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Sim Sala Bim

April 18, 2009

Because if they (corporations) practice sleight of hand often enough, they think that you’ll buy their bullshit.

Sharp piece by Andy Ostroy:

During the eight miserable, ineffective and wasteful years of the Bush administration, Karl “Turd Blossom” Rove, the president’s chief political advisor, deftly crafted a successful strategy of turning the “little guy” on himself. That being, to divert and distract these Average Joes away from the real issues that effect them–unemployment, wages, health care, education–and instead drive them to the polls through hot-button issues including abortion, gay-marriage and life-support (Terri Schiavo). For a long while, it worked. The little guy consistently voted against his own self-interests. More here

It is the right of every American to protest against the government – that little document, the US Constitution, allows for it. But what the hell were the protestors complaining about?  They were spouting hate about Obama. Why? Most who were protesting were getting a taxcut. Mad about government spending? Well, where was that anger when Bush and the GOP were spending like instant millionaires for 8 years? They took a surplus and turned it into a deficit. Did they call Bush a terrorist? A Socialist?

The more that people turn away from these latest antics of the reactionary sector of the right, the more violent they become. They couldn’t successfully steal the last election, so now they are having a full-blown tantrum. Educate yourselves, or when they pander to the electorate’s basest fears, you’ll be the puppet that they’re controlling.

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7 comments

  1. Ah, but several people (unfortunately not myself since at that time I wasn’t paying attention to what was going on politically) DID call Bush a Socialist, maybe not a terrorist, but definitely Socialist. And now that I’m paying attention, I do the same thing.

    And yeah, hell yeah I’m pissed at Bush because if it wasn’t for him (and now Obama taking us down the same road, only faster) my job probably wouldn’t be going away in about two months. Come June 11 I’ll have 8 years at the same place. That plant was like my second home. I love most of the people I work with. It wasn’t because of shady business practices. It wasn’t because of poor quality. Just the opposite. We practically got union benefits w/out having a union. Our quality is the best in the world, just ask our customers. Management and the shareholders did everything they could do to try to keep us afloat (but they never cut our important benefits). Now everything’s going back to Indiana soon.

    So yes, ALL the spending, starting with the first Bush, is what led to this. And yes, I’m pissed. Why aren’t we too big to fail (but I wouldn’t want them taking government money anyway)? Why was I shorted on my unemployment this week? Why didn’t I get the FULL $13/week “tax cut”? Why aren’t they listening to the people like ME?

    THIS is what led to the tea parties, not taxes. Taxes aren’t high enough yet to protest. But it’s coming. I promise. And when it gets so high that more and more jobs go overseas, and more and more cities, then states, go bankrupt, that’s when the shit’s gonna hit the fan. And I don’t want violence. None of us do. But I’ve been saying it for about two years now, it’s coming. And I’ve been saying it since before I watched anything on Fox News. Before I ever watched Glenn Beck. I never pay attention to Limbaugh or Hannity. Before I ever watched Bill O’Reilly.

    But the social climate now is so similar to that of the Romans towards the end. I hope we can avoid violence. I don’t want to kill anybody. I really don’t want anybody to kill me or anyone else. I’d like to resolve it peacefully. That’s why I believe in the protests going on now, and were since Bush was in office but unfortunately got very little, if no, attention.


    • First of all, I am very sad to hear about your job. Very sad. Maybe you would qualify for a grant to go back to school?

      “THIS is what led to the tea parties, not taxes. ” According to their own promoters, these tea bag parties were about taxes…tax increases.

      The ones talking violence are the extremists. ALI-PAC, FAIR, Stormfront, FW, AFP, John Tanton network and Fox News.

      The difference between ACORN & SEIU, and FW & AFP? 180 degrees. Source Watch, Newsmax, et al.

      What exactly do you want resolved that isn’t being addressed? We finally, FINALLY have a president who is taking on the biggest challenges that have faced a president in decades. And signs are pointing to an upturn in the economy. It will not be steady and it will have setbacks, it will take years because we did not get here overnight. And it’s going to be difficult, damn difficult. But it has to be done.

      Your last paragraph really startled me. If you don’t want violence, then don’t choose violence. It is never the answer. Look at who is responsible for the social climate being the way that it is. You’ll find a lot of answers when you uncover that.


  2. I actually get emails from FAIR and the Heritage Foundation, among others and not once have I seen where they’re calling for violence. Same as Fox News. Perhaps what you’ve seen and heard were taken out of context, the way Beck’s “War Room” and “Destined to Repeat(?)” specials were.

    And the idea for the tea parties came from Bob Basso, the Thomas Paine impersonator on youtube, asking people to send tea bags to the government. Then Ron Paul took it one step further and suggested the tea parties to protest big government and out of control government spending, which will lead to higher taxes.

    And the so-called MSM decided to make teabagging jokes instead of taking us seriously and reporting on the protests like true journalists. The Huffington Post, Keith Olberman, Anderson Cooper, and basically those that would be considered leftwing extremists if you use the same criteria used for rightwing extremists, treated it like a joke. Reporting should be about the truth, not about your own bias. Remember when the media was part of the checks and balances to keep the government in check? That’s not been true at least as long as I’ve been alive.

    If my last paragraph startled you, perhaps you misunderstood it. I don’t want violence, and I hope we can avoid violence. As far as who’s responsible for the social climate, it’s us. We let them take all this power. We didn’t stand up for ourselves. States have no power anymore. Now that we’re organizing to change that, peacefully, the MSM are doing everything to discredit us.

    Ask yourself this: if McCain had won the election, was taking government control of banks and car companies, proposed the largest budget in presidential history which will lead to a $9.3T deficit over 10 years, refused to let the banks repay bailout money, and the same people who are protesting the government doing this now would protest then, would you still be on the side of the government? Or what if it was mainly the left who was protesting the current administration but the media wasn’t taking them seriously, which side would you be on?

    As for what I want resolved, I want the government to have a lesser role in my life and a nonexistent role in private business. Had it not been for the bailouts started by Bush then continued by Obama, we’d be out of this recession. I want to know why it was okay for the media to bash Bush for the bailouts but praise Obama for the governments role in, and increasing the scope of, the bailouts. I want the government to listen to their bosses which they haven’t done since the first Bush was in office.

    “We finally, FINALLY have a president who is taking on the biggest challenges that have faced a president in decades.” What’s he doing different than Bush, other than increasing government control and spending even more of our money? And this upturn in the economy could just be a bear market rally, which could just as easily go away as quickly as it came. Remember, there were times it looked like the Great Depression was over and then BOOM! the decline began again. But the recovery could be steady if they’d take a lesson from Harding and what he did in ’20 & ’21. It’s just as simple as that. These are the things I want resolved which aren’t getting addressed. “But it has to be done.”? No it doesn’t. They’re playing to your fears the same way Bush did concerning Iraq. This is a natural cycle and the more they try to fix it the longer the problems will last.


    • First and foremost, I love you. We could keep having this ping-pong type conversation, but I don’t know what good would come of it since fundamentally we are so far apart. So, I’ll just say this and be done with it: FAIR is what it is and the Heritage Foundation, while not as openly funded by hate groups, is an extreme right group. The history that they have been a part of (not foreign, but domestic) is not something that I’d want to be associated with. Just be careful in putting your trust into those with extremist attitudes and agendas.


  3. I love you, too. And I enjoy these conversations. You’re the only person I have access to whose opinion differs from mine. I feel challenged to put my best arguments forward. And because our views are different, we should be able to find some middle ground for a solution…be role models for Congress… Plus it gives me an insight into crazy people ;). My main thing is I’m concerned about the safety (physical and financial) of future generations being compromised for our comfort. I would gladly give up everything I own, all of my creature comforts, if it meant that my children and their children and their childrens children would never have to worry about paying off a debt incurred by one, two, three generations before they were born. As far as being associated with FAIR and Heritage, and I mean no offense by this, but what about the racist history of the Democratic party, massacres, founding of the KKK, opposition to ending slavery, etc.? Fact is, every group has a dark past, even I do. But we shouldn’t be defined by it, we should learn from it.


    • Well, since it doesn’t appear that I’ll be bringing you into the light…;) –
      No offense taken. Not at all. It’s just that my relationship with you and your brother are the most important things to me and I don’t want our clashing views to carry over into that. It’s not worth it to me. I am a little concerned that I’m the only one you know with a differing view. Here’s where I say “Get back to school!”. Study political science. Go in with an open mind and learn as much as you can.

      The founding of the KKK wasn’t the fault of the Dems; it was by veterans of the Confederate army – sore losers, I guess. Both parties began as one, the Democratic-Republican party; it was in response to the Federalist party.

      Funny that we’re discussing this now because my students are learning about the Civil War and we just finished a book that was centered around Hitler & the Nazi’s.

      I am not opposed to Republicans. Quite the contrary. I believe in a strong multi-party system. It’s the extremists on both the right and the left, and if it weren’t for the 1st Amendment, they’d not have the legal right to speak up. Right now, it’s those on the very far right that are having a problem – and if you look at who’s behind the racial turmoil on the right side, it becomes very scary. And the hate speech is ratcheting up.

      The far right has had control of this country for 8 years and it makes anything that this admin does look like extreme socialism. They can’t even speak the truth about universal health care. And then there’s that fool, Pat Robertson, who is by the Bush admin’s definition, calling for terrorism. WTF? Especially coming from someone who’s made lots of money from diamond mining.

      No one wants future generations to have to pay for what has gone on before…well, I’ll just say of the middle and working class wants that. The well-to-do need us, which is why they oppose abortion unless it’s for their family. There has, as long as I can remember anyway, been a class division, and now someone is finally paying attention to that. That makes this administration very dangerous in the eyes of a few. (Don’t mistake my respect and support of Obama as blind trust – I have my disagreements.)

      We no longer have a checks and balances between the three powers of government so we damn well better keep our two-parties strong. My concern is that people are educated and not misled.

      I hope this made sense – running back and forth making dinner/supper. 🙂


  4. Eh, everybody has disagreements. I won’t let it get in the way of our relationship. And I plan on going back to school, when everything gets straightened out.

    We don’t have a mulit-party system anymore. Dems, Repubs, Independents…they’re all the same right now. Eventually, we’ll get some decent Libertarians in Congress and maybe even in the White House. Now would be the time for them to start campaigning, getting there message out there and getting noticed.

    There was a time when the media was considered the fourth branch of the government, keeping the checks and balances in check. But now all we have are opinion shows, op-ed pieces, comedies. There are very few true journalists out there anymore. Now it’s all about ratings and paper sales. The closest one I can think of, and he doesn’t even consider himself a journalist, is Glenn Beck. I’ve only been watching him since September, but he doesn’t cut anyone, dem, repub, ind, any slack (from what I’ve seen). Repubs are pissed because he called them out on all of their pork in the stimulus and omnibus bills. Dems don’t like him because he doesn’t agree with their views.

    I don’t want you to think I believe Obama’s a Socialist. His ideas, mainly bigger government, a larger government role in private business, universal healthcare, etc., appear to be.

    If the Democrats would get back to their roots, i.e. Jefferson, I wouldn’t have a problem with them. Same with Republicans. Both parties need a wake up call and now’s the time. They’ve both swung so far to the extreme that they’ve met at the apex. And at that apex is fascism.

    When your class read about Hitler, was there any info about the Weimar Republic? It’s after the hyperinflation there that Hitler came into power. That’s another of my fears about this extreme spending. And for the first time in history we’ve monetized our debt. That’s never been done successfully, i.e. without hyperinflation, in history.

    Anyway, that’s all for my rants for today. Gotta get ready for work.



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