Archive for November, 2011

A Little Perspective: Aristotle vs. Republican Tea Party
November 27, 2011

The RTP insists over and over that government is too big, that it interferes in business too much (and apparently not enough in people’s private lives), and that American government should be shrunk to the size of a bathtub and then drowned.

Obviously these people are not thinkers, demonstrate no concern for their fellow Americans, and don’t give a damn about community outside their enclaves of thoughtlessness. They want whatever they can get their hands on, whether it be salary and wages without taxes, or teachers working for a pittance in a public school system damned by lack of funds, or roads and bridges crumbling into uselessness. All that seems to matter to them is that we have a big, bad military to protect us from all the evil they imagine exists in the world planning to get them and make them bow to some god or orthodoxy which is as ludicrous as their own vaunted system of superstitions.

But there is nothing new under the sun…

Aristotle’s belief that humans are by nature political animals (i.e., who live in an organized society) and that the state is a positive force in bringing about the good life (rather than only being a necessary evil whose purpose is to keep order) had a great impact in both the theory and practice of statecraft. Aristotle’s view of the state provided ammunition to secular rulers against claims of ecclesiastical interference and supremacy, and was a major element in the defeat of the idea of a universal Christian monarchy ruled by the pope.

That’s from The Medieval World View: An Introduction.*

It’s the same battle American society is fighting today. We’re not in much danger of being ruled by the creaking pederasts in the Vatican, but it’s difficult to imagine that the fundogelicals fueling the mindless rage on the right would rule with a lighter hand than the vicious princes of delusion in the Vatican applied during the Inquisition.

And it’s certain that the RTP doesn’t believe that the state, i.e., the American government, could ever be a force for bringing the good life to Americans. They seem to think that nobody in government is an American, other than the right-wing crazies in Congress who are as thoughtless and vapid and loud as the bulk of the RTP itself these days. For the RTP government only exists to project American power (e.g., bombs, bullets, cluster bombs, denial and ignorance of science, slaughter, and arrogance) around the world and police power against anyone who dares to object to the coming rule of ignorance and arrogance and sheer stupidity that characterize the RTP.

Life back in the days of Aristotle and in the millennium of the medieval world was brutal and cold under the weight of princes and barons and priests. The people with the gold and the armor and the weapons and the crucifixes trampled pretty much anyone who got in the way of their lust for power and greed for wealth. It’s hard to imagine the current crop of wannabe rulers in the RTP want life to be much different, especially since that’s where their policies would take the world.

And where’s today’s Aristotle to drive them from the doors of the temples of democracy?

* The Medieval World View: An Introduction: William R. Cook, Ronald B. Herzman, Oxford University Press, 2d edition, softcover, p. 27

#

Advertisements

Iran: plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose
November 12, 2011

America’s wading into the Big Muddy again.

How many times, America, how many times?

They’re at it again…

#

Michele Bachmann: “Work or die!”
November 8, 2011

From ThinkProgress:

GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann promised to significantly lower funding to social safety net programs during a speech at the Family Research Council this morning, going so far as to suggest that people who can’t work should not eat. “Our nation needs to stop doing for people what they can and should do for themselves,” she said. “Self reliance means, if anyone will not work, neither should he eat.”

Perhaps they should be whipped too. Or maybe we could cut their hands off because if they do stay alive they must be eating and if they’re eating then that would be stealing, so off with their hands. That’s all just mighty Christian of her, isn’t it?

But really, shouldn’t this prescription of Bachmann’s apply to Ms. Bachmann herself? She is a Republican member of a Congress in which the Republicans have chosen to do nothing, thus they are not in any real sense ‘working’, are they? So, Ms. Michelle, no food for you until you get a real job – not that you’re qualified for anything other than sucking at the public teat of taxpayer money like you’ve done most of your life.

If anyone doubted Ms. Bachmann’s credentials as a completely-off-the-deep-end, insane, dumbass, cold-hearted, brain-damaged moron, her comment should put their doubts to rest. But of course these credentials eminently qualify her as an acceptable candidate for the Republican nomination for President of the United States and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the United States.

‘Scuse me while I call up the Asylum to see if my old room is still available. That’s the only place I can find sane people anymore.

And because I seem to have logorrhea this morning, let’s consider what Ms. Bachmann has not. No one lives in a complete vacuum. We live as members of communities, or as Ms. Bachmann so innocently put it, ‘in our nation’. Ms. Bachmann apparently believes firmly and profoundly that our nation should become a place of dog eat dog mentality, that the strong should brutalize the weak, in her example by starving them to death. Ms. Bachmann is apparently neither competent nor capable of considering that self-reliance in a community means you do the best you can to care for yourself, but you rely on your community, in this case the United States, to help you when you need it, just as you are willing to help your community when it needs you. But that’s not Ms. Bachmann’s way. She would, it seems, quite enjoy watching people starve to death: after all, that would be justice and being one of the leading intellectual lights of the Republican Party she must, of course, understand justice.

All you unemployed people out there, living high off the pittance of unemployment insurance because there are no jobs, you’d best cover your ass, because the almighty Michelle Bachmann, wielding the sword and word of her God and the thought  processes of any number of insane, deranged pissant dictators, is getting ready to hack your ass off, along with your hands and feet just for good measure. And say, how come your kids aren’t working?

It’s just amazing what the Republicans can dredge up from the mud of humanity to represent their best philosophical and political thought.

You go, Michelle! Yessir, right into a padded room on the locked ward on the fifth floor. Dinner will be served in a couple of months. If you’re lucky.

#

SuperCommittee Finance, Shimance! Ride, Ride to Ruin and World’s Ending, Dumbass.
November 4, 2011

 

TalkingPointsMemo has a brief article on the shenanigans of the so-called SuperCommittee, followed by many comments on the effects of the various so-called ideas those august so-called gentlemen on the committee are ‘discussing’.

The commenters seem to have missed the point.

It doesn’t matter whether tax cuts are stimulative or destructive.  The effects of cutting spending by this much or that much do not matter. None of the discussion on financial matters matters.

Only one thing matters to the Republicans: getting Obama out of the White House and installing their own corporate whore. They are willing to wreck the country to accomplish that goal. And they are succeeding on both counts, with the able help of… wait for it… Obama and the Democrats, who are trying desperately to give away the valuable stuff in a pathetic attempt to get the crazies on the right to play nice.

Wake up, America! You have nothing to lose but everything that matters.

Wake up, America! You have nothing to fear but the arrogance, the ignorance, the hatred, and the stupidity of the Republicans, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Tea Party.

Wake up, America! You bunch of sleeping dumbasses.

#