Skip to main content


Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 05:30 PM PST

O'Reilly Sums it Up

by r fisher

Bill O'Reilly summing up the consensus Right a few seconds ago on Fox. "The white establishment is now the minority. And, the voters, many of them, feel that the economic system is stacked against them, and they want stuff. You're going to see a tremendous Hispanic vote for President Obama. Overwhelming black vote for President Obama. And women will probably break President Obama's way. People feel that they are entitled to things and which candidate between the two is going to give them things?" So the only people voting for Obama are minorities and women who want free stuff? And here I thought it was Americans who remembered that the last time we let you fuckers run the show you lied us into a war and broke the economy with your little de-regulatory experiment. Asshole.

Edit #1: I always knew that watching Fox and hating O'Reilly would take me somewhere, I just always thought it would be the federal penitentiary. The rec list for the first time is way better. Cheers.

Discuss

Wed Oct 03, 2012 at 11:46 PM PDT

Obama wins the debate in one line

by r fisher

ROMNEY: What we do have right now is a setting where I'd like to bring money from overseas back to this country.

OBAMA: Great. Why don't you start with your bank accounts in the Caymans then?

Game over. Obama whiffed big time on a couple of gimmes. This was a huge one. Another...

ROMNEY: But you make a very good point, which is that the place you put your money just makes a pretty clear indication of where your heart is.

OBAMA: I agree. Where do you keep your money again Governor?

Forget the rest of it. If he hit him on either of these that would have been it.

Discuss

Wed Oct 03, 2012 at 11:29 PM PDT

Same old Mitt

by r fisher

I'm not sure why Mitt's performance tonight is surprising. Mitt always says exactly what his audience wants to hear. It's his calling card. When he's narrow-casting, for example, at $50K dinners or battling in the Republican primary, he's a tried and true right wing ideologue. When he's broadcasting, like in tonight's debate, he's a moderate. He always says what the audience wants to hear. When he's at a Dodger game he says blue is his favorite color. When he's at Kentucky Fried Chicken he says Colonel Sanders is his favorite military leader. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Discuss

Wed Sep 05, 2012 at 02:44 PM PDT

Mitt's Big Problem - The Bush Question

by r fisher

When George W. Bush left office in January 2009 he did so with an approval rating of just over 30%, up a little over the low of 25% he reached in October of 2008 when the economy was collapsing and we weren’t sure whether or not it would ever recover. As financial titans fell like giant sequoias and stalwarts of American industry with names like General Motors and Chrysler lay gasping for air the American public grew alert, seized by panic. Americans learned quickly the impact that big finance had on everyday life as we lost our jobs and our homes in record number.

(Are we better off than we were four years ago? I guess I’ll answer that question with another question. Are you fucking kidding me?)

Initially, focus was on survival. But once the economy bottomed out, banks stopped collapsing, and the auto industry was saved, we were faced with a future that promised a long and rough road. This being the land of opportunity we wanted to know who to blame. Whether you accepted the Conservative story that government interference in the market by government sponsored entities like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were entirely to blame, or the truth, ultimately, culpability was laid at the feet of George W. Bush who could be held responsible for both scenarios. This, among other issues like unpopular and expensive wars, accounts for the abysmal approval rating.

In 2008, Barack Obama’s campaign portrayed John McCain as Bush II reincarnate. Milking the Bush approval rating for all it was worth Obama came into the White House with huge congressional majorities and began the task of rebuilding the economy.

Four years later Republicans have the audacity to ask whether or not we’re better off than we were four years ago. The question itself is an insult to the intelligence of the American people. For me the answer is easy. Four years ago I was laid off at the height of the crisis and today I have a good job. So, yeah. I’m way better off.

But we all remember what life was like in 2008. Does it feel like that today? Are banks collapsing? Is the auto industry? Is the stock market plummeting? No, no, no. Unemployment is down. Year over year debt has slowed to the lowest it’s been since Clinton. 4.5 million private sector jobs have been created in the last two years. We’re out of Iraq. DADT is dead and gone. Lily Ledbetter, on and on. Why they’re going all in on a question that it is very easy for Americans to answer is anyone’s guess.

The real question we face is whether or not we believe we’re better off moving forward with Barack Obama or Mitt Romney. And to answer that question we need to know what makes Mitt Romney different from George W. Bush.

During the postgame coverage of night one of the 2012 Democratic National Convention CNN’s Piers Morgan interviewed Romney Communications Director Gail Gitcho. Gitcho repeated the disingenuous meme that we’re not better off than we were four years ago. And in yet another indictment of the current state of our media, Morgan conceded her point by not disputing it and instead replied with a standard Liberal retort that the whole mess was inherited from the previous administration. Gitcho was ready for it;

GITCHO: Sure, you're going to see blaming, you're going to see scapegoats. This is not about running against President Bush. If they wanted to run against President Bush, then they are eight years too late. President Bush is not on the ballot. You will continue to hear these excuses, this blame-shifting, this scapegoating, because they have no record to run on and President Obama has no plans in the future to fix it.

Clearly it’s something the Romney camp doesn’t want to address, and for good reason. Unfortunately for them however, the fact that they’d rather not confront an issue does not mean that it will simply go away.

The policies of George W. Bush brought this nation to the brink of disaster. We are still dealing with the aftermath and will be for some time. Japan has been battling economic woes for twenty years now. If Romney wants to ascend to the most powerful office in the world than he had better explain how his economic philosophy differs from that of the man who fucked everything up in the first place.

Now what Republicans would like to do is continue the ideological lineage of Reagan. In part because it’s something they’ve married themselves to and in part because it’s a lucrative ideology for people who think the end all be all of existence is to make a shit load of money, and especially for those who already have a leg up on the competition. But the only way that they can do that is by casting Bush as a rogue actor. He has to be seen as a deviation from the gospel. He’s not of course. Tax cuts for the rich, an expansive and expensive foreign policy, and a regime committed to deregulation are pillars of the Reagan ideology. Bush was a good soldier. It was the ideology that fell flat and failed us.

But since Mitt is a continuation of that ideological legacy, Republicans cannot tie him to Reagan without disavowing Bush, which is why Gitcho was so well prepared to deflect and pivot—and why Bush wasn’t invited to the RNC.

And of course, the reason that they’re running from the Bush Question is because they don’t have a good answer. Conservatives know this, which is why the primaries were such a struggle for Romney. If they’re being honest they’ll admit he’s actually the closest thing to Bush that they have. So now that they're stuck with him they have to hope that a) we forget about Bush and b) we fail to see how similar he is to Romney.

Good luck with that!

Republicans are caught in an identity struggle between an unpopular Tea Party ideology and a failed Reagan ideology. Since they can’t quite decide, they’re trying to do both, which is why we get the old “you’ll see where we stand once we’re elected” bullshit and a Romney/Ryan ticket designed to placate both factions. They can’t tell you where they stand because if they take a hard stance they alienate a large segment of the coalition. He can’t tell you he’s not Bush because he’s not sure himself.

But by all indications he is. When measured against the pillars of Reaganology, those that were faithfully followed by Bush, Romney holds up very well.

David Cay Johnston, Pulitzer Prize winning Reuters columnist and tax specialist, calls Romney’s tax plan, “George W. Bush on steroids.” Johnston says that while the Bush Tax Cuts gave 12% to the top .1% of the wealthiest Americans, the Romney plan gives 33% to the top .1%. The Tax Policy Center calls his budget “mathematically impossible.” How he plans to increase military spending and offer tax cuts while balancing the budget is just not possible. “By 2022, Romney would need to cut all non-defense, non-Social Security programs by 49 percent. That is not plausible, to say the least.”

He’s hired 43 of the Bush foreign policy specialists as advisors. So as far as foreign policy goes it’s safe to say we’ll get more of the same. This explains Mitt’s recent bluster at the RNC where he called out Iran, predictably, and in another transparent attempt to tie himself to Reagan looked to reignite the Cold War by calling out Russia.

Complicating his foreign policy position is the fact that wars are unpopular with the Libertarian strand of the Republican Party who are repelled by the economic impact of costly military incursions. The wars thus far are estimated to have added $1.4 trillion to the debt. Factor Mitt’s hawkish position in to his plans to balance the budget and see what happens to a plan that's already "mathematically impossible." Foreign policy and economics are inextricably linked. And following the Bush foreign policy model is not the road to economic prosperity.

Finally, there’s Mitt on deregulation. This one is predictably simple for a man who’s made his money in private equity. Romney has pledged to repeal Dodd-Frank in its entirety if elected. From his own webpage, “A Romney administration will act swiftly to tear down the vast edifice of regulations the Obama administration has imposed on the economy.” Easy-peasy.

And that’s it, the Bush trifecta. Tax cuts for the wealthy, an expansive interventionist foreign policy, and a commitment to deregulation—the exact same prescription that led us to 2008 in the first place.

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina says "Republicans have to do a better job explaining to swing voters how Romney's policies are different from Bush's."

Yup.

I'm sure as soon as someone figures out how they're different they'll let us know.

Discuss

Paul Ryan has recently been touted as the Republican poster child for fiscal conservatism. He’s been presented by some as a serious man with serious intellectual ideas. In truth he’s nothing of the sort. Economically, he’s a radical extremist and a man to which the term conservatism, in general, and fiscal conservatism in particular, has no rightful belonging.

As a recent diary of mine discusses, one of the debates currently being held is whether or not Ryan actually is a fiscal conservative. As I argue in that diary, to even participate in the debate is to concede on some level that fiscal conservatism is virtuous. I won’t rehash it all here.

Here, I ignore the temptation to debate whether or not Ryan’s votes for TARP, Medicare-D, et al, evince that he is, like the vast majority of his party brethren, a FINO (fiscal-conservative-in-name-only.) Rather, I grant the premise in Ryan’s favor. Let’s say that Ryan is what he claims to be. Let’s say that he will enact all that he purports to. Let’s say that he can de-align himself from his pro-Bush voting record. Let’s say that he is a Randian Libertarian and not a Compassionate Conservative.

I still reject the notion that this makes him a fiscal conservative for one simple reason. I don’t think that there is anything remotely conservative about dismantling New Deal protections for workers, especially during a period of economic stress. If anything, the prospect is utterly and entirely fiscally reckless. What could possibly be considered conservative about undoing social programs that have been in place for 80 years? We’ve been down that road. Let’s not forget the impact of Gramm-Leach-Bliley.

Conservatism, for all its lack of altruism, has been pragmatic. It hasn’t been historically short-sighted. It has recognized at some level that in exchange for workers agreeing to participate in a capitalist system that has proven to be volatile and destructive some base level of protection is granted. This contract has been negotiated and renegotiated since it was put in place in the 1930s but always respected by everyone but radicals. To be sure, Conservatives have sought to reduce those protections as much as possible but only radicals have ever sought to eradicate them entirely.

That’s why guys like Goldwater were destroyed in elections. They were extremists who wanted to undo the contract. These radicals were maligned by Conservatives and Liberals alike—Liberals because they stood for worker’s protections and Conservatives because they wanted to keep capitalism in place.

Before the end of the Cold War there were viable alternatives to capitalism and Conservatives knew it. It was in no way guaranteed that capitalism would endure, especially given its limited appeal to workers who properly understood it to be potentially and periodically pernicious.

But now, 23 years since the fall of the Soviet Union, those on the Right with no notion of the past have forgotten the tenuous history of capitalism in America. These irresponsible shortsighted radicals threaten to undo the whole damn thing. Those who value capitalism understand this today just as men like Joseph Kennedy Sr. understood it in the 1930s. Famously, Kennedy said, “in those days I felt and said I would be willing to part with half of what I had if I could be sure of keeping, under law and order, the other half."

Paul Ryan has no concept of any of this. He is driven by ideology. History is meaningless to him. That fact in and of itself is the antithesis of Conservatism. And when you consider that his policies are designed to undo the capitalist contract in America, one that has stood for eighty years, it’s clear that he’s no fiscal conservative. Any voter seeking a fiscally conservative representative should look elsewhere. Paul Ryan is a radical.

Discuss

Recently the argument-du-jour made by programs like the Daily Show and Up with Chris Hayes, among others, has been that despite his tough talk Paul Ryan is not a fiscal conservative. The argument is pretty basic and since I’m sure most of you have seen it I’ll just hit a quick recap. Ryan voted for TARP, Medicare-D, the Bush Tax Cuts, the extension of the Bush Tax Cuts, and the Iraq Invasion. This information is then tied to a ballooning federal debt—rightfully so—and the point is made that Ryan is just another in a long line of Republicans who talk tough about fiscal responsibility but can’t seem to vote in line with their own rhetoric.

While this is absolutely true and illustrated by the fact that Ryan is despised among many true fiscal conservatives who consider him a sell-out it’s not the right way to come at the VP nominee.

I understand the allure of making the argument. It says, “Look, I know you guys like Paul Ryan because you think he’s a fiscal conservative but he’s really not so you shouldn’t like him.” But what is the expected result of such an argument?

To answer that question it should first be asked who this argument is directed toward. Ostensibly, it seems to be directed at those who find virtue in fiscal responsibility, and implicitly toward those who are not already solid Romney or Obama voters. So we’re talking about Independents; swing voters.

Why would we ever want to present this argument to a swing voter?

The implication of the Stewart/Hayes argument is that a fiscal conservative is somebody that a voter should want in office. It validates the notion that if Paul Ryan were a true fiscal conservative a voter would be correct in supporting him for office. With this as the debate’s premise, Romney and Ryan don’t need to show that they’re devout fiscal conservatives at all. They only have to show that they’re more fiscally conservative than Barack Obama. Maybe they can’t win the “Paul Ryan IS an Ayn Rand disciple through and through” debate but they can win the “Paul Ryan is more fiscally conservative than Barack Obama” debate. And the point is that that’s not the debate we want to have.

The debate shouldn’t be whether or not Ryan is a fiscal conservative; it should be whether or not the economic policy prescriptions of fiscal conservatives are what we need right now, or ever. It should be that in tough times the last thing we want to do is impose austerity measures on the American people. It should be that dismantling and diminishing social programs while people are suffering is evil. It should be that trickle-down economics has never worked. It should be that we haven’t forgotten that and we’re not dumb enough to fall for the same old rehashed repackaged tired argument again whether it’s called trickle-down or job-creator economics. It should be that deregulation brought this country to the brink of economic catastrophe. This should still be pretty fresh in everybody’s minds.

The combination of Ryan’s policy prescriptions and Romney’s insatiable greed and refusal to release his tax-returns crystallizes the point. All they want is all they’ve ever wanted. More money. And they don’t give a shit about you.

The upshot is this: Whether or not Ryan is a true-believer is wholly irrelevant because he’s dead wrong either way! It doesn't matter what Ryan thinks. It only matters that he's wrong.

By framing the debate as whether or not Ryan is actually a fiscal conservative Stewart and Hayes accept the premise that the same old Conservative economic policies are acceptable, if not desirable. They’re not. They’re dangerous and have screwed Americans time and time again.

Shift the debate.

I love you guys but you should really know better.

Edit #1: Let me say that the point of this diary is not to malign Stewart and Hayes. The point I'm trying to make is that the argument they put forward on their shows is not one that is advantageous to the Obama campaign. So anyone interested in seeing Obama re-elected might want to consider how effective running with the "Paul Ryan is not a real fiscal conservative" argument is before running with it.

Discuss

Wed Aug 15, 2012 at 08:35 PM PDT

The Danger of Romney's Insecurity

by r fisher

What does the Paul Ryan pick really mean?

Every election we get all fired up when the VP pick is announced, but why? The 24 hour news networks have to fill time and we all understand that. But why do we get so caught up in it election after election? How short are our memories? What has a VP ever meant to any of us? How many Vice Presidents can you name that didn’t take over as President that were truly impactful? Cheney and??? How many can you name at all? How many can you name that lost in an election? Who gives a shit?!

The pick is important in certain cases, no doubt. McCain choosing Palin was important. McCain was 72 years old and a former prisoner of war. The Cheney pick was important because Bush was lazy and in over his head and he knew it. (Cheney actually picked himself if you’ll recall…) But in all other cases in recent history the VP pick has been largely unimportant. What has Joe Biden meant to your life for the last four years? Are we worried about a guy who’s never had a drink keeling over before he’s 70?

I won’t argue that the VP is entirely meaningless. Only that it is usually meaningless and absolutely over-hyped.

But more important than the pick itself is what it says about Mitt Romney. Indeed, the pick proves what we already knew. Romney is insecure about his Conservatism. So insecure in fact, that he made a horrible strategic decision in choosing Paul Ryan.

The strategy, as the RNC calls it—and rationale, I say—is that Mitt needed Ryan to “energize the base.” I must have missed something. This is the same base that believes a Kenyan Socialist is systematically dismantling the Constitution, right? The same base that goes to rallies holding signs of Obama with the Hitler ‘stache?  The same base that won’t abide another penny of taxes for the wealthy? These are the people who weren’t going to make it to the voting booth to vote out the most hated Democratic President of all time?

I call bullshit. Whether they’re voting against Obama or for Romney is inconsequential. The result is the same. The base is coming out en masse this November. However fragile Romney’s Conservatism, he’s not Obama. And he’s rich and white, and almost a Christian. Definitely not a Muslim anyway. This pick wasn’t made strategically. It wasn’t tactics. It was fear based. It was a choice made based on Romney’s insecurities as a Conservative and a Mormon in a party with a base that’s further Right than it’s ever been and overwhelmingly Christian.

This is the thought that keeps me up at night.

Sure he’s goofy. And disconnected. And probably an alien. But he seems pretty harmless. He sings off key. He repeats some strange line about trees being the right height. Despite his support for rich guy tax policy you get the feeling that underneath it all he’s not that different than Obama—the Obama we’ve seen the last four years anyway. He was governor of one of the most Liberal states in the Union after all. He did implement Obamacare before Obama did. Doesn’t seem all that radical to me.

And I don’t think he really is all that radical. But he is something potentially more dangerous and the Ryan pick confirms it. He is utterly insecure.

Insecurity is dangerous when it’s attached to tremendous power.

LBJ was famously insecure and this, according to many Presidential historians, led him to drive us deeper into Vietnam. The result as we all know was millions of lost lives and widespread and enduring suffering. If Johnson could be bullied why not Romney?

Against all sanity he chose a VP candidate who is way further to the Right than he is. Thankfully, I think this is a move that will cost him the election. Independents won’t swing for Ryan. And running with a rabid ideologue shoots new life into a Democratic base that has been frighteningly quiet thus far.

His curse is our gift. And the move that proves how dangerous he really is ends up being the same one that saves us from that danger.

I was terrified of his insecurity and now I am grateful for it.

Discuss

What does the Paul Ryan pick really mean?

Every election we get all fired up when the VP pick is announced, but why? The 24 hour news networks have to fill time and we all understand that. But why do we get so caught up in it election after election? How short are our memories? What has a VP ever meant to any of us? How many Vice Presidents can you name that didn’t take over as President that were truly impactful? Cheney and??? How many can you name at all? How many can you name that lost in an election? Who gives a shit?!

The pick is important in certain cases, no doubt. McCain choosing Palin was important. McCain was 72 years old and a former prisoner of war. The Cheney pick was important because Bush was lazy and in over his head and he knew it. (Cheney actually picked himself if you’ll recall…) But in all other cases in recent history the VP pick has been largely unimportant. What has Joe Biden meant to your life for the last four years? Are we worried about a guy who’s never had a drink keeling over before he’s 70?

I won’t argue that the VP is entirely meaningless. Only that it is usually meaningless and absolutely over-hyped.

But more important than the pick itself is what it says about Mitt Romney. Indeed, the pick proves what we already knew. Romney is insecure about his Conservatism. So insecure in fact, that he made a horrible strategic decision in choosing Paul Ryan.

The strategy, as the RNC calls it—and rationale, I say—is that Mitt needed Ryan to “energize the base.” I must have missed something. This is the same base that believes a Kenyan Socialist is systematically dismantling the Constitution, right? The same base that goes to rallies holding signs of Obama with the Hitler ‘stache?  The same base that won’t abide another penny of taxes for the wealthy? These are the people who weren’t going to make it to the voting booth to vote out the most hated Democratic President of all time?

I call bullshit. Whether they’re voting against Obama or for Romney is inconsequential. The result is the same. The base is coming out en masse this November. However fragile Romney’s Conservatism, he’s not Obama. And he’s rich and white, and almost a Christian. Definitely not a Muslim anyway. This pick wasn’t made strategically. It wasn’t tactics. It was fear based. It was a choice made based on Romney’s insecurities as a Conservative and a Mormon in a party with a base that’s further Right than it’s ever been and overwhelmingly Christian.

This is the thought that keeps me up at night.

Sure he’s goofy. And disconnected. And probably an alien. But he seems pretty harmless. He sings off key. He repeats some strange line about trees being the right height. Despite his support for rich guy tax policy you get the feeling that underneath it all he’s not that different than Obama—the Obama we’ve seen the last four years anyway. He was governor of one of the most Liberal states in the Union after all. He did implement Obamacare before Obama did. Doesn’t seem all that radical to me.

And I don’t think he really is all that radical. But he is something potentially more dangerous and the Ryan pick confirms it. He is utterly insecure.

Insecurity is dangerous when it’s attached to tremendous power.

LBJ was famously insecure and this, according to many Presidential historians, led him to drive us deeper into Vietnam. The result as we all know was millions of lost lives and widespread and enduring suffering. If Johnson could be bullied why not Romney?

Against all sanity he chose a VP candidate who is way further to the Right than he is. Thankfully, this is a move that will cost him the election. Independents won’t swing for Ryan. And running with a rabid ideologue shoots new life into a Democratic base that has been frighteningly quiet thus far.

His curse is our gift. And the move that proves how dangerous he really is ends up being the same one that saves us from that danger.

I was terrified of his insecurity and now I am grateful for it.

Discuss

When I think about the image that the Republican Party has somehow managed to sell, and then measure that image against what it is they actually stand for, I’m faced with some pretty glaring hypocrisies. I’ll wait while you pick up your jaw from off of the floor.

The one I really can’t get over though—this week, anyway—is how they’ve somehow managed to cast themselves as the tough guy party versus the sniveling chicken shit party of the Democrats.

You know the imagery; Reagan the cowboy commanding the Commies to tear down The Wall, a man in his Ford F-150 driving down a dirt road back to the house after a hard day’s work, the entrepreneur who came from nothing and made it on his own, the nuclear family coming out of church. If the Republicans could choose four defining portraits of their constituency they could do worse than the four described above. They’ve worked hard to sell the image, and the appeal is apparent, but it’s not what I think of when I consider the policies they stand for.

For the purposes of this diary I’m only going to focus on the first two. That is, the image of the Republican as the protector of the American people and the projector of American power—Reagan, more or less—and, the image of the strong, white, male, head of the family, who lives in the heartland and goes out and earns the money and then comes home to wife and family—the guy in the F-150. This is the rugged tough guy American. Whether kicking ass in foreign countries or doing so on the home front he is not to be fucked with.

In What’s the Matter with Kansas, Thomas Frank explores the way in which Republican politicians emphasize contentious social issues, over all others, in an effective effort to manipulate people to vote against their own economic interests. The question Frank sought to answer was, how are the Republicans, whose economic policies so clearly favor such a small sliver of Americans, and who so blatantly prioritize economic policies over all others, effective in garnering broad support in elections? Screaming about gay marriage and abortion while deemphasizing economic policy was his answer. And that’s one way to do it.

But with the success of the Occupy Movement in bringing issues of economic injustice to the forefront of political discourse, Republicans can holler all they want about abortion and gay marriage and immigration, and they will, and some of it will stick, but they can’t muffle the national dialogue revolving around class. It’s permeated all sectors and it’s not going anywhere.

The Kansas tactic was basically a distraction strategy. When we'd go hiking in the hills my dad would use the same method to catch lizards. With one arm stretched way out to one side he would wiggle his fingers back and forth which would capture the lizard’s attention while he would creep up slowly with the other hand and grab him from behind. That’s what the Republicans did with wedge social issues. They were distractions. Effective ones. And they caught a shitload of lizards.

That won’t work now though. You can’t forget something this important. What was the matter with Kansas was that it didn’t know who it was economically and didn’t understand who it was voting for. There’s no hiding that anymore. It’s pretty clear now that Republican politicians, despite their tough talk about social issues, value economic policy above all, if not singularly. The ones with any power do anyhow. And it’s long been understood that they have no plans in tackling, while in office, the same social issues that are so effective in ginning up support from “values voters” during elections. I think—hope—that some of this is penetrating the bubble.

What I’m talking about here though is Madison Avenue stuff. Selling an image. Like Corona or Chevy. Political parties brand themselves. The rugged tough guy is one of the Republicans most effective marketing campaigns. It’s effective in convincing middle and lower class white males—mostly, though not exclusively—who don’t pay a lot of attention to politics, to choose between projecting an image of strength or an image of weakness by way of party identification.

This is the issue that I see heartland lower and middle class people struggling with. The cognitive dissonance that arises from, on the one hand, understanding that the Republican candidate really doesn’t give a shit about you at all, and on the other, associating Republicans with manliness and/or strength and Democrats with weakness. If there are any voters who have found Jesus in class consciousness, and I have to believe there are, then they are forced to choose between these two competing negative alternatives.

Fear not friend, there is a remedy for what ails you.

The image of the Republican as fearless bulwark against nefarious foreigners and domestic Dirty Harry is all bullshit and needs to be exposed. The Republicans are not the party of rugged tough guys. They’re the party of cowards.

Think about it. Republicans love guns and Liberals don’t. This much we know. And guns are normally associated with manliness, which is why men who want to be seen as manly, and don’t pay much attention to politics, choose to associate with the Right instead of the Left. Makes sense. But how does loving some crutch that says you’re frightened of other people a projection of strength? You own or carry guns out of fear that someone else may harm you. Liberals seem to be fine without them. Republicans are scared and Liberals aren’t. That’s how it breaks down. How the shit are Liberals the cowards in this scenario? Isn’t it more manly to walk down the street without a gun, being confident that you can handle whatever comes your way, and not being paranoid that everyone is out to get you? Damn straight it is. The cowards can keep their guns. We don’t need ‘em!

Same goes for war. The Right is terrified of everyone. The Iranians are coming to get us! The Afghans! The Libyans! The Iraqis! Holy shit it’s Grenada! We spend as much on our military—NOT DEFENSE!—as the rest of the world combined and still Republicans tremble and cower. Add in our allies, and we account for 60-75% of total military power. And still the Republicans are terrified. Liberals, secure in their manhood and not scared of any foreign nation, have the backbone to cut military expenditures. Sure we need a strong military. We’re just not frightened to the point that we need to rapaciously accumulate weapons like some paranoid strung out junky fearful that everyone’s coming to get us.

So get the word out won’t you my friend? Real Americans don’t need guns and aren’t scared of other countries. Slap that elephant on the ass and tell him to beat it. Wave goodbye to your cognitive dissonance. Real men ride donkeys. Giddy up.

*Edited becuase the p word has offended some folks.

Discuss

It's crazy to think that in this economic climate guys like Paul Ryan, Marco Rubio, and Rand Paul feel completely comfortable talking about eliminating workers' rights. Eighty years ago, under similar conditions, large scale conciliations were made to workers. The difference is that they knew back then what we have since forgotten; that the wealthy need us more than we need them and that capitalism is a choice.

More below the fold.

Continue Reading

Sarah Palin sells out her party, her beliefs, and the people she claims to speak for by refusing to stand up for them, and in so doing reveals her true motives.

Continue Reading

Russell from Survivor provided a glimpse into the psyche of the modern capitalist. Win at all costs and f#%k morality.

Continue Reading
You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.

RSS

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site