We interrupt this blog with an important message.
Religion or politics? Pick your poison.
Well, I am going to pick politics. But before you click away screaming, I hope you stay with me on this one.
Although my conclusions are things you have heard before (which means you’ll either love them or hate them), remember – this is Jenny. It isn’t just about the destination and stating my personal conclusions. It’s about how I reconciled the thoughts in my head that influence the ultimate actions and viewpoints I have.
In other words, that means one of two things, or a combination of both. An esoteric ramble or a rant. Let’s call this one an esoteric rant!
Even if you hate the destination, maybe you’ll find the journey interesting. Probably not, but, oh well. It was important to me to make it abundantly clear where I stand politically. When the crap ultimately hits the fan, I don’t want there to be any doubt as to where I stood.
For readers outside the U.S., I hope you find my take on this interesting and clarifying. For those in the U.S., well, damn it, just vote!
WHAT DO I STAND FOR?
I stand for democratic principles – principals that have been the hallmark of what it means to be an American since the founding of our nation. Yes, there were times and are times when our actions stand in contrast with those principles. But the ideals of democracy have been so valued and sacred to Americans that they always push us towards fully embracing those principles for everyone.
And when those ideals push us, it is always uncomfortable for those being pushed, but short of our Civil War, no group of Americans betrayed their country and pushed back in civil war. Of course, in that war, it was our government pushing democratic principles on the South. What if it were the other way around? What if it was the people pushing democratic principles and the government pushing back? And wouldn’t it be ironic if the government that was pushing back was in power because of the South? Wow, that would be some interesting fiction.
Oh well, that would never happen in a democracy. In a democracy the government is representative of the people. Hold that thought.
I was a Republican for quite some time. The GOP I was first exposed to was billed as the party with the ideals of Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt. I was taught to think that was still the case. Once I took the time to question things and seek my own answers, something clicked in me. Those ideals were not the ideals of Reagan, Bush I or II, and certainly are not the ideals of the right-wing extremist party of Trump. Those ideals still existed, but they now existed somewhere else. Consider that I am for these ideals:
- The spirit of our people is the strength of our nation.
- America does not prosper unless all Americans prosper.
- Government must have a heart as well as a head.
- Courage in principle, cooperation in practice, make freedom possible.
These are the ideals in the platform of the Democratic Party… oops, did I say Democratic Party? I meant, the Republican Party. However, it is from the GOP circa 1956. Yes, the GOP once was the progressive party. The Democrats of that time were controlled by the “Dixiecrats,” the Southern Democrats who basically molded their behavior around that of a modern-day plantation owner. Scum every one of them.
CHANGE 1 – PARTIES FLIP (late 60’s/early 70’s)
Kennedy was a new type of Democrat – progressive on social issues. Nixon was a new type of Republican – one who is willing to suspend the mechanisms of democracy in order to win for himself. And his aide, Pat Buchanan, saw an opportunity to bust the Democrats strong hold in the South.
They saw the South as easy prey. Southerners had a long history of voting against their self-interest if it meant they got to hold on to their racism. The new GOP would see to it that they catered to that racism and continued the racist policies of the Dixiecrats.
They also made a bet. They needed the religious vote, especially among Catholics who at the time voted overwhelming for Democrats. How could they get these people to switch their votes and abandon their self interests? Abortion! They would see to it that anti-abortion became a lynch pin in their platform. What? You thought they did this on moral grounds? No, it was strictly a political play.
Still needing another issue, the polls told them that gun ownership could be as emotionally charged as abortion. So GOP went all in on scaring Americans that Democrats would take their guns and they’ve kept up that scare ever since.
Those bets paid off. By the start of the 1980’s, the South had stopped electing racist, corrupt, Dixiecrats, and started electing racist, corrupt, Republicans. Thus the great southern tradition of voting against ones self interests continued. As long as Bubba got to keep his racism, keep his guns, and push an anti-abortion view, they would give up on education, infrastructure, healthcare, etc. The South remains at the bottom of practically every metric that measures wealth and prosperity and at the top of practically every metric that measures government hand outs.
Yep, them Southerners are basically economic socialists sucking off the government teat and they don’t even know it. Hey, but at least Georgia still makes it hard for African-Americans and Latino’s to vote, Mississippi has prisons overflowing with African Americans who are used as a (slave) labor pool to do work for pennies an hour, and Kentucky joins six other Southern states as being down to their last clinic that can perform safe abortions. Yee-haw!!
There was a problem. While the GOP continued what Nixon started, there were still plenty of GOP leaders, mostly outside the South, that provided some balance to the party. Over time, these GOP leaders became to be ridiculed as “moderates.”
CHANGE 2 – PURGE THE GOP MODERATES (2008)
In 2008 the tea-baggers happened (Tea Party movement). They ousted the moderates in the GOP.
Lyin’ Ted Cruz is a great example. Although David Dewhurst wasn’t much of “moderate,” he was too much of one for the extremist right. The extremists tapped Cruz and heavily funded him for a seat in the Texas legislature. He first had to run hard against well respected and fellow Republican, David Dewhurst. Cruz did so by calling out Dewhurst as “a moderate.”
That label was used over and over by these new extremists to unseat moderate after moderate, in elections throughout the country. Cruz beat Dewhurst, then beat the Democrat candidate and joined the Texas legislature. Cruz was then tapped by the extremists tea-baggers who funded him to now run for a Senate seat. He went about winning it much the same way – calling any potential GOP opponent a “moderate.”
CHANGE 3 – VOTER SUPPRESSION
I don’t need to state much as there is so much already out there on this. Gerrymandering, voter suppression, and now, outright hacking, has become an important tool for the GOP to maintain power. None of these efforts would be championed by the GOP if the electorate were likely to vote GOP.
CHANGE 4 – RISE OF MAGA/FACISM (2016)
Trump leveraged his celebrity to take his message beyond the South, to mostly blue-collar workers everywhere. They were most at risk for being misled and Trump exploited that.
Truth has no home with him. Every speech is full of lies, reinforced by his mouthpieces, reported as fact by Fox, and magnified by his Russian troll-bot allies. Want to track his lies as he tells them? Follow @ddale8 on twitter.
Trump knows that people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one, and repeat it enough and people will believe it. Trump knows you never allow the public to cool off; never admit fault or wrong; never concede any good in your enemy, never accept blame.
Did you know those prior two sentences are directly from a psychological profile prepared by the United States Office of Strategic Services? They were, but it wasn’t a profile on Trump. It was a profile on Hitler.
In two years the GOP went from bad to worse. Imagine where it will be in just one more year if left unchecked? Today it is completely corrupt, indecent, and immoral. Anyone affiliated or supporting the party is complicit and will carry this shame through history. They have disgraced this country and are a danger to our democracy and values. And those aren’t just my words. That was taken from Steve Schmidt, a former GOP strategist and echos many of the sentiments of those who once called themselves members of the Republican Party.
I am for humanity, decency, diversity, equality, compassion, justice, (the true “law and order”). My anti-GOP feelings are the by-product of the fact our president and the GOP are the opposite all of those things.
CHANGE 5 – TBD
Consider your options if –
- If someone doesn’t value evidence, what evidence are you going to provide them to prove they should value it?
- If someone doesn’t value logic,what logical argument would you provide to show the importance of logic?
- If someone doesn’t value compassion, what appeal to compassion would you make to resonate with their capacity for compassion?
- If someone doesn’t value justice, what rule of law would you cite to show the need for justice?
- If someone doesn’t value the principles of an American democracy, what patriotic feeling can you evoke in them when their sense of patriotism is numb to the violation of those principles?
I can point to specific events where the GOP hasn’t valued evidence, logic, compassion, justice, and American democracy, where their base has applauded each and every event. I’ll let you fill in those events for yourself because frankly, there are too many to cite.
I believe we are at the point that you can no longer appeal to facts, logic, compassion, justice, or principles of democracy when dealing with MAGAts and Facists.
As the fascists have accelerated the pace to control the courts, the justice system, and the voting booth, consider this
Once the mechanisms of democracy are so undermined that the views of the majority no longer have a voice, what is left for that majority to do in order to be heard?
Minority rulers who are driven to stay in power at all costs must suppress freedom in order to maintain control. Minority rulers, whether a person or a party, don’t stay in power in a true democracy. History is not kind to countries that have had minority rule.
So what’s next? I don’t know. Hopefully it is decided at the ballot box where true democracies decide such things.
One side bet I have — countries like Venezuela better watch out. Trump needs a war and he doesn’t do things unless the fix is in. North Korea and Iran are too messy. Aha! Pick a fight with a much smaller military, and something closer to home to really increase the “fear factor.” If I were a bookie, I’d be giving the odds on favorite as being Venezuela. And the best time to stoke the flames of war, oh, about mid-2020 should do it. Sooner if an impeachment conviction is looking likely.
Whether you like the candidate or not, whether you consider yourself a Republican or not, this is the year I hope people vote straight ticket Democrat. Anything else is a slap in the face of all who have fought and died to uphold American principles of democracy. But frankly, I just want people to vote – assuming they haven’t been blocked from doing so and that systems aren’t hacked.
If our elected officials better reflect the values of the majority of Americans, then the right people will be elected, whatever those values may be. That’s how a democracy works. That’s how it will work here.
My concern isn’t that it won’t work out. It will. My concern is how many MORE people are going to have to be oppressed at best, killed at worst, before we work it all out. The voting booth can keep that number to a minimum.
This ends my political rant.
Back to your regularly scheduled kink.