SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY
POLITICS MAKE BEDFELLOWS STRANGE
OUR POLITICAL MARRIAGE OF CONVENIENCE IS FALLING APART
Republicans Are Guilty Of Fostering Irreconcilable Differences
Another great post from Ms. Willpen, formerly of the Borough of churches, synagogues, mosques, temples and Junior's, now the budding conscience of the Left. While it might not bother some of us to crack some Nazi heads, there are many here among us who feel that life is too precious to pollute or endanger with bloodshed, even in a worthy cause. So, nu, we wrestled with the better angels of our nature and this is how it all came out. As Honest Abe, our second Jewish President (Madison was "passing;" named after a street on the Lower East Side of Manhattan --His wife: Dolly, HELLO!!!) put it,
"We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature."
The post that launched a thousand megapixels:
"Pay it forward…"
The beginning of the post that started this conversation.
' I have been feeling so depressed and upset and tense lately regarding all the craziness that has been going on in this country. We are at each others necks ready to strike the first blow for what we believe in. Instead of fighting against each other, we should be reminding each other how much we all love this country regardless of our political leanings. We should not be at war with our fellow Americans. So I thought that it would be a nice thing to pay it forward. Watch this video and pass it on. Post it on your blogs. Pass it on to someone you love and someone who bugs the crap out of you. Pay it forward until it has reached around the country and reminded each and every one of us that we are all fighting for the same things. '
I’d have to disagree on this one. We are not all fighting for the same things. We are all fighting each other over the same things.
Moderates, liberals, progressives and democratic socialists all believe in human rights, equal justice under the law, a strong social safety net, limiting the use of force and violence in general, a truly democratic government of the people and not of the corporations.
“Centrists” (Blue Dogs), libertarians, conservatives, corporatists and Fascists believe in the opposite of all that. They are who and what we are opposing. They have made it very clear that there can be no compromise, no middle ground, no accommodation. All of our efforts to achieve consensus with them have simply led to nothing being done on healthcare, climate change, equal rights, control of corporations, fair trade, etc. Not only have they held us, the majority, back for many many years, they have trashed this country just to fill their own pockets and empty their own bile sacs.
All this is out in the open, now. There are no more “moderate” Republicans. They are all in the thrall of the extreme right-wing. Even silver-haired millionaire old-money Senators talk like crazed illiterate thugs about our government and our polity. This is no time for compromise. You cannot show weakness to bullies. That’s what happened to the Weimar Republic. If you think I’m being hyperbolic here, folks, go to the library and read up on it. It’s not just that there are parallels between the early Nazi Party and what the Republicans are trying to do today. They are actually using the Nazi playbook as a day-by-day guide to strategy & tactics right now in America.
Not that the Right hasn’t always done this. But there has rarely ever been this level of hatred, violence and hysteria among ordinary citizens, without a word from anyone in the media or government. Those who have forgotten the days of mass rallies of the Bund in NYC’s Madison Square Garden (1930’s) and KKK political assassinations in broad daylight (1970’s & 80’s) will perhaps recall the era when John Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King and Malcolm X were all assassinated without any satisfactory investigations into who was behind it all. The net result was Nixon, and forty years of corrupt, incompetent conservative Republican & DINO rule, a disaster for the American middle class.
So go ahead and make nice with the Nazi’s if you want to, folks. They will never respect you for it. You’ll just be making it easier for them to stab you in the back. After all, they’re the minority; they can’t win fairly in a democracy.
"willpen August 12, 2009 at 2:32 pm"
Comment in response to mine, above.
' Now we are having a dialogue.
While I wholly respect and understand where you are coming from, I have to say that I have been doing a lot of thinking about this lately. After the stuff that has been going on here for the last few days, with some crazed and pent up person using me as their whipping post, I have been observing the behavior on both sides.
I suppose that I am trying to be the devil’s advocate here, trying to push everyone just a bit in order to open up a conversation. I really think that is what is missing.
I read a very interesting article at the Huff Post this morning: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-leo-rangell/understanding-conversatio_b_257037.html
It talks about what I have been trying to say here.
People do not speak to each other but past each other, do not absorb and process what others say but pick and choose that which serves their own inner purposes. This 24/7 phenomenon, which plays a ubiquitous part in human life from Wars to broken friendships, was discussed in depth at a Round Table on “The Closed Mind” held at that Congress.
I too am angered to the point of frustration. I know deep in my heart that when the tables were turned I may have been angry and upset, but I never reverted to the tactics that are being used now against the duly elected establishment. But I also know that we cannot continue this way. There has to be someone who just yells "I CAN'T DO THIS ANYMORE". Someone that has to start to try and turn things around. I see us slipping back in history and I fear a racial undercurrent simmering below the surface, such as the Rosa Parks poster that was torn out of a woman's hand at a Claire McCaskill town hall meeting. We have to be the cooler heads that prevail. I must follow the same instincts that I follow in business, which is the road to success is best paved by a slow and steady march.
I know that there will be times when my head will want to explode again, but I am trying to get the better of my demons to stop and think before it does. '
The thing is, they have NOTHING to fear from us. We’re not Stalinists. We’re barely liberals by any objective measure of international politics. And we’re mostly pacifists; all of us are certainly against unnecessary violence.
We have a great deal to fear from them, as recent history and current events show. This isn’t a conversation any more. It’s a battle, by their own definition, and they started it. And now they’re getting violent. You can’t reason with violent, armed lunatics who won’t even talk to you.
As to hearing what they have to say, how can I avoid it? They own the media. I’ve had them screaming in my ear all my life. It’s the progressive majority that has no voice, that isn’t being heard. It’s the Right who will not listen, who mischaracterizes everything we say.
In business, you can always walk away from a bad deal. Usually. There’s always another deal. Usually. In our civic life, not so much. You can’t just walk away from under-funded schools, non-existent healthcare, brutal police, an empire-building military, and a rising corporate medieval State. And they have no reason to “hondle” with us, the majority. They hold all the cards. Except one. We’re the majority. It’s time we started acting like it, while we still can.
Yes, it may not be all that pleasant or warm and fuzzy. Wars rarely are. But brutal occupations aren’t, either. That’s what we’ve had for forty years. That’s our choice: A short painful non-violent political fight, or an endless painful accommodation with these violent Nazi-wannabees.
We really do not have a third choice. That’s their doing, not ours. We are the reasonable ones, always. But often in life, it’s the least reasonable people who win. They know that. Hence these tactics. We cannot allow them to succeed. This is only the beginning of their insanity. Have we forgotten what happened over the previous eight years? How many died? How our good name was lost? How our rights were trampled on? Look where they’re STARTING this time! Does it take much vision to see where they’re headed?
"willpen August 12, 2009 at 5:10 pm"
Comment in response to mine, above.
I agree with you 150% but I also feel like I have been losing my sanity. I feel a rage inside of me that I don’t like. I have visions of blowing some of these people’s brains out while smiling about it. My life has been turned upside down financially because of what has been done to this country for the last 8 years and then sometime before that.
I am trying to rationalize this all like a RATIONAL person, not a screaming banshee. I don’t know what more to do, so trying the approach of offering an olive branch is what I need to try now, because if I don’t, I don’t know how I can continue reading and watching what is going on in this country without wanting to blow my own brains out.
I am frankly scared shitless that this is all gonna end in some kind of tragedy. Something that we can’t take back. Something that is more than words.
I need to add something else here. I hate having to be filled with hate and rage. I despise the feelings that these people are making me feel. I spent most of my formative years protesting against the Vietnam War and government abuse. I may have gotten rowdy at times and boisterous, but I was young and passionate and I learned from it. I learned that hating is a bad thing and it was so difficult for me to have to deal with Bush for 8 years. I could never even bring myself to listen to anything that he had to say. I hated the sound of his voice, but I kept it to myself because it was what was needed to do. So I understand the rage that you and so many others are feeling now. '
Don't let them get to you. You exist at a higher level of consciousness, and represent a higher moral standard. Nothing they can do will ever change that, Willpen, and if there were such a thing as a Judgment Day, I think we all know who could stand without fear and who should be trembling.
Personally, I don't think there is a Judgment Day, except for the one every day here on Earth. I think that all decent people of any faith or no faith try to live their lives in as just and righteous a manner as they can, and treat one another with respect and generosity of spirit Those who do not are simply not decent human beings.
I really do not feel rage toward them, just outrage. I don't care how they live their own lives, though I feel sorry for the people around them, especially their kids. But people with such warped and twisted values as those militating loudest on the Right these days simply cannot be allowed to prevail or predominate in our public discourse. They are blindly or deliberately in the wrong and doing wrongs that are not excusable or ignorable. They are like out-of-control adolescents who will just keep pushing until somebody gets hurt. We have no choice but to be the adults and stop them before that happens.
That's why I say we simply have to say "ENOUGH!" right now, before there is another great historical tragedy and derailing of our polity. The assassinations of the 1960's seemed to come out of nowhere, though there was plenty of general turmoil at the time. The constant ratcheting up of the threat level by very visible figures on the Right today is an obvious warning that we cannot help but perceive. It does not require that we respond in kind or engage in some extra-legal measures. We just have to demand firmly but peaceably that our government put a stop to this before it becomes any more violent.
It's not your job or mine to physically oppose these thugs. All we need to do is let our government know that we support any reasonable action that will stop the escalation of violence before it becomes any more physical. Call it "reading the riot act." Give them fair warning right now that they have already crossed almost every line ever drawn on political conduct in this country. Washington, Jefferson, Adams, Lincoln, Wilson, Roosevelt all took action against sedition and potential violence well before there were any major tragedies. It's time for Obama to do the same. Not in the name of partisan politics, but in the name of public safety and defense of our democracy.
I would recommend that everyone who feels strongly about this write the White House and maybe their representatives in Congress, and demand that they take action against the worst of these thugs now. That includes the Fox News and Clear Channel networks. Johnson and Nixon never hesitated to let the broadcast Net's know when they had crossed a line. Hints were even dropped as to possible suspensions of FCC licenses, for mere trivialities compared to the violent craziness being broadcast now. The 'Nets backed down rather than risk losing their sweetheart licenses. Something similar could be done now. I think it is time for that. Let's ask for it now.
The thing about bullies and their toadies is, they're cowards. Like dogs, if you stand your ground they will withdraw. If you show fear, or turn and run, they'll tear you apart. Limbaugh, Beck, and the rest of them need a rolled-up newspaper across the snout, right now. I'd like to see it come from some unassailable American hero, maybe even a conservative. I'd like to see a Mr. Welch stand up in Congress and say, "At long last, have you no sense of decency?" It's time.
So write that email to your candidate for Voice of Reason. And keep the pressure on. But don't let these dweebs get to you. They're pathetic, at best. Take comfort in knowing that decent folk outnumber them, and are universally appalled by them. It's only a matter of weeks at most until the backlash takes them down. All the conservatards are really doing right now is digging their own grave. It's going to be a LOVELY symbolic funeral! See you there!
Remember, you're not alone, folks. You're not losing this battle, they are. We're going to continue winning and making this world a better place. We're unstoppable. All we have to do is stick together and persevere in being decent human beings. You're doing a great job at that, Willpen. Take comfort in that, and in the vast community of like-minded people who are all together in this.
TO BE CONTINUED...
(Further dialogue with any civilized person is welcome.)
(cross-posted at blog me no blogs by cosanostradamus)
Friday, August 21, 2009
a great and necessary conversation
Please read this conversation that was posted last weekend by Cosa Nostradamus. I agree with what he says: the level of discourse has sunk so low in recent weeks that it's time the grownups in our government (if there are any) put a stop to it.