Tuesday, September 09, 2003

The Republican Program - Going Great Under Dubya!

Eric Alterman posted a reader letter today that pretty much sums up the successes - yes, successes - of the Dubya regime (Jo Fish over at Democratic Underground today called our President-Appointee Short Bus George, which is a great new nickname for Augustus Jr.).

Is it possible that what we think of as Bush failures, he thinks of as successes? Certainly the enormous budget deficit is deliberate, having been a central Republican tenet since Reaganomics, with the long-term goal being the fiscally forced elimination of Social Security, since the R’s have conceded political-ideological defeat on this issue. Given that they count this apparent failure as a success (and I don’t see how anybody could argue that the deficit is inadvertant), what other obvious failures could be seen as successes by completely unscrupulous villains?

High unemployment: Forces long term wage and benefit concessions, puts unions on their heels. Success.

Increase in homelessness: Increases economic insecurity for the lower classes, making them more likely to docilely accept terrible work situations. Success.

Defeat in the drug war: Gives an excuse to lock up huge percentages of poor people, especially poor people of color, especially poor men of color. Given the historically inarguable “conservative” animus against people of color, especially men of color, I think they’d chalk this up as success too. The addicts not in prison are destroying their lives and severely damaging the lives of people around them. Success.

War on terror and insufficient homeland security: Since the Bush administration OFFICIALLY stated that an invasion of Iraq would likely result in INCREASED terrorism against Americans, I can only imagine that they count the lack of a terrorist sequel of the September 11 Atrocity as a failure. Karl Rove saw Bush’s numbers skyrocket when foreigners murdered thousands of Americans. Given their completely unscrupulous villainy, why should we trust that they don’t deliberately want that to happen again, especially since their actions seem to show it?

Americans have a tremendous capacity for denial. We simply don’t want to believe that our leaders really, really mean to do most of us serious, serious harm.

Which I think mostly nails it. And Americans do have a horrible capacity for denial. For the majority of nitwits out there, as long as they have their cable TV, cheap booze, free porn on the web, and a rickety roof over their heads, everything is just nifty-keen. Remember, the average American reads - brace yourself - one book a year, and gets his news from the local TV station, which, if it's anything like the ones here in Columbus, mostly covers "today's murders!" and the occasional photo op by the mayor with a 15 second squib of "national news." Dubya's mystifying approval ratings and the incredible number of people who still believe that Sodamn Insane was responsible for 9/11 rather than our glorious allies the Saudis can be largely accounted for, after allowing for a 20-25% base of Republican fanatics, by the fact that most people just don't care enough to really find out what's going on. Eventually, they will care - when the economy collapses, when their job is shipped to India and the only job they can find is at Wal-Mart, when they have no social security or medicare benefits, or maybe when their kid is shipped home in a body bag from the latest Imperial dust-up, but until then, the vast majority just can't be bothered. And it's part of the responsibility of the Democratic party to start educating the populace about some of this. As Orwell put it, democracy means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear, and it's time to start shouting it from the rooftops: The Republicans are not the party of God, not the party of the flag, not the party of defense. They are dedicated to the proposition that it's best if most Americans are poor and dumb and a few people control 90% of the wealth and all of the political power. The Republicans will send your children to die in foreign wars, but not their own. The Republicans care less if your children have decent schooling because they send theirs elsewhere. The Republicans care less if you have a decent job, a decent home, retirement, health care; that would cut into their fortunes. If you're black or hispanic, the Republicans will dribble a little lip service your way and then screw you any way they can. The Republicans exist only to enrich their central power base and will lie, cheat and steal to feather their own nests. The Republicans will buy large quantities of weapons that do not work in order to funnel money to their contributers. They will wave the flag not because they honor it, but to fool people into thinking they do while in the meantime they ship your job overseas and ship in as many immigrants, legal and elsewise, to force down your wages and benefits and bust your unions. And on, and on, and on, ad infinitum. Yes, this has been a rant, but my God, what I have seen happen to my country in my own lifetime! Dubya ends his speeches with a pious and lying "God bless America." All I can say is, "God save America."

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