I’ve never been one to call names, especially not towards a party that is generally associated with Libertarian ideals, but the latest incarnation of the GOP must be called out for many of the problems that persist in America.
GOP leadership is entirely to blame for the dumbing of America, illegal Iraq War and broken economy in the 21st century. It won’t be long before they try to pin America’s woes on terrorists or liberals or both. That said, it isn’t the politics or rhetoric that I am concerned with, propaganda tends to balance out over time. What bothers me and the problem that we should all be concerned with is the strong appeal to patriotism and the use of nationalism to manipulate the masses.
How did America devolve into a near-fascist State? I say “near” because I still hold out hope that the corporatism bubble will soon burst and Americans will remember what it means to care about justice, liberty, and individual rights.
Divide and Conquer to “Right” the Ship
Among the first cowards to lay claim to patriotism and promote fear and terrorism were Rush Limbaugh and later Ann Coulter.
Both pundits are responsible for a lot of the nonsense that passes for politics these days and I’d throw in the younger Michael Moore and other flaming liberals but who really takes them seriously? What makes Republican extremists so dangerous is that they are taken seriously by the party core. Their “entertaining columns” and media personalities help set the table for what happens in Washington. Whereas liberal activists wear pink shirts and lead protests, they have no direct access to Washington outside the “liberal media” that covers their antics.
The anger and hatred that has corrupted the well for Republicans begins with Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter and publications like the Weekly Standard. Even so, they have become national authorities, and extraordinarily wealthy entities I might add, as a result of their appeal to nationalism that divides Americans. Whereas, Ronald Reagan is widely recognized for his attempt at popular appeal — despite his Republican political agenda — the new “patriots” have done just the opposite. They no doubt reasoned that if there is no distinct line drawn in the political sand, then independents determine political outcomes and that rarely bodes well for the far-right.
Post-Reagan and Bush, the only way Republicans would become relevant again was by hurting the Democrats to off-set the negative image that Ronald Reagan and Bush gave Republicans. Luckily they had their grips on Congress when Bill Clinton was in office, Newt Gingrich was a great force for the GOP and monica-gate would seal the deal to kick off the new Republican era.
Three objectives were necessary for the right to seize power:
- Obliterate the left-wing entirely. Even now, partisans continue to hammer away at words associated with Democrats and the old left. If you recall, it was once “communists” that were the main target of the right-wing, then they realized how much more effective it was to paint liberals as commies. Once communists became a bad word in America, liberal went under full assault by the likes of Limbaugh (back when he was relatively clean and conservatism was still a good idea). Limbaugh’s success gave rise to more people like him and any “liberal” politician would pay the ultimate price in votes.
- Shift the political spectrum to the right. The old center is the “new left”. The old left are in mental institutions if you believe the propaganda. The old center shifted right and the right-wing veered towards neo-conservative thinking.
- Minimize the resistance and divide the “new center”. The center is displaced, often labeled as “crazy” (see Ron Paul / libertarians) or “un-American” (see anti-war Democrats). Anyone who failed to fall in line with the new political paradigm was ostracized.
The problem with the success of right-wing pundits and strategists, Rush Limbaugh’s rise to prominence and the ascension of Ann Coulter is that they got a little too ambitious, they pushed too fast and too soon. By effectively shifting the political spectrum, they opened the door for neo-conservatives to be thrust into American political prominence. Nothing good can come of a ruling class that borders on the extreme and because neo-conservatives know that their window of opportunity is about to be slammed shut, they are resorting to engaging in the same tactics that they accuse Muslim fundamentalist extremists of using against us.
Neo-conservatives have turned to terrorism to remain in power
If you really think about it, neo-conservatives have emerged as a new kind of terrorist. Just because they don’t use weapons or go out and kill Americans, doesn’t mean they should remain unaccountable for their actions. There is no one that I’d hold more responsible for ruining our economy and the deaths of over four thousand American soldiers than the neo-conservative wing of the Republican party.
Terrorism comes in many forms, it isn’t just about some misguided individuals strapping bombs around their waists and blowing up an American embassy. Terrorism doesn’t mean a bunch of brown fools carrying out some stupid quest to achieve martyrdom while killing thousands of innocent people in the process. Terrorism comes in a more subtle and dangerous flavor than we witnessed on September 11th, 2001, and neo-conservatives have no problem terrorizing Americans.
Can anyone truly say neo-conservatives do NOT engage in terrorism? It may only be my view, but the neo-cons have engaged in more acts of terrorism than Jihadist extremists. As Americans, we forget that terrorism is a tactic that preys on fear in order to force the opposition into action on policy matters. Though acts of terror are often done in desperation against a much larger force, neo-conservatives regularly use fear coupled with appeals to nationalism to bully their political adversaries. This is the very same type of fear-driven tactic that got Hitler into trouble, it’s the very nationalism that destroyed Germany for over half a century.
Neo-conservative terrorism has been instrumental in shaping American policy and until now it has been very successful in keeping them in power. If there is any part of you that believes that statement is outlandish or extreme, consider for a moment how many times you’ve heard words that make you fear or hate a certain segment of the population. How many times have you been conditioned to fear men like Osama Bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or even Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton? What makes me think that these tactics have been successful? Notice that the media and public are eerily quiet when it comes to the Iraq War, the economy, torture, murder and corporate fraud and corruption that has sent our economy spiraling downwards. Sure, the neo-conservative movement may die a nasty death in 2008, but consider all of the injustice that is occurring as a result of their actions and how little they’ve been accountable for their policy failures and fear-driven politicking.
GOP Responsibility: The party must be reclaimed from the neo-cons, it can not sustain another George W. Bush
What the GOP has done with American policy should be criminal. I have no problem with the ideals and foundation of the party, but the Republican party has strayed so far from its roots that it is hardly recognizable anymore. There have been many articles written about how conservatism has failed, but that is not the case in my view. Under President Bush, there was nothing truly conservative (or liberal for that matter) about his policies.
"To be completely fair, in the current political bull run, there is a stunning amount of Republican influence but in a Democratically controlled environment. And because they still feel the need to prove themselves (rather than consider, reflect and possibly even agree with the new way of political thinking), Republicans hardly even consider ANY of the positive effects of any of the current acts, laws etc. that are being passed through the house, instead they stick to their own guns feel proud for denying another "blue" bill and then they try and point the finger at Obama, saying that his ideas, actions, and current mindset are causing America's continuing downward spiral. Well, maybe I'm a little off my horse here, but maybe instead of instantly denying a bill to prove a point, maybe they should learn how to transfer belief into action and let the bill prove itself either right or wrong, because believe it or not, it actually might make a difference in this society (which is what we really REALLY need). Left in the wake of a 8 year disaster, there is no way any sensible (maybe even balanced) political thinker would expect one man to clean up an 8 year disaster within 4. And still to this day, Republicans are losing their hold on the political bar because the senile GOP vets are losing their own grasp in thinking. The older they get and the more they try to keep their traditional way of thinking, eventually it's going to seriously collide with the new way of thinking. They forget that they need to adapt to the ever-changing society that is considered the "American way of living" and this is where in this year, Republicans are really starting to cripple a government that desperately needs to be reinforced. They are trying to hold out as long as they can, but sooner or later they are going to have to accept that maybe they just might be wrong after all."