Web Search nikon coolpix digital cameras The Miserable Annals of the Earth: Thinking out loud

Friday, February 08, 2008

Thinking out loud

McCain is the presumptive Republican nominee.

Okay, what does this mean?

For Big Money, this is a big frickin problem. Big Money's most reliable ally in controlling the U.S. government has been, for the past century or so, the Republican Party. And Big Money hates McCain. Hates hates HATES him.

What does this mean?

It means that Big Money now has a choice. It can pull a complete 180 and start trying to build up McCain as a more palatable option to the conservative base. Unfortunately, they have to date spent millions making him completely unacceptable to that same base, and it's been money well spent, too. Do they really want to throw that investment away, when most people think McCain can't win the election anyway?

Conversely, Big Money can start investing heavily into someone it likes better. However, to justify that investment, whoever Big Money chooses as an alternate has to have a reasonable chance of winning the Presidency.

Big Money is sending conflicting signals right now, which indicates to me that a final decision has not yet been reached. On the one hand, one of Big Money's most powerful media voices, Ann Coulter, has come out and stated on Sean Hannity's FOX program that if John Cain becomes the Republican nominee, she will actively campaign for Hillary Clinton, because Clinton is the more reliably conservative candidate than McCain.



On the other hand, Mitt Romney has announced he's quitting his campaign:



Romney is as big a shill for 'the innerests' as Coulter ever will be, and if he's marching offstage, it's because someone bigger than him cut the marching orders. Romney himself says that he's doing this to shore up conservative support for McCain, and, yeah, I can see that. Within my admittedly limited understanding of the power dynamics here, that makes as much sense as anything else.

But... again... Romney is a shill for Big Money, and Big Money hates McCain. HATES him. So Romney stepping down is a pretty strong indicator that Big Money is giving serious thought to swallowing its intense dislike of McCain and getting behind his campaign.

Coulter's statement of support for Clinton over McCain, though, is an equally strong signal that Big Money is considering supporting someone else in this election. And when you can't find a Republican candidate you like well enough, where does a worried plutocrat go?

Straight to the nearest viable candidate named Clinton, that's where.

Right now, right this moment, The Innerests must be in a frenzy of frustrated indecision.

You're not even supposed to be able to get on stage nationally if you're not safely bought and paid for long in advance.

The most valuable thing any national campaign can have going for it is that mystical word 'viability' -- the perceived ability to win the election. As a general rule, viability is granted (or withheld) by the media -- if the media says a candidate has a good chance to win the election, then, as if by magic, that candidate does.

If, on the other hand, the media declares a particular candidacy to be non-viable, then that candidacy is dead in the water. Tell the electorate often enough that a vote for such and such is a wasted vote (worse, it will work out in actual effect to be a Vote For This Other Guy You Really Hate) and most people will swallow it hook, line and sinker. The candidate's positions, past record, and actual character become entirely moot once the public has been convinced that this candidate CANNOT win the election. It becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.

The media, of course, by and large, works for Big Money. In effect, this means that for a candidate to be anointed as 'viable', Big Money must approve of them. Otherwise, they are 'crackpots', they are 'from the fringe', they are 'extremists' -- they 'cannot be elected'. And, guess what? They won't be.

Sometimes, though, candidates make their way through the cracks in the system. McCain has built a national, even an international reputation around being a maverick, an outsider, somebody who is willing to slap iron for the little people against the big movers and shakers in the Republican Party. Whether this is actual fact or not doesn't much matter; the point is, a lot of people believe it. McCain appeals to moderate Republicans and to independents, enough so to make him electable... if not in a general referendum, then, at least, at a Republican nominating convention.

More importantly, the press loves McCain. They want to see the guy become President, or at least, they want him to get a good shot at it. This is something political analysts often times overlook. Yes, there's a machine, and yes, the machine runs nearly everything... but the machine is made out of cogs, and sometimes, the cogs spin unpredictably. For whatever reason, the media has largely failed to embrace any other Republican candidate this year. They've gone, by and large, koo-koo for McCain puffs. That, combined with McCain's already noted appeal to moderates and independents, has made McCain's candidacy very 'viable'.

At this point, Big Money can still crush McCain like a bug. The press may love McCain, but the press can, ultimately, be brought to heel. Spend enough money on enough opposition ads, throw enough dirt around, form enough 527s, fire a few reporters who won't fall into line fast enough and promote a few others who will... Big Money will have no real problem tearing McCain down.

If they want to.

The problem is, who else have they got? Yeah, the Ann Coulter thing is a test balloon, but you have to figure it's a desperate long shot -- I don't honestly believe there is enough money in the universe to convince any significant percentage of the conservative base to vote for 'Hitlery'. That doesn't mean Hillary couldn't win with enough money behind her, but it's risky. If McCain takes the independents and the moderate Republicans, then Big Money has to somehow position Hillary to somehow be made appealing to conservatives who won't vote for McCain -- and, y'know, all the Democrats. Money and media can forge some weird coalitions, but that one stretches even my imagination to the breaking point.

Plus, Barack Obama has proven to be a dangerous monkey wrench in the works over on the Democratic side. It's very possible that Hillary may not even be nominated... in which case, Big Money has to go back to McCain. Who else are they going to buy up on the Republican side? Well, nearly anyone, sure, but again, I doubt there is enough money out there to simultaneously demolish McCain and build up, say, Huckabee or Paul to the point where either is 'viable'. Not that either of them much appeals to Big Money, either.

Here's how I'm figuring it, right now: the 2008 elections were supposed to be safe elections for 'the innerests'. After 8 years of rampant Bush/Cheney corruption, the Great Unwashed would be happy to vote for whoever wasn't a Republican, and Big Money was reasonably certain that would be Hillary. Yeah, the conservative base hates her, but 2006 shows that the conservative base is no longer in a position to decide elections. So let the 'other side' have one for 4 or 8 years.

Hillary has always been a reliable watchdog over big corporate interests. Bear in mind, her 'universal health care plan' is nearly entirely comprised of the Federal government forcing everyone in America to buy health insurance -- a gigantic economic windfall for The Interests, as it will directly profit the zillion dollar health insurance industry, while indirectly giving a big shot in the arm to every other U.S. company that currently pays substantial portions of their workforce's healthcare costs. Net winner, Big Money. Who takes it up the ass yet again? You and me.

So Big Money figured they had '08 locked down. They'd put up someone they could count on -- Rudy, maybe, or Mitt -- on the Republican side, and maybe he'd actually win, but even if Mr. Rich Guy lost (something all the smart money was predicting) well, they'd have another Clinton running on the other side, and could use their media mouthpieces to make sure that any other candidate who wasn't safely bought and paid for was pronounced 'non-viable'.

But McCain has royally screwed things up on the Republican side. Big Money can't stand him, but they haven't been able to tag him as 'non-viable', and he's picking up enough votes to make him a real pain in the ass for them.

Meanwhile, over on the Democratic side... well, we know who's been fucking things up for Big Money on the D side of the ticket.

So, once again... Big Money has a big problem. Suddenly there are way too many variables and things are getting wildly out of control.

What's going to happen next? It depends.

The next big signal will be who McCain picks as his VP. If it's Huckabee, or, worse, Paul, that's the end of him with Big Money. They'll go elsewhere for satisfaction. Look for 527 funded attacks on McCain to ratchet up to insane levels, and for some other candidate to start raking in big contributions.

On the other hand, if McCain picks Romney or Rudy or (more likely, for reasons I'll get to) some other corporate fat cat politician to run with, that's another signal -- he's telling Big Money that regardless of his history, he's their guy, and if he should get into office, he'll protect their interests. In that case, look for all the conservative media mouthpieces to suddenly turn on a dime and start up with the 'John McCain, a True American Hero' bullshit, and most if not all of the really nasty 527 attacks on McCain to get dialed way back, while, at the same time, the mud starts to be slung big time against whoever is running against him.

I have no faith in McCain's essential integrity, and he's pretty clearly a smart guy with a lot of self interest. If I had to bet, I'd bet he'll work very very hard to get Big Money back on his side. On the other hand, McCain has a lot of pride and can be as foolish as the next guy, and he'd hardly be the first to buy into his own self promotion. If he really enjoys the idea of being a maverick, he'll tell Big Money to go fuck itself and try to make himself over into someone who can fuse the moderates and independents together with enough of the conservative base to get him into the White House.

That's a very risky strategy, but who knows? He's a charismatic guy, and let's remember, George W. Bush was, in reality, not someone at all who should have appealed in any way to the conservative base, or to moderates, or to independents -- a spoiled little rich kid, a failure as a businessman, an alcoholic and a cokehead, who pulled strings to get out of combat duty and then didn't even bother to show up for the last year of his Air National Guard tour. When you have the media in your corner -- and McCain does -- you can work miracles. (To an extent, McCain already has.)

So here's how it looks to me right now -- if it's McCain and Clinton, then Big Money will strongly back whichever one of them seems most economically reliable... and I'm going to say that will probably be Clinton, as she's never gone after their nuts with any kind of serious legislative attempt at campaign finance reform. Look for a lot of anti-McCain swiftboating and a big summer-fall roll out of 'I hate to say it but Hillary is actually a better candidate on the issues that matter to Republicans than John McCain' from all the FOX News and conservative talk radio ventriloquist dummies.

Democrats and liberals will stupidly rejoice, Hillary will be elected President, the Bush tax cuts will remain permanent, no recent Republican legislation will be overturned, the rich will continue to get richer, the national security state will continue to become more oppressive and intrusive, and we'll all be offered jobs at $11 an hour working as call center customer service reps for Asian manufacturing firms -- and be assured that we should be grateful for the opportunity.

Of course, Big Money has to be careful to wait until Hillary is actually the Democratic nominee. Once she is, liberals and progressives and most Democrats can be trusted to swallow pretty much anything and vote for her in the general election. However, until she locks it up, Big Money does not want to seriously start flying that 'Hillary is more reliable on most conservative issues than McCain' flag. If they do, it's going to cost her the nomination. I'm surprised Ann Coulter jumped the gun the way she did... but it's important to understand that she did it a few days BEFORE Super Tuesday, and she was probably trying to throw those primaries to Romney. Now that it hasn't worked, don't look for this particular line of dialog to be repeated until when and if Hillary is finally coronated as the official nominee.

If it's McCain and Obama, and McCain has picked a pro-biz candidate like Rudy or Mitt as his VP, then I'm going to guess Big Money will swallow its pride and support McCain. Look for a lot of Osama Hussein Obama crap from the 527s and conservative talk radio, along with the usual 'John McCain, Greatest American Hero' nonsense. However, I wouldn't look for either Rudy or Mitt to be McCain's VP in this instance. Big Money knows both of them carry too much baggage to appeal to the theocons. They'll want to go out and find someone who can thump a Bible, rant a little bit about gay marriage and school prayer, and who is still rich enough to be willing to protect his own when it comes to economic policy. I don't know who that guy is, but I'll bet that if Big Money wants to bad enough, they can find him.

If, on the other hand, it's McCain the Maverick (running with someone like Huckabee or Paul as his VP) against Obama, well... things could get very interesting indeed. Big Money won't want either of those tickets in the White House. That, I suspect, is when we'll see Michael Bloomberg come out of the shadows with a whole lot of cash in his pockets.

Or it might be someone other than Bloomberg, but whoever it is, I guarantee you this -- campaign finance reform will not be part of their platform. And if they get into office, the first thing they'll push for is to repeal the McCain-Feingold Act... just to spit in John McCain's face.

I suppose this means I've finally talked myself around to supporting Barack Obama more or less unequivocally in the election. Yeah, I hate the way he panders to the Democratic religious base, but, well, I guess that's better than pandering to the Republican religious base, or to Big Money. I'm not crazy enough to think he can get into office without owing a few favors, but I am pretty sure he's not as completely sold out to high finance as everyone else. And who knows? He may be willing to put his boot up a few Congressional Democrats' asses, once he's in the White House.

At the very least, I don't think an Obama Administration will be 'business as usual'. Which is, I suppose, really the best we can hope for.

8 Comments:

At 10:48 AM , Anonymous Mr/Ms X said...

You know, I've been wondering why the mass media herd mentality had been so dismissive of McCain until recently, after they all masterbated openly over him in the 2000 election. I believe you've explained it; the bosses (some of whom own the news venues) think he's bad for business.

You rightly point out that Clinton is not exactly an enemy of the bosses. Times were good in the '90s, and she was a greedy yuppie in the '80s.

What kills me, besides that the democrats can't cough up a viable QUALIFIED candidate, is what no one seems to be campaigning on. Last time around, I kept saying that with creeping fascism and $3 gas coming out of the White House, if Kerry couldn't beat that monkey, he didn't deserve to be president; he wasn't competent enough for the job. None of that has changed, except the names.

If the Democratic nominee would just hammer away at those points the same way Rudy worked 911 into every sentence, she/he would force McCain to choose between [gag] defending the chimp or agreeing, the later of which would nicely nuke him with his constituency.

That's my advice to the dems: keep it simple, stupid.

 
At 11:33 AM , Blogger Doc Nebula said...

The last thing any presidential candidate wants to bring up is gas prices, or anything else to do with a real, actual, honest to God, specific problem. They'll talk about 'the economy' in vague terms, or about 'ecological issues', but when it comes down to the nuts and bolts, well, the global energy shortage along with America's insane dependence on foreign oil (and natural gas) isn't anything that they can do anything about. Worse, if they WERE to talk about it, they'd have to admit that, um, uh, well, y'know, we really ARE going to have to leave a big military presence in the Middle East for the next... well... however long it takes us to use up all their oil.

And they REALLY don't want to say that.

As to creeping fascism, the majority of the American people, like all humans at all times in history, have a remarkable tolerance for authority as long as authority keeps them comfortable. Americans are still very comfortable (how much longer we'll stay that way is a very significant question, but you can bet nobody wants to bring it up) so only a very few of us really give a shit about the truly scary growth of our own national security state. So why bother bringing it up?

Beyond that, well, as I see it, there are two possibilities -- a candidate is genuinely idealistic and would like to do something about increasing government totalitarianism, in which case, something permanent will happen to them, their VP will be sworn in, and all will continue as before. Or, a candidate is wise in the ways of the world and decides, hell, for the next eight years, I'll have fun pulling all the cool levers and pushing all the buttons. And thank you, Mr. Cheney, for installing all of them so openly.

 
At 3:59 PM , Anonymous Mr/Ms X said...

Ah, I say $3 gas, $3 gas, $3 gas. Look, we get a representative of big oil in the White House and conquered the Middle East; isn't the gasoline supposed to be about 75 cents a gallon right now? I honestly think Bush's owners want things exactly the way they are.

I'd have something about it on the bumper stickers. So what if it's empty talk? It happened on the Republicans' watch, we campaign on it, and lamentably, we can get away with not worrying about it until we're in office. People are stupid, and it would work. How's that for cynical?

It's cynical, but it's also how most good advertising works: a simple message with a visceral hook. Campaigns are no different. Gas prices are something everyone instantly connects with.

You're right that an astonishing few of us are concerned (read: aghast, worried, wide-eyed, terrified, angry, ranting like cassandras) about the totalitarianism, a truly much more important issue. And you mention a thought that's crossed my mind: I don't trust any of them- ANY of them to dismantle the unitary executive once they're in a position to find those powers convenient.

All this, of course, is assuming that Resident Bush leaves office on schedule. My opinion of those Nazis has sunk so low that I wouldn't die of shock if an "emergency" popped up. I would however, strongly consider taking up residence in another country, and/or seriously contemplate what the Declaration of Independence has to say about the appropriate action in the face of tyranny.

No, fuck it; this deserves a direct statement. If they try to throw the constitution completely out like that, It would be my patriotic duty to join the armed resistance. So let's hope a peaceful, legal, transition of power takes place, and the feds (read: SS), having naturally noted this post, don't have to round me up around January 20th next year.

In conclusion- bumper sticker text: "75 cents". Not "Clinton/Obama '09" or whatever, just seventy. five. cents. Keep it simple, stupid.

 
At 8:25 PM , Blogger Doc Nebula said...

Ah, I say $3 gas, $3 gas, $3 gas. Look, we get a representative of big oil in the White House and conquered the Middle East; isn't the gasoline supposed to be about 75 cents a gallon right now? I honestly think Bush's owners want things exactly the way they are.

First, let me note that we Americans are deeply, deeply spoiled when it comes to gas prices. Everybody else in the industrialized world would eat light bulbs and shit sulfuric acid to be able to buy gas for $3 a gallon. Just sayin'.

Second, yes, Bush's masters (and, alas, ours) DO want gas prices to stay exactly the way they are. They don't make any money from lowering oil prices.

It's actually more complex than this. The original neocon plan for conquering Iraq was strongly motivated by a takeover of the oil supplies, with plans to immediately lower prices for America and her allies. The Cheney cartel, however, did not want to lower oil prices, as that would drastically lower their profits. They simply wanted to CONTROL Iraq's oil reserves. Saddam Hussein had gotten unruly on us, and was jacking around with international oil prices from one month to the next, just to show that he could. Cheney's coalition can't tolerate that, so it became necessary to fire Saddam. Unfortunately, when you fire a U.S. government civil servant of Saddam's pay grade, it nearly always involves either military force or a covert CIA op.

Make no mistake, though, Saddam certainly was a U.S. employee. We created him, put him in power, kept him in power, and paid him handsomely while he was in power. As long as all he was doing was the usual U.S. friendly repressive dictator bullshit, i.e., killing, torturing, and exploiting unAmericans, we were fine with him. But when he went off the reservation, Bush I slapped him down hard, and when he started dicking around with international oil prices on a regular basis (mostly because he figured he was indispensable to U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, an assessment that, as it turns out, was entirely correct, but, you know, Bush II and Cheney aren't the sharpest tools in the shed when it comes to international relations), well, Bush/Cheney and their posse decided he had to go.

Unfortunately, we've had no luck at all replacing him, which is why we're mired in Iraq right now, and for the forseeable future.

I'd have something about it on the bumper stickers. So what if it's empty talk? It happened on the Republicans' watch, we campaign on it, and lamentably, we can get away with not worrying about it until we're in office. People are stupid, and it would work. How's that for cynical?

People are unwise and have short memories, but not about things that directly impact their comfort, convenience, and household economies. Cheap gas is a campaign promise the American people will NOT forget. Bush I broke his 'read my lips, no new taxes' pledge, and it cost him his second term. Any candidate who promises cheap gasoline had better deliver, or they'll be looking for work in four years, and they all know it. Furthermore, they all know they CAN'T deliver cheap gas... peak oil is real, the demand for the product is surging way past the supply, and it will be impossible to even hold the line on the enormously low price America is already paying per gallon without continuing to keep a very strong military presence throughout Iraq and the rest of the Middle East... and you may have noticed that this is a very unpopular war. Clinton and Obama are doing their best to mouse around it, but the simple fact is, while they may be able to withdraw a few troops, neither of them are promising to end the war... because if they do, Americans are going to be paying 8 bucks a gallon for gas. That's the truth that they do not want to have to come out and say.

It's very simple -- nobody gets elected President (or Senator, or Congressman, or Governor, or Mayor, or Dogcatcher, for that matter) by telling people (especially spoiled Americans) that tough times are coming and sacrifices are going to have to be made and the American Way Of Life is going to have to change. People don't vote for candidates who tell them shit like that. Osama is preaching 'change we can believe in', and I suspect he knows exactly what he's promising us... but the changes that are coming are not anything any of us want to experience.

So, no... nobody running for any office wants to mention the price of gas, because the brutally simple truth is, gas is becoming a scarce commodity and when demand outstrips supply, prices go up. We desperately need to find a substitute for light sweet crude, or we need to change our way of living dramatically. But you can't sell truth like that to the American public; they will run screaming into the arms of the guy who is promising them "it's morning in America" again. (In this election, by the way, that guy is Barack Obama. I recognize the exact same semantically null, emotionally inspiring rhetoric coming from him as rolled out of Ronald Reagan thirty years ago... but in spite of that, he seems to me to remain much much the lesser of many evils.)

It's cynical, but it's also how most good advertising works: a simple message with a visceral hook. Campaigns are no different. Gas prices are something everyone instantly connects with.

Obama does indeed have a simple message with a visceral hook, but believe me, he would douse his pecker in naptha and strike a match on his pubic hair before he would so much as breathe a syllable about gas prices.

You're right that an astonishing few of us are concerned (read: aghast, worried, wide-eyed, terrified, angry, ranting like cassandras) about the totalitarianism, a truly much more important issue. And you mention a thought that's crossed my mind: I don't trust any of them- ANY of them to dismantle the unitary executive once they're in a position to find those powers convenient.

Congress would have to force them to do it, and Congress, at least under Bush/Cheney, seems to have become little more than the President/Emperor's rubber stamp. A major flaw in the so called division of powers, however, is that the law is enforced by the Justice Department, which is under the control of the Executive Branch, and, as we've seen, is very easily corrupted. If the DOJ simply refuses to prosecute (or even investigate), then even an aggressive Congress (something we haven't seen since Clinton faced a Republican majority over a decade ago) is stymied.

I'm honestly not sure what can be done about this. We need a President who genuinely wants to set things right, and who would be willing to use the improper powers the office has now accrued to set things right. I'm not idealistic enough to like our chances. But we've come to a bad place. With a corporate-compliant media, a cowed Congress, and a completely corrupted DOJ, there is absolutely nothing to stop whoever we elect President from doing whatever the hell they want to... nothing besides, you know, armed insurrection or a military coup. (As the military has largely become a sinkhole of authoritarian Christian fundamentalism, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't enjoy the results of that last. And I can't imagine an armed insurrection having much of a chance.)

I suppose the rest of the world could get sick of us and petition the United Nations to invade and subdue the renegade, out of control U.S. government with a peacekeeping force, but, well, we still have a whole lot of nuclear weaponry, so that's unlikely to work, too.

All this, of course, is assuming that Resident Bush leaves office on schedule. My opinion of those Nazis has sunk so low that I wouldn't die of shock if an "emergency" popped up.

I used to feel that it was ridiculous to assume that Cheney and Bush would ever willingly surrender power, but now I think that, essentially, they are pawns of the Powers That Be, and the Powers That Be will only push us so far at any given time, for fear of really stirring us up. As long as whoever is taking over the helm from Bush and Cheney are 'safe', i.e., won't mess around with the necessary business of predators continuing to kill and eat us prey, then an orderly (and largely illusory) transfer of power will be staged for our benefit.

I would however, strongly consider taking up residence in another country,

What other country? The uncivilized places are horrors, and the civilized places are all run by the same predatory secret masters as run us. Move to France or Austalia, you'll end up doing the same thing you do here -- keep a close eye on your kids, lock your doors at night, and hope/pray you never do anything to significantly annoy, much less threaten, a Power That Be (or one of their favored minions).

No, fuck it; this deserves a direct statement. If they try to throw the constitution completely out like that, It would be my patriotic duty to join the armed resistance. So let's hope a peaceful, legal, transition of power takes place, and the feds (read: SS), having naturally noted this post, don't have to round me up around January 20th next year.

The Feds don't pick people up for bitching online. The Feds love the Internet; we all come here and gripe, and then we go watch AMERICAN IDOL. It's a fabulous stress release for us, and keeps us off the streets. Plus, we have to keep getting up in the morning and going to work to pay our access fees. It's a win/win for them all the way around; that's why they tolerate it in the first place.

Thanks for some long and interesting comments; I'm enjoying the dialogue... whoever you are. ;)

 
At 11:30 AM , Anonymous Mr/Ms X said...

Any candidate who promises cheap gasoline had better deliver, or they'll be looking for work in four years, and they all know it.

Of course. I wish I'd been clearer that the "75(cents symbol)" Is a criticism, not a promise. Making that unmistakable is a detail I haven't worked out completely- the slogan should naturally be introduced by the candidate, probably at a debate- constantly elaborated upon in speeches and campaign commercials. But that you mistook my remarks brings up a possibly fatal flaw to the notion; will anything make it clear enough for the grazing herd while keeping the slogan so simple? I dunno. Does "Where's my cheap gas?" while less problematic, work anywhere near as well?

I'm not sure, by the way, that the gas couldn't easily be brought back under $2 for the time being. I suspect the oil infrastructure in Iraq is in MUCH better shape than Dick Cheney wants you to know. I'll bet that a hell of a lot of oil could be pumped while we cast about for the best way to extricate ourselves...

I should interject here that we might be going wrong not campaigning against the creeping fascism just because no one's made much headway with the public so far. Have enough people even tried hard enough? In the high-profile national media, I'm only aware of Keith Oberman giving it anything like the kind of attention it deserves- if MSNBC even counts as high-profile. It may be a mistake not to use the bully pulpit of the nominee to MAKE it a big issue, like Ross Perot did for a balanced budget. (I've missed the little kook lately.)

I'm not sure it wouldn't worth losing to McCain just to get everyone talking about it in a big way. "First," I'm fond of paraphrasing, "they came for the ayrabs"...

I used to feel that it was ridiculous to assume that Cheney and Bush would ever willingly surrender power, but now I think that, essentially, they are pawns of the Powers That Be, and the Powers That Be will only push us so far at any given time, for fear of really stirring us up.

Yeah, the biggest problem Cheney has faced in going Hitler on us is that this is America! We grow up pretty much indoctrinated about how great our freedom is. Some of the typical steps towards fascism have taken place, but, for instance, they've had to settle for a compliant, but still technically free, press. I wonder, too, if in their hearts they're really willing to commit fully to the police state- they're Americans too. But Cheney has built a consistant track record of stooping lower than I expected...

As long as whoever is taking over the helm from Bush and Cheney are 'safe', i.e., won't mess around with the necessary business of predators continuing to kill and eat us prey, then an orderly (and largely illusory) transfer of power will be staged for our benefit.

One hopes for at least that. I don't anticipate the fascism to get TOO bad as long as they bother to pretend.

I should add though, that George Quincy Bush has much better bodyguards than the board of Exxon/Mobile, and once there are no elections, what exactly can big oil do to their renegade boy in the face of the U.S. freakin' Army? You know from where Lenin said power issues.

What other country?

I dunno. Somewhere English-speaking and non-fascist. I'm just talking outta my butt on that one.

The Feds don't pick people up for bitching online.

Yet. That we know of. If I knew things weren't going to get worse, I'd shut up. In my heart, I don't honestly give a shit about Jose' Padillo; I'm worried about being on a slippery slope. And obviously, should they commit to having that 'emergency', they WILL be rounding people up for unconstitutional reasons. It's safe to assume that declaring for violent resistance under certain conditions is quite a bit more than enough once the conditions have been met. That might be true even now, let alone with the condition in question being full-on dictatorship.


I'm enjoying this exchange, too.

 
At 2:16 PM , Anonymous Always Esteemed Scott said...

Mr/ms x said

Of course. I wish I'd been clearer that the "75(cents symbol)" Is a criticism, not a promise.

I dunno. Up here in Canada, we're constantly bitching about high (or, to be more specific, *rising*) gas prices (gas here in the nation's capital is around $1.06/litre, which equates to just over $4/U.S gallon). Politicians at every level, from municipal councillors to federal MPs (Members of Parliament) frequently talk about "doing something" to deal with high gas prices, complaining about price collusion on the part of gas companies (left leaning parties) or high taxes on gasoline (right leaning parties).

Nothing ever gets done, of course, but I don't see any politicians paying a price for this. I don't know if that's simply because Canadians are different from Americans in that respect (it's always a bit tricky to extrapolate Canadian behaviour to the U.S, particularly where politics is concerned).

Doc Nebula said:

I used to feel that it was ridiculous to assume that Cheney and Bush would ever willingly surrender power, but now I think that, essentially, they are pawns of the Powers That Be, and the Powers That Be will only push us so far at any given time

It appears that,as far as the Powers That Be are concerned, the *appearance* of a legitimate democracy is important. And when the vast majority of politicians, both Democrats and Republicans seem to be totally bought and paid for by the same Powers, it seems like it would be pretty easy to replace one set of pawns for another, more aesthetically pleasing set.

Which is why I don't really get the full Hate-on that the conservative Elite seems to have for McCain - he's demonstrated quite clearly (at least to me) that there are virtually no principles he won't sacrifice in order to become President.
In other words, if he isn't already bought and paid for, he's for sale.

What other country? The uncivilized places are horrors, and the civilized places are all run by the same predatory secret masters as run us. Move to France or Austalia, you'll end up doing the same thing you do here

Sure...but in return you get free health care, fewer guns and a modestly better social safety net.
At least, until the Secret Masters get rid of them...

 
At 8:14 PM , Blogger Doc Nebula said...

I dunno. Up here in Canada, we're constantly bitching about high (or, to be more specific, *rising*) gas prices (gas here in the nation's capital is around $1.06/litre, which equates to just over $4/U.S gallon). Politicians at every level, from municipal councillors to federal MPs (Members of Parliament) frequently talk about "doing something" to deal with high gas prices, complaining about price collusion on the part of gas companies (left leaning parties) or high taxes on gasoline (right leaning parties).

Nothing ever gets done, of course, but I don't see any politicians paying a price for this. I don't know if that's simply because Canadians are different from Americans in that respect (it's always a bit tricky to extrapolate Canadian behaviour to the U.S, particularly where politics is concerned).


I hear that. But I think there's a difference between harrumph-harrumph-I-am-outraged-outraged-at -this-grotesque-miscarriage-of-justice-and-something-must-be-done emanating vaguely from some ministerial larynxes, and a specific campaign promise made by a specific candidate during a specific campaign. Politicians all over the world decry high taxes, too, and bluster about how something must be done -- I can't remember the last time a politican ever said that taxes should be raised -- but virtually every political pundit agrees, what cost Bush I his re-election was that he made a solemn promise ("read my lips -- no new taxes") and then broke it. People remember that stuff, and gas prices are as important to them as taxes (in large part because gas prices are significantly comprised of taxes).

So, I still very strongly believe that it would be an appalling mistake for any candidate to put the price of gas on the table as a campaign issue.

Which is why I don't really get the full Hate-on that the conservative Elite seems to have for McCain - he's demonstrated quite clearly (at least to me) that there are virtually no principles he won't sacrifice in order to become President.
In other words, if he isn't already bought and paid for, he's for sale.


McCain pushed through campaign finance reform legislation. Big Money simply WILL NOT FORGIVE that, ever. It doesn't matter that the law he helped write and shoved through Congress is worthless and accomplishes absolutely nothing, what matters is, McCain changed the system, which is intolerable. Worse, he showed people that it could be done... that it is possible to alter the way we finance political campaigns in this country. That's horribly, horribly dangerous, but I don't think the Powers That Be really see it that way, because they simply cannot take the notion of any kind of threat to their way of life seriously.

However, it was cocky and presumptuous of him to do it, and he must and shall be punished for being so goddam uppity, and that's how that has to be.

Beyond that, Tom Tomorrow probably put it best with the following short post --

Why they hate him

Imagine how you’d feel if Joe Lieberman had just captured the Democratic nomination.

That’s how the far right sees McCain.


I think that pretty much says it all.

 
At 9:06 AM , Anonymous Mr/Ms X said...

Kerry DID bring up gas prices in a campaign speech- once that I'm aware of.

Even should it be true that campaigning on gasoline is toxic -and the notion surely has some merit- I daresay there'd be an exception should you be able to make a strong case that prices have been deliberately allowed to inflate by the administration. Haven't done the research and don't plan to, but I expect the case could fairly easily be made.

If so, while we're pumping a lot of oil on our way out, the strategic oil reserve could surely be built to levels adequite to employ in getting gas prices somewhere politically feasable right before the next election.

And anyway, I wanted to campaign against creeping fascism more in the first place. It ought to be put on the table.



Canada WAS the first place I had in mind. I just wonder how much I'd hate the winters. And I gather Australians like us more, and not all of it is a desert. Much harder to sneak home for a visit from, though. -Plus it was just loose talk in the first place.

 

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home