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It is savagely immoral and profoundly inconsistent to insist that women endure unwanted — and in some cases dangerous — pregnancies for the sake of “unborn children,” then eliminate financing designed to prevent those children from being delivered prematurely, rendering them the most fragile and vulnerable of newborns. How is this humane?
It is inconsistent only if you think that the GOP gives a shit about babies. Of course, they don't. This isn't about "life," it is about power. It is all about the patriarchy.
So, Charles, to answer your question, it isn't humane. That is not a conservative value.
Attention right-wing mouth-breathers: when you finish building another Gilded Age on the orders of the new Robber Barons, keep in mind that in this little historical re-enactment you will not be starring in the role of the new Carnegie.
I'll see you on the soup lines, dumbasses.
Also, see Roy's latest takedown.
First off, let me remind everyone that "class war" is a metaphor for class struggle, not a call to armed revolution. I think "second amendment remedies" are a silly fantasy in the fevered right-wing brain.
But the main point here is that the class war is already underway. We are not calling for a start to it. We are already being attacked by the capitalist class and their multinational corporations. The struggle in Wisconsin is an example of that.
We are calling for workers to defend themselves against the world's owners. There are more of us than there are of them.
Matt Taibbi, as usual, spells it out effectively:
Nobody goes to jail. This is the mantra of the financial-crisis era, one that saw virtually every major bank and financial company on Wall Street embroiled in obscene criminal scandals that impoverished millions and collectively destroyed hundreds of billions, in fact, trillions of dollars of the world's wealth — and nobody went to jail. Nobody, that is, except Bernie Madoff, a flamboyant and pathological celebrity con artist, whose victims happened to be other rich and famous people.
Corporations are hell-bent on grinding workers to dust while destroying the planet. All in the name of a little quick self-enrichment—for themselves, of course, not the billions of us. They won't stop doing this unless they are forced to stop. They only way we can force them to stop is to destroy them.
Workplace democracy is the only kind of democracy that exists in the world today. Everything else that goes by that name is a lie, a ruse to keep workers from seeing their own interests. So all of it must go. The only organization we keep is the labor union. Workers rule through a confederation of unions.
The douchebaggery of Republicans is coming fast and furious these days. Our next contestant: Rep. Phil Jensen of South Dakota.
He wants to allow the killing of doctors providing reproductive services and he wants to prevent Sharia law! Because Christian fundamentalist violence is so much better than Islamic fundamentalist violence.
There's a term for that kind of aggressive stupidity.
As Bob Herbert notes, our plutocracy is a democracy in name only. We are but wage slaves to the wealthy and corporations.
Herbert sums it up nicely:
While millions of ordinary Americans are struggling with unemployment and declining standards of living, the levers of real power have been all but completely commandeered by the financial and corporate elite. It doesn’t really matter what ordinary people want. The wealthy call the tune, and the politicians dance.
When will Americans take to the street and demand democracy?
The screeching Birchers, drunk on plutocrat cash, demand liberty for the corporations so that they can grind us down and destroy the planet even faster. (They want to police the sex lives of others but let corporations pollute without restriction to enrich the very few. Populism? I don't think so; it's sociopathy.)
Let's face it, two Chamber of Commerce parties is not a democracy. Labor must stand up to this monstrous machine and speak truth to ordinary people about their interests.
Ladies and Gentlemen, our Douchebag of the Week: Scott Walker, Governor of Wisconsin.
His anti-labor political theater is so douchebaggy, he might have clinched the yearly award too.
Congratulations to the people of Egypt! One dictator down, about 150 to go.
So, when are we Americans going to overthrow the Chamber of Commerce parties who rule us?
Post-Vinson: the next time a conservative whines about "activist judges," kick them in the groin.
I'm always heartened when people take to the streets to demand social change, as in Tunisia recently, and Egypt. Collective action (and the important work of labor unions) is the only way to build the society that we want, to say no to the corporations and their political lackeys.
And yet, in the US, it seems the bigots and the paranoid reactionaries are the only voices we hear in the public sphere.
What we need, more than anything, is not more civility, it is more veracity.
Too many liars in our public sphere. When a fringe, paranoid movement takes over one of the major political parties, you know that the mendacity index is going to shoot up. But the political right has long been rooted in lying to make itself more appealing. And both parties are wholly owned subsidiaries of multinational corporations, and a lot of lying is necessary to obscure that fact—both parties talk like they care about ordinary workers, but neither do.
As a scholar of American political rhetoric, I know that this is nothing new. But the lack of courage to tell the truth is still depressing.
UPDATE As if to prove my point, the asshole who represents Georgia's 10th district, on twitter: "Mr. President, you don't believe in the Constitution. You believe in socialism."
Anyone who actually believes that statement is an idiot. And anyone who doesn't but says it anyway is a fucking liar.
American conservatism today is based, it seems to me, almost entirely on shameless lying. To be successful in the GOP or the rightwing punditry, you have to be shameless enough to lie as easily as you breathe. Let's give them this credit: no one compares as a professional liar to Palin, Beck, Limbaugh, et al. Their elected officials of note are equally shameless. So, it would follow, to be a Republican voter you have to be shameless enough to believe all the lies — either too lazy to question them or too mean-spirited to be bothered by the strategy.
Take away the hate and the paranoia from American conservatism, and what do you have? (Well, perhaps you'd still have that glibertarian corporate ass-kissing, but you see that among professional Democrats too.)
The calls for civility are fine. But unless we're going to tackle the problem of mendacity, we're doomed.
Another isolated incident. Let's not connect the dots. That would be mean to Sarah, Glenn, and Rush.
The drunken death threat is pathetic enough, but it is the content of the calls that is telling. Calling a Democrat a "communist" for opposing tax cuts for the wealthiest one percent is a lie that is very easy to trace.
What a cowardly, narcissistic performance. Exactly what one expects from Palin. Who else could turn a political assassination attempt into a story about how mean and unfair everyone is to her? And, more importantly, who else is so callous that they would want to?
The demagogues of the far right won't stop their violent rhetoric. They profit too much from it. But it isn't the rhetoric that's the problem; it's the lies and paranoia that are embedded in the violent rhetoric. The Republicans won't give that up because they have nothing else. It alone rescued them from complete national irrelevance.
The GOP deserves Palin. The John Birch Society idiots deserve the GOP. To hell with all of them.
I hope, as the Twitterati has been saying, that this is the flame out of Palin's political career. I doubt it. I'm too cynical to believe there is a bottom to the barrel of American politics.
It is about time we puncture the myth that corporate managers are particularly good at anything socially valuable.
Paul Thomas, in the Guardian, notes:
Education is a primary public good. But we have abandoned our responsibility. We want educated citizens, but we don't want to have to pay for it, or work to make it happen. Of course, in a society where 25% of the adults are virulently anti-science — and just plain nuts — it is no surprise that our education system is disrespected.
If the Democrats can't or won't change that, then we have no need for them. It's time to find a party that champions our values.
One important difference between American conservatives and American progressives today: the right conceives of the meaning of 'American' as exactly equal to its own interests and preferences, so that anything they dislike is by their definition un-American. The left does not do this; they define anything outside of their own preferences as wrong, but not traitorous.*
(Consider the way the left described Bush and the way the right describes Obama. The left called Bush a war criminal. The right calls Obama a socialist, foreign-born Muslim. Both are strident. One statement is demonstrably true — Bush proudly admits that he authorized torture, a war crime — and the other is demonstrably false. But the main point here the particular boundary drawn by the right in their attacks: Obama is un-American.)
This difference gives the tactical advantage to the right, one that fanatics always have over moderates. The correct course of action is not for progressives to become more fanatic, but rather, to persuade people of the dangers of fanaticism. Fanatics use lies, fear and hate. We need to call them on it.
This is why I think that the Bircher/Tea Party moment is going to be brief. They will be exposed as the fanatics they are.
Exactly. Is it naked opportunism? Or, is it the case that those with moderate views have given up entirely on the GOP?
The current spasm of racism and nativist fear has given the Birchers (a.k.a, the Tea Party) a bit of energy, but I think it is still near the end for this particular ideology.
Any bets on when the Republican House will impeach Obama for being a foreign-born, Muslim, socialist?
Now no one can pretend that "conservative activist" means anything other than douchebag.
When those assholes get together with these assholes, you get a racist, reactionary backlash. Basically, Birchers playing with corporate money. Welcome to contemporary America.
I agree, white people have gone insane.
Read the rest of this excerpt from Joe Bageant's new book.
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
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