the real problems of unequal pay, unaffordable day care, the glass ceiling, attacks on reproductive rights, lack of affordable medical care, and a whole long list of inequalities that need to be corrected.” Those are the issues being fought for in the only real ground that matters in everyday life - in the places where laws are made.

LadyHawkAZ recently stated that “Feminism seeks to counter by achieving equality, by legal and social advancement as well as empowering women in traditionally male areas (workforce, politics, sexuality etc).” I certainly agree with and endorse this statement wholeheartedly and I cannot imagine anyone who cares enough about liberal/progressive/Democratic politics to be here would find one word of that with which to disagree.

I am sickened by the fact that Repukes want to defund Planned Parenthood, meddle in health-care decisions which should always be within the sole province of the affected woman, mock rape victims, oppose equal pay, oppose re-enacting the VAWA, and disparage full and true equality before the law for all women. I am equally sickened by homophobia and transphobia and recoil in disgust at the demeaning of our GLBT brothers and sisters when they forcefully and rightly assert that their lives and relationships should be treated with the same respect and recognition as those of straight folks.

Again, I suspect that the vast majority of DUers concur in full with what I have said above. Yet for some people here this is not enough. Because we defend the right of people to be silly, obnoxious, or even offensive, some of us are repeatedly and continually called “misogynists” by a small and very loud cadre of DUers. Would a “misogynist” be outraged by attacks on abortion-service providers and all the other attempts to provide women all across the country from having full opportunity to exercise their Constitutionally guaranteed right to decide to terminate a pregnancy and have full access to contraceptive services? Would a “misogynist” scream to high heaven about the Repukes’ attempts to redefine rape downwards? Would a “misogynist” support the Lily Ledbetter Act? Do “misogynists” contribute to Planned Parenthood so that it may continue providing desperately needed health-care services for low-income women? Do “misogynists” denounce cave-dwellers like Rush Limbaugh, Todd Akin and that goofball Mourdock? The answer is self-evident.

I am not defending people who come on DU to deliberately throw crap like the monkeys in the primate house or other trollish types, but attacking people for the words they may intemperately use without knowing one thing about the actual policies they support on the political battlefield is stupid and shortsighted. It’s petty and mean-spirited keyboard-commandoism. Telling people what they “really” think or mean is bullying and assholism. Goalpost-moving and blatant intellectual dishonesty are particularly egregious kind of assholism. Attempting to run off people based on nothing more than language usage when they are good Democrats, progressives and liberals who support the goals the Democratic Party has stood for from FDR to JFK to LBJ to George McGovern to Jimmy Carter, to Bill Clinton to Barack Obama is counterproductive and a generally shitty thing to do.

DU is one of the best online communities in all of the Internets. I’ve run across many wonderful people here on DU in the 7 ½ years I have been here on and off. It’s a funny, stimulating, enlightening and thought-provoking place. Because we are Democrats, we never agree on everything but we do overwhelmingly agree on the real issues of peace, justice and equality. But if anyone has that many problems with DU and so many DUers, maybe this is not the right place for you.

Our enemy is not common vulgarities, even if they may be inappropriate for DU. Our true common enemy is out there trying to destroy everything we stand for and there could be no better representative of that enemy than the greedy, selfish corporate nihilists on the Republican ticket and those for whom these monsters are a mere front. Anyone who forgets that should just leave DU. The internet is a big place, and you should easily be able to find a new home online.

You said it, polly!! nt

When Willard loses - and I think he will lose big

absent some unforeseeable event between now and election day - there is going to be a bloodbath in the Republican party.

The old Reagan coalition of plutocrats, religulously insane and white working/middle-class bigots is coming unglued. The plutocrats got too greedy at the expense of much of the working and middle classes and the religulously insane warped off into a bizarro universe of their own. The growth in numbers of the Ayn Rand disciples only adds to the chaos. There ain't enough duct tape in the world to patch it back together.

The fundamental divide in the Repuke party now is between the plutocrats and the lunatic masses of religiously batshit dominionists, Ayn Rand disciples, xenophobic bigots and old-school John Birch Society paranoid crazies. The plutocrats have the money but the loonies have the numbers. There is no longer anything holding these groups together.

My guess is that, yes, there will be an even sharper turn to the right on the part of the loonies. There is no real Repuke "establishment" anymore and this campaign proves it. Rmoney was a perfect example of the old school plutocratic Establishment Republican. The only way he was able to secure the nomination was by pandering to the followers of the varied psychos (Bachmann, Santorum) on the far-right fringes. So expect the loonies to reject any attempt by the plutocrats to foist off a Jeb Bush on them in 2016. Jeb is a Bush and an epic asshole (I am here being redundant) but he's not a man bent on political suicide by pulling a Willard. By 2016 Bachmann and Santorum will represent the left edge of the Republican party base. They will go whole-hog in on Santorum or someone even more batshit insane that him. And if the economy is in anything resembling a decent state they will get crushed Goldwater or Mondale style.

The interesting question is whether the Repukes will ever be able to come back after such a curb-stomping. The plutocracy invented and ginned-up the baggers in a gamble, hoping that these orcs would let them reclaim a majority of the electorate. After Grampy tapped Princess Dumbass for the veep spot all of the real orcs and ogres came boiling down out of the attic William F. Buckley locked them in almost fifty years ago. They are now in the middle of the Repig dinner party scaring the cat half to death, taking bites out of the dog and dropping boot-sized turds on the Persian rug and no one knows how to get rid of them. As happened to Doctor Frankenstein the monster they created has turned on them. The choices confronting the Repuke establishment at this point are mutually destructive. The only way to kill the monster is to blow up the castle that is the Repuke party but then they go down with it. If they don't, the monster will take over the castle and probably blow it up anyway. They are epically fked.
Go to Page: 1 2 Next »