Thursday, May 31, 2007

"Good-bye America": How the GOP Subverted American Ideals & Values

Cindy Sheehan has packed it up, giving up her valient struggle because America is no longer the country she grew up in and loved. Who can blame her? America is no longer the country I knew and grew up in. I loathe the values the GOP would ram down our throats. I am right. The GOP is dead wrong.
Good-bye America... you are not the country that I love and I finally realized no matter how much I sacrifice, I can't make you be that country unless you want it.

- Cindy Sheehan

I hear that all the time these days. This is not America. This is not the America I knew. What ever happened to Free Speech? What the hell happened to this country? Dude, Where's My Country?

When one begins an article like this it is most often done with a qualification that the intent of the article is not to cast blame or to point an accusatory finger. Well, that's not the case this time around. I know who fucked up America and if I should fail to point an accusatory finger I will not have done my job.

The American right wing in cahoots with the big corporations have bent America over and screwed her silly. This pack of liars and crooks partnered with Ronald Reagan to outsource the very soul of this country.

They waged war on all working Americans and small business.

They conspired to create a corporate, fascist state.

They conspired to destroy the labor movement.

They divided the nation into haves and have nots.

They stole the American air waves and gave it to the likes of Clear Channel, FOX, Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity.

They divided the nation along religious lines, rewarding fundamentalism with your tax dollars.

They built up an empire and called it a "war on terrorism" but, in fact, they made terrorism worse [See: Of Schadenfreude, Götterdämmerung and Bush's gestalt of failure, war crimes, and treason!]. In fact, the "war on terrorism" is a bloody fraud, terrorism is worse and former friends and allies now despise us.

They outsourced your job!

They devalued the dollar.

They created an America propped up by a world which cannot afford not to prop up the US economy.

They have proven that they care nothing about global warming, and, in fact, deny science, reason and free enquiry.

They destroyed, perhaps forever, the integrity of the electoral process.

The effects are not only economic, though I have written reams about how Reagan's policies ushered in the present era characterized by obscene disparities of income. The effects are related to the deterioration of education and the mass media. In both instances, reason and science are denigrated and under attack by the forces of superstition, mumbo jumbo and pernicious ideology.

That Ronald Reagan's economic program was called "voodoo economics" was ominous. His was the first "voodoo" administration, characterized by meaningless, feel-good platitudes, nonsense, lies, religious ideology and perhaps real voodoo for all the good done by Reagan. Many, indeed, felt cursed.

It was all GOP code words and consultant crafted jargon. Some thirty percent of the population didn't care if Reagan was telling the truth. Important for them was the fact that whatever he puked up made them feel good about themselves.

Ronald Reagan elevated stupidity and inarticulateness to hero worship status. He would not be equalled or surpassed until George W. Bush arrived on the national stage. It was not only Democrats who suffered in this new dark age. It was also articulate Republicans like Nelson Rockefeller and John Anderson. There was no place for them in the new GOP. There was no place for intelligence in medieval America. There was no place for enlightenment amid American Gothic. There was no place for debate when brute force and stolen elections guarantee a win.

George W. Bush took up where Reagan left off - elevating the cult of the stupid, blazing new trails for inarticulateness, making a half-baked omelet of scrambled thought processes. On numerous occassions, he has asked the media:
"... who ought to make that decision? The Congress or the commanders? And as you know, my position is clear -- I'm a commander guy." --George W. Bush, who apparently is no longer "The Decider," Washington, DC, May 2, 2007 (Watch video clip)
Evelyn Pringle, writing for Buzzflash, counters:
This country is now paying a heavy price for Bush's lack of military experience, and his taunting invitation of "bring it on," that has resulted in a never ending stream of challengers traveling to Iraq to teach our loudmouth president a lesson.

- Evelyn Pringle, What Military Service Qualifies Bush To Lead Iraq War? Buzzflash

I believe Cindy Sheehan's plaintive adieu to be symptomatic of a new American malaise, the palpable sense of despair and helplessness felt by all Americans as their beloved America, an ideal of Democracy, slips inexorably into a black hole of right wing lies and malevolence.

Fears of another, deliberate middle east war are very real and justified, given the rogue nature of an illegitimate regime in America. The implications of a protracted and ever widening Middle East war, spreading from Afghanistan and Iraq to include Iran are just too terrible and disastrous to contemplate.

It may be too late to halt the inexorable march to war. Bush has most probably taken the US past the event horizon. A descent into oblivion may be unstoppable.

Generally, the term "Dark Ages" is used to denote a period of time beginning in 476 AD, the date on which the barbarian Odoacer deposed the last Roman emperor, Romulus Augustulus. The "Dark Ages" were a period of religious struggle. Protestants are more inclined to use the term "Dark Ages", while Catholic writers tend to characterize the era as harmonious and productive. It is fair to say that Bush's last redoubt of popular support will be found among radical fundamentalists who share Bush's extremist visions of the apocalypse. An apocalypse of his devising!

The Dark Ages were times of great religious struggle and extensive Muslim conquests. It is easy to imagine the West's current antipathy toward Islam having its origins in a dark age in which Muslim and nomadic warriors rode through the ruins of fallen empire, perhaps laying waste to farms and villages. It must be remembered, however, that by the time of the crusades, many Muslims and Christians lived peaceably side by side from Constantinople to the Red Sea.

One has nightmares about America's descent into darkness and self-created hell. It is a dark vortex threatening to suck up ala Stephen King's Langoliers the world we knew. Like all big media productions, it has a soundtrack: H. Ross Perot's giant suckiing sound down south and a goofy little ditty performed by George W. Bush -an absurd buck and wing with a bit of his own stupid doggerel thrown in for the surrealistic effect.

Make the Pie Higher

I think we all agree, the past is over.
This is still a dangerous world.
It's a world of madmen
And uncertainty>
And potential mental losses.

Rarely is the question asked
Is our children learning?
Will the highways of the internet
Become more few?
How many hands have I shaked?

They misunderestimate me.
I am a pitbull on the pantleg of opportunity.
I know that the human being and the fish Can coexist.

Families is where our nation finds hope
Where our wings take dream.
Put food on your family!
Knock down the tollbooth!
Vulcanize society!
Make the pie higher!
Make the pie higher!
A video update and another reason not to believe Bush's official "theory" about how the towers of the WTC fell:













31 comments:

Anonymous said...

ive been struggling with the right words to express this sentiment. The Cowbay has done it all, he just didnt heve enough ink to write about all the ways the GOP has taken our nation away from us. I'd like to say thanks, but I can't bring myself to say thanks. it's all true and all too sad.

Len Hart said...

Thanks anonymous. I understand precisely how you feel. In fact, every REAL patriot has felt this sense of mourning and foreboding. I know Cindy must have been feeling it when she said what she did. As you say "It's all true and all too sad". I will probably quote you, if you don't mind. Come back again and share your thoughts at our corral.

thepoetryman said...

Wow! Mr. Hart you've nailed it shut my friend. Nailed it tight and with enviable precision.

thepoetryman said...

Len,
Could you send me an email to prime63@cox.net and I can add you to The Peace Tree author list?

Peace,
Mark (thepoetryman)

thepoetryman said...

Oh my... Never mind sending the email...I followed the email you sent to read the fine post... Drat. My brain is really the size of a half of a pea! I am working on making it pea-sized for that would be an improvement. :>/

Christopher I said...

Your piece provides lots to think about.

Let me suggest that, despite Bush-Cheney, America today may be a better country than its ever been.

Think about the past, and in only the 20th century, and before Reagan. Think about the violent suppression of labour movements around the time of World War 1, inane presidents like Calvin Coolidge and Herbert Hoover, the Great Depression, communist witch-hunts manifesting in McCarthyism, racial segregation against African-Americans, the agony and upheaval of the Vietnam War, the US bombing of Cambodia which led to Pol Pot and his genocide of Cambodians, Richard Nixon and Watergate, and much, much else.

There was much despair during the times of these happenings, but eventually the evils went. Despair arises, no doubt, because it seems the bad times of the moment will never end. But they do. Think about that, in just a year-and-a-half from now – a mere moment in the time-scale of history – George Bush and Dick Cheney will be gone. And when they are, there could well be, as a reaction, a scaling-back of presidential powers, as happened after Richard Nixon resigned.

The US has something no other country has – elections every two years. If you don’t like the bastards you can throw them out after just 24 months. And whilst, more times than not, you don’t throw the bastards out when you should, the members of Congress do always have at the back of their minds that there are elections always around the corner, and they calibrate their behaviour accordingly. And it’s happening right now as 2008 approaches. Perspective is all.

People say America today isn’t the country they once knew. But all people say this of their own countries no matter where they live. It’s stating the obvious to say that the whole world, in including the USA, is transforming at a rate faster than ever before, thanks to the micro-chip and an exploding world population and mass migrations. So we may as well strap on our seat-belts and enjoy the ride.

If I might add another thought to my overlong comments. Could the extremist drift of the GOP over recent years have anything to do with the fact that it is a “white” party in an America becoming less and less “white”? Therefore the GOP will, more and more, have to cater to the sectarian and selfish concerns of the “white” sub-group?

Len Hart said...

Think about the violent suppression of labour movements around the time of World War 1, inane presidents like Calvin Coolidge and Herbert Hoover, the Great Depression, communist witch-hunts manifesting in McCarthyism,

That's just evidence that the GOP won those battles and they did so by violence and crookery. Ronald Reagan was the piece de resistance. There was STILL a labor movement until Reagan. My father was very active in labor, a staunch Democrat, a liberal. This is some history that I have lived.

There was much despair during the times of these happenings, but eventually the evils went.

They didn't "went". Labor was crushed.

And when they are, there could well be, as a reaction, a scaling-back of presidential powers, as happened after Richard Nixon resigned

Nixon's resignation solved nothing. In fact, Nixon's resignation had the effect of radicalizing an already radical party. Look at the gang of crooks around Bush. Many, like Rumsfeld and Cheney, are left overs from Nixon. They are evidence that "Watergate" was not a lasting "win" for the Democrats or for America.

George Bush and Dick Cheney will be gone. .

It's not that simple, Christopher. Dick Cheney should have ridden off into the sunset with Nixon. He didn't.

The US has something no other country has – elections every two years.

Not anymore we don't. Follow up the links I provided.

People say America today isn’t the country they once knew.

The US is a shadow of its former self. The current dollar is worth about four cents on the dollar of 1895...and, if China were not as corrupt as we are, the dollar might collapse overnight. If that happens, we would face the absurd inflation experienced by Germany after WWI. That collapse set up the rise of Hitler.

Could the extremist drift of the GOP over recent years have anything to do with the fact that it is a “white” party in an America becoming less and less “white”? Therefore the GOP will, more and more, have to cater to the sectarian and selfish concerns of the “white” sub-group?

I no longer care why the GOP is the way it is. When I describe GOP tactics, I speak from experience. I have been inside their campaigns. I know how they are planned, how the schemes are cooked up. It is not a political party. It's a crime syndicate, possibly, a criminal conspiracy.

Len Hart said...

Mr. Hart you've nailed it shut my friend. Nailed it tight and with enviable precision.

Thanks poetry man. Enjoyed your site. don't be a stranger.

Anonymous said...

it is the same america....the one that murdered the native population and stole their land...that shot down early union strikers like exterminating cockroaches....that allowed the military industrial complex to become god and country....but the founders did leave us an escape clause....if anyone could read it....the declaration of independence...sean heretic, the intruder.

Liberality said...

What upsets me most is that I have children and grandchildren who have to live in this diminished world that we have wrought. I don't want them to live in a polluted and contaminated world. You would think that GOPers would feel the same way. What about Bush, he has two daughters, surely he cares about their future as most parents and grandparents care about the future for their kin? But maybe not. Maybe he thinks his riches will protect them or he just doesn't care. Or maybe he really believes that Jesus is coming back soon so it all won't matter anyway?

Len Hart said...

Anonymous said...

it is the same america....the one that murdered the native population and stole their land.

I am Native American on my mother's side, Scots-Irish on my father's. I grew knowing about the genocide against my own ancestors and curious about why the truth was never told about it in the American history books or the movies.

For a poignant attempt, please read Howard Zinn's "People's History of the United States". It's an incredible story, and has gotten less press than that other atrocity: slavery!

Len Hart said...

I never trust Wikipedia entirely...but I am sure there is much verifiable information here about the plight of the Native Americans.

bigphatjay said...

This all smacks loudly of generational tyranny at its most base form. Thomas Jefferson warned of it.

"Generational tyranny is to force a yoke of debt around the yet unborn for the sake of political popularity of the moment."

If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and tastes like a duck...

Anonymous said...

Warning, I feel a rant comining on...I've thought long and hard about the seminal comment of the person (sorry I don't know his name) who, while standing next to Mike Meyer's in a post Katrina fund raiser telethon, said "George Bush don't like black people." While I thought this brilliant in it's simplicity at the moment, I no longer think it's true. The reality is that George Bush don't like poor people, or middle class people for that matter. Or more accurately, he dosn't care about anybody who isn't a rich eleitist like him, and the rest of his country club ilk. Bush is color blind, but he is not money blind. Every trick, mis-deed, or machevellian machination he and his band of "evil-doers" have cooked up over the years has been an effort to shore up the strength of the richest of the rich, the ultra elite, the power brokers, the top twentyeth of one percent who own 99% of everything. The ones we all work for. For Bush's GOP, it's about power and it's about money. Why else would he hold hands with the Arab prince. But George didnt ruin this country alone. He had a lot of help. It is the foot soldiers of his GOP revolution that have willfully changed America to favor their own elitist kind. Consider Mehlman the closet gay who created strange bedfellows with the christian fundamentalists all for the chance to bring in a block of disenfranchised voters. Consider mastermind Cheney who created a personal fortune for himself as a Haliburton war profiteer. Consider the sycophantic Gonzales who would pull any lever in the judicial system to apease his boss the president, for without him he would be working in a Taco Bell ( I don't mean to dispariage anyone working at a Taco Bell, you probably have 10 times Alberto's integrity). Consider Rove who's job it is to create a GOP dynastay by rigging the electoral system with a series of self perpetuating "fixes". Consider the PNAC who waited patiently for more than a decade, like a sleeper cell plotting their return to power. Consider their mainifesto that said they'd have no shot at regainging power unless there was some catastrophic galvanizing venent, "like a new Pearl Harbor" and suddenly, miraculously for these neo-cons, it happened. Consider Michael Leeden a two bit wanna-be spy who took orders from Cheney, through Burlisconi, and bribed an alcoholic female clerk working at the nigerin Embassy, to steal stationary and seals from the Embassy, so that the CIA could create the infamous Niger forgeries, that led us to the greatest lie of all; the fake threat of an islamic madman who possesed nuclear weapons and wanted to kill Americans. Consider Condi Rice the once brilliant academic who threw away her soul to tell "mushroom cloud" lies to an american people. Consider the complicit corporate media who created an echo chamber of free advertising for the Bush Cheney Rumsfeld lies. Consider the rubber stamp republican congress who approved the Patriot Act, which should have ben called the your rights and shove them Act. Consider signing statements. Consider the theory of the unitary executive who can retain all the power he wants as long as he is in a perpetual state of War. There are so many greedy self-serving individuals who have led us here, and so many fat dumb and happy Americans who allow it to happen that we cannot blame just one man or even his cadre of loyalists. We the people have allowed this to happen, slowly, bit by bit. We are like frogs sitting in a pot of water. The GOP turned on the heat, but because it warmed up slowly we were complacent and didn't jump out. Now we are cooked. Worse still is that we have become anestatized to their villanous ways. After all, what's one more wire tap, one more extrordinary rendition, one more federalist judge appointed to the high court, one more breech of civil liberties, one more erosion of the constitution,one more impeachable offense, what's one more? There are those of us who care enough to be informed, but for the most part, we feel paralized by the sheer weight of their depravity and corruption, so much so that we can do little but type on blogs in frustration. When there is a snake under ever rock how do your drive the snakes out? How does one effect change against this juggernaut of deception and greed, and complacency? God help us all.

Anonymous said...

Fuzzflash sez...


Great post, Cowboy. J'Accuse Americana. You shine the light on all the snakes that need placing back in Uncle Sammy's box if Jeffersoniam Democracy is to survive this current plague of American fascism.

Len, apart from slagging Keith Olbermann bigtime, our little mate christopher "ever so 'umble" i, had this to say on his blog
Saturday, May 19, 2007.

"The Contact Has Begun (17)
Today I’ll continue on with my discussion of the book, “The Contact Has Begun”, by Phillip H. Krapf, a retired long-time journalist with the Los Angeles Times, who, in the dead of a night in June of 1997, was abducted by extra-terrestrial aliens and taken aboard their spacecraft."

Eric Cartman, the noted philosopher from South Park CO, once observed that a guy who experiences one too many anal probes, often struggles to establish credibility with the reality based community. Not that for one minute do I suggest that Chris is a card-carrying nut case or anything of the sort, it's just that he he is soiled with mauvaise foi, which is far worse.

Vierotchka said...

Christopher I said...

The US has something no other country has – elections every two years.


In Switzerland, the president is changed every year. People go to the polls several times a year - at least four and sometimes seven or eight or even more times a year. Switzerland is probably the only country in the world which enjoys direct democracy - something which the US sorely lacks, and which could make the US an infinitely better country if it did have it.

Vierotchka said...

Liberality said...

What upsets me most is that I have children and grandchildren who have to live in this diminished world that we have wrought. I don't want them to live in a polluted and contaminated world. You would think that GOPers would feel the same way.


Problem is, GOPers believe that End Times have begun and that they will be raptured, so they reckon this gives them license to rape the earth and soil its environment as much as they please while reaping huge profits in the process...

Christopher I said...

To Anonymous (Fuzzflash?):

Thanks for plugging my blog.

It get few enough readers as it is, so the more references it receives, the better.

I write stuff once a week, so c'mon over.

Anonymous said...

They are backing another Edsel out of their garage as we speak...dusting off TVee land's Fred (the other poser) Thompson... if nothing else, they are consistent.

Great post as usual, I cringed going through those statistical links up there...more grinding of the teeth reading that data/analysis, vs. the spew of disinformation our syphilitic media and their corporate cronies have continued to offer up over the years.

benmerc

SadButTrue said...

Great post, Len. Yet another litany of reasons that we suffer from outrage overload. I think the link between the possible (likely? I think inevitable) economic collapse and the rise of the Nazis after hyperinflation hit Germany is too little mentioned, let alone explored. The loonie (Canadian dollar) is at a 30-year high right now, and has gained over 50% since 2002. This in spite of Canada, along with America's other major trading partners, buying up US T-bills like crazy to try to prop up the greenback. It just isn't working any more.

Len Hart said...

Vierotchka said...

In Switzerland, the president is changed every year. People go to the polls several times a year - at least four and sometimes seven or eight or even more times a year. Switzerland is probably the only country in the world which enjoys direct democracy - something which the US sorely lacks, and which could make the US an infinitely better country if it did have it.

That is much closer to the "Greek Ideal" (as we imagine it) than the American system. It only works if the people are informed. There are many reasons the American populace, I dare say, is less informed, generally, than are Europeans:

1) The US media is dominated by media conglomerates. I have already ranted about the demise of the Fairness Doctrine. Very, very briefly, alternative voices are almost completely shut out these days.

2) In the 60's there were, to be sure, extremists like Bill O'Reilly, Rush Limbaugh et al. But they were seen, at the time, to be extreme. Today, this fringe has gone mainstream, though that may be changing of late.

3) The Fairness Doctrine was an essential ingredient at a time when electronic media required "huge" investments. Even a small town TV station was pricey indeed. A "Fairness Doctrine" was essential if the people were to have any voice at all.

"De-regulation", however, had a counter-intuitive effect. Rather than making the broadcast media more accessible, it simply enabled its consolidation. So --while the required investment kept out the hoipoloi at the time, the ever monolithic nature of Fox et al has had an even worse effect.

Sure, almost everyone now can throw up a web site. But how many blogs reach a millionth of the audience that is brainwashed daily by Fox and Limbaugh?

We could all learn much from the Swiss model and Europe in general. Geneva, I think, is as close as one gets today to the Greek Ideal of the "City State".

Anonymous said...

Manifest Insanity, indeed.

Anonymous said...

Looking at the US from a European perspective, it does not seem to matter that you have elections every two years, when you elect a de facto king for four years.

Back when the US constitution was framed, the powers of the president of the US were nothing compared to those of the kings of the time. Now two hundred years later, most European countries are lead by prime ministers who can be kicked out by a vote of no confidence at any time. Kings, queens and most presidents play just a ceremonial role.

Many Americans revel the checks and balances built into the US constitution. I'm sure they have served the country well, but the US is far from the agricultural and frontier society it once was. The president of the US sits at the helm of the largest military, intelligence and propaganda machine in the world, which makes it very difficult for the other branches of government to have any real influence against a determined president.

Len Hart said...

Back when the US constitution was framed, the powers of the president of the US were nothing compared to those of the kings of the time.

Indeed! But while English monarchs at the height of their power might claim a "divine right" but none ever got away with exercising the absolute rule that Bush claims he has.

The case of King Charles I might be an object lesson for Bush if Bush could only read. King Charles I was relieved of his head -arguably for crimes less egregious than those for which GWB must stand trial.

damien said...

Len, there's a developing story from Daniel Hopsicker (via Cannonfire).

Agape Flights is a Right wing, evangelical group that has allegedly been assisting the CIA in Haiti and elsewhere. They are based in Venice (Fl), home of Huffman Aviation. A pilot named Mark Mikarts who flew for Agape was also Mohammed Atta's flight instructor. Agape had US permission to fly regularly to Cuba on questionable missions. One of their pilots was flying into Afghanistan. It's also claimed that Agape is linked to Youth With a Mission (YWAM), a missionary group responsible for the Disney propaganda film "Path to 911".

I also wanted to point you to this excellent account of Rumsfeld's actions (or lack of them) during the Pentagon attack. Aside from his criminal dereliction of duty Rumsfeld also displayed a far too easy acceptance of the events that were occurring. Chilling, really. There's no doubt in my mind he knew this attack was coming. And if he did, so did others.

Marc McDonald said...

Yes, I definitely agree that America, in the era of George W. Bush, is descending into a new Dark Ages. The first Dark Ages were characterized by superstition, a decline in knowledge, and widespread ignorance. That's clearly happening again in the U.S. today. If you watched the GOP debate, you'll notice that 3 candidates raised their hands when asked if they didn't believe in evolution.
Some might say that the rise of the Internet will help to keep the people informed. But just remember, the Internet can also be used to rapidly spread lies, propaganda and misinformation.
I mean, after all, back when television was invented, some futurists claimed that this wonderful new invention would wipe out ignorance and lead to a more intelligent, informed population.

Marc McDonald
http://www.beggarscanbechoosers.com

Len Hart said...

Indeed, Marc,

The internet is a double edged sword spreading as much crap as quickly as good people can spread enlightenment and reason.

Your comments about TV are right to the point. You might enjoy my take on Ed Murrow at Wires and Lights in a Box

United We Lay said...

There's a pretty good discussion about this going on over at my blog. I wish I had the time to present a case the way you do!

damien said...

Len, I know I'm one of the people who is, perhaps, at times too gullible with respect to 9/11 material on the web. But I draw your attention to what I believe to be an excellent account of the failure of the institutional media to deal with 9/11 issues by Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed. I hope it helps redress some of the more problematic material. Cheers.

Len Hart said...

On the contrary, Damien, your posts have always been extremely well-documented. My biggest regret is one that I suspect many people have these days. And that is, Bushco has moved so fast on so many fronts that it is much harder to keep track of Bush than, say, Ronald Reagan or even Richard Nixon. Your posts, I am sure, have helped not only "Cowboy" readers but many others who may not have found me yet. Keep up the great work, my friend. The truth will one day all come out. And you will have done proven yourself a good and right thinking citizen. We all do what we can. I am proud that you have found my little "free" blog a worthy place to post.

Bob King said...

I found you via digg, because in digging my own article, they thought it might be a duplicate of yours.

Alas, no. But perhaps worth a read:

Graphictruth: "Why Do You Hate America, Mr. King?"

And welcome to The Usual Suspects Blogroll, for what it's worth.