Tuesday, October 18, 2016

"...the fun is having lots to do and not doing it."

I did promise I'd write no more about the 2016 election, and, technically, this post isn't about the 2016 election but my fears of what that election represents.

As I said below, it is blindingly obvious to anyone that hasn't drunk the wingnut Koolade that the GOP in it's present incarnation offers only two things:

1. Stooging for open oligarchy, and
2. Comfort for white nationalism, Christian theocracy, and fear of the "others" (whether those others are gay, or brown, or Muslim)

And that's really it. There's no "hope" there. There's nothing aspirational. There's no vision of a future United States that isn't a polluted, plutocratic, conservative-Christian feudality. That's it; if you white (male, Christian) you right. If you brown...well, fuck off. And you lib'ruls, homos, uppity wimmens, nigras, beaners, immigrants of all stripes, Muslims, atheists...aaaaand I might as well stop here because I'm just depressing myself.

But this toxic stew of corporate-fondling, hate, narrowmindedness, bigotry, and weath-whoring is embraced by damn near four out of ten Americans.

Now...don't get me wrong. I'm not in love with the mainstream corporate-whoring Democratic Party. The Dems' neglect of the horrible effects of capital flight, economic inequality, and crony corporatism are a huge part of why we're in this mess right now.


The Sanders movement shows that the Democrats CAN be pulled to the left.

Not only can the GOP not go there...it's obvious that it won't even let the corporatist centerist Democrats go there - it won't let them be corporate centerist Democrats because they're insufficiently fucking nutzoid for smacking homos, luuurving Jesus and snowflake babies, hugging rich people and big corporations, and bombing the shit out of darkies and fuzzy-wuzzies.

The parallel that jumps to my mind (and I’m not the only one, given the spate of articles about this…) is the rise of Jacksonism in the 1820s.

And the reason that scares me is the damage Jacksonism did; the next thirty years of American politics were dominated by Jacksonians and Jacksonian policies like internal minority genocide and external aggressive war. Plus the malign neglect of slavery (or the outright approval of and expansion-encouragement of it). A whole bunch of our worst Administrations were Jacksonian, culminating in Buchanan. Basically Jacksonism was the bedrock on which the Civil War was founded. The worst feature of the politics of Jacksonism was that they made it impossible for the United States to simply outlaw slavery as Great Britain did between 1830 and 1845.

The upside of Trumpism versus Jacksonism is that we no longer have a franchise limited to white males. The downside is that the GOP’s propaganda machine has done a helluva a great job pulling in the “white male allies”; Christian theocrats, people fearful of imaginary jihadis under the bed, and the plutocracy into a coalition that looks like it represents about 40% of the public.

And the downside of that is that this basket of deplorables is dead-set against allowing the United States any government but the one they desire.

Do I think that we will see “another Jackson Administration” anytime soon? Probably – and hopefully – not.

But I think that the GOP has become a self-licking icecream cone; I think that regardless of whether the media comes down hard on the Trumpeters after November that this hard core of Jacksonians will not dissipate, and the United States will be, in effect, dealing with the same situation that broke the nation in 1860; there will be a large, indigestible, irredentist minority that will never, NEVER accept the legitimacy of their opponents. No non-Jacksonian/Trumpter will be allowed to govern. Obstruction will be the order, not just of the day but of the week, the year, the decade.

Eventually the American public will look for a “savior”, and a Man on Horseback seems all the more likely to be that "savior".

Hopefully I will bide safe in a ditch when that happens.


basilbeast said...

Read Taibbi? He was on the Daily Show last night

The Money Quote

>>Anyone who takes a close-enough look at how we run elections in this country will conclude that the process is designed to be regressive. It distracts us with trivialities and drives us apart during two years of furious arguments. It's a divide-and-conquer mechanism that keeps us from communicating with one another, and prevents us from examining the broader, systemic problems we all face together.<<



FDChief said...

Read the whole thing. And while I agree with a lot of what he says, I think he misses the point. "Elections" are the result, not the cause, of the national divide. Look at just one issue; say income inequality for example . And the problem I see isn't that "the process drives us apart". It's that D's have internal disagreement on how to roll back plutocracy. R's deny that it's a problem!!!

That's not a process problem. That's a fundamentally-incompatable-worldview problem. That's my point. Yes, bad journalism makes our electoral system worse (as does FPTP voting) but the larger problem is a large minority unwilling to allow anyone who doesn't share their politics to govern.

FDChief said...

AND the R's have no intention and haven't since 1992 of allowing the D's to do anything about (to use just this example) income inequality. You name it; removing the Social Security cap, increasing the top marginal rates, not eliminating the estate tax, raising corporate taxes, minimum wage increases and/or basic income insurance, nixing the carried interest deduction, corporate executive pay...there's no aspect of the New Gilded Age that the GOP is not determined to pursue AND no resistance to that ethos that is is not determined to obstruct.

That has nothing to do with bad election journalism or elections, period. It's polar opposite politics and the determination of the "conservative" side to destroy the function of civil government rather than let that government act in ways that it dislikes.

Over at MilPub P.F. Khans whined that saying this was "unpersuasive and meanspirited".

I'll tell what's fucking meanspirited; being told by "conservatives" that because I don't agree with their policies that I am a traitor, unAmerican, a Defeatocrat, a dhimmi who is living in a woo-woo fantasyland.

I'm fucking sick and tired of hearing a bunch of fucking feudalist cosplayers tell ME that I'm the one living the antiAmerican fantasy. If telling them that THEIR intentions to return my country to 18-fucking-90 is unacceptable and vile and the real "antiAmericanism" is "unpersuasive and meanspirited"? Well, sofuckingbeit. These sonsofbitches need to know that it's time that they don't get to define what's "American".

Podunk Paul said...

Hola, Chief,
You’re over-reacting to Khans' criticism. I don’t know the man except in the superficial sense of what his web postings have revealed. It’s common for men who have risked their lives in combat to believe that the experience somehow validates their opinions. Flying helicopters in a war zone, or whatever else Khahs endured, does not translate as political acumen. On the contrary, such experiences tend to have a regressive effect. We batten down.


FDChief said...

We've spent most of the past eight years battening down against Republican obstruction. I'm sick of it and yet Congressional Republicans are already promising to gin up "investigations" on Day One of a Clinton 45 presidency. That's my point; these chicken-fuckers are gonna keep fucking that chicken. They could care less about the majority of their fellow Americans that voted against them and their agenda.

That's not a republic, except in the "banana" sense. And that's what they'll bring us with this political onanism, Paul Ryan's toxic gift.