Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Who to be Really Mad At...

Is it the idiot Preznit? Well, he is a poor politician and an even poorer policy-maker, but no, he's not at the top of the list. Why, he and his people and just taking advantage of the way the game's played (sort of like the Yankees).

So, it must be the evil corrupt press, right? No! Evil and corrupt, yes. Probably even lazy and a bit stupid. But the press' problem is not that they are biased in favor of conservative (though their coverage undeniably is). The main problem is that they are scared -- part of a burgeoning trend toward cowqardice in our society, which I believe is linked to the corporatization not just of journalism, but of our society as a whole.

The press' problem is that a) they are scared of getting yelled at by crazy right wingers and b) they have only one real goal: selling soap. If Americans lined up for liberal propaganda coming from their news, why, that's what they'd be selling. And you know what, that might just be happening. Air America seems to have better and better advertising on their air. Maybe there is money to be made pandering to the left.

Meantime, the crux of the press' problem is that they do not disclose their own biases. Fox News, on the other hand, pretty clear who they're rooting for. But so-called mainstream journos do not disclose their own biases in favor of the liberals. So, when a conservative says something foolish and outlandish, it's covered as "controversial," or "hard-hitting." Were a liberal to do the same thing, it'd be "insane," or "nutty." How can they be so different? Because the unspoken premise of the mainstream is that the liberals are the good guys, and are held to a higher standard. Dems are supposed to be normal, sensible, reasoned, scrupulously correct. Repubs, on the other hand, are the Snidely Whiplashes, and are supposed to be liars, self-serving, vitriolic rich bastards.

So, thus, the press.

But that's not who to really be mad at...

The folsk that deserve the highest level of opprobium, based on their highest level of responsibility, is the approximately one-half of our fellow citizens who think that Bush is not an idiot, and that the conservatives have really gotten things going in the right way. Conservatives have a valuable role to play in our system, but the current crop (dating back to poor old Ronald Reagan), is not playing their part. These guys are interested in power for power's sake, and for no other ends. And their ambition and lack of caring is so naked, that for so many voters to miss it is an act of intentional self-delusion. The right-wing's agenda is no secret.

The good news is, like McCarthy-ism, when this things falls, it will fall quickly and completely. Our society will resume its progressive ways, inexorably -- the only question is when. One of these days, perhpas even before the election, eenough Americans are going to wake up and say, hey, wait a minute -- why isn't the government -- my government, our government -- making more of a difference in my life and in the lives of my fellow voters? When that day comes, we start the next chapter.

Comment, if you dare!

Hang on a minute...

The Senate yesterday debated the merits of a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. As obivously ludicrous and fundamentally mean-spirited as this is, I prefer to tweak this latest "Hey-Look-Over-There-At-That-Shiny-Thing" tactic on precedural grounds.

I recall that during the 1992 campaign, just about the most important thing we could do to save our society and protect our children from an amoral, caotic future was to amend the constitution...to outlaw flag burning.

I don't believe such an amendment has been adopted yet.

So my favorite retort to the RNC idiots on gay marriage is, "first things first." Let's get the whole flag-burning problem squared away, then turn to gay marriage.