Saturday, March 30, 2019

Origins of Con-servatism



I’ve often discussed the human characteristic described as the authoritarian personality. And I have also described modern American conservatism as a very authoritarian Cult of Right-wing Authoritarian Personalities. Today’s con-servative C.R.A.P. has descended, in more ways than one, from a long history of authoritarian, reactionary elements of society.

Conservatism cannot hold power without a total lock on the authoritarian minority of a population in service to the ideology. Because the established political powers are guaranteed support from only the authoritarian quarter of a population, the forces of conservatism will always be directed at dominating discourse, suppressing democracy, and overruling consent by the majority of the governed. Only that special minority are deemed worthy of rule by authoritarian leaders and their true believer authoritarian followers.

The overlap of “conservative” and “authoritarian” is almost total. Not all conservatives are Right-wing Authoritarian Personalities, but all authoritarians are conservatives. And they are true believers in their leaders.

In 2017 psychology professor John Ehrenreich wrote an article for Slate titled, “Why Are Conservatives More Susceptible to Believing Lies?”

He found, “Conservatives’ greater acceptance of hierarchy and trust in authority may lead to greater faith that what the president says must be true, even when the “facts” would seem to indicate otherwise.”

This willful blindness is not good for humanity’s prospects for survival and prosperity.

So who are these conservatives and where did they come from?

Along with an understanding of the nature and history of the Right-wing Authoritarian Personality, knowledge of the history of conservatism itself is important. As we know, authoritarian personalities have been among us since our cave dwelling ancestors needed a rapid fight-or-flight response for survival. As monarchies rose, authoritarians would almost universally side with the leaders and their military/police guardians. This pattern of behavior would develop into modern conservatism.

Freelance writer and video essayist Ian Danskin brought us the illuminating youtube series exploring such topics as “The Alt-Right Playbook: Always A Bigger Fish” and “White Fascism” 

I can’t recommend these video essays on conservatism enough. (He just needs to apply the term "con-servatism" for our new nexus of white nationalism and corporatism.)

Danskin presents an excellent overview of the history of conservatism, going back to Thomas Hobbes, Edmund Burke, Joseph DeMaistre. They reached common agreement in finding democracy “repulsive” in their defense of monarchy.  He traces the lineage from these men through modern pillars of conservatism like Hayek and the Austrians to the Goddess of Greed, Ayn Rand.

Let’s have a look at some thoughts and quotes from “The Origin of Conservatism” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4CI2vk3ugk

According to conservatives, conservatism is all about “fiscal responsibility”, “limited government”, and “Rights of the individual”. It doesn’t take a journalist or historian to know how flexible these principles become when applied by conservatives and authoritarians.

Danskin observes the reality of their policies and finds conservatism is much more about, “maintaining social hierarchies”, asserting the idea that “people are fundamentally unequal”, and  “capitalism good, democracy bad”.

These are the tightly held “principles” of con-servatism.

He frames Royalist Edmund Burke’s message as, “Your labor is only as valuable as the degree to which it satisfies the desires of the moneyed classes.” This stands against Adam Smith’s “Labor Theory of Value” that places value on the labor done by workers. We see where this is going, don’t we? Labor becomes the dirty word here, as in value of, as well as in organization and representation of labor rights. Conservatism never tires of telling us labor rights should be unequal to owners’ rights and privileges. Never mind labor produces the value by which the owners profit.

He illustrates how conservatism promotes the idea that, “Humans are innately unequal and society flourishes when power is doled out to the deserving”, and “Conservatism upholds the status quo and defends the powerful.” It’s always been this way with American conservatism, since the colonial monarchists.

And throughout American history, from defending slavery, to opposing the civil rights movement, and to suppressing minority voting, the pattern has been consistent. Danskin makes it clear,  “The alt-Right ARE of the conservative tradition, only more.”

I wish I could say there is light at the end of the tunnel. Today authoritarianism speaks louder than democracy. Ignorant, frightened, racist and brainwashed Americans have chosen the path of darkness and authoritarianism, and they have shown they don’t need a majority to take us there.

American democracy died in 2000. The American soul died in 2004 when it reelected the men who lied us into a war of aggression. Trump has only zombie-fied the rotting corpse into a white nationalist corporate state.

The late, great George Carlin told us back in 2007:

You have no choice. You have owners. They own you. They own everything. They own all the important land, they own and control the corporations, and they’ve long since bought and paid for the Senate, the Congress, the State Houses, and the City Halls. They’ve got the judges in their back pockets. And they own all the big media companies so they control just about all the news and information you get to hear. They’ve got you by the balls.

And that is how it will always be...As long as enough of the majority are apathetic or ill-informed, the authoritarians will preserve the power of their elite rulers. 

Democracy is the direct threat to their rule. By having the louder voices and financial support from the ruling class, they easily dominate political discourse. They have been wildly successful in demonizing journalism and education. This has always been the way of darkness and evil.

Only a volitional evolution of conscience and consciousness, along with the willingness and ability of the majority to vote and become active, can illuminate the darkness wrought by ignorance, hate, and a cult-like faith in authoritarian con-servatism.

Until then, democracy loses and con-servatism wins.

60 comments:

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"According to conservatives, conservatism is all about 'fiscal responsibility', 'limited government', and 'Rights of the individual'." ~~ Dave Dubya

LOLOL We know that's a joke. "Fiscal responsibility"? It has been proven, time and time again, that deficits swell under Republican administrations. That's a fact.

"Limited government"? Nope! It's tied to "fiscal responsibility", but also they only limit it to their own pet projects (e.g., the MIC, subsidizing corporations and the wealthy, etc.).

"Rights of the individual"? Please ... you're killing me! LOLOL

Yeah, sure, as long as you're white ... and male ... and rich. ;-)


"It doesn’t take a journalist or historian to know the how flexible these principles become when applied by conservatives and authoritarians." ~~ Dave Dubya

No, it sure doesn't. This is where the acronym, "IOKIYAR" applies nicely.

(By the way, you obviously revised and edited your wording, and inadvertently left in the "the".)

Good article, Dave -- and especially enjoyed the vid links to some of Ian Danskin's great series of essays.

There's a lot to mull over and think about here, so I'll be back. Hope to see some TB3 contributions, too. Like his analysis of ideas.

Dave Dubya said...

JG,
Thanks for spotting the extraneous determiner. Fixed.

It's clear enough that inequality is at the very core of con-servatism. It is vital for the protection and preservation of rule by the economic elites. Authoritarianism, racism, bigotry, resentment, anger, fear, and above all, dishonesty are it's essential tools.

All is fair game in their war on democracy, and it is all in service to their economic royalist masters.

The economic elites and their authoritarian leaders and followers will always be a minority. Therefore, minority rule has always been the essence of their ideology and methods.

Dave Dubya said...

Vern’s pushing another far Right nut-meme on AOC.

She said, "They had to amend the Constitution of the United States to make sure Roosevelt did not get reelected."

The idiots of the far Right think she’s ignorant about FDR’s death in office.

She was exactly correct.

In 1944 Republican candidate Thomas Dewey talked about a presidential term-limits amendment “to make sure Roosevelt did not get reelected”.

In appreciation of Vern’s AOC Derangement Syndrome, I’ll let him chew on this insight from the brave young woman.

"When we talk about ideas like democratic socialism, it means putting democracy and society first, instead of capital first; it doesn’t mean that the actual concept of capitalistic society should be abolished."

Sane and informed people know capitalism needs regulation, and should be balanced by socialistic services and programs.

Dave Dubya said...

Bill Maher echoes FDR and AOC in commenting, "Happiness isn't only about what you have. It's also about what you don't have to worry about.”

Maher suggests we rebrand America's capitalist and socialist elements "Capitalism Plus." Because, "It's a plus when you get sick and you can focus on getting better instead of not going broke” and “ending up sleeping under an overpass.”

Anybody on the Right want to argue against Capitalism Plus?

Jefferson's Guardian said...

Re: Vern's AOC derangement syndrome. MSNBC is replaying her town hall meeting tonight at 9 p.m.(EDT).

Do you think Vern will tune-in to hear some intelligent discourse by an honest public servant...for a change?

Yeah, me neither.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"Sane and informed people know capitalism needs regulation, and should be balanced by socialistic services and programs." ~~ Dave Dubya

Dave, do you mean the socialistic services like Medicare and Social Security? Those socialistic services?

The ones Vern uses and depends upon? ;-)

I'm guessing that without Medicare, old and decrepit Vern would be pushing up daisy.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

By the way, that's "daisies"... :-)

Dave Dubya said...

Racism and hate have no bottom.

Vern is enthusiastically insisting AOC doesn't know about FDR and the 22nd Amendment. Just like all the racists who said Obama didn't know there were 50 states.

He even took the trouble to "con-splain" to me personally how the 22nd was passed after FDR died. Bless his little heart.

Isn't it hilarious how they think they know more than we do, and prove it by showing their ignorance, hate and racism?

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"[Vern] even took the trouble to 'con-splain' to me personally how the 22nd was passed after FDR died." ~~ Dave Dubya

Ocasio-Cortez's error was her timeline, and not the intent or reason. It's not like she was intentionally trying to pass off a lie. (Who would ever try to do that?! ;-)

If we want to explore and scrutinize gaffes we could examine George W. Bush's presidency. He was the king of "did I really hear what I think he said?" fuck-ups.

Until he looked it up, odds are Vern didn't have a clue when the 22nd Amendment was passed -- if he even knew what it was. It's not exactly a date that stands out in history -- like those years of catastrophic events in American history: 1963, 2001...2016.

Yeah, Vern and other alt-right white nationalists only call-out AOC because the petite lady from the Bronx intimidates the hell out of them. She should -- she's way smarter than they are, and they know it.

Since we're on the subject of gaffes, look up "3 Mexican countries".

Jefferson's Guardian said...

By the way, my apologies for saying MSNBC was going to replay Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's town hall meeting last night. It was an entirely different show about her dynamic and meteoric rise from complete obscurity one year ago to being the influential face of the progressive caucus of the Democratic Party today.

In just under three months in public office she's already impacted the party's talking-points on global warming, and mobilizing to mitigate the dangers of a planetary catastrophe.

Even my wife, who's apolitical and usually uninterested in government personalities and policy, insisted on watching the special. She even commented afterward, "It's too bad she can't be our president." I responded that one day she will be.

Dave Dubya said...

AOC Derangement Syndrome is quite the psychosis. Only in the paranoid racist fringe mind, can a young freshman rep be called a "leader of the party". Pelosi is doing her best to marginalize all those brown young female upstarts.

Yes, FOX(R) is leading the country by being as stupid and bigoted as Trump with their
"3 Mexican countries" idiocy.

Vern had no comment on AOC's point on democratic socialism and capitalism. That would require independent thought. Far easier to just hate and demonize.

Dave Dubya said...

If civilization lasts long enough to record it, history will favor AOC over Trump.

As the far Right gloats about being above political correctness, unwittingly because they have an ideological political correctness of their own, AOC shows the courage to invoke global warming, the most politically incorrect reality for the neoliberal order and the American far Right.

She has guts, brains, and above all, decency. No wonder the Right hates her. Of course they'd hate her for simply being an uppity brown female.

Just the Facts! said...

dave, what race is AOC?

Dave Dubya said...

JTF,

She's a member of the human race.

But like all humans of non-white, non-European ethnicity, a dreaded "other" to all the racists and bigots.

Where's your humanity? Where's your "Christian" honesty, compassion and decency?

Dave Dubya said...

JTF's response was a denial that sea levels are rising...

Not all racists are climate science deniers, but, well, most of them probably are.The most important thing in this world to them is whom to hate.

Anyone who respects science is worthy of their hate. Anyone who believes in equality of opportunity and equal justice under law are also worthy of their hate.

Nice guys.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"[Vern's] response was a denial that sea levels are rising..." ~~ Dave Dubya

Not unexpected. Being a science denier, he'd never look at the scientific evidence, much less have the intellectual curiosity to want to understand the data.

I guess during his three trips to the beach in 70 years, it never looked higher to him. ;-)

Dave Dubya said...

Nazi white nationalists love FOX(R) and Tucker Carlson.

VAN JONES (HOST): It's very alarming to me to see, I thought, at the highest levels, even, you know, anchors at Fox speaking that way. Does it alarm you?

DEREK BLACK (FORMER WHITE NATIONALIST and son of Stormfront's founder): Yeah. It's really, really alarming that my family watches Tucker Carlson's show once and then watches it on the replay because they feel that he is making the white nationalist talking points better than they have and they're trying to get some tips on how to advance it.

JTF,

You too? Thoughts?

Dave Dubya said...

JTF's thoughts are too filled with concern for the victims of Joe Biden to address his white nationalist propagandist.

He's so full of compassion he'd take a bullet for Trump as he was groping his daughter under the table.

What is that again? IOKIYAR. Of course it is. Anything and everything is OK if you are a Republican. Even white nationalism.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"[Vern's] thoughts are too filled with concern for the victims of Joe Biden..." ~~ Dave Dubya

Yet he never, once, voiced any concern for the multitude of women who came forth to claim they were sexually molested by mushroom dick himself -- nor did he for the woman that Bret Kavanaugh unsuccessfully attempted to rape.

Double standards, much?


"[Vern is] so full of compassion he'd take a bullet for Trump as he was groping his daughter under the table." ~~ Dave Dubya

Vern is twisted and sick enough to not only permit this, but I adamantly believe he'd assist. It would be tantamount to a sacrificial offering to his own "golden calf", Donald Trump.

And why wouldn't he? Each day Vern supports Donald Trump, he assists in the sacrificing of his fellow Americans at the alter of Donald Trump.


"What is that again? IOKIYAR." ~~ Dave Dubya

It's always IOKIYAR with Vern ~~ and all the other sicko alt-right white nationalists like him. As H. Clinton labeled them, they're truly deplorable.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"[Ian Danskin] illustrates how conservatism promotes the idea that, 'Humans are innately unequal and society flourishes when power is doled out to the deserving', and 'Conservatism upholds the status quo and defends the powerful.' It’s always been this way with American conservatism, since the colonial monarchists." ~~ Dave Dubya

Conservatism, and by default, Republicanism, is systemically ani-democratic. Since the gilded age it has always been in the corner of "big business" to the exclusion of the working- and middle-classes.

The door opened to equating the rights of corporations with those of real flesh-and-blood human beings in the late 19th Century with the Supreme Court decision Santa Clara v. Southern Pacific Railroad. That one mistaken decision is ground-zero. It opened the floodgates for subsequent corporate personhood decisions that have, ultimately, stolen democracy from the American people.

Tell your resident troll that I'll make an even trade with him. If he'll agree to speak out against the legitimizing and legalizing of human rights status of corporations, I'll agree to join him in his pursuit of inferring the same for unborn fetuses.

It's even-Steven and straight up, with no "players to be named later" and no other additions or exclusions.

Deal...or no deal? ;-)

Jefferson's Guardian said...

Correction: Obviously, that should have read "Republicanism is systemically anti-democratic."

Dave Dubya said...

I think JTF once said he'd agree to a gun ban for an abortion ban. I thought that was a fair offer and showed rare flexibility.

I would give up my guns for complete reproductive freedom, universal public healthcare, unrestricted voting rights for all citizens over 17, eliminating corporate personhood and partisan gerrymandering, or even ending the electoral college.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"I would give up my guns for complete reproductive freedom, universal public healthcare, unrestricted voting rights for all citizens over 17, eliminating corporate personhood and partisan gerrymandering, or even ending the electoral college." ~~ Dave Dubya

Ya' hear that Vern? Deal...or no deal?

Jefferson's Guardian said...

Wow! Here's a golden nugget...

"Was Thomas Paine a socialist? If by 'socialist' we mean a state-supported welfare system to ensure the poor and working poor lead comfortable lives, then yes. Paine supported a social welfare state. If by 'socialist' we mean that wealth is produced by the working classes (in his day the farmers and the mechanics) and that they should reap the benefits of that wealth, then yes as well. (Paine had a labor-theory of value). But if by 'socialist' we mean the definition it was to gain some 20-30 years after his death, ie. that the working classes control the means of production through the state, then probably not. Those ideas and even the language around them had not come into use during Paine's lifetime. In his era capitalist forces were just taking shape, and he did not foresee some aspects of that. In reference to 'socialism' in that light, he would have no clear grasp of the issues involved. He did support the program of Babeuf in the French Revolution, but opposed his methods. (The word 'communism' was coined by Goodwyn Barmby in a conversation with those he described as the 'disciples of Babeuf'.) So all in all, he seems to have supported many of the tenets of what people later referred to as 'socialism.'" ~~ from the Thomas Paine National Historical Association at thomaspaine.org

Dave, tell Vern to pass this along to his totally free-market advocate friend, T. Paine. ;-)

Anonymous said...

You guys seem way left of center, do you really think the majority of Americans will buy that?

Dave Dubya said...

Anonymous,

That depends on where the center is, of course.

You may be surprised how left of center most Americans are.

Liberal is no longer the dirty word it used to be. Even the word socialism is gaining more favor.

After decades of far Right propaganda demonizing the word "liberal" it's no wonder many can't identity with the label, but they do, in fact, favor progressive ideas and policies. Americans are far more progressive than the politicians in DC. Conservatives enjoy a greater proportion of representation than liberals, especially in the Senate.


Most Americans Are Liberal, Even If They Don’t Know It


The Radical Left’s Agenda Is More Popular Than the Mainstream GOP’s

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"You guys seem way left of center..." ~~ Anonymous

What's so left-of-center about complete reproductive rights freedom, universal public healthcare, unrestricted voting rights for all citizens, and eliminating corporate personhood?

They're all desired by the majority of American citizens.

Where do you stand with each?

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"Liberal is no longer the dirty word it used to be. Even the word socialism is gaining more favor." ~~ Dave Dubya

Republicans and conservatives act like they're afraid of the word, "socialism". Yet, like Vern, they sure love the benefits of Social Security and Medicare.

Since Dennis Prager was so kind to define "liberal" and "leftist" for us, "liberal" isn't so much the "L-word" that used to cause pearl-clutching and never, ever, was to be uttered in mixed-company.

The word, "Leftist", has taken up that dubious distinction. ;-)

Jefferson's Guardian said...

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez @AOC

This is the REAL conversation we need to have as a country.

As horrific as this president is, he is a symptom of much deeper problems.

Even foreign influence plays on nat’l wounds that we refuse to address: income inequality, racism, corruption, a willingness to excuse bigotry.
~~ Twitter, March 24, 2019


George Takei @GeorgeTakei

Let’s say Trump goes down in disgrace from Mueller or the SDNY or Congressional investigations. We’re left with a big question: How did a guy like that get elected? Why do so many still support him? We can’t just say “Fox News” or “Russians.” We have serious issues to sort out.
~~ Twitter, March 24, 2019

As George Takei states, we have serious issues to sort out. The same problems that existed prior to Trump's surprise election to the White House - that have existed for at least the past 40 years - only have worsened with this corrupt and inept administration.

We know the Republican Party only supports the status quo, and as a matter of fact only seeks to entrench and strengthen the top 1% at the expense of the working- and ever-shrinking middle-class.

The Democratic Party has become nothing more than "Republican-lite". The majority of those who've announced their intentions to run against Trump are mainstream corporatists, which is opposite of what is needed to address those issues Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez outlined in her tweet, and which Dave Dubya already articulated: "complete reproductive freedom, universal public healthcare, unrestricted voting rights for all citizens over 17, eliminating corporate personhood and partisan gerrymandering, or even ending the electoral college."

The Democratic Party is only in existence to maintain the corporate state; the GOP to cut and then wring-out the last bits of social safety nets and civil rights established during the FDR through the LBJ years.

Neither, as they stand, is fit for human consumption.

Anonymous said...

Guys, you keep talking about rights and freedom and a person named "Vern". Where are his posts or he is just a made up person?

Dave Dubya said...

"Vern" is "Just the Facts". He has posted under numerous other names as well. We use Vern to identify him in case he switches names again.

He inadvertently posted his real name on a Right Wing email forward message. It is not Vern.

TB3 said...

"Liberal is no longer the dirty word it used to be. Even the word socialism is gaining more favor." -- DD

That's because the words Liberal and Socialism have no fixed meaning anymore. When these words are just trotted out anytime a certain section of the population that perceives themselves on one side of the political spectrum doesn't agree with something, it loses its meaning. The Affordable Care Act is a Liberal take over of Healthcare, despite it's origin and genesis as a Heritage Foundation/Conservative-proposed alternative to Single-Payer proposals. Oh, but a Democrat offers it up as a means of getting access to heathcare to the people? Suddenly it's a Liberal takeover and socialism... despite nothing about the ACA being remotely socialist.

"What's so left-of-center about complete reproductive rights freedom, universal public healthcare, unrestricted voting rights for all citizens, and eliminating corporate personhood?" - JG

Nothing. Complete reproductive rights SHOULD be championed by Conservatives. However "Conservatives" don't mind advocating for limits and government interference here. Universal Public Healthcare? There's nothing left of center about that. It'd be unnecessary if the Capitalist Market fulfilled the need adaquately. It doesn't. It's overpriced and now our Government is forced to address it with the tools available to it. Unrestricted Voting Rights SHOULDN'T be on the political spectrum, unless that spectrum includes anti-democratic leanings. Are right of center more inclined to autocracy? And Corporate Personhood... I don't even understand that or how those "right of center" rationalize it to themselves. If they do at all.

"You guys seem way left of center, do you really think the majority of Americans will buy that?" - Anonymous

I, personally, am not defined by a spectrum. This is not baseball. There's no side to pick. There is no left, right, or center. If I personally believe in marriage equality and pro-choice policies, that doesn't remove the option from me of being, Pro Government Spending cuts or shifting some governmental decisions to local municipalities. People don't fit on a spectrum, because they can believe anything along that spectrum at any time. This isn't even mentioning the various nuances that could dictate where a person's decision on a topic would make them fall. Take abortion. You've got some people "right of center" that will accept abortions only in the case of rape and incest. You have others who don't accept any abortions under any circumstance. Now we're talking different flavors of 'right of center' or one is "more" 'right of center' than the other. In some cases, I'm sure the one that believes in the exception would be called liberal by the other.

In short: We are what we are. Stop concerning yourself with fitting people into boxes or definitions or a tick-mark on a spectrum bar.

Dave Dubya said...

JG and TB3,

It would be interesting to hear Anonymous's take on these matters. If he has no thoughts on the matter, a simple appreciation for our responses would suffice.

In Orwell’s 1984, O’Brien explains to Winston Smith between torture sessions, “It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words...Don't you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? Orthodoxy means not thinking - not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness."

And, voila! Through a massive campaign of lies, half-truths, and unilateral definitions of terms intended to demonize opposition, the Right can sway the unwitting and low-information voters.

That’s how Trumpism, the Republican Party, and FOX(R) have done it. Frank Luntz and Newt Gingrich, and more recently Prager, are the new breed of authoritarian destroyers of language that the Right needed to ramp up their propaganda methods. “Estate tax” magically transformed into “death tax”.

The Bush/Cheney war criminals simply called torture “enhanced interrogation”. O'Brien the torturer would have liked that.

Now Democrats are socialists and liberals are commies. BLM is a roving gang of murderous dark people. This is how the Right’s new theft and destruction of language operates. It is vital for fulfilling their desire for a total power, like the Party in 1984.

The German Nazis used the term “Lügenpresse”, or lying press, in their campaign to destroy journalism. Now American fascists and white nationalists cry “liberal media” and “fake news” when the truth threatens their power and agenda.

Old Adolf understood the importance of, "What Good Fortune For The Government That The People Don't Think". Especially when HE was "the government".

"Socialism" must remain a flexible and ill-defined invective because it has been their go-to scare word since FDR. The Right is playing their greatest hits again.

TB3 is right that nobody can be at a single point on the spectrum. It makes no difference to Righties that I am a firearm owner and capitalist by being a market investor. I'm still a gun-grabbing leftist/liberal/socialist/nazi/commie to them.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"Are right of center more inclined to autocracy? And Corporate Personhood... I don't even understand that or how those 'right of center' rationalize it to themselves. If they do at all." ~~ TB3

Are right-of-center more inclined to accept autocratic rule? I think so. That's the reason we have a demagogic totalitarian wanna-be occupying the White House today.

"Corporate personhood", and its underlying roots and evolution in our nation's last 133 years, is mostly a foreign concept to the majority of Americans. It is so ingrained and intertwined in our governmental and political processes that it has become normalized within our culture.

I don't think "right-of-center", "far-right", or "left-of-center" folks have a clue, much less have heard the term, but in my view it's the most pressing and important issue of our time -- affecting just about every problem we face today.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"It would be interesting to hear Anonymous's take on these matters. If he has no thoughts on the matter, a simple appreciation for our responses would suffice." ~~ Dave Dubya

I'm also curious to see what Anonymous has to say, Dave. I suspect he (or she) isn't "left-of-center", based upon his/her remarks earlier.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"In Orwell’s 1984, O’Brien explains to Winston Smith between torture sessions, 'It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words...Don't you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? Orthodoxy means not thinking - not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.'" ~~ Dave Dubya

George Orwell's dystopian work from 1949 was absolutely prophetic in its portrayal of a future society consumed by permanent war, surveillance and "Big Brother". Its "Newspeak" propaganda references clearly came to pass in American society 40 years later through the emergence of slanted news media sources such as Fox News and others.

The niche- and target-marketing of our traditional news sources have heavily contributed to the polarization of society into basically two tribal units, each separated by only a few carefully selected wedge-issues -- although in agreement on 85% of mutually agreed upon policy monoliths.

It's this 85% that prevents outlying ideas, e.g. those of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez or Bernie Sanders, to germinate and fully take root. It's this 85% that controls the narrative -- whether through the government, the media or private entities. It's what has been aptly referred to as the corporate state.

Orwell, in his classic "1984", called it "the Party".

Dave Dubya said...

JG,
Anonymous does seems to have a problem understanding. our refuting, our points. Or simply an unwillingness to share thoughts. Just popping in to ask questions, with no acknowledgment of our responses becomes simple trolling. The lack of a simple "thank you" suggests the lack of courtesy that is becoming a characteristic of the Right.

If he has nothing to share, I have no reason to keep answering him. Or maybe he's happy with our answers and is on his merry way. Fine.

The so-called "center" has been drifting to the Right for decades as the corporate lock on media and government tightens. We have a far Right party and a moderate Right party. Where does that put the "center".

It puts the political "center" far Right of the people's preferences for more progressive policies. Minority rule is their game and they are winning their war on democracy.

We have corporate media that profits from a horse race contest instead of policy debates in elections, as they cheer on any damn war or military action a president wants to pursue for corporate/political interests.

For any incremental advances in racial/social tolerance, we see the reactionary Right further embrace white nationalism. The shift has gone so far to the Right that the Tangerine Tyrant has dismantled investigations into domestic terrorism by white nationalists.

Only black and brown people are terrorists in their view. The Right wing Supreme Court has just reversed the concept of justice in death penalty cases by adding the new psychological torture of telling the convicted to choose their means of death. Like a damn Bond villain. If that isn't cruel and unusual punishment, what is?

Cruelty has always been a hallmark of the authoritarian Right.Trump and his cult gloat at the suffering of other human beings. Look at how he has treated fellow Americans in Puerto Rico.

And it is always time to take more food stamps from the poor and cut taxes for the rich, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

Because on does not agree 100% with you does not make one an enemy of the people. It is odd that you and Dave seem hyper sensitive to any question so much so that censorship is practiced in order to limit the conversion to only your point of view. This could be taken as a symptom of a lack of confidence in your positions. Is that the case?

The question I asked is what is the different between the policy's you support and the ones implemented in Venezuela? To not take this question seriously really diminishes the strength of your positions.

Dave Dubya said...

Anon, Or should I say "Vern"?

"Because on does not agree 100% with you does not make one an enemy of the people."

Trump says that about the press and his opposition. You don't have a problem with THAT, do you? Nobody here made that claim. Projection and Straw man time?

"hyper sensitive"? You mean by answering you? There's a fix for that.

I asked for your thoughts, and you offered nothing but baseless accusations. This clearly indicates to us your Right wing ideology.

Censorship is not the word for refusing trolls to dominate the conversation. Got it?

You either contribute or detract. You are detracting by false accusation and dishonesty.

"The question I asked is what is the different between the policy's you support and the ones implemented in Venezuela?"

NO. You DID NOT ask this question. "Venezuela". That whataboutism confirms it, Vern.

Nowhere did anyone say we must emulate Venezuela. US sponsored embargoes have hurt that country as much as their own incompetence and corruption.

I've listed progressive goals that are popular among most of the people. YOU have not listed conservative policies favored by the majority. In fact you offered NOTHING.

Listen, Vern. You're done. Only trolls like you hammer us with false accusations, deflections, and lies.

"Censoring" trolls is no different than not letting drunk guests piss in the punch bowl.

Now, apologize for your rudeness or piss off.





Just the Facts! said...

Apologize for asking a question? Rather authoritarian of you. Piss off Dave.

Dave Dubya said...

For his failure to apologize for his lie about the Venezuela question, Vern (JTF) has been outed again.

For his veiled accusation and blatant projection that we accuse those who disagree as being the enemy of the people, Vern has been outed again.

I won't piss off, but we can most certainly piss on his dishonesty, cowardice in identifying himself, deflections, false accusations, and insipid comments. He is only proving how the enemies of DEMOCRACY operate.

And we will continue to piss on ALL of his white nationalist, neo-fascist cult. They need to be flushed into the sewers of the marginalized fringe where they belong, if this country is to ever return to decency, and a just and fair democratic representative republic.

God bless democracy, truth and decency. And God damn the white nationalist Party of Trump, the enemies of democracy, truth, and decency. They can all go to hell and join their "great deceiver" and master.

Got it, Vern?

TB3 said...

I'm kind of tired to hearing about Venezuela. It's just a buzzword.

1) No one ever suggests emulating Venezuela, except "Right-Wing" concern trolls. This is a concept entirely made up so the "Right" can set-up a strawman arguement and deflect away from conversations.
2) EVEN if people in America wanted to emulate Venezuela (What exactly are we supposed to be emulating again? Is it just the vague notion of "socialism"?), we're the best and greatest Nation on the planet, right? I think we'd be able to do better at whatever it is Venezuela apparently failed at doing.

Also:
"To not take this question seriously really diminishes the strength of your positions."

It's difficult to take questions from you seriously when you've proven to not be seriously asking them. This is how interacting with you is like. You seem obsessed with boxes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wmVkJvieaOA

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"Anon, Or should I say 'Vern'?" ~~ Dave Dubya

Oh my! I do declare! Are you telling me Anonymous was really Vern all along?

Gee, how can that be? Will wonders ever cease? ;-)

Jefferson's Guardian said...

Dave, may I recommend Vern be sentenced to thirty lashes with a wet noodle and suspended for thirty days in forced solitary "resignment"? ;-)

On a more serious note, I'm convinced Vern should be completely censored (no exceptions) and absolutely not be allowed to participate as the intruding and obnoxious troll that he strives to be.

Dave Dubya said...

JG,
You're making a lot of sense. He's gone back to Venezuela again.

Let's let him show what he's learned about Venezuela before discussing it. Let him specify polices, and put them in context with their single source oil economy and being under embargoes.

Or he could simply apologize for his rudeness and deceptions.

I bet he does neither, of course.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"Let him specify polices, and put them in context with their single source oil economy and being under embargoes." ~~ Dave Dubya

He's incapable. You're demanding something that's totally impossible for a brainwashed cultist. He doesn't have the intellectual curiosity or ability.

Clinton was right. He's deplorable.


"Or he could simply apologize for his rudeness and deceptions." ~~ Dave Dubya

That'll never happen either. Racists are unapologetic. So are enemies of democracy.

Damn him to 30 days in the wilderness. He'll straighten up.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"I'm convinced Vern should be completely censored (no exceptions) and absolutely not be allowed to participate as the intruding and obnoxious troll that he strives to be." ~~ Jefferson's Guardian

I slept on it. I'm convinced, more than last evening, that the troll doesn't return to your blog, day after day, to participate in the free association of ideas, or to learn or acquire understanding.

Vern comes here for one purpose; one reason only: to disrupt. He comes here to disrupt the free association of ideas, disrupt and prohibit learning, and to disrupt and quell potential understanding. He comes here, each day, purposely to disrupt the promoting of democratic thought and ideas, and to deflect the discourse toward Trumpist racism and Trumpism racist propaganda.

Dave, I still think you should ban him for 30 days, retroactive to April 1st -- fools day, which is so apropos. From there, any and all comments he sends you, you ought to delete without reading (further silencing his racist, hateful message). When the calendar flips to May 1st, open the opportunity and privilege to commenting under your strict terms and conditions. Once he fails again, and just as a child he will, give him another 30 days in the wilderness.

Like any chronically delinquent child, he needs to be dealt with swiftly and severely. He'll either fall in line or permanently leave. Either option will be positive for the health and vitality of your blog.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

Speaking of wandering in the wilderness, I see Cain was nominated to a seat on the Federal Reserve by Unable. Let's hope, as in the Genesis story, Cain will kill Unable through this idiotic move.

Hope springs eternal...

Dave Dubya said...

JG,
You are correct. Con-servatives are Right-wing Authoritarian Personalities, known for their absence of decency and conscience, with open hostility towards reason and fair discourse. His only function here is to spread hate in his mission to "own the libs". We've always known this, of course.

Although, he has been quite reliable in his presentation of a perfect case study and representative of the cult of white nationalist Trumpists. He represents a dark and malevolent curse on human decency and progress, so he's got that going for him.

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Jefferson's Guardian said...

"He represents a dark and malevolent curse on human decency and progress, so he's got that going for him." ~~ Dave Dubya

Lock him up! Lock him up! USA! USA! USA!

Ban him to the wilderness...

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"And throughout American history, from defending slavery, to opposing the civil rights movement, and to suppressing minority voting, the pattern has been consistent. Danskin makes it clear, 'The alt-Right ARE of the conservative tradition, only more.'" ~~ Dave Dubya

Yes, "...only more."

The alt-right, protected and given voice by Donald Trump, is truly the scourge of the Earth. This ultra- and racist conservatism is steadily increasing both in this country and worldwide. It's purpose is to demean our democratic processes and deny civil rights to every person of color, all women, and anyone considered part of the LGBT community. In other words, anybody who's not like them.

Agreed, the pattern is consistent and undeniable.

Anonymous said...

Reggie, NOLA.

Man, Dave and Jefferson's Guardian are dead on about CON-servatives! I'd like to know if you would share with me, your sources of your insight. I can't find anything like what you are saying here on Cable TV or broadcast TV or any of big newspapers, or from any of the Democrats running for their nomination. You're the best liberals out there, you make all the others look like centrist. AmeriKa must wake up to the damage being done to it by the right wing fascists, soon we will be just like 1936 Germany.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

Dave, if Michigan State wins tonight, want to place a friendly wager on Monday night's championship final? ;-)

Jefferson's Guardian said...

"...Dave and Jefferson's Guardian are dead on about CON-servatives!" ~~ Anonymous

So true.


"You're the best liberals out there..." ~~ Anonymous

So true.

Jefferson's Guardian said...

It's not going to happen...

Dave Dubya said...

JG,
MSU lost their focus. I hate relying on sports teems for gratification. It seems half of them are losers. ;-)


Reggie,
Here are a few good alternate sources of non-corporate media with news and analysis:

https://publicintegrity.org/

Center For Public Integrity

https://www.truthdig.com/

Truthdig

https://www.juancole.com/

Informed Comment

https://www.motherjones.com/

Mother Jones

https://www.democracynow.org/

Democracy Now

https://www.mediamatters.org/

Media Matters

https://www.alternet.org/

Alternet

https://prospect.org/

The American Prospect

Jefferson's Guardian said...

Dave, did you know "our country is full"? LOLOL

Maybe Trump should offer SRO?

LOL

U.P. Tim said...

It is full, Jeff . We got too many full of sh-t, lying Republicons covering-up for their Lair-in-chief.

Dave Dubya said...

JG and Tim,

If the country is "too full", then we have no room for anyone else, so Trump better mandate all pregnancies be aborted. It's the only logical solution to the Trump Cult's problem.

But that's not the problem. THEY are.

Of course, what we ARE too full of are racists, bigots, idiots, dupes, white nationalists, Republicans, assorted authoritarians, and greedy corporate elites.

And since most white people voted for Trump, that morally and intellectually unfit majority of them are welcome to move back to Europe.

That should do it. We could have a real democratic republic, based on equality instead of white privilege. And think of all the fresher air and cleaner water we'd have. It would be a huge improvement, and really make America great.

That's my plan, anyway.