Friday, April 7, 2006

Microcosm

BY GRAND MOFF TEXAN

I ran this yesterday on dKOS as a follow-up to an earlier diary, and they I realized that it was something for this site as well, since it's all about dealing with Vichy Democrats (among us, not just candidates) before we can deal with the right.
--
Tuesday, quite a few dKOS posters were shocked both by the invective of my diary and at how many KOSsacks were so psyched up after reading it.

Let me explain it to you:

We're sick of being told to be nice to the people who have been kicking us in the teeth for the last thirty years.

People on the left are ready to follow someone who sticks up for them and sticks it to the other guy, and they're sick of "Democrats" who offer the base nothing and instead spend all their time being nice to the people who hate us.

Debate?

The right isn't interested in debate. When it comes to evolution, global climate change, or even sex-ed fer cryin' out loud, the right is the enemy of fact. These are the people who think bipartisanship is date-rape, remember? Being right means jack shit. Humiliating your opponent means everything. If you didn't already know that the right just uses "debate" as a delaying tactic and as a way to shut people up, you have no business offering political advice to the rest of us. It's over your head.

There's an old quote from Ghandi making the rounds lately. You know the one. It talks about the stages of an outside movement fighting established power and how you eventually win? Yeah, that one.

Let me tell you what comes before that, before you can even begin to be laughed at or ignored. An outsider movement must first change how it sees its establishment enemy. Otherwise there's really no "you" to ignore, laugh at, or fight. You'll just keep on doing what the establishment wants you do do, even if you think you're fighting back. Your "opposition" only strengthens them.

The change goes like this:

first the enemy is the Devil

then he becomes the Fool.

The polemics of the Reformations (yes, all three of them) traced exactly this course. This is why the popular image of the fool is so iconic for that era. Ultimately, religious differences were rooted to other, irreconcilable differences as different faiths took root in different cultures and contributed to their growing apart. First, the Other was the devil, a threat to your Church. But after years of empty "debate," in which each side refused to admit the arguments of any other (and with no basis in observable fact to settle the argument), theological debate wasn't the point. They're fools, and we are done with them.

This is where we are now. What we have now on the left are too many people who think they're fighting the powers that be but who are actually just reinforcing the power we think we're fighting.

You empower and encourage our enemies by fearing them, and you live in fear of them (make no mistake) when you say, in effect,"quiet! You'll make them angry!!!"

That kind of person disgusts me.

The first thing you have to do is deprive your enemy of his ability to frighten you or anyone else. Even if your enemy is doing something truly frightening, you must deny him the strength-through-appearances that comes with being feared. It is enough to tell your bloc that their interests are threatened by the enemy's action, but the enemy himself must be made to look weak, hypocritical, incompetent, failed, and fraudulent.

Bush made this easy. He is all these things and he is truly pathetic. I mean that: I pity the man. But too many of you made him into a monster, and Rove thanks you.

oderint dum metuant

let them hate us, just so long as they fear us

Enough of this crap. If you're talking about what the right is talking about and you're not making a mockery of it, you're doing the right's work for them. If we need to go after a Democrat we'll do that, but not if it advances the right's argument or repeats their charges. We'll murder her career in the dark. Lieberman's different. Attacking him means attacking the right's message, the message that only neutered Democrats like Lieberman are respectable. We'll murder Lieberman's career in the town square just to make an example of him and everyone like him.

Let me show you the difference between helping your enemies and hurting your enemies. If I choose to defend Pianka, I spend our political captital. But if I attack Pianka's attackers for mindlessly flying off the handle, and add that they do that all the time, I spend their political capital.

And when I do the latter and you claim I'm doing the former, you're doing the right's work for them.

But one of the biggest problem I see right now is how hard so many leftists (of faith and otherwise) are working to play into the right's exploitation of religion. If you're a leftie of faith and you find it easier to attack your fellow leftists, and don't have the guts to take on the big, scary religious right, I question your politics. But since you also fail to take on the people who've inverted the values of your religion, since you fail to oppose their daily blasphemy, I question your faith. You attack your allies, help our enemies, and tolerate the degredation of your supposed religion, so don't whine to me about not showing respect for what you obviously do not value at all.

I'm not looking to accommodate people of "faith" on the right who will never vote for us anyway. Their faith is merely an accessorization of their social values that make them the natural enemies of all things progressive. Bigtory is important to them, the bible is not. Instead, I'm looking to expose the exploitation of a shallow and phony faith, to make that disgusting pose and ploy such an everpresent spectacle in American political discourse that the tactic is rendered useless forever, if only beause the country is sick to its stomach.

No matter how nice we are, the right will make us out to be dangerous and crazy, so you might as well have the advantage of being on the attack. They're going to tar us no matter what we do, so you might as well have the advantage of telling the truth. We have the advantage of being right. We have an agenda that puts the people and principles of this country first. They have the advantage of knowing that you win by always attacking, never apologizing, and by demonizing your opponents with tiny details. They have an agenda that uses fear, ignorance, superstition, and greed to attack our Constitution and prey on our people. They're counting on you to bend over backward to try and be reaononable. Then they turn to their cattle and tell them that wimps like you are all there is on the left.

Ridicule, scorn, and shame are the only sane responses to an agenda that is simultaneously dangerous and phony. It's the only honest thing to do. This isn't about being somehow 'better' than them, it's about beating them. After what they've done to us and our country, you should be revolted by them.

We are already better than them, after all. It's time we started treating them like they are worse than us.

If we put our pro-American agenda together with the tactics that have been kicking our ass for a generation, we will wipe them off the face of the earth. Every other developed nation has marginalized the forces of jingoism, superstition, and bigotry. Long experience has taught them that the people who come with that message are only going to lead them into ruin. Why does America have to look like a third world country on the inside?

It's because we're too nice to tell the fearful, ignorant, and superstitious that they're being used by an elite that regards them with utter disgust. It's because we're too nice to call that exploitation what it is. Thus, we live in the Age of Bullshit. We gave in to the Bullshit. We're too nice to Bullshit.

We brought this on ourselves.

We're too nice to stand up and tell the truth: that our enemies are not conservatives, they're not not Americans, they're not even Christians. It's all fake, a ploy to distract while they rob our country blind. And they'll keep doing it until someone stops them. They are utterly without moral compass or compunction. Until they feel the pain of financial and political penalty, they'll keep carving up your country ...

... while you're being nice to them in the sad hope that they'll stop.

What we saw on Tuesday was a microcosm of this election and the next: the base is looking for someone to lead them, but the usual losers in the DLC and the wimpy left are afraid to take advantage of our opportunity. But now, the numbers are looking so good that some think the failed triangulation of the last several elections will finally work. I'm not willing to bet on their failed strategies. Never again.

This is a base election, not a time to triangulate and make converts. We lose when we fail to turn out the base, and the base won't turn out for the wimpy DLC types think they can just limp over the finish line without having to abandon their losing strategy. They'll take half-measures and phony redemption over changing tactics to win a crushing victory. That kind of attitude is why we're still fighting these Nixonians, why they're still free to wreck the country murder all over the world. We didn't kill them off when we had a chance. Their careers and their whole pathetically retrograde movement should have been dead in the water years ago.

We will not make that mistake again.

BACK TO VICHYDEMS HOME

8 comments:

Thersites D. Scott said...

GMT: This is getting you a Koufax nomination next year for best writing. Stunning. Eloquent. Thank you. What a great thing to wake up to.

Tate said...

Excellent! but the card of the devil with people in chains should be smaller and a more victorious painting should be ADDED, IMHO to encourage people to fight back.

Tate said...

Is the first painting in your post Ship of Fools? I tried unsuccessfully to find a (long) review/critique of Katherine Anne Porter's novel and the excellent film with Oskar Werner and saw a small version ofwhat looked like that paintings in a separate article.
There is a messageboard about Oskar Werner which was excellent if small and his anti-fascist stands after having suffered under the Nazis.

Tate said...

There is a wonderfully sensitive photo of Oskar Werner as a Nazi in Decision at Dawn who is questioning his brainwashing. Have never seen the film but Werner was a true and great actor and this photo focusing on his face and expression is wonderful.

Grand Moff Texan said...

Thanks, T2, but I think the competition is stout.
.

Grand Moff Texan said...

tate:

hmmmm, I was trying to stick to the theme, but I'm open to suggestions.
.

Grand Moff Texan said...

Oh, and the painting is Bosch's "Ship of Fools"
.

lucretia said...

Grand Moff Texan: I just wrote long kudos to our post, but it just got wiped out. Anyway it's great.

You're right about about the Ghandi reference. We must see the enemy as they are and play to THAT enemy. The public will come around when they hear authenticity, like they did with Howard Dean in the primaries. And we know how the GOP and Dem Vichy's crushed him.

The Bush thugs used framing early on because they can't defend against our real arguments. But the Vichy Dems melted.

The religious right has indeed inverted the 'values' of Christianity with defintion of morality based as always on sex and righteous behavior. This suits the Corps because it keeps the masses in line. Notice how the mainstream media subscribes to a lot of this.

Yes too many Dems and leftists fear what we say. By so doing we are aditting the Bush/Rove facist power.

A movie theater here in Oakland, Ca "Grand Lake" uses part of their marquee to pitch it to Bush. Latest I love:

"Sinclair Lewis said: Facisim will come to America wrapped in the flag carrying the Cross."

About DKos comments: Seems to be two kinds: young white middle class who want to keep some of their illusions about America, and more mature group who zero in sharp stuff.

I couldn't find your diary of last Tuesday to view commwents,but maybe too long ago. Perhaps you want to say title and your name used.

I use the same name as here.

Carry on!