Op-Eds Speaking Truth to the Powers-That-Be
Mitt Romney’s selection of Congressman Paul Ryan as his V.P. running mate over the weekend, a deal brokered to appease the John Birch Libertarians with hundreds of millions of dollars to make or break a candidate, puts American fascist funders potentially within a heartbeat of the most powerful job in the world.
Fascism is defined as an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization that is authoritarian and usually engages in intolerant views or practices . Some of the wealthiest “robber baron” families funded and supported American fascism long before the Nazis extremism made it wildly unpopular. They aren’t the armband wearing clowns who parade around Skokie. They are far more dangerous, because they wield money and power much more quietly and efficiently.
In fact, the Nazi’s “final solution,” was an extension of the forced sterilization programs for poor women and men seeking pre-FDR public assistance that these wealthy people campaigned to put into practice in states like North Carolina. The last of those government-run programs didn’t end until 1974.
By their line of thought, the working person and the poor have varying degrees of evolutional defect that prevent them from succeeding. The rich are supposed to get rich and the rest of us? Well, whatever happens is really your own problem. If you die off, as you probably should, then the superior gene pool survives and the population of this country improves.
While the Ryan V.P. announcement will be strategized and analyzed for its superficial impact, the bottom line is a Neocon admission that Karl Rove has failed, at least for the moment, and that the GOP Civil War is over: The Libertarians’ coup of the GOP is complete. Romney could not proceed with a Pawlenty and prevent an attack from the even farther Right that is driving moderate Republicans into extinction.
Last week I told you about the Un-Civil War going on in the GOP. The neo conservatives (Neocons) of Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush, helmed by Karl Rove, have steadily been losing control of the party to the Dead Billionaires Club(DBC), funders like the Koch brothers, the Mellon-Scaifes of Pittsburgh, the Coors, the DeVos (Amway) family: The 1% of the 1%.
For weeks, in the background of the news, you’ve been seeing primary battles waged where Tea Party candidates have been ousting old-line Neocons, and pre-Neocons, from Senator Dick Lugar in Indiana to Ted Cruz’ primary victory over David Dewhurst in Texas to Jim Bridenstine’s K.O. of five term congressmen John Sullivan. Even if they lose the White House, the Tea Party and backers like the Club for Growth continue on their RINO (Republican in Name Only) hunting drive to purge the GOP of moderates in both state and federal legislatures.
The Tea Party’s demonstrated dogmatic absolutism is what has driven Congressional approval ratings to historic lows. Lowlights include the legislation that tanked the U.S. Postal Service and the brinksmanship with the debt ceiling that caused the first-ever impairment of our once-untouchable federal credit rating.
Time and again, the Tea Party have proudly stated that they will place their principles ahead of the common good of the American people. They have a zero-sum game where compromise, the normal glue of American democracy, is not an option, as their voting record in Congress and in state houses across America attests.
Perhaps the most notable absolutist has been Congressman Paul Ryan, whose “Ryan Plan” to slash the federal deficit and burn the social safety net to the ground has been lambasted by serious economists as dark fantasy and excoriated by the Congressional Budget Office as bad policy.
Why would Romney, whose campaign has already been struggling with independent voters, pick Ryan, such a polarizing figure?
Ryan is not of his Neocon camp. Republicans have been running from the Ryan Plan, and a majority of Americans (58%) specifically did not like its provisions to gut Medicare and turn it into a privatized voucher system when it debuted in 2011. Even in his home district, hundreds of his followers at a Town Hall meeting were openly screaming at him about his proposals on Medicare.
Moreover, the Tea Party, which is a fraction of a fraction of the already shrinking GOP, carries huge negatives.
The debt debacle that the Tea Party engineered brought an 82% disapproval rating to Congress which has lingered, and started a downhill in support for the Tea Party as well, a Gallup poll showed.
The Tea Party’s anti-union and anti-women legislation in state houses around the nation have spawned recall efforts in Wisconsin and other states, and have increased their negatives with rank-and-file union members, blue collar workers, and in particular women of their own party. TPM reports last April:
“In 2010, a plurality of independent women said they liked the movement increasingly as they learned more; today, they say they like it less by 2 to 1. Republican women — who gave some of the most positive reviews of the tea party message two years ago — are far more tempered in their support this year.”
The answer to the Ryan pick is clear: The Tea Party in terms of numbers of actual citizens is shrinking, but the power behind them is not.
No one in the media seems to analyze the news of the day involving Ryan and the Tea Party past a certain point. They report that Tea Party positions are unpopular. They report that John Boehner got rolled by the Tea Party during the debt ceiling debate. They even report the trend of Tea Party candidates either forcibly retiring Neocons or driving them out.
How is that possible when the Tea Party polls with such high negatives and a shrinking base, that it can get away with wielding such power when their policies lack clear popular appeal?
The billionaire funders of the Tea Party control a sea of cash that is turned against GOP regulars in primaries. That has swayed the party’s decision-making, and appear to have influenced the Romney VP pick.
While the John Birch Society doesn’t share its member list, the Koch brothers father, Fred, was a founder. It’s not a hard line to draw. The other members of the DBC, the DeVos, the Coors, the Mellon-Scaifes may not be Birchers, but you couldn’t pass a hair between their political values and goals.
Other, more moderate Republicans clearly now fear them. Too late, some are trying to resist them, as former Florida GOP chair Jim Greer did last week when he outed Florida Republicans’ disenfranchisement strategy.
The Neocons are on the run from the Giving Godzilla that they created with Ronald Reagan in the 1980s by courting the marginalized forces of the far, far Right that ran David Koch for V.P. on the Libertarian ticket against Reagan.
American fascist power and influence now threatens to devour D.C., and our system of governance.
As they have tested the waters that finally led to the far Right flood of candidates in 2010, DBC-backed Tea Party members will continue to drive for complete control of the government. They have the 35 years of patient building of think tanks, astroturf grass roots groups like Americans for Prosperity, and almost unlimited cash to continue.
Even if Romney-Ryan loses, they continue to slowly turn the country back to the 19th century capitalist nirvana which they seek.
The fate of a democracy based upon compromise requires the few remaining moderates and Neocons to rise up and purge the Teahadis from their party. Perhaps allowing the Ryan nomination is there way of testing the Kochs clan and seeing if they over-reach.
The Tea Party continues to set the table for a take-over of Congress. If they get the White House, Grover Norquist’s “Rubber Stamp President” will preside over a dismantling of the New Deal and put even more burden on middle and lower income Americans as it rewards the rich for their divine right.
My shiny two.
Socialism, by definition, is ownership by government of the means of production. Facism, by definition, is the contol (without ownership) of the means of production.
Barack Obama is, by definition part-socialist and part-fascist. Mussolini and Hitler were, by definition, fascists, though “Nazi” stands for “National Socialist Party”. Paul Ryan is about as far from either being a socialist or a fascist as one can be.
The entire premise of this piece is demagoguery and obfuscation. Progressives do that because they know that those who elect socialist and fascists are either ignorant, stupid, or moochers.
Your Hammer and sickle are showing. Got you running, do we? You can run but you cannot hide!!!
Why is it you trolls automatically assume that someone who opposes your extremism is equally extreme? Ronald Reagan couldn’t get elected dog catcher in the modern GOP. We’d love to see “independents” kick your sorry asses out of the GOP. We’d love to see a return to reason. This country has been founded upon civil opposition, and finding a common middle ground. I’m not hiding. I’m right here. And I will call you as you are: Selfish, self-righteous, and fascist if you buy into to all that the John Birchers and their Tea Party minions are selling. That doesn’t make me a communist. That makes me a realist.
Mirriam-Webster definition of fascism: a political philosophy, movement, or regime (as that of the Fascisti) that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition.
Truth2Power definition: an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization that is authoritarian and usually engages in intolerant views or practices.
Webster definition: an authoritarian system of government under absolute control of a single dictator, allowing no political opposition, forcibly suppressing dissent, and rigidly controlling most industrial and economic activities. Such regimes usually try to achieve popularity by a strongly nationalistic appeal, often mixed with racism.
thedrpete definition (from above): Socialism, by definition, is ownership by government of the means of production. Facism, by definition, is the contol (without ownership) of the means of production.
Progressives for a century have fabricated the idea of “right-wing fascism” when that is a contradiction in terms, like jumbo shrimp. The right is for individual liberty and free markets. The left is for subjugation liberty for the “common good” (as they define it) and more and more government control.
Yes, we were fabricating that fascism that sprang up here in the 19th century. We were just lying out our teeth about those much-maligned Nazis… Seriously, Dr. Pete, are you in the medical marijuana biz? You’ve been smoking way too much of your own product.
Hi–I’d like to see a post defining fascism (and if there already is one–link please?). I’m not completely convinced that Ryan represents fascism in the way that, say, fundamentalist Christianity does. It seems as if there are two primary issues for Ryan/Tea Party folk. The primary issue is taxation and government spending–the less the better, in their opinions. The secondary issue is rigging voting (like the crazy Ohio election hours issue or voter ID laws) in favor of those who will vote for the primary issue.
Fascism, on the other hand, would require a deeper ideology and literal persecution of those who disagree. I think it would have to go well beyond name-calling Internet trolls to really be fascism. What am I missing?
Definition is right at the top. Fits him and his party to a ‘Tea.’
. . . TEA-LIBAN REPUBLICANS is the term I’ve used since Dick Army got back in the saddle.
. . . BTW, nice done!
We like “Teahadi” much better. 😉
The selection of Paul Ryan as running mate proves once and for all that Romney is nothing more or less than a Money Puppet. Shove enough money up his butt and he’ll say or do whatever the money tells him to.
”The American fascist would prefer not to use violence. His method is to poison the channels of public information. With a fascist the problem is never how best to present the truth to the public but how best to use the news to deceive the public into giving the fascist and his group more money or more power……American fascism will not be really dangerous until there is a purposeful coalition among the cartelists, the deliberate poisoners of public information, and those who stand for the K.K.K. type of demagoguery…..The symptoms of fascist thinking are colored by environment and adapted to immediate circumstances. But always and everywhere they can be identified by their appeal to prejudice and by the desire to play upon the fears and vanities of different groups in order to gain power….The American fascists are most easily recognized by their deliberate perversion of truth and fact. Their newspapers and propaganda carefully cultivate every fissure of disunity, every crack in the common front against fascism. They use every opportunity to impugn democracy. They use isolationism as a slogan to conceal their own selfish imperialism……..They claim to be super-patriots, but they would destroy every liberty guaranteed by the Constitution. They demand free enterprise, but are the spokesmen for monopoly and vested interest. Their final objective toward which all their deceit is directed is to capture political power so that, using the power of the state and the power of the market simultaneously, they may keep the common man in eternal subjection…..” Vice President Henry A. Wallace, New York Times, April 9, 1944.
“There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God’s name on one’s behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both. I’m frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in ‘A,’ ‘B,’ ‘C,’ and ‘D.’ Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me? And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of ‘conservatism.’ ”
Barry Goldwater US Senator (R-Arizona)
Source: Congressional Record, September 16, 1981
just the quotes i would have posted as well kelly cowan. and did anyone else realize the trolls ran back to their briges quite quickly? nice post and great replies to those shills.
Picking Ryan could effectively neutralize him for at least 4 years if Romney wins (barring a tie in the Senate). To be sure, this is a risky gambit on Romney’s part but this could result in the prospect of reality getting in the way of Ryan’s simplistic world-view. This COULD be a real game changer to begin the push back against the Bircher-Libertarian types, but if there is one thing I’ve learned about the GOP it is that this sort of thing slides through their fingers like sand.
On the other side of this you have a Vice Presidential nominee who is woefully unprepared to sit in the big seat should very bad things happen, which is to say, unqualified. You also have no guarantees that this guy who force fed his staffers with Ayn Rand’s painfully bad philosophy will ever see the light.
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