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Unregulated Capitalism and Christian Fervor: Report from the 9/12 Rally at the Capitol

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Shallah Kali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 04:40 AM
Original message
Unregulated Capitalism and Christian Fervor: Report from the 9/12 Rally at the Capitol
Comparing Obama to Hitler and Al Qaeda, and claiming to be agents of God, protesters in Washingtonsupported by a coalition of conservative Christian groups, as well as pharmaceutical lobbyistsraise the bar on unreasonable discourse.

http://www.religiondispatches.org/archive/1840/unregula...

It was more than a little disconcerting to be in the heart of this crowd in DC, listening to people speak in the vernacular of Fox News sound bytes about czarism and socialism and fascism and the paranoid religious rants of the impending Armageddon and the One World Order. And then to realize that these people truly believed, passionately, that every word of what they were saying was true.

There are many reasons for this: the astroturf organizations backed by corporate lobbyists who sponsored and organized the event; Glenn Beck and Fox News and the incessant drum beat of their misinformation campaign.

But while this explains the sources of the deception, it doesnt fully explain the motivation. It doesnt explain why protesters can argue, for instance, that their Medicare program is somehow a perfect example of free market forces at work, while universal health care is a communist plot to destroy America. Just because people are carrying 50,000 different signs down the street, doesnt mean that each group is separate, said Frederick Clarkson, author of Eternal Hostility: the Struggle Between Theocracy and Democracy (and contributor to Religion Dispatches).

To address each message as separate is to miss the point, Clarkson said, because the messengers are the same, whether the issue is abortion, Obamas birth certificate, or the death panels.

And tying these messages together, for the first time in American history, is a single major network, he said.

Joe Bageant, author of Deer Hunting with Jesus, who also writes about class issues from his hometown of Winchester, Virginia, points to the fact that just as the post World War II economy was built on the backs of black Americans, it was also built on the backs of poor working whites.

Bageant theorizes that those same corporations that exploited the labor of those workers are now using their children and grandchildren as foot soldiers to do battle against their own self-interests.

He said Americans no longer have any language to describe their struggling circumstances, because the words to describe their solutions have been demonized.

They have thoroughly internalized the messages of a predatory economic system managed by the corporations and financial elites who own their jobs and their schools and their media, Bageant said.

They cant say socialism, working masses, elitecan you even imagine trying to say that as a good thing?universally. So, theres a frustration. They know somethings wrong, but cant express it.

So, they are reduced to sputtering Fox News- and Rush Limbaugh-provided buzz words, he said.


To read the entire article go here: http://www.religiondispatches.org/archive/1840/unregula...

or for printer version here: http://www.religiondispatches.org/dialogs/print/?id=184...
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liberal N proud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 05:56 AM
Response to Original message
1. Beckerheads
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HillWilliam Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:50 PM
Response to Reply #1
5. I hope you don't mind, I'm running with that term
:rofl:

Perfect and priceless.
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liberal N proud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 03:17 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. Not my original
I heard it used here on DU. Can't remember who to give credit though.

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HillWilliam Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 03:30 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. 'S'okay
I relayed it to my partner via IM who rather liked Beckerwoods as well... either works :)
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nosmokes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 06:00 AM
Response to Original message
2. Great article,thanks for posting. K&R!
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starroute Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 12:42 PM
Response to Original message
3. I'm reminded of 1984
Only Orwell was afraid of words like "bad" being purged from the language, removing the ability to make moral judgments. What Bageant is suggesting it that it's sufficient to simply demonize words like "socialism" or "class warfare" -- and that this makes it effectively impossible for people to discuss the real nature of their problems.

Clearly it's time for a little vocabulary reframing. Hey -- if even "bad" can come to mean "good," how hard can it be to rehabilitate "socialism"?

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vinylsolution Donating Member (807 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:11 PM
Response to Original message
4. Sadly, these people are the very ones....
... who would benefit the most from progressive policies.

But now they've been brainwashed into rejecting any notion of a government that might help them.





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irislake Donating Member (967 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:23 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. Sometimes I think they
damn well deserve to have miserable lives. It's better to be poor and have no health care than to be a "socialist". Ain't it?
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Zoeisright Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:59 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. I agree.
How miserable do they have to get to wake up and realize how stupid they are? Or is that even possible?
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Shallah Kali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 04:46 PM
Response to Reply #6
10. Better dead than red used to be a popular slogan
I admit I have times too when I think the deserve to reap what they sowed but then I remember they are taken the rest of us further along their merry road to ruin.
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espiral Donating Member (143 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 02:18 AM
Response to Reply #4
12. You forgot Connecticut
...home of Beck himself, and site of one of the biggest 9/12 Meetups in the US, right in Fairfield County.
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ShockediSay Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 04:53 PM
Response to Original message
11. "predatory economic system managed by the corporations and financial elites"
Funny,that's the very definition of fascism just about
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