Wednesday, January 28, 2009

In Defense of Rush

I HOPE HE FAILS!

With this statement, Rush Limbaugh effectively started a whole heap of shit with President Barack Obama. And nothing could have made me happier.

Now I'm not going to sit here as a mind-numbed drone and agree with Rush without consideration for whether he's right. But I remember the rush of "conservatives" "hoping" for Obama's success that triggered this statement. And I have listened to this statement from right to left and left to right. And I have heard every attempt to misconstrue this statement that the moonbats could come up with. And I have stated my goals and aims and hopes for the next four years. And most of you who read me regularly know what I have said.

I agree with Rush and I also hope Obama fails. Miserable. So bad that he ends up crying like a little bitch with a skinned knee and shit.

To clarify, I still respect the office, the man holding that office, and express my wish that he does right by the USA. But so far, I haven't seen that from the Obama administration. So any failure of him to implement liberal policies, or the failure they will inevitably produce is gravy.

But this is a larger issue than just Rush and his statement. Because part of his job is to say something provocative to get people's attention. And when you get the President's attention, you're doing something right. Obama in speaking to House Republicans on the Stupid Satanic Stimulus bill, said, “You can’t just listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done.”

Yesterday, NO HOUSE REPUBLICAN VOTED FOR THE PIECE OF SHIT STIMULUS.

It's about damned time.

So I have three points to cover on this:

Listening to Rush - The moderate McCain wing of the party had its run for the White House in a year that Bush was sliding along the same path. The result was a disenfranchised base and a swing vote that had few differences on which to choose. So they chose the shinier of the two candidates. While this foolishness was going on, conservative talk radio and the conservative blogs (my greatness included) were yelling and doing everything they could to try to pull the faltering GOP back from the precipice and guide it back onto a distinctly different path than the Democrats. Instead, the default nominee attacked his own party when they showed spine, gave faulty lip service to the right, and finally threw us a bone(r) for a VP before slapping a political muzzle on her. Meanwhile, the president was ratcheting up the spending, culminating in the Dastardly Bastardly Bailout.

While I don't expect zombie obedience, the GOP needs to get back to conservatism, which is distinctly and diametrically opposed to liberal positions. And while compromise is sometimes necessary to get things done, compromising principles is the surest way to piss off your base while empowering your opponents. And if the vote on the stimulus is any indication, perhaps the GOP has figured it out. In short, you will be better off if you listen to people with principles consistent with your base and not liberals trying to usurp conservative themes and creating a government program for each theme.

That Amendment - In part, it says:
Congress shall make no law... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press....
Agree or disagree with any pundit, no matter how much they may disgust and revile you, the only power the people should possess over the press is the right to not listen. And to give the government the power to have any control over the press or over free speech (especially a contrarian view) not only directly violates the letter and spirit of this Amendment, but is the hallmark of a totalitarian society.

I'll reserve judgement on what the administration plans to do (until they do it), but it does bother me that the president sees fit to try to separate the GOP from the loudest voices of their conservative base. Not surprisingly, I would oppose ANY attempt to take out any pundit for expressing his views, even if he's a complete asshat. Michael Savage jumps to mind. Or maybe Stuart Smalley when he was running Air(head) America into the ground like the will of the people in Minnesota.

Differentiation - Let me be blunt. I won't tolerate conservatives coming here and just viciously attacking President Obama. Very simply, for better (ha) or worse (until 2012), he is our president. And I have no desire to hear him attacked like Bush, who has been called and idiot, war criminal, bitch for big oil, and selected not elected for eight years straight, with no damned civility.

But, conversely, all of us on the right are going to hit Obama as hard as we can on every stupid big-government bullshit move he even things about trying. And that's the way it should be.

Oh, and a little fun mockery is fine. Otherwise it would all be too boring.

So buck up, Barry. It's on!

67 comments:

Beth said...

Rush never should have said he hopes Obama fails, what he should have said is "I KNOW he will fail" because liberalism (whether liberals admit it or not) always does fail.

Gayle said...

Beth makes a good point.

Rush is right. If Obama is going to push nothing but liberal BS down our throats, like this insane bailout, why would we hope for him to succeed? We'd have to be suffering from brain damage!

I read your post over at Conservative Convictions, Patrick. I loved it!

repsac3 said...

The whole "That Amendment" bit seems misplaced.

Speech is speech is speech. Rush has every right to do his dance, but the President has every right to reply in kind (though I do wonder a little at the wisdom of doing it all that often. It's fine to call Rush out as the apparent leader of the Republican party--Gingrey's grovel to the big guy was among the more disgusting bits of "mouse, not man" I've seen, but said alot about the relative power of each man--but it'd be silly to make a habit of it.). No one's "taking out" anyone... We all get to call the asshats asshats, whoever we think the asshats are... ...and even if our names are Rush or Barack.

Dave Miller said...

As for GOP support of the stimulus bill, or lack thereof, I think the last time happened was in the first Clinton term with the 1993 Tax Bill/Increase.

This was on the heals of the tax increase passed by Bush the Elder.

What should be remembered is that both tax increases were vociferously opposed by the GOP, and even ridiculed, yet the result was that we exited the recession of the late 80's and had strong growth throughout the 90's.

The moral of the story is that you can be unified in your caucus or party, and still be wrong, as the GOP has proved in the past.

TAO said...

I think it is time for Rush Limbaugh to run for President, and I expect Patrick to nominate him for thus....

Hey, if Al Franken can win a Senate seat Rush running for President should be a no brainer....

Sounds like a sure bet in 2012.

Jump on this one Patrick....it might be time for Rush to walk the walk rather than just talking the talk...

Shaw Kenawe said...

So Rush Limbaugh's taking on President Obama? Ha!

Rush Limbaugh is an entertainer, a clown, a demagogue. That's it.

The idea that President Obama would listen to any of Limbaugh's claptrap is hilarious.

I'd like to ask Limbaugh how long he's studied economics and where he got his degree in higher education.

HINT: He doesn't have one. But in keeping with the right's disdain for education and rigorous critical thinking skills, that would only make him more attractive. The right has a gang of these types hawking their ideas on the radio and teevee.

Talk is cheap, cheap, cheep! Limbaugh bloviates and dribbles his nonsense for $$$$$ lots of it.

We perfectly understand his motives for saying he hopes President Obama fails, and for his ridiculous offer to set out his rescuse package.

Imagine if Keith Olbermann did the same. Imagine the howls of ridicule from the right that we'd hear if Olbermann, who at least has the benefit of higher education, had suggested that George Bush listen to his economic ideas. Or Rachel Maddow--who, BTW, has a Ph.D. That ought to really make you dislike her--she's smart.

I think it's wonderful that the Hindenburg of Gas Bags has pompously announced that he would be willing to advise the president on the financial package needed to rescue this country from the mess George Bush made of it.

We all need a good laugh during tough times, and as usual, The Boundless Bloviator has come through for us all.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Patrick,

I forgot to address this:

I agree with Rush and I also hope Obama fails. Miserable. So bad that he ends up crying like a little bitch with a skinned knee and shit.

How 2004 of you, Patrick. Still stuck in your "Nyah, nyah, nyah. They were mean to Georgie, so I'm gonna be super meanie, mean, mean to Barry! I'll show them bipartesanship! *Patrick sticks tongue out and flips the bird*

We are truly a nation of juveniles.


And then this piece of sincere silliness:

To clarify, I still respect the office, the man holding that office, and express my wish that he does right by the USA.

You hope President Obama leaves office as Bush did, a failure. So we'd have what? 12, maybe 16 years of failed domestic and international policies? How patriotic of you. /snark.

BTW: Saying you "respect" the office and the "man holding it" is a contradiction when you hope the "man holding it" fails, because Pres. Obama is irrevocably tied to that office as the representative of the American people, whether conservatives like it or not. When you hope his policies fail, you hope America fails. That's just the way it is. No fancy foot work about "I respect him, but not his policies" crap. Pres. Obama is what he believes, just the way you can't separate who you are from your conservative/libertarian principles.

So let's do away with this false reverence for "the office." We see through it. Have the guts to be honest and say you agree with Limbaugh and his followers who hope President Obama, and what happens to America over the next years are miserable failures.

It's interesting to discover where this childish revenge mentality comes from. I remember googling "Miserable Failure" in 2004 and seeing GWB's face show up.

Be honest. That where this "I Hope He Fails" mentality is coming from. It's pure and simple revenge for all the hostility GWB received during his 8 years.

What a great way for this country to heal.

Good on you.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

When you hope his policies fail, you hope America fails.

I'm so glad you said this, Shaw, because it's what I would have said if I wasn't in such a beastly mood that I would have had to say something that even Patrick would have had to censor (in violation, of course, of The Amendment)...

Wishing disaster on your President, your compatriots, yourself and your country is the most amazing display of cutting off one's nose to spite one's face I do believe I've seen in a long time.

Will the satisfaction of seeing your President fail be so intense that you don't mind the effect it has on you personally, on your family, your friends, the rest of the country and ultimately the world?

I don't know. Bush was an idiot. I always hoped, though, that he'd start getting things right. Seeing his idiotic decisions tearing down our country never gave me any satisfaction or bubbly joy. It just made me sad.

Maybe that's a liberal perspective on it.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

...with no damned civility.

I agree with Rush and I also hope Obama fails. Miserable. So bad that he ends up crying like a little bitch with a skinned knee and shit.

This is civility?

Just checking.

I said a million times that Bush was an idiot, made idiot decisions, got on his knees for Big Oil, slid through not one but two suspicious elections and was responsible for a war based on lies to the American People. I said it and I'll still say it. Civil? What Bush did to our country wasn't all that civil.

But I'll say this: any less-than-Emily-Post-Etiquette-sanctioned comment I ever made about Bush was AFTER he fucked something up. I didn't sit around casting voodoo spells and lighting black candles in hopes of conjuring future failure for him. I never said, 'Gee, I really hope Bush fucks up again.' I DID say, 'Gee, Bush has fucked up again.'

There's a difference. I never wished for our President, or our country, to fail. I never wanted any American to die for a war based on lies. I never hoped that our foreign relations would be so shattered that we are nearly universally hated. It was never my dream that so many things that could have gone wrong, did.

That might be the difference here. I never wished failure on Bush, but I sure as shit resent him for the failures he (and as a result, we) have experienced. Now it seems that in the name of 'patriotism' and 'conservatism' and, let's be honest, revenge for the vilification Bush earned, conservatives and others are actually hoping he fails.

You really want to wish failure on the man whose policies and actions will affect your and your children's lives?

Am I the only one who sees this as even mildly counterproductive?

Any vilification Bush got from me he earned in spades and got it... AFTER he failed, not before.

But it's the left who are the vengeful uncivilzed ones, right? The ones who cheered as GW and Laura got on the plane? Would golf claps have been more appropriate? The whooshing sound of a million people sighing with relief in unison?

Put on your big girl panties and grow up.

Dave Miller said...

Saty and Shaw, in the current political atmosphere, many Republicans are rightly teed off at how President Bush was treated by the left. I can understand that. But I do not understand how many of those same Republicans, often claiming to be Christian, can then say they have a right, and will choose to be just as evil to President Obama.

Isn't evil always wrong, and if we are claiming Christ, aren't we called to live a different life?

All to say, I am with both of you on this one.

dmarks said...

"The moderate McCain wing of the party had its run for the White House in a year that Bush was sliding along the same path"

I can't really agree that McCain was a "moderate" as an overall characterization. He fit the conservative mold on several important issues, such as his opposition to abortion and his strong support for retaliating stopping the terrorists. Sure, he sided with the liberals on taxes for a while, but he did change on that to the conservative view as well.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Beth said...
Rush never should have said he hopes Obama fails, what he should have said is "I KNOW he will fail" because liberalism (whether liberals admit it or not) always does fail.


Of course this is silly. If conservatism were successful, then why have the Republicans lost the last two elections, 2006 and 2008?

Why are young people registering as Democrats in huge numbers, rather than Republicans.

It's almost pathalogical how you guys ignore facts and continue to belive in fantasies.

Beth, you're fooling yourself. The facts are that the American people have rejected conservatism and voted for liberalism.

Conservatives have claimed that President Obama was the most liberal senator in the US senate.

And the American people voted him into office, as well as voting out a number of Republicans in the Senate and the House.

You've got to face facts, my friend, and try to figure out why Americans have rejected conservatism so resoundly.

Beth said...

(Bush isn't conservative, at least not fiscally).

Patrick M said...

Okay, I'm going to skip addressing specific people and will, instead, clarify a few things.

The GOP has been a bunch of halfwits and asshats over the last 8 years, some of them virtually abandoning conservatism.

Rush is not a Republican leader. Ask McCain. However he is the loudest conservative voice.

A good economy can handle tax increases. That's not today.

As for Obama's failure, his policies will fail to do what they are advertised to do, and tie even more shit up under government control. So I sincerely hope he fails to successfully implement this shit. There will be times I will stand with him.

The hilarity is not Rush taking on Obama, but Obama taking on Rush. When the POTUS feels the need to verbally go after a fucking talk host, it's weakness.

As for my comments about Obama crying like a little bitch with a skinned knee and shit, I'm quoting, and I thought it was funny. Lighten up.

Rush won't run fro president. I will.

As for education, I trust people who are coming up with the correct numbers. And I know my numbers. I don't put a lot of stock in education when the person comes out an asshat.

How 2004 of you, Patrick. Still stuck in your "Nyah, nyah, nyah. They were mean to Georgie, so I'm gonna be super meanie, mean, mean to Barry! I'll show them bipartesanship! *Patrick sticks tongue out and flips the bird*


I'm stealing this.

When you hope his policies fail, you hope America fails.

Wrong-o. Failure of the country is measured in how many of our freedoms are lost. And if Obama fails in doing so, his failure is America's success.

Bush was an idiot.

...with no damned civility.


You know, when you bitch about civility and can't stop calling a former president an idiot, I stop giving a shit.

I can't really agree that McCain was a "moderate" as an overall characterization.

Do I need to go pull up the list?

If conservatism were successful, then why have the Republicans lost the last two elections, 2006 and 2008?

Because the GOP has been abandoning conservatism. And generally, when it's a clear conservative running, the Dem doesn't win.

Patrick M said...

On a side note, Mike was wondering a couple of days ago why I didn't name Rush when I quoted him.

Mike, if you're reading the comments, THIS is why.

Damn I need a drink.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

And I was so waiting for the big girl panties retina burning photo essay.

*sigh*

Patrick M said...

The incessant carping (which continues Ad Nauseum on Shaw's blog) on this subject burned most of the joy out of me. I couldn't come back after the first comment deleted itself.

For the rest of you, and poor Satyavati, who might be angling for picks of my manbulge in bikini underwear, here's what the hell she's talking about:

Put on your big girl panties and grow up.

Keep it up with lines like that and I'm going to post pics of me in said undies. People will scream in agony and smash their monitors at the horrific, retina-burning sight of my hairy white ass. Then they will hunt you, tie you up, and flog you mercilessly. I'd go on, but I don't want you too excited.

dmarks said...

Patrick. I thought of the amnesty thing for illegal aliens on McCain. I thought conservatives admired rugged individualism and hard work and what it does for this country. Thus, I am not in favor of deporting the illegals who have found jobs and are working hard at them. (as opposed to the ones who come here, commit real crimes, and lounge on America's welfare hammock).

I'd kind of like to see a list of the other issues McCain is/was liberal on, but it is fine to drop it, since McCain's candicacy is history and won't be revived.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

Thus, I am not in favor of deporting the illegals who have found jobs and are working hard at them. (as opposed to the ones who come here, commit real crimes, and lounge on America's welfare hammock).

It was estimated that in NC, 30% of the construction industry is dependent on Mexican crews. I have never done a survey of these guys' I-9 forms but I can tell you that I have personally seen them work. Like dogs. They're on the site right at the time you can start to see, they cook lunch on a piece of aluminum flashing and two bricks, and they work until you can't see anymore. They are not all created equal but there are quite a few (especially a brick laying crew that my husband works with frequently) that I would personally request if we were to build again because it's the nicest work I've ever seen.

These guys make good money because what they do is skilled. And you hear a lot that 'the Mexicans are stealing our jobs'. Okay, two thoughts on this. One, if you can lay brick better than they can, I'll ask for you. But more importantly, at least in this area, the vast majority of the Mexican population are doing jobs you don't want. They're out landscaping in 105 degrees, or cropping tobacco in scenes reminiscent of the prewar South (sans whips). They're doing menial jobs that you think you're too good for and wouldn't do for the minimum wage pay they're getting. Nobody's job is actually getting stolen... and, if, in this current economy, you are willing to do those jobs, get out there and ask.

I have seen plenty of Mexican workers whose work ethic-spend little, work hard, save a lot-puts ours to shame. Some of them go on to own their own businesses and be very successful through nothing but their own talents; believe me they go up against a lot of prejudice these days.

I'm all for keeping anyone who's got a job and working at it. Let them work. They can be fast-tracked through Immigration-make it a mandatory thing that to obtain legal status at least the head of household must be working. If you want, you can even put a time-thing on it to require that say for a five year period they have to continue to be working or at least not receiving government aid. I think it would work and certainly motivate people who might not otherwise to get off assistance if they can.

dmarks said...

"And you hear a lot that 'the Mexicans are stealing our jobs'"

Yes. Good points. Getting a job by being better at it is not "stealing" a job.

Patrick M said...

On immigration: The issue is whether they have entered legally or not. Part of any real immigration reform must be set up to address this, because the majority took advantage of our open border and only broke laws to earn a living. I don't really want to get into the entire plan, but there has to be a way to get them on the books and decide whether they should deported or granted working rights. An immediate wholesale deportation would be just as stupid as leaving the border porous.

dmarks said...

Yes, there is the legality problem of them being "illegal immigrants". But for those who work hard, don't suck welfare money, don't engage in "We Hate America" protests, and don't commit (other) crimes, the illegality of it is about as serious as jaywalking.

Patrick M said...

Dmarks: It's a little more serious than jaywalking (which no one I know ever enforces (kind of like our immigration law)), but there's an in-between that we will have to find on this.

On a side note, if we deported every illegal, it would knock them jobless numbers down quickly.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

The issue is whether they have entered legally or not.

There's plenty of people here legally who aren't contributing as much to society as some of the illegals.

I'm not saying don't change the laws about people who aren't here yet; that's a different issue. But for the people who are here now, as far as I'm concerned, if they're working, have a clean record, and aren't on assistance then they're pretty much as good as me. Say for example you put a one year waiting period on legal status, and you make it mandatory that for that waiting period you have to prove that you're employed, not on assistance and have no record, and then you further make an intermediate legal status, say for three years, where you have to remain employed, not on assistance, and have no record. There's arguments that can open up with this when you get into households and children; I would not deny assistance in the form of WIC or child health programs. There are other problems I could nitpick. But it would be a good place to start.

Wholesale deportation would put a hard blow on the economy, unless, as I said, everyone who's lost their jobs are willing to pick up minimum-wage work and do it with some level of competency. And quite honestly, when I see things like *support groups* for girls who have had their Nieman Marcus credit card limits halved and are forced to eat in three star restaurants instead of four now that their investment banker boyfriends or husbands have lost their six figure jobs... you know, I just don't see it happening.

dmarks said...

SDD: "But for the people who are here now, as far as I'm concerned, if they're working, have a clean record, and aren't on assistance then they're pretty much as good as me."

That has been pretty much my point all along. In general. But I definitely draw the line at giving illegals voting rights, and I would not be so willing to give them welfare.

If an illegal alien is applying for welfare, they obviously cannot support themself here, can they?

Arthurstone said...

Patrick typed:

"Dmarks: It's a little more serious than jaywalking (which no one I know ever enforces (kind of like our immigration law)), but there's an in-between that we will have to find on this."


Actually jaywalking is mightily enforced here in Seattle. I've been cited as have many of my friends here in the downtown core. Easy revenue I suppose.

To make up for it though the traffic cops seemingly never ticket autos for running red lights or cutting pedestrians off in a crosswalk. One needs to be on ones toes (as it were) walking in this city.

repsac3 said...

I could accept the ideas that Patrick & dmarks are offering (though surprisingly, my heart is to the right of them... I don't want to deport all illegals, but I'm not opposed to deporting all the illegals we can...).

I'm one of those who thinks Americans will do those jobs--though perhaps not for the same pay, which is one reason pay rates in some fields are being held down for illegal & (on the path to) citizen alike. I'd rather see folks improve their own countries (perhaps even with more US aid) rather than allow them to come here & take advantage of benefits that Americans fought for & earned.

But, since my thinkin' will never be put into practice, I'm good with rules that speak to who can stay & who has to go, based on past work history and length of time here, including withholding all non-essential government benefits from people who are here illegally. (I don't want anyone dying, or anything... But I'd rather we feed a hungry illegal alien person or family in a deportation center than out on the US streets.)

(I know... What the fuck kinda liberal am I, anyway?!? I make this same kinda swtcheroo on gun control, too. There are reasonable measures surrounding both issues, and then there are FANATICS on both sides.)

Dave Miller said...

Patrick, here's a thought. If Obama's policies turn the economy around and usher in a new round of prosperity for America, will conservatives say they were wrong?

Why shouldn't people [conservatives] take the stand that they believe his policies will fail, but they hope everyone of them succeeds for the good of our country?

Why is it that when Dems said the Bush wars, and policies were wrong, conservatives said the Dems were calling for the defeat of America, yet in this case, conservatives [doing the same as the Dems did, just with economics] call themselves saviors of their principles?

How is this different?

Beth said...

Quite simply Dave, socialism as a policy has never, ever worked, it is a proven fact, so we know any Obama policy that leads towards socialism will make this country fail, or at best prolong the bad economy.

War, on the other hand, can be good policy, if done properly. We can argue whether or not Bush's policy on war worked, I for one would point to the fact that after 9-11 we had no others attacks under Bush's watch as being an indication that the War on Terror was a good policy.

dmarks said...

Beth: Socialism works great: In the modern era, it has proven to be the most successful method for the government to get the most power over its people.

It is not a coincidence that the overwhelming majority of the tyrant/murderer dictators of the 20th century have been socialist in their identification and practice, as are many of the remaining ones today (al-Asad, Kim Jong Il, Robert Mugabe, etc).

Arthurstone said...

Interestingly enough Robert Mugabe is also a staunch Roman Catholic.

Go figure.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

Am I the only one who is aware that many modern, civilized, successful, happy European nations operate under at least a partially Socialist system?

And that in large part Socialist activism is responsible for taking the United States out of a feudalistic serfdom, and has won many benefits for workers that even Republicans enjoy?

McCarthyism continues to cast its long, ugly shadow over this country.

Arthurstone said...

Satayavati devi dasi wondered:

Am I the only one who is aware that many modern, civilized, successful, happy European nations operate under at least a partially Socialist system?

Not at all. It's a truefact.

But for a certain type of 'real American' socialism, maoism, marxism, environmentalism, the Democratic Party, fluoride in the water, the Federal Reserve, loss of the gold standard, etc. etc. all are part of the same sinister plot to 'sap our precious bodily fluids'.

McCarthyism didn't start with Joe and certainly is alive and well today. Indeed the internet provides rich soil for this sort of thing. We've always had reactionaries and always will.

Remember their (unspoken) motto: 'Throw until it sticks.'

Patrick M said...

Arthur: Actually jaywalking is mightily enforced here in Seattle.

Let me mark Seattle off my places to live then. Damn.

Repsac: What the fuck kinda liberal am I, anyway?!?

The kind that ends up on this blog. LOL

Dave: If Obama's policies turn the economy around and usher in a new round of prosperity for America, will conservatives say they were wrong?

Probably not, and for two reasons. First, the porkulus bill seems to have little to do with economic stimulus. And second, the problem is that these policies are going to grow the government much faster than even Bush was doing. And that's not the path to less government and more freedom, which is the principle we must oppose this on.

Saty: Am I the only one who is aware that many modern, civilized, successful, happy European nations operate under at least a partially Socialist system?

And these are the same economies that are finding out that giving people stuff is beginning to bankrupt them (France comes to mind). And it appears we are porking our way into even more unholy levels of debt than before.

Arthur: Far from plots to sap my fluids, it's a matter of security versus freedom. And I would prefer freedom to security through government control.

Especially if fluids are involved.

Arthurstone said...

PatrickM typed:

'And these are the same economies that are finding out that giving people stuff is beginning to bankrupt them (France comes to mind). And it appears we are porking our way into even more unholy levels of debt than before.'

Actually these are countries which were doing quite well before various 'free market strategies', 'financial innovations' and American style pro-corporate de-regulation were introduced into their politics.

dmarks said...

"Am I the only one who is aware that many modern, civilized, successful, happy European nations operate under at least a partially Socialist system?"

These countries are only slightly more socialist than the US has been. That is, most of the economy is still controlled by the people, instead of the State.

The countries in Europe that were the most socialist were also the ones that were worst off: the Soviet bloc countries.

"And that in large part Socialist activism is responsible for taking the United States out of a feudalistic serfdom"

That's a medieval system that we never had here. Actually, socialist activism is responsible for eroding the traditional Constitutional ideals of the supremacy of the individual over the state.

Socialism is itself a quite regressive movement. In centuries past, rapacious rulers justified their rule by claiming some sort of divine authority. Socialists have replaced this justification for tyranny with "scientific" reasons. But whether the dictator is a Pharaoh, Fuhrer, or President-for-Life, it is all the same under the surface.

Arthur said: "Interestingly enough Robert Mugabe is also a staunch Roman Catholic."

And so is Daniel Ortega, one-time dictator of Nicaragua and the current "president".

Under Mugabe, Zimbabwe was at one time prosperous, surprisingly.

Beth said...

I can't freakin believe liberals openly wanting to embrace socialism, the pilgrims didn't risk their lives to escape tyranny for kicks, men didn't die for freedom because they thought it was a just a fad, sheesh our forefathers are spinning in their graves at what we have done to their framework! The United States of America didn't rise to its greatness in its relatively short history because it was a "little socialistic"!!!

This isn't MaCarthyism folks, I just want my country to get back to the basics!

Patrick M said...

Beth: I can't freakin believe liberals openly wanting to embrace socialism...,

Well, they did win big in the last two elections, and they have the ability to do whatever they want for the next two years.

Last time they had this opportunity was 1992. After two years, they faced the consequences in 1994.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

"And that in large part Socialist activism is responsible for taking the United States out of a feudalistic serfdom"

Labour laws in this country as they exist today, ie, the weekend, the eight hour day, etc., are in large part in place due to Socialist activism.

That's a fact.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

This isn't MaCarthyism folks

The McCarthyism is the knee-jerk reaction to the word socialism, which in this country incites an instant fear despite the amount of knowledge one has on the topic.

A lot of people who rail against socialism haven't got the first frickin clue what it means or what it's done, see above results of activism, for them in this country.

It's hysteria against a word ingrained in them through the last three generations which have done their damned best to teach people in this country that socialism and communism are the same, which they're not, and that anything that doesn't involve businesses raping workers is EEEEEEEEVIL.

Because that's what capitalism and The American Dream are about.

Beth said...

Activism is NOT socialism, the right to peaceful assembly (having labor unions for example) is guaranteed under the First Amendment! It's because of our freedoms that we can fight for what we think is right, not because the government is taking over! Do you know what socialism actually is??

Satyavati devi dasi said...

In 1914, one of the worst labor conflicts in American history took place at a mining colony in Colorado called Ludlow. After workers struck with grievances ranging from requests for an eight-hour day to allegations of subjugation, the National Guard was called in by Colorado governor Elias Ammons. That winter, Guardsmen made 172 arrests.

The strikers began to fight back, killing four mine guards and firing into a separate camp where strikebreakers lived. When body of a strikebreaker was found nearby, the National Guard’s General Chase ordered the tent colony destroyed in retaliation.
__________________________

"As worker discontent and strikes… intensified in the summer of 1917, demands grew for prompt federal action… The anti-labor forces concentrated their venom on the IWW."
Soon, “the halls of Congress rang with denunciations of the IWW" and the government sided with industry; "federal attorneys viewed strikes not as the behavior of discontented workers but as the outcome of subversive and even German influences".

On September 5, 1917, at the request of President Wilson, the Justice Department conducted a raid on the Industrial Workers of the World. They stormed every one of the 48 IWW headquarters in the country. "By month’s end, a federal grand jury had indicted nearly two hundred IWW leaders on charges of sedition and espionage" under the Espionage Act.
__________________________

...the Socialist Party put a number of issues on the national agenda and advanced perhaps by decades the legislation which achieved a number of objectives for working class America. The list includes giving women the right to vote. It includes legislation restricting child labor, and protecting workers’ rights to join unions and when necessary to strike. It would also include workplace safety, on the railroads and in the mines and factories.

dmarks said...

"Labour laws in this country as they exist today, ie, the weekend, the eight hour day, etc., are in large part in place due to Socialist activism."

Which have nothing at all to do with feudalism.

"The McCarthyism is the knee-jerk reaction to the word socialism, which in this country incites an instant fear despite the amount of knowledge one has on the topic.

A lot of people who rail against socialism haven't got the first frickin clue what it means or what it's done, see above results of activism, for them in this country."

Actually, McCarthyism is accusing someone of being a communist when they weren't or aren't. That's all it is.

If you have a clue about socialism, you will despise it and work against it. One has to look no further than Europe in the mid-2oth century to see the triumph of two different socialist regimes, one in Eastern Europe and the other in Central Europe.

dmarks said...

"teach people in this country that socialism and communism are the same, which they're not, and that anything that doesn't involve businesses raping workers is EEEEEEEEVIL."

Socialism and communism are not the same. One can be socialist without being communist. See the Ba'ath parties of Iraq and Syria, and the German National Socialist Party. But all communists are socialists. Look at the first "S" in "USSR".

Socialism is usually about the government raping workers and denying them the choice over their own lives. Socialism is about the ruling elites making the peoples' personal choices for them, against their will and against their interest.

Myself said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Myself said...

Beth said...
"Rush never should have said he hopes Obama fails, what he should have said is "I KNOW he will fail" because liberalism (whether liberals admit it or not) always does fail."

WRONG!

Rush hoped that Obama FAILS as do so many of US do.
Rush is not afraid to say it as he thinks it.
Maybe you feel it's better to pussy-foot around the issue but HE does not nor do I.
We do not want America to become a Socialist country so what is wrong with hoping that he fails.
I do not support him (Obama) and so many of the bloggers on these boards have expressed the same opinion.
Yes, it's OK to NOT to support a President who is SO off the wall as this man is.

So Let ME Be Blunt Also!
I don't want Obama to succeed either...
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has launched an assault against Free Speech. Make no mistake, their current 'online petition' against Rush Limbaugh is nothing but an effort to lay groundwork for resurrecting the Fairness Doctrine. But my friends, I'll say it here - and run no risk of Big Brother stifling my political speech (yet...) - I'm with Rush. I don't want President Obama to succeed. That may seem rather unpatriotic. Trust me, I'm one of the more patriotic people that I know (& I know some real red-white-&-blues). However, at this point, I believe I'm taking the most patriotic position.

Hear me...I'm not saying that I want our government to come crashing down. I'm not saying I want Mr. Obama to fail as a President in the eyes of the world, or even in the eyes of our people. What I am saying (& what Mr. Limbaugh was saying, too) is that I want his agenda to fail. Oh, how I want his agenda to fail...

I want his anti-capitialist, income-redistribution-socialist, pro-abortion, dismantle-traditional-marriage, environment-before-common-sense, foreign appeasement , terrorist-assuaging agenda to fail...and fail miserably. That would be best for our country. I desperately want what's best for our country.

There, I've said it . Enjoy your afternoon.

Beth said...

It seems inconsistent with the ideals of Socialism for the Socialist Party to want the PEOPLE to have control over their destiny instead of allowing the government to intervene, as they did so badly in the example you mentioned Saty in Colorado.

And to "Myself", did you actually read what I wrote?????

dmarks said...

Beth. You have it right. Socialism is about nothing power for the ruling elites at the expense of the ruled.

Shaw Kenawe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shaw Kenawe said...

Beth said...

I can't freakin believe liberals openly wanting to embrace socialism, the pilgrims didn't risk their lives to escape tyranny for kicks,

Actually, the Puritans [considered a perjorative name to these religious purists] were pretty tyrannical themselves. They left Europe because they couldn't succeed in imposing their strident religious beliefs on others. The Puritans came here for religious freedom--the freedom to force people to believe as they did.

About 21,000 of the "godly" came to the New World on a "Pilgrimage" to impose their brand of religion, 13,000 went to Massachusetts Colony.

Throughout this time they were not separatists. In fact, when the government in England was taken over by Oliver Cromwell not only did the emigration stop, some people went back to England. (Cromwell was a "Puritan" - he also abolished Christmas as a celebration but that is another story.)

While the first generation was in charge, there was strict adherence to the church laws including forcing people to church. Select members of the congregation went to the homes of people not in church to find out why they were not there. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne gives a pretty fair presentation about the attitudes and activities of the Puritan Elders. They did not extend the tenets of their religion to the local indigenous peoples.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Myself said...

So Let ME Be Blunt Also!
I don't want Obama to succeed either...

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has launched an assault against Free Speech.


No. It. Hasn't.

The First Amendment guarantees individuals freedom of speech and prohibits the GOVERNMENT from restricting that free speech, with certain modifications, i.e. speech that causes a clear and present danger,you can't yell "Fire" in a crowded theater--Judge Learned Hand.

The DCCC's petition merely invites people to sign it and tell Limbaugh what they think of his unAmerican remarks.

It truly amazes me that so many Americans don't know what the First Amendment is about.

If Patrick deletes remarks from his blog (and he has) he is not "taking away your freedom of speech." He's. Not. The. Government. He's exercising his right as a private citizen to run his blog the way he sees fit.

Limbaugh has the right to vomit his nonsense about hoping President Obama fails (and it's not Obama's policies, either. Limbaugh says emphatically "I hope HE fails." Not "I hope THEY fail."
But American citizens also have the right to hold him accountable for those words, and therefore, sign petitions saying they think he's a bloviating cacafuego.

Make no mistake, their current 'online petition' against Rush Limbaugh is nothing but an effort to lay groundwork for resurrecting the Fairness Doctrine.

No one in the Executive or the Legislative Branch has proposed any such legislation. This is paranoia set out by the fringe scaredy cats of the GOP.

But my friends, I'll say it here - and run no risk of Big Brother stifling my political speech (yet...)

When you say it "here," the only "risk" you run is having Big Brother Patrick delete your rant.


I'm with Rush. I don't want President Obama to succeed. That may seem rather unpatriotic.

Well, in addition to unpatriotic, it's batshit crazy. But, you're free to say it, fellow citizen.


Trust me, I'm one of the more patriotic people that I know (& I know some real red-white-&-blues). However, at this point, I believe I'm taking the most patriotic position.

Of course you do. And what could be more patriotic than hoping for more failure for America?

God Bless America, and listen, God, "Myself" wants her to fail.

Amen.

dmarks said...

Shaw said "No one in the Executive or the Legislative Branch has proposed any such legislation. This is paranoia set out by the fringe scaredy cats of the GOP."

It has been shown that several top Democratic Congressional leaders favor the idea of censoring the media. This makes it a danger worth pointing out. It has existed, which blunts the idea that it is mere "paranoia". And if top Dems had their way, it would come back... further vaporizing the idea that it is mere "paranoia".

Now, imagine that the top GOP leaders favored repealing the voting rights act. Even if they were not at the time actively pursuing it, wouldn't you say it was fair to warn about that too?

Shaw Kenawe said...

It has been shown that several top Democratic Congressional leaders favor the idea of censoring the media. This makes it a danger worth pointing out. It has existed, which blunts the idea that it is mere "paranoia". And if top Dems had their way, it would come back... further vaporizing the idea that it is mere "paranoia".

Worry about it when there is a House or Senate bill proposing it. Then remember this:

Obama Does Not Support Return of Fairness Doctrine
There may be some Democrats talking about reimposing the Fairness Doctrine, but one very important one does not: presumptive presidential nominee Barack Obama.
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 6/25/2008 12:25:00 PM MT
Related: Complete Election 2008 Coverage

There may be some Democrats talking about reimposing the Fairness Doctrine, but one very important one does not: presumptive presidential nominee Barack Obama.Source

Now, imagine that the top GOP leaders favored repealing the voting rights act.

Sorry. Not a good comparison.

Re-instating the Fairness Doctrine is not the same as repealing the right to vote for a group of Americans.

dmarks said...

"Re-instating the Fairness Doctrine is not the same as repealing the right to vote for a group of Americans."

Actually, it is. It guts the first amendment of "freedom of the press", especially in this electronic era and there has been talk of extending it to cable. Severely curtailing the right of the free press is as serious as voting rights damage.

"Obama Does Not Support Return of Fairness Doctrine"

I don't think he's big on the whole issue. It is not a biggy to him. He'd not propose or push it, but I doubt very much he'd veto it if it passed across his desk.

Also, I'm having less and less faith in Pres. Obama promises. He promised not to hire any lobbyists. But now he has hired at least 10, with the very lame excuse that it's only a few.

Also, I don't know if he promised to have an ethical administration. If he didn't, it's a good thing, because he is actually lowering the bar set by his predecessors with his new Secretary of Treasury.

Arthurstone said...

There was an interesting piece on the radio today. Seems it's the 30th Anniversary of the Iranian revolution and an American reporter was visiting the shrine of Ayatollah Khomeini where a whole host of events were marking the occasion, speeches, prayers, dedications, parades, various tributes, etc. Often punctuating the end of various events and scattered throughout was the slogan 'Death to America!'

The reporter spoke to some of the 'Death to America' crowd and found them very polite and eager to discuss their views with an...American. Like so much political protest in the age of electronic media there is a Kabuki-like formality to the events in Tehran. Politics IS theatre. And the point is 'Death to America' rarely means 'let's kill all the Americans'. It is more akin to 'I hope he fails'.

Many Americans are comforted by the notion that events in the Middle East are driven by an irrational hatred of 'the West' and 'Islamofascism'. It is difficult for us to grasp there is a political component to all of this. And that long time American policy has caused a great deal of resentment in the region.

Whereas Rush Limbaugh has nothing to complain about and performs his radio act for money (having long since discovered that stoking the resentments of his audience is hugely lucrative) the Iranians at least have a legitimate beef or several. Long victim of western imperialism they likewise have suffered the consequences of a nation making its own choices which displeased the powers that be:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1953_Iranian_coup_d'├ętat

Of course there are people who want to cause us harm. And they must be dealt with.

But the notion that adherents of an entire religion wish us dead is preposterous. And not particularly useful in making the hard decisions we need to make regarding the actual threats we face.

dmarks said...

The guy who was overthrown in 1953 was no saint either.

"Death to America" is an official government chant that over time has less and less meaning to those who say it. But it does underscore the genocidal intent of the current Iranian government.

But I think you make good points once we get rid of the claim of "western imperialism".

Arthurstone said...

dmarks typed:

'The guy who was overthrown in 1953 was no saint either.'

Who said he was? Still, the Brits and US really had no business overthrowing the guy. We have a habit of changing the rules when the locals go against our wishes. See Chile, 1973.

dmarks added:

'But I think you make good points once we get rid of the claim of "western imperialism".'



Oh how I wish we could.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Empire


Sadly western involvement in Iran is indeed a textbook example of western imperialism.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran-Britain_relations

Indeed.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

If you have a clue about socialism, you will despise it and work against it. One has to look no further than Europe in the mid-2oth century to see the triumph of two different socialist regimes, one in Eastern Europe and the other in Central Europe.

Again. There are countries in Europe today that exist quite successfully under at least a partially Socialist system. They are not bastions of abuse, they are not desolate wastelands, their people are modern, educated, civilized and happy, and we can learn from them. There are no evil dictators in these countries, there are no mass genocide programs, there are no repressive regimes forcing the people to go barefoot in rags. Have nations claiming to be 'Socialist' put forth governments that do have these things? Certainly. In the same way, the 'democratic republic' of the United States, in which 'all men are created equal', previously held as law that its black population was worth 3/5 of the corresponding white population, and equated them with property on a par with livestock. Not the same? I beg to differ: it's a situation where the name and the game are opposed to each other.

The political spectrum is just that: a spectrum. You can take any ideology you like and slap the name of your choice on it (the Nazis liked the word "Socialist" too and yet there was nothing "Socialist" about it). There is communism, there is socialism, there is democratic socialism, there is fascism, there is anarchy. There are mixed economies, which in objective terms seem to be quite successful. To paint all governments who call themselves 'socialist' as evil, disregarding those whose economies, countries and citizenry are successful, is the same as calling all 'democracies' bastions of All That Is Good and True. It's patently untrue.

So many people believe that socialism is about raping the populace. This, in fact, is the diametric opposite to the goals of socialism. Socialism recognizes that in a capitalist economy, the control is placed in the hands of a few, who are then free to exploit those who are forced to work for them. The goal is to end the exploitation and discrimination, and put the power back in the hands of the population as a whole.

On a micro level, we can see that in the US, companies who distribute ownership among their employees (and several large companies do this) are successful, have higher productivity rates, employee satisfaction and retention, and, if you do any studies on the current situation, are experiencing fewer layoffs in the current economy due to the willingness of all employees to pitch in and make changes in their operating procedure to benefit all at the expense of none. This is an example of real socialism at work: the people retain the power through collective ownership of the means of production and together take the responsibility for each other's mutual benefit.

Imagine! A company in the United States, of all things, working according to Socialist principles! And my God.. it works! No oppressive regimes, no bloodshed, no genocide, no oppressed workers struggling at the expense of a few.

Imagine that!

dmarks said...

"Again. There are countries in Europe today that exist quite successfully under at least a partially Socialist system."

Again, this is because they are mostly non-Socialist. The more socialist they are, the worse they are. The most recent example of a country that was mostly socialist in Europe was Serbia in the 1990s, which was run by Slobodan Milosevic's Socialist Party. The government, as per socialist ideology, controlled most of the means of production there.

"There are no evil dictators in these countries"

You find these in the countries that are the most socialist.

"This is an example of real socialism at work: the people retain the power through collective ownership of the means of production and together take the responsibility for each other's mutual benefit."

Under socialism, the ruling elites control the means of production, even if it means intervening in private matters and forcing the owners of a company to give away control of the company to those who never earned it or nor not qualified to make decisions. That's a form of fascism, plain and simple. Under capitalism, each worker (including managers, who work too) completely controls the part he or she contributes, as everything is part of a voluntary agreement. The free market allows such arrangements with employees as you described in your examples. Or not. It depends on what the people work out themselves, and what the actual creators of the company decide is best (as opposes to a "one size fits view" solution being forced on them by government). That is the beauty of it.

The companies you mention in the US work according to free market capitalist principles: the company itself chose the management style that best worked according to that situation, and it was not forced on it by government.

The free market allows a diversity of management and ownership styles to be entereed into voluntarily by those directly involved in the company. What you describe works in some companies, and not others. Under capitalism, people are free to try this out, and if it works, it survives. Otherwise, it does not, and no-one is forced into one management/ownership style by the government against their needs and interests.

"So many people believe that socialism is about raping the populace."

That is very true.

"Socialism recognizes that in a capitalist economy, the control is placed in the hands of a few"

No. In socialism, control is placed in the hands of a very few. In capitalism, there is little such "control" as decisions are left to the people not the State.

"who are then free to exploit those who are forced to work for them."

The force is again in socialism, not capitalism.

"The goal is to end the exploitation and discrimination, and put the power back in the hands of the population as a whole."

The "population as a whole" used as a euphemism by socialists to justifty dictatorial control by elites who run everything "in the people's interest". The more socialist a country is, the less power the ruled have.

"(the Nazis liked the word "Socialist" too and yet there was nothing "Socialist" about it).

The Nazis were very socialist, of course, as the party held to the central socialist ideal it is best when a strong government runs the peoples' lives for them. The term Nazi was just a nickname, in fact for a party whose actual name was the German language version of "National Socialist German Workers' Party"

"To paint all governments who call themselves 'socialist' as evil"

They may not be evil, or the country may in fact not be very socialist, but their name is an open declaration of intent to turn the country into a totalitarian state.

Patrick M said...

I do have a point to add:

I heard it yesterday (but lack a link to verify) that Obama's new addition to the FCC is NOT a proponent of the (un)Fairness Doctrine. Hopefully, that means that Obama will have the sense not to drag us down that evil road.

Of course, Nancy Pelosi still seems warm to the idea.

Arthurstone said...

They may not be evil, or the state may not be very capitalist, but their name is an open declaration of intent to turn the country into an oligarchy beholden to their corporate masters at the expense of workers.

Cheers!

dmarks said...

Arthur: That tends to happen the most under socialism. Under capitalism, workers have a lot more control over their own lives and destiny. Far more than under socialism. Oligarchies tend to exist due to government tampering with the economy: the more socialism there is, the more power is concentrated in the hands of the rulers at the expense of the people.

And Arthur? I have something to ask you, unrelated to scoring poins in these debates. Since I can't email you, please contact me in the email address in my profile.

Arthurstone said...

Actually I can imagine that my version would resonate far more deeply with the vast majority of the world where folks scrap by on a few dollars a day.

I am finishing up a trilogy of novels by the late JG Farrell. The subject is the British Empire as viewed through three separate events. The Indian Mutiny of 1857 (Siege of Krishnapur), the fall of Singapore in 1942 (The Singapore Grip) and Northern Ireland (Troubles). All make for a very interesting discussion of capital's effects on aboriginal populations. Nation building. Colonialism. Free trade and the like. It's interesting to superimpose a map of European empire over a current map and take a look at who benefited from the experience and who didn't.

Highly recommended.

Krishnapur won the Booker in 1973.

Toad734 said...

Seeing what conservative policies got us over the last 8 years, maybe we should try liberal.

Rush is a big, fat, drug addict; he is a farce and an idiot.

Patrick M said...

Toad: seeing what conservative policies got us over the last 8 years...

Other than some tax cuts and a few social things, I'd like to see all the conservatism.

dmarks said...

Arthurstone: Colonizing is not free trade. Also, it's not free if some people are actual slaves and can't make decisions.

Toad said "Rush is a big, fat, drug addict; he is a farce and an idiot."

If weight is a valid political criticism, I'm surprised that Al Gore does not get bashed for it more. Hint: try for a more substantive criticism of Rush Limbaugh next time. It's pretty easy to do without the irrelevant (bi,g fat) and playground insult (idiot). You had a good start with the "drug addict" part.

Arthurstone said...

dmarks typed:

'Arthurstone: Colonizing is not free trade. Also, it's not free if some people are actual slaves and can't make decisions.'

Bingo. Right you are.

But it's necessary for any sort of understanding of how we got here to realize that the colonial powers (Britain first and foremost) were on a mission to improve the world and believed their system (capitalism) was superior to that of all the nations they colonized. That many Brits and a few locals ended up filthy rich was all to the good. It proved 'God' was on their side.

And it turned out that most folks didn't benefit much from their introduction to industrialized capitalism.

It's interesting how much the PNAC jargon sounds like the old British imperialists.

Not a coincidence.