2017/03/27/The Civil War is Here/woozle

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I wanted to take a bit of time to respond properly to this bit of shame-redirecting tripe from FrontPage Magazine – a web site where dysconservatives who fancy themselves as intelligent and well-informed can find acceptable political positions arranged artistically with a side-salad of all the right sorts of words.

Let's take this piece by piece, shall we? Yes, let's shall.

A civil war has begun.

This civil war is very different than the last one. There are no cannons or cavalry charges. The left doesn’t want to secede. It wants to rule. Political conflicts become civil wars when one side refuses to accept the existing authority. The left has rejected all forms of authority that it doesn’t control.

I can only think that this bit of reality-inversion is carefully designed to drive any FrontPage reader who happens to be a reasonable person into a blind rage in the hope that the last member of this obviously endangered species will then make her way straight to the David Horowitz Freedom Center and strangle the author of the article, the editor of the magazine, and possibly any copy-editors who might have been involved, thus resulting in one more reasonable person being put into prison and no longer being an obstacle to the ongoing right-wing takeover-and-destruction of society.

Seems a high price to pay, but it's consistent with the Right's eagerness to sacrifice everything for ideology – usually starting with the truth and other people... and this article is no exception.

Being a glutton for punishment, I now continue with the next bit...

The left has rejected the outcome of the last two presidential elections won by Republicans. It has rejected the judicial authority of the Supreme Court when its decisions don’t accord with [the left’s] agenda. It rejects the legislative authority of Congress when it is not dominated by the left.

It rejected the Constitution so long ago that it hardly bears mentioning.

I often think that people on the Right learn to speak by repeating back things which have been said to _them_ enough times. They don't know what the phrases actually mean, but they do understand that these words can be used to sound Important and Significant and Correct.

When words have no meaning (besides "you're wrong and I'm right"), then all of our arguments – all of the evidence and reasoning we present for our positions – they see as being like poo that we're flinging, in some sort of dominance contest... and if you're flinging poo at your enemies, why not throw some of their own poo back at them as well? I mean, just in case your own poo isn't awful enough. Then you've got twice as much poo to work with, thus giving you a clear advantage in the poo arms-race and showing those awful liberals just who is in charge.

(Although they might want to consider diverting more funds from caring for widows and orphans and put it towards generating more poo, just in case. One thing right-wingers seem to agree on is that you can never have too much weaponry.)

In any case, that would seem to be the mechanism at work here: We explain to them, clearly and using simple language, and of course including clear evidence presented on eight-by-ten colored glossy photographs with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one, that their proposals are not only harmful but also unconstitutional.

They then chew on that for a bit, but apparently never really digest it – because here it comes right back out the other end: it's the Left that's rejecting the Constitution, don't you know old chap. I'm rubber and you're glue, and a double dumb-ass on you. Quid erat demonstratum, and so's your mother.

Shall we continue? Why not – we're all masochists here by now, I should think; anyone else has moved on to doing something productive with their lives.

[The Left] was for total unilateral executive authority under Obama. And now it’s for states unilaterally deciding what laws they will follow. (As long as that involves defying immigration laws under Trump, not following them under Obama.) It was for the sacrosanct authority of the Senate when it held the majority. Then it decried the Senate as an outmoded institution when the Republicans took it over.

I apologize, but I must momentarily drop my facade of civility and say, what the fuck?? When were we ever for unilateral executive authority? We're not fucking idiots. We remember what happened under Bush. We'd have to somehow believe that there will never, ever be another Republican in the White House in order to want to destroy the balance of power like that – and even then we’d want some check on presidential power, because even Democrats sometimes support bad policies (witness Obama taking single-payer off the table, followed by Hillary’s refusal to support any form of universal healthcare).

I mean, yes, it is baffling and disturbing that we, as a country, do somehow keep electing fucking idiots who want to screw us all over – including any right-wing voters who aren't obscenely rich, which I gather is a thing that happens – but we’ve become well inured to our fellow Americans being completely taken in by the right-wing alt-reality, and voting for the biggest alpha male who promises to protect them from all the worst imaginary problems and invisible bogeymen, rather than having the slightest understanding of what's involved in solving the real issues we all face as a country.

We on the Left don’t support unilateral executive power because we do have some understanding of reality. I imagine right-wingers may have a hard time grasping that fact, the underlying concept of an objective and observable shared reality being rather foreign to them... and of course we know how they feel about foreigners, and foreign ideas. (Can't let them in.)

Need I mention that we also never bloody well supported supreme authority for the Senate nor claimed it was an outmoded body? From what corner of the blogosphere did they pull those ideas, and why are we being held responsible for them? ...wait, I apologize – those are questions one asks of an honest opponent; I should know better by now.

Nevertheless... shall we continue ingesting more of this?

No, fuck it. I'm done. This article proceeds from false assumptions which it then uses to build an argument painting the Left as the enemies of everything decent (and also America).

...because apparently we needed more right-wing hatred directed against us; our homes, vehicles, and workplaces weren't already being firebombed and terrorized enough, our people weren't already being raped and killed enough, our lives weren't already being threatened and turned upside-down enough, by right-wing fuckery.

This is a classic example of the Right looking at all its own worst tendencies and blaming them on someone else, because they simply cannot comprehend that they are ever wrong about anything, that their words and actions have consequences – much less even begin to comprehend the vast, mind-boggling depths of just how wrong they are.

When you prize loyalty over accuracy, you shouldn’t be surprised if your accuracy ends up being essentially nonexistent – but of course they don’t care how wrong they are; they only care how powerful they are – which they like to prove by metaphorically or literally beating up anyone who is less powerful and who therefore looks like a safe target.

Dear right-wingers, dear Republicans: you are the enemy of America. You are the terrorists you keep warning us about.

And you need to bloody well stop it or we shall be very, very cross.


Other versions:

  • 2017-04-05 Google+: original posting
    • Audio version of an earlier draft is available on Patreon and downloadable here.