Sunday, May 31, 2009

If you REALLY want to understand what the Right is about

You need to go to FireDogLake and read this, and it will chill you to the bone,


autoegocrat said...

Now that they're shoe-horned into being the white male Southern party, you can expect to see the GOP re-brand itself in the next few years as "the party of success" and behind it one will find precisely this sort of mentality.

Mark my words, it will happen. It's one of the few places they have left to go.

Kate said...

What an utter crock!

Anonymous said...

Do bridges go in one direction? Doesn't Edmund Pettis going in both directions? Without it, might traffic--"progress," "justice" and "empathy"--become stuck, clogged and perhaps create "bridge rage?" Does rage go in both directions? What happens if we ignore one side of the bridge at the expense of the other? Haven't we done that before?

Steve Steffens said...

Anon 11:37, Are you REALLY suggesting that the poor, put up on white people are the ones oppressed?

To that, I steal Kate's line, what an utter crock?

Anonymous said...

To the Cracker:

Are you REALLY suggesting that poverty stops at the door of an artifically-created and articifically maintained category known as "race?" Of course race matters, but as I believe you have argued on several occasions, class is the predominant issue that we face. If that is what, in fact, you believe, surely then you would agree that class distinctions effect the lives and futures of all poor and "middle class" people regardless of their "race." To argue otherwise is logically inconsistent with your own position.

Steve Steffens said...

Of course not, don't create a strawman.

However, race ALSO matters, and don't deny that. You presumably understand how race has been used to UNDERMINE class struggles, if you've been paying attention.

Anonymous said...

The straw man, as you put it, was drawn from your construct, logic and apparent distinctions. My response clearly indicated that "race matters" (see above) so to suggest that I argue its irrelevance is not an accurate portrayal of my positions. It is also an unwarranted inference that somehow if I do not exactly restate what you or other "liberals" believe as "paying attention" that I am somehow unaware of complexity and my arguments are subsequently in need of "correction" or "intervention." Such inferences or recitations do not reflect that heritage of liberalism, but--as ever--the authoritarian self-righteousness of "liberalism."
But to the point, I would further suggest that not only has "race been used to undermine class struggles" (your words), but that the inverse is true as well. In short, those dynamics play off one another to the detriment of our entire society. More importantly, however, "society" is not a sentient being who suffers the slings and arrows of, in the present instances, race and class distinctions. Individual human beings, conversely, have and are enduring injustice. Those dynamics further do not stop at the door of an artificially-created, artificially-maintained "poverty line" espoused by the central government. In fact, such artificial distinctions continue to rest at the core of our current social and personal stratification and no government program is capable of fixing those realities.

Steve Steffens said...

It was a LACK of government intervention that allowed the current stratification to occur, if you'd pull yourself out of your books and pay attention.

If the government (our collective nature at work) does not work to solve these problems, they won't be solved, unless you are advocating nihilism and anarchy, which one could infer from your writing.

The simple fact is that we are ALL part of the society, and we must either work together to solve the problem or it will consume us.

The right has had their chance and failed unequivocally; what's YOUR answer?

Anonymous said...

My response might lead you to grasp that I am doing something other than reading a book. It might also help you to read such books as they shed light on matters of importance to our society.
You once more premise that "our collective nature at work"-- the central government is the best means of expressing that "nature." Leaving aside for now the record of those "applications," I ask you what exactly composes the nature of our "collective?" Does it include every one? In short, is anyone not belonging to an oppressed "group" excluded from the national or even human "collective?"
If, however, your reasoning is correct, how does the central government effectively respond to the problems of poverty, racism, and other concerns? Government can pass laws and utilize a "bully pulpit" to address these concerns. A law, regulation or even a resounding sermon cannot change the basic root that shapes human relationships. Government is an arbiter of competing concerns, not a social worker or a change agent.
Conversely, I am not arguing, as you once again imply, that "government" is somehow the problem. It can and needs to continue to establish guidelines of fairness in the marketplace that prevents the sort of, as it were, "profiling" that creates the injustices of which we both speak. Governmental laws are, in a word, necessary.
At the same time, advocates for governmental intervention have come to assume that theirs is the morally superior position. They now accuse people who raise basic questions about their premises of an ever-increasing list of evils ranging from "uninformed," to "incorrectly informed" to "book smart, but no common sense" (unless it suits other of their purposes, then they mention how these people need to get our heads out of those same books) on up the scale to laughable attempts at bullying, to personal denuniciations and threats of execution once "we attain power." All the while, these same "liberals" demand "tolerance" in the public square. These quite real exchanges bring to mind a phrase from a "book:" there is something rotten in the house of "liberalism." That rottenness does only perpetuates the wrongs no that "liberals" claim to abhor.
As for my "solutions," the best means I think we have to address poverty and its attendant consequences is to encourage--a la RFK--the market to enter those areas where economic deprivation is most acute. Giving people a stake in their own futures through, as one example, education by insisting that "reading" is not a "white" activity, but a human one, that insists teachers be well-prepared and accountable intellectually, and, as I have come to believe, a form of competition between schools that encourages learning in an atmosphere of safety might be a decent place to start.
On the other hand, we have spent billions of "collective nature" dollars on aid to public education since 1965 and what are the results? Children shot every single day on the way to school in Chicago, Memphis and undoubtedly other cities; rural communities who hire their uneducated and culturally conformist local graduates; suburban schools that abound in material comfort, but reek with nihilistic indifference; in other words, our "collective nature" intervened in education and we have achieved little more than the perpetuation of "know-nothingism" wrapped in the clothing of increasingly legally-segregated "communities." Why not allow competition and give adequate vouchers combined with free choice of which schools parents want to send their children and provide a learning enviornment that encourages free reflection rather than rigid, conformity?
Given the sense that my response is more than a bit long, I'll stop for now and await your next answer.

Anonymous said...