During early decades after our nation’s founding, Christian morality and the “Protestant work ethic” tempered commercial competition and assured a measure of concern for others’ well-being and livelihood. The worst potentials of unrestrained Capitalism began to be felt only after the Civil War, and then increasingly until labor movements, women’s suffrage and the advent of The New Deal. Reaction to such progressive forces continues to show two tendencies by “conservative” resistance: (1) retirement out of sight into a private “underground” where its sentiments ferment and fulminate, and (2) a stripping away of traditional ethics from the ruthless activities of pure greed, often under disguise of the Libertarian Individualist Ideology of people like Ayn Rand, the pretended “real Americans,” honestly self-believed and vehemently claimed by those gripped in that backward outlook.
We need new, political terminology. But, what? Stop using Left and Right? Much on the Right is WRONG, while center to moderate Left is more REAL. For the sake of preserving democracy and serving human beings before corporations, it may be easier to reduce the status of corporations to that of mere associations, for these are all that the Constitution actually recognizes. You don’t have to be an “originalist” to see this, if you read plain English. Citizens have the right to associate but not to change reality by word-magic pretending to re-invent lawful reality.
Not strangely, a majority of Tea Party members seem to be retired, either drawing pensions, interest income or Social Security. Surely, they don’t want their national benefit system privatized at this point in life. Many people have nothing but that safety net to show for a long, hard, working life. Eight years of careless, Republican foolishness by Bush/Cheney and the Neocons have put millions next to the street or into dire poverty. Obama did not cause this. Even TARP was conceived and begun under Bush.
The stimulus plan set in motion by Obama proved less effective than hoped but less complete a failure than Republicans want to paint it. Today, the serious economists think it was too small. Ultra-Wrongers neglect to notice the part they played in obstructing his plan from the start and how their “experts” made it necessary to try.
Think of our greatest humans — Chief Joseph of the Nez-perce; Mohandas K. Ghandi; Jawaharlal Nehru; Nelson Mandela; George Washington and a dozen of our founders. Abe Lincoln. Charles Darwin, who for more than twenty years patiently delayed publication to refine and substantiate his theses. A dozen physicists who dreamed mathematical formulae to connect complex observations into an inkling of fundamental reality that blew aside false, old theories like chaff. Charles Dickens who for much of his life wrote novels that brought people of all walks to empathize with poor working people, sick children and the elderly. Samuel Clemens whose Mark Twain stories taught us generous laughter at human folly. The list is immense.
None of the persons made prominent by the Tea Party or its handlers are on that list. They can’t help it. Theirs is no enterprise for helping anyone who isn’t nervously comfortable. They excuse their behavior by claiming to open doors, freeing anyone to climb a ladder to success, power and wealth. They don’t tell how the narrowing rungs at the top are packed with those who only want high place and who bar everyone not of their sort who won’t bow and serve.
We whose understanding and imagination were widely and deeply humanized during upbringing and growth, and who became directed toward community and wholeness of relation between man and nature in the oneness of life, must forgive those who are given to shallow values. They cannot help themselves. They are alienated from us and unwilling to be helped by us. Falsely secure in believing they already know everything of worth, they are not ready to learn anything from the hated “liberals” whom they misunderstand: the educated, widely-read and cultured people they sneeringly dismiss as “elite.” The resentful jealousy of those who have lived only to make a living and be amused by entertainers are so deeply and unconsciously self-destructive as to take down the entire nation and, during the collapse, wonder why such evil is happening to them.
The RP pretends every solution lies in yesterday’s unrestrained enterprise and the reduction of all value to markets for private property and government supports for getting rich, no matter the cost to society or nature. Live now for short-term gains, dine on the corpse of a dying world because nothing is made to last. The lord will save us who are just and righteous, in the end. He will lift us away in great spaceships on the clouds of morning. Alas, for the hangover of waking in pain, our children crying for food among the ruins.
On November 6th, 2012, Republicans lost heavily in the election. Why? They have shown unmistakably dishonest strategy, bad character and disloyalty to the American public. Using their old tactics of whipping up anger, resentment, despair, disappointment, impatience and fear through the childish gullibility of many ordinary people into a froth skimmed off into the Tea Party movement, the GOP money-baggers and their cynical disinformants will have managed to lose enough Senate seats to allow many things to be improved for the nation during the next four years up to 2016.
Like the Japanese at Pearl Harbor, Republicans have wakened the sleeping giant of the American people. There are too few sleepers left in 2012 for the GOP’s agitating propagandists to drug deeper into dreamland, this time. Determined recoil against Republican methods, money and candidates will raise a tsunami that sweeps away the forces of regression. No amount of fat-cat money or covert, foreign donations will suffice because people are getting immune to the effects of negative bombardment by media. It won’t work well enough, any more. People are waking to their reality.
Popular approval for the Supreme Court’s five enemies of democracy is so low, not one of them could get on the court if their offices were elective. It will take a while before congressional action circumvents their wrongful works, but the American giant will not forget. No amount of semantic engineering can put this genie back into the bottle. It will gather force quietly and in due course deliver such a blow to the radical, pseudo-conservative outlook as will unsettle its collective mind and drive it so far underground that the mere getting of wealth for wealth’s sake will lose prestige for generations, perhaps permanently.
People may seek to be creative of themselves by improving their minds; by improving the world; and by assisting the power and process of creativity, removing obstacles from before it and interference from around it. They will not put up with retrograde nonsense, any more. They will not allow obfuscation, stonewalling and gridlock. We will enter an age of progress that will totally astonish the backwardites with its workability and beneficience, making them wonder what could ever have let them imagine they were really alive or had meaningful ideas for the world.
Lastly, accountability will prevail. The after-effects of Dick Cheney’s public life will endure far into the future as a legacy of bad thinking at immense cost, death and destruction. While his lethal impact may not match that of Napoleon, Hitler, Stalin or Pol Pot, his wasteful cost to the world in lives and wealth puts him squarely in their category. Plain truth will overcome his elaborate deceits and denials. Shame on his ilk and all who admire and support him.