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WilliamPitt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 09:53 AM
Original message
Class Warfare My Ass


Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, a Republican presidential candidate, speaks at the Florida P5 Faith and Freedom Coalition Kick-Off event at the Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando, Florida, September 22, 2011. (Chip Litherland / The New York Times)

Class Warfare My Ass
By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t | Op-Ed

Saturday 24 September 2011

I have to live for others and not for myself: that's middle-class morality.

- George Bernard Shaw


I have been saying this for years upon years, but it bears repeating: the most awesome, fearsome, and effective weapon in the arsenal of the modern Republican Party is their total, utter and complete lack of shame.

That weapon - the ability to say or do anything, literally anything, even as it flies in the face of on-the-record comments made just the day before, or contradicts thousands of votes cast in congresses past - is the equivalent of a battlefield-deployed tactical nuclear weapon. It clears the field, but good, and if everything is ashes in the aftermath, so be it. So long as effective spin makes the news cycle, it's a victory for them, and screw the people who get hurt.

The GOP wins when that is the contest, and that is all they care about...and the awful irony comes when the very people getting screwed are up on their feet cheering after the deal goes down, because "their team" won the day.

Watching these recent GOP debates has cracked me up for any number of reasons, but nothing can top watching those millionaires square off in an attempt to prove who among them is the most "folksy," the most in tune with the working stiff. Mitt Romney, whose personal fortune roars deep into nine figures on the left of the decimal, actually claimed he was a middle class guy during a recent campaign appearance.

Ah, yes, the irony again...just think, if people banking nine figures of personal wealth were actually considered middle class, all of our problems would be solved, right?

Or something.

Which brings us to the subject of "class warfare." The term has been a favorite broadside of the right-bent rich-people-first set going on forty years now, and in times past has always reaped them rich rhetorical benefits. We're a classless society here in America, don'tcha know, so accusations of "class warfare" have all too often sent lily-livered liberal-leaning politicians scuttling for the exits, for the apology, for the eventual retreat.

Oh no, it isn't class warfare, this is only fair...which earned, invariably, a reply of "CLASS WARFARE SOCIALISM WHAAARGARBLE"...which, in turn, earned another hasty retreat instead of a proper and just reply.

Which is, should have always been, and should now be: kiss my ass, you leech, you bloodsucker, you greedy whore, you war profiteering glutton, you disgrace, you betrayer of America.

Oh, I know the argument. I know it as well as the spit I leave on the sidewalk when there is a bad taste in my mouth. The rich are better than us, they are the ones making the jobs, they have earned their esteemed position through a Randian process of natural economic selection, etc...except for the sneaky fact that a large number of these "business titans" inherited their wealth, and today increase their wealth not through hard work, but through favorable interest rates and even more favorable tax rates on money that is already in the bank.

The top-earning businesses in America today, across the board, are wallowing in record profits, and yet somehow hiring is stagnated. Why is that?

Could it be that these titans are holding off on hiring in order to affect the number of jobless Americans, so as to influence public opinion as we head into an election season? God almighty, to have such astonishing reach...to be able to keep millions out of work in order to put one black guy out of a job...now that's real power.

Class warfare, indeed.

Poverty has increased locally and nationally across the board, joblessness is reaching Great Depression-era levels, and millions have lost houses to those whose own homes resemble castles, to those who are secure in both funding and foundation. Money does not disappear. It has to go somewhere; what is lost is always found. Most all of us have spent the last several years losing money hand over fist, while Forbes tells us that the richest among us have increased their wealth by vast amounts in one year.

Try to contain your shock.

There is work available for the doing, on infrastructure and new technology fields and any number of other areas, but the GOP majority in the House of Representatives won't have any of it, because their marching orders are to screw the American economy in as many orifices as are available to try and unseat the sitting president. Period, end of file, and if you still think that isn't their intention, I have a big red bridge over San Francisco Bay to sell you.

Class warfare? These cretins have the unmitigated gall to accuse other people of class warfare?

It is a wonder of American politics, this absolute and astonishing lack of shame on the part of the modern GOP. They have spent the last thirty years stifling a minimum-wage increase, they blocked legislation to help 9/11 responders pay for very present health concerns, and spent the latter part of this last week trying to screw disaster relief funding for people who lose homes to tornadoes, floods, wildfires and earthquakes. They hate Social Security and Medicare down to their gold-plated bones. Now they are deliberately and intentionally stifling the very economy they themselves tore up, for no other reason than to win the next election.

How are they doing it? Money and power, power and money, and be damned to those who suffer for their desires.

Psssst...it is class warfare: full-throated, no-bullshit class warfare, and the rich ones whining about it are the ones who are winning. Be on your own side for a change of pace. They got the guns, as a man once said, but we got the numbers.

It is class warfare, and has been for a generation. We've been losing, badly.

For now.

http://www.truth-out.org/class-warfare-my-ass/131680621...
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Raven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 09:59 AM
Response to Original message
1. :-)
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WilliamPitt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 10:06 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Thanks, Mom!
:hug:
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Whisp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:54 PM
Response to Reply #2
25. hehe. so cute.
:D
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mnhtnbb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 10:17 AM
Response to Original message
3. The favorite tactic of the right is projection. Don't forget it.
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socialist_n_TN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 10:20 AM
Response to Original message
4. Well, as I've often said..........
It's only class war if we fight back. Until then it's a class massacre.

I'm a Marxist. Fighting back is at the CORE of my belief system. I KNOW whose side I'm on in the class war. Everybody else needs to pick a side.
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watercolors Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 10:20 AM
Response to Original message
5. Thanks, great editorial , have missed your writtings here
but check in at Truth out every week.
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kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 10:50 AM
Response to Original message
6. Five to One...
Jim Morrison and the Doors...
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REACTIVATED IN CT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-25-11 09:04 AM
Response to Reply #6
34. Thanks. The old memory bank fails me at times.
It does remember seeing them perform live at the Fillmore East in the 60's.
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DinahMoeHum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 11:05 AM
Response to Original message
7. Well, Will, my DU avatar says it all. . .
n/t
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KarenS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 11:21 AM
Response to Original message
8. K & R

You DO have a way with words, Mr. Pitt!!

:applause:
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Zorra Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 11:29 AM
Response to Original message
9. Rec. "their total, utter and complete lack of shame"
Psychiatrists/Psychologists have a word for the type of human that the displays the personality characteristics that you described in your post as being prevalent in many members of the Republican Party.

Sociopath

Lack of Remorse, Shame or Guilt
A deep seated rage, which is split off and repressed, is at their core. Does not see others around them as people, but only as targets and opportunities. Instead of friends, they have victims and accomplices who end up as victims. The end always justifies the means and they let nothing stand in their way.

http://www.mcafee.cc/Bin/sb.html

"They got the guns, as a man once said, but we got the numbers."

By almost all accounts, the Lakota annihilated Custer's force within an hour of engagement.<44><45><46> David Humphreys Miller, who between 1935 and 1955 interviewed the last Indian survivors of the battle, wrote that the Custer fight lasted less than one-half hour.<47> Other Indian accounts said the fighting lasted only "as long as it takes a hungry man to eat a meal." The Lakota asserted that Crazy Horse personally led one of the large groups of warriors who overwhelmed the cavalrymen in a surprise charge from the northeast, causing a breakdown in the command structure and panic among the troops. Many of these men threw down their weapons while Cheyenne and Sioux warriors rode them down, "counting coup" with lances, coup sticks, and quirts. Some Indian accounts recalled this segment of the fight as a "buffalo run."<48>

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Little_Bigho...

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TBF Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 11:45 AM
Response to Original message
10. It has always been class warfare.
We did have a timeframe in this country (maybe 40s-70s) where a distinct middle class did form due to progressive taxation (see Eisenhower Administration). Now we are back to the same old same old. A small percentage of billionaires holding most wealth, and the rest of us scrambling for crumbs.
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NOMOREDRUGWAR Donating Member (319 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 11:47 AM
Response to Original message
11. Dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum
Dum dum dum dum dum
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lunatica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 11:48 AM
Response to Original message
12. It's time to face facts
As long as they can obstruct they will. There is no bottom to how low they'll go. There is no limit to what they'll do. This is a fact.

We are fools to think we can reason with them, or make them care.
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WingDinger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 11:49 AM
Response to Original message
13. I would also comment that Rethugs and Teafreaks both believe themselves morally superior.
Edited on Sat Sep-24-11 11:50 AM by WingDinger
We are just working for status and power for ourselves. Selfish pricks that we are. We just pander to the wastril poor and ill to get the votes. We REALLY don't care about social justice. That is just a scam to gain re election. In fact, we are slavemasters that use the misery of Americans to gain politically. All this cuz we get off telling everyone how to live and what to say.

While they, selfless christians that they are, work not for theirselves, but tirelessly for those they have only a {real to them}, fantasy of ever calling peers. So morally superior are they that they feel no remorse in dismantling democracy, to dissallow any solutions we might favor from ever being discussed. Now that those parasites, those eaters, begin to outnumber them, autocracy is the surest way to prosperity.
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DeSwiss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 12:02 PM
Response to Original message
14. If this were class warfare......
...then there would be banker's bodies laying in the streets.

- Instead of the foreclosed upon homeless.......

K&R


21st Century Banker's Suit
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bertman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 01:34 PM
Response to Original message
15. REC. Anyone who believes what is written here owes it to themselves and our nation to be in DC
on October 6th at Freedom Plaza.

October2011.org



Peace and solidarity.

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WilliamPitt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 05:27 PM
Response to Original message
16. Evening kick
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proud patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:03 PM
Response to Original message
17. for now .
but not always the ants shall overthrow the grasshoppers to use "a bugs life"

shoulder to shoulder
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HappyMe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:13 PM
Response to Original message
18. :) Thank you. nt
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Fire Walk With Me Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:16 PM
Response to Original message
19. Liked it on Facebook, Recommending it here! So very well-said!
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:39 PM
Response to Original message
20. I have one quibble with something you say.
Edited on Sat Sep-24-11 08:42 PM by JVS
"Money does not disappear. It has to go somewhere; what is lost is always found. Most all of us have spent the last several years losing money hand over fist, while Forbes tells us that the richest among us have increased their wealth by vast amounts in one year."

Actually money can and does disappear. In fact, the very trigger for this economic crisis was that the property bubble popped, which meant that a lot of the money people were spending and investing with suddenly had nothing behind it. This caused the banks (who were heavily invested in it), and the insurance companies (who by backing credit default swaps were also invested in real-estate) to lose tremendous quantities of money. (Technically speaking they lost the value of the assets which permitted them to use money backed by the assets' value, for a microcosmic view of this consider the person whose home was valued at $100K and has now had it sink to $50K and is no longer able to borrow $100K against the title) Where did it go? It disappeared just the same as a dozen eggs do when you drop them.

What happened in the crises was that money disappeared to such a degree that the banks were no longer solvent and instead of lending they needed to recapitalize. This is why lending nearly stopped. The banks didn't have money to lend and instead just became debt collectors.

Now here's where things get interesting. Although the crisis affected many rich and powerful people, the rich and powerful are able to make sure that they don't lose. They are able to get the federal government to bail them out. They run the businesses, hire and fire, set pay, and basically make all the most important decisions within the economy to their own benefit. Have you ever been waiting for a flight that got cancelled and seen the rush of people to ticket counters or onto smart phones so that they can book something before the rest of the crowd does? What we are experiencing now is the aftermath of a massive loss of money within the system and the resulting scramble to to make sure that those losses are someone else's problems, to make sure that the long waits for a flight to the destination are other people's waits. And it is the rich who have the best phones, the fastest legs, and the best level of service from the airline. It's no different in the economy. This is the war.


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RagAss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:51 PM
Response to Original message
21. Yup..."It's all fun and games until someone wheels out a fucking guillotine."
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Fire Walk With Me Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:52 PM
Response to Original message
22. And...permalinking.
:hi:
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EndElectoral Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:53 PM
Response to Original message
23. Good Article William....but add in a complict media and it's a tough battle
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pa28 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:53 PM
Response to Original message
24. KNR
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unkachuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 08:56 PM
Response to Original message
26. K&R....n/t
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unblock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 09:18 PM
Response to Original message
27. it's not their lack of shame that's the weapon; it's the media that lets them get away with it
Edited on Sat Sep-24-11 09:18 PM by unblock
if the media played fair and held republicans to the same standards it held democrats, republicans' lack of shame would quickly lead to plummetting poll numbers and they would shortly thereafter learn not to behave that way.

they distort democrats' words to make them look inconsistent and smear them with labels like "flip-flopper".

when democrats say anything remotely unacceptable (i.e., liberal) to the powers that be, they are branded "socialists" and "radicals" and "extremists" and "out-of-touch" and "elitist" and "partisan".

republicans have no shame and lie and distort with impunity because they know they won't be challenged.

most recently, limbaugh called elizabeth a "parasite" because she's worked and has earned herself a pension from a private institution (harvard university). how on earth this supposedly makes her a parasite, i have no idea, but rest assured that the media will not challenge him on it, nor will it challenge any other republican who picks up that meme.


republicans are playing by the rules.
it's the referees who have no shame.
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Auntie Bush Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-26-11 02:03 PM
Response to Reply #27
39. "republicans are playing by the rules. it's the referees who have no shame."
Sorry, I disagree. Republicans are NOT playing by the rules...that's why the referees have no shame.
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unblock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-26-11 02:32 PM
Response to Reply #39
40. i mean they're playing by the rules as defined by the referees.
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Major Nikon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 09:25 PM
Response to Original message
28. GOPhers need simple messages that will fit on bumper stickers
"class warfare", "flip-flop", "tax and spend", etc. On and on it goes. When your constituency has the attention span of a hamster on crack, you've got to come up with something short enough to fit on a bumper sticker or a 15 second sound bite. Whether or not it passes the bullshit test is tertiary at best.
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-24-11 10:30 PM
Response to Original message
29. Garrison Keillor agrees with you, Will.
:hi:
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fasttense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-25-11 04:10 AM
Response to Original message
30. Psychopaths have no shame either.
Read the psychopath next door. It's a real eye opener.
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Dover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-25-11 04:31 AM
Response to Original message
31. Just as many Dems that are pro-privatization and are bought & paid for.
You are right, it IS class warfare. But there is no chance in hell that if we had a Dem majority (oh wait, we DO) that things would be significantly different. The system is corrupted, bought out and moving more overtly toward corporate rule. It probably isn't helpful to continue betting on a fixed game. Just pissing into the wind.
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Norrin Radd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-25-11 04:36 AM
Response to Original message
32. kr
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Stumbler Donating Member (599 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-25-11 05:59 AM
Response to Original message
33. Yep
When they try to cut Social Security & Medicare benefits, it's a-okay! Raise the sales tax on Coca-cola, fast food and clothing? Not-a-problem! Lay off 10,000 people to increase your quarterly productivity report? Astounding!

Ask for a nominal increase in the marginal tax rate of the wealthiest who can best bear the brunt of such an expense? Class Warfare!! F'n hypocrites....
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Hoosier Daddy Donating Member (271 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-25-11 09:14 AM
Response to Original message
35. The wingnut definition of class warfare:
Anything that doesn't involve sacrificing our kids so that the rich can carry on partying.
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rucky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-25-11 09:14 AM
Response to Original message
36. Well done, Mr. Pitt!
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fascisthunter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-25-11 10:03 AM
Response to Original message
37. Evil Sociopathic Treasonous Republican Scum
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WilliamPitt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-26-11 09:08 AM
Response to Original message
38. One last kick
for those not around over the weekend.
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deaniac21 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-27-11 08:56 PM
Response to Original message
41. "CLASS WARFARE SOCIALISM WHAAARGARBLE"
We need to go to war against pig corporate lawyers!
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