They're Smarter Now (3/2/11)

Here is where I shall vent my spleen on whatever political topic might cross my mind on a given day. Comments or responses may be posted to whatever forum might be appropriate to that particular topic.

They're Smarter Now (3/2/11)

Postby Ferguson Foont » Wed Mar 02, 2011 1:17 pm

The minions of the right are a little smarter now than they were when they won congressional majorities back in 1994. More on this a little bit later, but first a personal note.

Some people to whom these messages are sent seem to take offense at them. There are three individuals in particular (the only three from whom I have received such objections in literally DECADES of writing these occasional pieces), two whose flying-monkeyness would make Michelle Bachmann blush, and another who is offended because I'm no longer as enthusiastic an Obama booster as I once was. They want me to stop writing completely, it seems, and they always respond in a majorly and purely ad-hominem fashion, bouncing their messages back and forth in supportive agreement between themselves, despite the fact that, privately, I have repeatedly BEGGED them to write in opposition to the positions I take, the programs I advocate, and my observations in general, in a manner that might actually be related to the issues involved. Instead they keep sending me a bunch of oft-forwarded right-wing claptrap (you've all seen the stuff, mostly racist, xenophobic garbage, or hero-worship for military adventurism, or stupid jokes along the lines of saying "Democrat" instead of "Democratic" to appeal to the intellect of 13 year-old boys who laugh at booger jokes).

I have found lately that right-wingers are very reluctant to engage in any kind of meaningful debate anymore. They do not want to read or hear anything that might dent the armor of ignorance that they have layered around their mistaken beliefs and superstitions dogma. They have very few positions they can take that might be persuasive anymore, particularly since the emboldened TEA Partiers have now removed any mask of public spiritedness and have revealed their true intentions, so their supporters now run and hide, shouting insults over their shoulders. These people are too infantile and insecure even to entertain the fleeting notion that they might actually be wrong.

But they ARE wrong. What the Republicans are doing is very dangerous to America and to democracy. Their policies are specifically designed to lower the standard of living of American workers and make America less powerful economically, socially and militarily. They welcome disasters they think they can blame on somebody else, even at the cost of millions of American lives and trillions of American dollars.

They hate nothing more than for government's most beneficial policies to succeed in easing human suffering, or reducing international tensions, or lightening the burdens our families, particularly our children, face. If something harms American education, they are for it. If something diminishes American science, they are for it. If something dirties our water or our air, they are for it. If something places closer surveillance on our private activities, they are for it. If something wastes energy, they are for it. If the choice is between diplomacy and war, they choose war. If the choice is between kindness and cruelty, they'll opt for cruelty every time.

Their goal is nothing short of a permanent corporate feudalism without class mobility or hope, with our robber barons enjoying a hereditary aristocracy in all but name, unassailable by the aspirations of the great masses of Americans on whose backs they stand in their opulent tyranny. The idea of an American worker wanting time of his own outside his employer's control, or who wants job security, benefits and a pension like we all once enjoyed, and might not wish to be financially ruined because his child falls ill -- these people -- American workers, American families, American children -- are regarded as beggars in the street, and the robber barons now perhaps have obtained the power to eliminate these offensive sights from their field of vision through neglect, disease, deportation and imprisonment, or by intimidating them to the point at which they will hide from view and no longer ask for fairness, for justice, for rights, for hope, since the effrontery of asking will place even those meager pittances they retain at risk.

Hey, if I believed in these cruel, selfish and short-sighted things and supported these vile politicians of the right, well, I might not want it pointed out either. But tough noogies. I am going to point it out, I am going to keep pointing it out, and I appreciate the many, many notes of support I receive from those of you with brains and hearts. I will continue to scoff with gusto at those whose thoughts are less charitable toward me and toward the American people than they ought to be until they either come around to a more beneficial way of thinking or stop sending their crap to me -- for an extended period of time.

But anyhow, as I was saying, the right is smarter now. Instead of allowing true, fully funded continuing resolutions until the eventual budget showdown, much earlier in the game, resulted in a shutdown of the American government like we saw in 1995, the right-wingers now extract major concessions for each step in a whole series of very brief continuing resolutions, each one chipping away at the New Deal and the Great Society piece by piece. We gave up four more billion dollars yesterday to keep the government running only two more weeks. What will The Great Capitulator give up two weeks from now? What will he forfeit from his "meet 'em WAY more than halfway" budget proposal to finally get an actual budget passed? What will he give up in return for a debt extension to keep us from default? The mind of this old New Dealer reels to contemplate it.

Now, mind you, the "majority" won by the right in the 2010 election wasn't all that landslidey. They won a few heavily targeted House districts and a couple of heavily targeted Senate seats, with almost all of the actual TEA Party candidates going down to ignominious defeat. The only major TEA Party victory was in Kentucky, where Rand Paul replaced the equally crazy, if not actually crazier, Jim Bunning (what on earth is wrong with the voters in Kentucky, too much moonshine?). All of their other headliners lost, some in particularly embarrassing fashion. Almost all of the TEA Party's victories came in Republican primaries, not in the general election, and in many cases (Nevada, Delaware and Connecticut spring to mind) cost the Republicans seats they might have taken had they run somebody who was able to put forth even the slightest claim to sanity.

But they have parlayed this self-proclaimed "mandate" into real power by intimidating the Republican leadership, who unfortunately now control the House, to do their bidding or see their own incumbents face serious challenges for renomination. The flea-bitten TEA Party tail is wagging the Republican Party dog, and a rabid dog is something to be feared, not respected, not listened to, not followed, and not compromised with.

Smart, vicious and crazy is a really bad combination. When somebody is always wrong, I really do not want him to be clever enough to succeed in implementing his ideas.
Republicans whine and Republicans bitch: "Our rich are too poor, and our poor are too rich."
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Ferguson Foont
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