Wednesday, November 22, 2006

RE Turkey Day

To all our writers and readers,
A very Safe and a Very Happy Thanksgiving.
From The Cast and Crew at the Colaition for a Republican-Free America

Monday, November 13, 2006

Conservatism won! NOT

Get ready for this.  The Vichy Republicans and fifth column talk show hosts are now trying to claim that this was a Republican/conservative victory.    You just have to give these guys credit.  You could disembowel them and they'd still try to tell the American people that they had guts.   Their phony claim is based on a few isolated victories by moderate Democrats over far right Republicans, but in almost every case the winning Democrat was more liberal than his defeated Republican opponent. 
 
The people in South Dakota, a purported Conservative string hold, rejected a referendum that would have banned abortion for nearly every reason imaginable, including rape and incest. The People in Arizona (a border state)  not only proved surprisingly opened minded when it came to immigration, they also voted down one of those foolish marriage protection amendments.  If you want to see how the conservative virus has failed to infect the younger generation, just go to the most conservative area of the country and look at how young people dress.   This may come as a shock and a revelation but they aren't dolled up in school uniforms.   Ask them how they feel about mixed race relationships.  Ask them how they feel about Gays and Lesbians.  Ask them about the music they listen to and the TV programs they watch, and I can almost guarantee you that they are not watching reruns of the Lawrence Welk Show.   Despite a higher birth rate among religious conservatives, the truth of the matter is that those children are leaning towards  cultural liberalism.  
 
The fact of the matter is that the past twelve years have been an aberration in an otherwise progressive history.  America has accepted liberalism, and the irony is that it not only happened during a conservative hay day, it may well have happened because of that conservatism heyday.   By any standard this election was a repudiation of the conservative agenda.   First and foremost it was a rejection of a sociopathic administration that led us into an occupation of choice, a war that left us with more than 2,800 dead and more than 20,000 wounded/disabled.  To make the situation even worse, the reasons for going to war kept changing--as did the reasons for continuing the occupation.   The American people are not stupid.   They know a series of lies and excuses when they see one.   Secondly, the Republicans reverted to their true form.  Not only did they side with the upper classes and corporate masters who routinely fund their campaigns; they essentially declared war on the middle and lower classes--not to mention several laws--to guarantee that their corporate masters were paid back in full and with interest.  The voters figured out that while you may come across individual corrupt democrats the Republican party had in and of itself become a culture of corruption, from the financial to the sexual. 
 
I also suspect that one some level Americans rediscovered the concept of morality.   You can't claim to be a moral country--or a moral party--in one breath and then turn around and support sexually sadistic torture in the next breath.   Note that running a series of pedophiles, racists, homophobes,  wife beaters, adulterers, and corporate criminals didn't help the conservative cause either, but as we have said many times before, by transferring so much power to corporate interests while trampling over our Constitution, this country came as close to fascism as it has ever come.   So in a very real sense of the word, the elections of 2006 were not only a rejection of the Republican party--they were a rejection of totalitarianism in red, white, and blue clothing. 
 
As I mentioned before I suspect that the American people realized that there was a lot more to an expanding economy than an inflated stock market, an increase in service sector jobs, and low wages.  Health care and economic security became key issues.   When you're working two jobs, and trying to live within a budget and still struggling to keep your head above water, you know on a very real level that something has gone terribly wrong with the American dream.   As if that was an accident.   The current batch of conservatives view social mobility as an objective to be overcome, a trend to be crushed.  To some extent they really do believe that they are superior to others and deserve a disproportionate piece of the American pie.  But on a deeper level they view freedom and the middle class as the enemies of stability, and if these people believe anything they believe that a thriving middle class demanding equal opportunities and constitutional rights is a threat to the excessive stability to which conservatives are so hopelessly addicted.
 
All in the elections were a repudiation of conservatism, incompetence, corruption, and repression.   And if the Republicans can't leave their delusion based "reality" long enough to "get it" then I hope you won't mind my stifled laughter as they wallow in their own ignorance and self-deception. 

Thursday, November 09, 2006

THE DANGER OF AMERICAN FASCISM


The  following GUEST PERSPECTIVE  appears courtsey of LeftOfCenter at THE BLUE REPUBLIC.  We found it to be truly ironic and we present the article here in that spirit.
 
Brandon and Daniel
 
 
The Danger of American Fascism
By Henry A. Wallace
The New York Times
From Henry A. Wallace, Democracy Reborn , edited by Russell Lord, p. 259.


On returning from my trip to the West in February, I received a request from The New York Times to write a piece answering the following questions:

What is a fascist?
How many fascists have we?
How dangerous are they?

A fascist is one whose lust for money or power is combined with such an intensity of intolerance toward those of other races, parties, classes, religions, cultures, regions or nations as to make him ruthless in his use of deceit or violence to attain his ends. The supreme god of a fascist, to which his ends are directed, may be money or power; may be a race or a class; may be a military, clique or an economic group; or may be a culture, religion, or a political party.

The perfect type of fascist throughout recent centuries has been the Prussian Junker, who developed such hatred for other races and such allegiance to a military clique as to make him willing at all times to engage in any degree of deceit and violence necessary to place his culture and race astride the world. In every big nation of the world are at least a few people who have the fascist temperament. Every Jew-baiter, every Catholic hater, is a fascist at heart. The hoodlums who have been desecrating churches, cathedrals and synagogues in some of our larger cities are ripe material for fascist leadership.

The obvious types of American fascists are dealt with on the air and in the press. These demagogues and stooges are fronts for others. Dangerous as these people may be, they are not so significant as thousands of other people who have never been mentioned. The really dangerous American fascists are not those who are hooked up directly or indirectly with the Axis. The FBI has its finger on those. The dangerous American fascist is the man who wants to do in the United States in an American way what Hitler did in Germany in a Prussian way. The American fascist would prefer not to use violence. His method is to poison the channels of public information. With a fascist the problem is never how best to present the truth to the public but how best to use the news to deceive the public into giving the fascist and his group more money or more power.

If we define an American fascist as one who in case of conflict puts money and power ahead of human beings, then there are undoubtedly several million fascists in the United States. There are probably several hundred thousand if we narrow the definition to include only those who in their search for money and power are ruthless and deceitful. Most American fascists are enthusiastically supporting the war effort. They are doing this even in those cases where they hope to have profitable connections with German chemical firms after the war ends. They are patriotic in time of war because it is to their interest to be so, but in time of peace they follow power and the dollar wherever they may lead.

American fascism will not be really dangerous until there is a purposeful coalition among the cartelists, the deliberate poisoners of public information, and those who stand for the K.K.K. type of demagoguery.

The European brand of fascism will probably present its most serious postwar threat to us via Latin America. The effect of the war has been to raise the cost of living in most Latin American countries much faster than the wages of labor. The fascists in most Latin American countries tell the people that the reason their wages will not buy as much in the way of goods is because of Yankee imperialism. The fascists in Latin America learn to speak and act like natives. Our chemical and other manufacturing concerns are all too often ready to let the Germans have Latin American markets, provided the American companies can work out an arrangement which will enable them to charge high prices to the consumer inside the United States. Following this war, technology will have reached such a point that it will be possible for Germans, using South America as a base, to cause us much more difficulty in World War III than they did in World War II. The military and landowning cliques in many South American countries will find it attractive financially to work with German fascist concerns as well as expedient from the standpoint of temporary power politics.

Fascism is a worldwide disease. Its greatest threat to the United States will come after the war, either via Latin America or within the United States itself.

Still another danger is represented by those who, paying lip service to democracy and the common welfare, in their insatiable greed for money and the power which money gives, do not hesitate surreptitiously to evade the laws designed to safeguard the public from monopolistic extortion. American fascists of this stamp were clandestinely aligned with their German counterparts before the war, and are even now preparing to resume where they left off, after "the present unpleasantness" ceases:

The symptoms of fascist thinking are colored by environment and adapted to immediate circumstances. But always and everywhere they can be identified by their appeal to prejudice and by the desire to play upon the fears and vanities of different groups in order to gain power. It is no coincidence that the growth of modern tyrants has in every case been heralded by the growth of prejudice. It may be shocking to some people in this country to realize that, without meaning to do so, they hold views in common with Hitler when they preach discrimination against other religious, racial or economic groups. Likewise, many people whose patriotism is their proudest boast play Hitler's game by retailing distrust of our Allies and by giving currency to snide suspicions without foundation in fact.

The American fascists are most easily recognized by their deliberate perversion of truth and fact. Their newspapers and propaganda carefully cultivate every fissure of disunity, every crack in the common front against fascism. They use every opportunity to impugn democracy. They use isolationism as a slogan to conceal their own selfish imperialism. They cultivate hate and distrust of both Britain and Russia. They claim to be super-patriots, but they would destroy every liberty guaranteed by the Constitution. They demand free enterprise, but are the spokesmen for monopoly and vested interest. Their final objective toward which all their deceit is directed is to capture political power so that, using the power of the state and the power of the market simultaneously, they may keep the common man in eternal subjection.

Several leaders of industry in this country who have gained a new vision of the meaning of opportunity through co-operation with government have warned the public openly that there are some selfish groups in industry who are willing to jeopardize the structure of American liberty to gain some temporary advantage. We all know the part that the cartels played in bringing Hitler to power, and the rule the giant German trusts have played in Nazi conquests. Monopolists who fear competition and who distrust democracy because it stands for equal opportunity would like to secure their position against small and energetic enterprise. In an effort to eliminate the possibility of any rival growing up, some monopolists would sacrifice democracy itself.

It has been claimed at times that our modern age of technology facilitates dictatorship. What we must understand is that the industries, processes, and inventions created by modern science can be used either to subjugate or liberate. The choice is up to us. The myth of fascist efficiency has deluded many people. It was Mussolini's vaunted claim that he "made the trains run on time." In the end, however, he brought to the Italian people impoverishment and defeat. It was Hitler's claim that he eliminated all unemployment in Germany. Neither is there unemployment in a prison camp.

Democracy to crush fascism internally must demonstrate its capacity to "make the trains run on time." It must develop the ability to keep people fully employed and at the same time balance the budget. It must put human beings first and dollars second. It must appeal to reason and decency and not to violence and deceit. We must not tolerate oppressive government or industrial oligarchy in the form of monopolies and cartels. As long as scientific research and inventive ingenuity outran our ability to devise social mechanisms to raise the living standards of the people, we may expect the liberal potential of the United States to increase. If this liberal potential is properly channeled, we may expect the area of freedom of the United States to increase. The problem is to spend up our rate of social invention in the service of the welfare of all the people.

The worldwide, agelong struggle between fascism and democracy will not stop when the fighting ends in Germany and Japan. Democracy can win the peace only if it does two things:

Speeds up the rate of political and economic inventions so that both production and, especially, distribution can match in their power and practical effect on the daily life of the common man the immense and growing volume of scientific research, mechanical invention and management technique. Vivifies with the greatest intensity the spiritual processes which are both the foundation and the very essence of democracy.

The moral and spiritual aspects of both personal and international relationships have a practical bearing which so-called practical men deny. This dullness of vision regarding the importance of the general welfare to the individual is the measure of the failure of our schools and churches to teach the spiritual significance of genuine democracy. Until democracy in effective enthusiastic action fills the vacuum created by the power of modern inventions, we may expect the fascists to increase in power after the war both in the United States and in the world.

Fascism in the postwar inevitably will push steadily for Anglo-Saxon imperialism and eventually for war with Russia. Already American fascists are talking and writing about this conflict and using it as an excuse for their internal hatreds and intolerances toward certain races, creeds and classes.

It should also be evident that exhibitions of the native brand of fascism are not confined to any single section, class or religion. Happily, it can be said that as yet fascism has not captured a predominant place in the outlook of any American section, class or religion. It may be encountered in Wall Street, Main Street or Tobacco Road. Some even suspect that they can detect incipient traces of it along the Potomac. It is an infectious disease, and we must all be on our guard against intolerance, bigotry and the pretension of invidious distinction. But if we put our trust in the common sense of common men and "with malice toward none and charity for all" go forward on the great adventure of making political, economic and social democracy a practical reality, we shall not fail.
 
This was written Sunday 09 April 1944
 
By Left Of Center
at
THE BLUE REPUBLIC
 
 

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

NEW GOP POLITICAL AD

Since the onslaught of Roe Verses Wade millions of innocent children have been murdered by deranged abortionists who refuse to accept the fact that victims of rape and incest must be forced to carry their unplanned children to full term. As a result, thousands or even tens of thousands of Republican pedophiles have been denied the right to assault children who might otherwise have been the unwilling victims of the Greedy Old Perverts. This November you can support the time honored belief that the unborn are sacred but that the children are not. Send a clear and resounding message that we need to end abortion so that Republican pedophiles will have more children to molest. Keep women in their place and support the rising tide of conservative sexual assault against minors. Vote early. Vote Often. Vote Republican.

This as was paid for by Puritans Endorsing Reactionary Visions.

REPUBLICANS Think Our Troops Are Stupid

Will someone please tell me why John Kerry didn't behave as forceully in 2003 as he did at the press conference that he called yesterday?
For those of you who missed this--and you were God awful unlucky if you did--John Kerry cracked an off the cuff joke about how young people should study hard and get good grades or they might get stuck in Iraq.   Of course the comment was directed at our combat-dodging president who hated studying,and who got by on a C average--the implication being that George W. Bush was so stupid that he didn't bother to study what might happen in Iraq if we were to launch a war of choice. 
 
Of course that was the intended meaning.    Deputy Propaganda Minister, (i.e. Spokes Liar) Tony Snow had  other ideas and decided it would be a really nice idea to suggest that Kerry was calling our troops ignorant and undereducated.  
 
Do you remember a point that I recently made about the Republicans?   How everything they accuse other people of doing is in essence a form of projection, a twisted form of confession in which they project their many sins and twisted beliefs onto others?   Well, I have a felling that this is exactly what the Republicans--Bush and his inner circle in particular--really and truly think about the troops.   We have already seen how Republicans present friendly images of themselves to the people they are manipulating and exploiting.   Witness how Bush, Rove, and their ilk played the Christian Right for what it was worth and then referred to them as nutty and difficult to handle.   We've seen how Rove praised his gay step father and then used gays as whipping boys to energize the Christian base of the party--only to ridicule those same Christians when he thought no one was listening.   And let's not forget that sick "comedy" routine" in which George W. Bush made a mockery out of American troops by creeping around the Oval Office looking for the missing weapons of mass destruction.   Trust me.   We've seen it time and time again.   When these lying sons of bitches accuse someone else of doing something it's usually to smear an innocent victim and to cover up the fact that this is what Bush and his cronies have been doing or thinking themselves.  Translated into the every day vernacular, when Spokes Liar Tony Snow accused John Kerry of mocking the troops, Snow was actually admitting that this Administration has manipulated and exploited the troops, only to believe that the troops were foolish for allowing themselves to be deceived by the Greedy Old Perverts in the first place.   Or to be succinct:  George W Bush, who truly is of limited intelligence, believes that the troops are as stupid as he is.
 
Personally, I rather liked John Kerry's comeback at yesterday's press conference:
 
"If anyone thinks a veteran would criticize the more than 140,000 heroes serving in Iraq and not the president who got us stuck there, they're crazy. This is the classic G.O.P. playbook. I'm sick and tired of these despicable Republican attacks that always seem to come from those who never can be found to serve in war, but love to attack those who did.

I'm not going to be lectured by a stuffed suit White House mouthpiece standing behind a podium, or doughy Rush Limbaugh, who no doubt today will take a break from belittling Michael J. Fox's Parkinson's disease to start lying about me just as they have lied about Iraq. It disgusts me that these Republican hacks, who have never worn the uniform of our country lie and distort so blatantly and carelessly about those who have.

The people who owe our troops an apology are George W. Bush and Dick Cheney who misled America into war and have given us a Katrina foreign policy that has betrayed our ideals, killed and maimed our soldiers, and widened the terrorist threat instead of defeating it. These Republicans are afraid to debate veterans who live and breathe the concerns of our troops, not the empty slogans of an Administration that sent our brave troops to war without body armor.

Bottom line, these Republicans want to debate straw men because they're afraid to debate real men. And this time it won't work because we're going to stay in their face with the truth and deny them even a sliver of light for their distortions. No Democrat will be bullied by an administration that has a cut and run policy in Afghanistan and a stand still and lose strategy in Iraq."
 
To that I would only add the following.  For some reason John Kerry felt that he had a reason to apologize when no reason was required in the first place.   If anyone owes the troops and their families an apology it is George W. Bush and his chicken hawk cabinet, which have never looked upon our young men and women as anything except disposable cogs in a machine.   More than 2,800 dead; more than 20,000 wounded or permanently disabled.   Somewhere in the neighborhood of 600,000 Iraqi casualties and more than a million Iraqis displaced.   A police force which is saturated with militiamen and insurgents who take the training skills they receive from American soldiers and then use those skills to--you guessed it--kill American soldiers; stop loss measures which keep American soldiers on duty for however long this President and his puppet masters think it is necessary, ad nauseam.
 
Of course I would never expect an apology from Bush nor any of the thugs and Brownshirts who dominate this Administration.  That might be a human thing to do, and as we have all learned during the past six years, at least 28 percent of the Republican Party is incapable of anything which even remotely resembles a loving, compassionate thought for anyone or anything.
 
And they have the audacity to go after John Kerry?  What can I say?  George W. Bush and his supporters are without honor.