Recent blog posts
About This Site
Bigotry + Ignorance = Contemporary GOP Base
Paul Krugman, once again, uses empirical data to expose the flaws in our democracy. He captures the hypocrisy of Republican voters nicely in the title: Moochers Against Welfare.
He mentions three possible explanations for why people in districts that elected the most conservative representatives tend to use more government programs than people in more liberal districts — the very people who seem to be most against social welfare are bigger "moochers" than the voters they rail against. Well, hypocrisy is a truly American value.
But I think the variable that Krugman has overlooked is most important: race. Those relatively poor whites in the reddest districts are opposed to social welfare for people of color, who they demonize as "unworthy poor" unlike themselves. Old fashioned American racism combined with the fundamental attribution error ("my misfortune is due to bad luck; yours is because you are lazy, stupid, evil, etc.") seems to be the best explanation.
Let's not forget that ignorance plays a huge role in this dynamic as well, given that 40+% of the recipients of government programs believe that they have never received government aid. The ideology of predatory capitalism exploits this ignorance to keep relatively less well off whites angry about public spending. It is also why Republicans, when elected, never actually enact the "small government" they blather on about.
Moochers against welfare is a pretty accurate description of the Tea Party.
The working class and the employing class have nothing in common. There can be no peace so long as hunger and want are found among millions of the working people and the few, who make up the employing class, have all the good things of life. Between these two classes a struggle must go on until the workers of the world organize as a class, take possession of the means of production, abolish the wage system, and live in harmony with the Earth. -- IWW
In a democracy it is necessary that people should learn to endure having their sentiments outraged. -- Bertrand Russell
Let us strangle the last king with the entrails of the last priest. -- Denis Diderot
It's not that no one sees the straight line to Doomtown we've been on since Reagan, it's that there's big profits in it. The most superficially Christian and Other-Worldly-Yearning nation in the developed world is the one most likely to kill you for your shoes. -- Doghouse Riley
The true purpose of education is to try to foster in students a kind of critical cosmopolitanism, such that they learn, among other things, to question any notion that one’s nation or tribe is favored by God or destiny. -- Michael Bérubé
It is not enough to decry the existence of the Spectacle. We intend to use both art and theory as a battering ram against Capitalism and its false opposition, tribalism, in all of its mystical forms. We believe it is possible to move beyond the inexcusable savagery of everyday life. -- The Anti-Naturals
Smartest Blogs in North America
Sites I Read