Saturday, March 12, 2011

Bullies Of Right

Or why “Compassionate Conservative” is an Oxymoron.

Last November our feckless President allowed an even more feckless Democratic Congress to run the worst campaign since Bill Clinton had a Contract taken out him by mob boss Newt Gingrich. How so many men and women with so much political experience could fail so utterly to guage the public mood was simply amazing. It was the Peter Principle write large and in the electoral field. Not since the sinking of the Titanic has such willful ignorance been on display.

The watery grave assigned for the luckless souls who ignored the rise of the TEA Party insurgence was mostly filled by Blue Dog Democrats. Why Democrats have failed since Reagan to understand that if you run as a watered-down Republican you will always loose to the more full flavored version is a mystery. Compromising with this lot is always a losing proposition.

It is not hard to understand what the TEA Party, which is nothing more than a re-branding of the Social Right, is. This is the logical extension of Lee Atwater and Richard Nixon’s Southern Strategy. The appeal is being made to bigots, it is being made to misogynists, it is being made to racists, it is being made to greedy geezers, it is being made to gun-waving loons. It is being made to bullies.

These are the same jerks that beat-up the uncool kids in Middle School and High Schools. It is the same failed jocks who barely made the cut for the JV squad in the last year of eligibility, and rode the pines even in the blow-out games. These are the men who are the last bastion of White Male Privilege, they are its unapologetic supporters. This is the rule of the ignorant hateful mob.

If you look at the behavior of all the supposed disparate threads of Conservatism, one commonality is the shear spitefulness and epic bad behavior. In short they are all bullies. They gladly prey on those who they see as weak, unprotected, marginal. Not only are they bullies, they are proud bullies. They are self-justifying bullies. They get off an being bullies. They do things and say things that are deliberately stupid, rude, offensive, and hateful to stick a finger in the eye of anyone who disagrees with them.

Look at the behavior of Representative Peter King. He is getting his xenophobia on. There is nothing subtle going on in his hearing on Islamic Extremism. It is nothing more that the verbal beat-down of an unpopular group; Muslims in the USA. It is almost besides the point that King helped to support a real terrorist group, the IRA, in his younger days. The man has no shame. Bullies never do. He is not even happy in beating down this easy to demonize group, got to go to the next easy brown target of opportunity: Mexicans.

If you follow the current mau-mauing of the “illegal immigrant problem”, if you follow the brouhaha, if you pay the slightest attention to the dog-whistles being not-so-subtly blown, you will realize the meme going around has nothing to do with the issue of immigration policy. No this is nothing more than vicious thugs and bullies getting their hate on. This is a not so under-the-radar way of them saying, “the dirty Spics are about to take over.”

If you really want to see the pitch black heart of TEA Party Nation, if you want to see the virulent hate that propels them; just mention the immigration issue. Nothing starts the spittle flying faster than to bring up the subject of what the Filipinos call Tago Nang Tago. ( Literally this means “hiding and hiding”, more loosely it means always hiding.) There are Twelve Million people living in the TnT Nation. There are Twelve Million people living in limbo. They are some of the most vulnerable, most exploited people living in U.S. borders. Twenty years ago Conservative Icon Ronald Reagan  did something that today’s TEA Party activists would consider treason from a Republican; he gave that generation’s TnT Nation amnesty. Today, that would be impossible. Republican states are dueling each other in who can set up the most Procrustean Bed for TnTs. Republican states are competing to see who can be the most Draconian in their penalties. It is not like TnT can organize, it is not like they can vote these hateful bigots out of office. No, TnTs have no choice but to take the abuse heaped up from the good, Christian, white people of Arizona, and other parts of the USA. The have to take verbal garbage from the same jackasses that hire them out for crap wages at Home Depot, or for maid service, or for caregiver, or the restaurant trade, or the other myriad jobs that pay poverty wages.

But the viciousness and bile is not limited to powerless minorities. No it extends, to powerless majorities. It extends to the real silent majority in the USA: Women. If you really want to get deep, dark and dirty into this subject, if you really want to spelunk the deep, fetid, slimy man-cave of misogyny, Amanda Marcotte is one of the better guides. The woman knows the territory, she knows the bottomless pits, she knows the dead-ends, she knows the false exits, she knows the other guides who will lead you into the many dark prisons of this huge cavern. Me, I will only give a nickel tour of the newest excavation. This would be Bad Bart’s side-show of abortions horrors.

This fun-house was set up in the debate about Obama’s “health care reform” bill, otherwise know as Barry’s big wet kiss to the Health Care Oligarchy. To even get to this bad bill passes, Obama had to ensure that no Federal monies were being used to fund abortion, honest injun, cross my heart hope to die. Never mind that neither Obama nor the Democratic Congress ever mentioned repealing the hateful Hyde Amendment. No, the Forced Pregnancy set wanted more. These he-man women haters needed assurance that no icky girls, with their icky unplanned pregnancies would ever darken the door of a legitimate clinic, ever. Thus was born the hideous Stupak–Pitts Amendment. This was again bullying. Attend to our women-hating, slut shaming, fetus worshiping obsessions or millions of real US citizens will get screwed was the ultimatum.

But the misogynists are not done, not by a long shot. Thank the Goddess, or some other munificent deity, that Amanda Marcotte never visits this tiny outpost on the wild, woolly webs because I’m about to plagiarize her thoughts and thinking darn near verbatim. The present assault on Planned Parenthood is again, nothing more than misogynist bullying. It is an assault on icky, nasty women with their icky nasty vaginas, and their icky nasty sexual desires that they are not supposed to have. Only whores have a sex drive, that is why and their cheeper sisters, the sluts, are what they are. Good women cook, clean, have children, and always defer to their husbands. They know nothing of sex, they don’t even desire it. They are happy homemakers who’s only job should be house help / nanny and unpaid sex worker for their bread-winning husbands. I could go on about this world view, and how messed up it is, but really, Amanda does it much better and with much more scatological wit. I’m picking out just one strand of Amanda’s j'accuse, there is plenty more at her website.

To return to that strand, to return to how the Right in general and the Republican right in particular are nothing more than a bunch of vicious bullies, I will return to the fairer sex. Specifically I will return to Planned Parenthood. The gutting of Planned Parenthood is yet another example of how right-wingers attack those least able to defend themselves. Planned Parenthood is the only resources for perhaps millions of Women who are working class and poor. Assaulting this cohort is pure, unadulterated  barbarism. It is cowardice written in blood, the blood of dead women butchered in back ally abortions. We are returning to those days gentle readers. We are returning to the days that women were mangled, mutilated, and yes, murdered by back ally hacks. We are returning to the days when women were forced to put their lives in the hands of a quack that got his license from a cracker jacks box. It is already happened in Philadelphia

That house of horrors happened because poor and working class women had no other options. Thanks to Hyde and Stupak real women, and real babies, suffered real harm. With the defunding of Planned Parenthood, more of these horror stories will be coming to neighborhood near you, or if you’re really lucky the house of horrors will be right on your block. And the insult added to the injury is that these right wing fetus worshipers will be OK with that. They get off on punishing all women for being sexual beings, the fetus worshipers especially get off on punishing poor, minority women for having sex and possibly enjoying it.

The real topper though came in the backwater, ends-of-earth, were the buffalo roam, piece of real estate known as South Dakota. They nearly authorized issuing hunting licensees to cull abortion providers. They were more than happy to give a thumbs up to brutal killing of doctors  who would interfere with a man’s holy planting of the seed in the soil of a woman. Nothing like giving a thumbs up to idiot terrorists who justify cold blooded murder by claiming justifiable homicide. This is the ultimate bullying; the use of firearms to settle accounts. It is the last refuge of the bitter coward trying to prove his manhood.

There are other examples I could point to. The whole Wisconsin fiasco of Union busting was just another example of how the Republican Party has become nothing less and nothing more than the party of bullies. The final move by the local Republican representatives in the Badger State clearly points this out. It was the final act of a bunch of rule breakers. It was the final act of a group of people who believe that might makes right. It was the act of a bunch of people who only believe in democracy if it means they win. In short it was electoral thuggery at its worst.

More examples could also be brought up, more data accumulated to support the point. It is a real treasure trove of bad behavior. What to do about Republican bullying? That is the rub. The answer is so simple yet somehow escapes the Democratic leadership. Most at sea is the titular leader of the Party, Barack Obama. How to put this nicely? Is there truly a way to talk about this without offending his fans and minions? Not really. This man, Barack Obama, has never had to deal with bullies before. He has lived apart from this reality. Bullying is not part of his history. Dealing with bullies is not part of his mental landscape. This is a man who was never, ever, rolled for his lunch money. This is a man who never was stuffed into a dumpster of rancid trash, or beaten, or both, by the football team.  He was sheltered from all of that because his mother sent him to the best school Hawaii had to offer. Not for our Little Lord Fauntleroy the grubby realities that numerous public school children have to endure. This, and his inbred transactional nature, is why Obama keeps trying to negotiate with the terrorists of the Republican Party. It is bad idea and a even worse policy.

The only real response to Republican bullying, to any kind of bullying at all, is to stand up to the bully. Otherwise, it is nothing but a world of hurt and stolen lunch money for you and the people you care about. Bullies never stop until they are made to stop. That is the cold hard truth of the matter. The good news is that there is no time like the present to push back against the bullies that infest the Republican Party. The mask of Middle American normalcy has been stripped from the TEA Party to reveal the hateful beast beneath.

Time for a little political jujitsu to flip these anti-democratic and anti-Democratic haters; to make them cry uncle. The recall efforts in Wisconsin are a good start, but more is needed. The usual lazy response of Liberals that the people will somehow do all the heavy lifting now the truth is revealed is just that ,lazy.  Liberals, Progressives, those who are left-of-center, need to continue to show up and raise cain like the good people of Wisconsin did. There is no rest, no let up, no break, keep the pressure on. Kick ass and take names good lefties. Keep showing the uninvolved, the uninformed, the undecided how the Republicans are being nothing more than bullies. People get that idea, they understand it when someone is being mean just for the hell of it. What is even better is that no one really likes a bully except maybe another bully. The current Republican and Conservative triumphalism could be smothered in just two years, just keep showing this lot for what they really are, bullies.

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