13 October 2013

Real Americans

The tribe of Americans we currently call the Tea Party believe that they are the only real Americans. When they wail that “our country is being taken away”, their conception of “us” does not include people who are not in their tribe.

Matt Taibbi in The Truth About the Tea Party:

It would be inaccurate to say the Tea Partiers are racists. What they are, in truth, are narcissists. They're completely blind to how offensive the very nature of their rhetoric is to the rest of the country. I'm an ordinary middle-aged guy who pays taxes and lives in the suburbs with his wife and dog — and I'm a radical communist? I don't love my country? I'm a redcoat? Fuck you! These are the kinds of thoughts that go through your head as you listen to Tea Partiers expound at awesome length upon their cultural victimhood, surrounded as they are by America-haters like you and me or, in the case of foreign-born president Barack Obama, people who are literally not Americans in the way they are.

Mike the Mad Biologist points to the proto-fascist note here in Misunderstanding Palin and ‘Palinism’: It’s the Politics of the Blood:

Her policy ignorance isn’t a bug, it’s a feature. Palin is conceptually and intellectually poor because her politics are not about policies, but a romantic restoration of the ‘real’ America to its rightful place. The primary purpose of politics is not to govern, not to provide services, and not to solve mundane, although often important, problems. For the Palinist, politics first and foremost exists to enable the social restoration of ‘real’ Americans (think about the phrase “red blooded American”) and the emotional and social advantages that restoration would provide to its followers (obviously, if you’re not a ‘real’ American, you might view this as a bad thing…). Practicalities of governance, such as compromise and worrying about reality-based outcomes, actually get in the way. Why risk having your fantasy muddied by reality?

Robert DeNiro's film The Good Shepherd:

Let me ask you something. We Italians, we got our families and we got the Church. The Irish, they have the homeland. The Jews, their tradition. Even the n****rs, they got their music. What about you people, Mr. Carlson? What do you have?

The United States of America. The rest of you are just visiting.


Billmon on herrenvolk democracy.

In a U.S. context, I take “herrenvolk democracy” to mean the sacred principle that all white people (or at least, white men) are equal.
But key insight I finally had about US herrenvolk democracy (& why our politics is so peculiarly poisonous) is: it's not just about race

To the populist right wing, liberals — like blacks, Hispanics, gays, Muslims, etc. etc. — aren't “white.” Not part of the volk. Not “real Americans.”

Which means that for the populist right wing, democratic rule by a liberal president (really, any big D Democrat) is a contradiction in terms.

Jim Henley on conservative indifference to Russian election tampering in the US:

Kurt Eichenwald

How does GOP not get Russia cyberattack is NOT about Trump? It is about a foreign power undermining American democracy.


11:44 AM - 23 Jun 2017
Let's talk about what we're up against here. The GOP doesn't think they betrayed America because they don't think we are Americans.
Conservatives have expressed their conviction that they constitute “America” for decades. They call where they live “Real America.”
James Watt said, I don't talk about Democrats and Republicans. I talk about liberals and Americans.
The House Unamerican Activities Committee began “investigating” leftists in the 30s.
The American Legion began as a proto-fascist paramilitary group after WWI. They broke strikes & black heads.

Thank God No One In America Can Remember Anything About Anything Ever
To the hard-core conservative, the rest of us are in America, but that doesn't mean we are Americans.
We are not white enough, or straight enough, or well-off enough, or we pray wrong, or don't pray. We love the wrong sort of “freedom.”
The GOP, from base to pinnacle, thinks they are the country. Therefore, if Russia is helping the GOP, Russia is helping America.
To Republicans, the GOP = Real America so Russian aid & comfort to Republican Party can't be treason by definition.
And at bottom, nothing about this should surprise us. The US national security complex has done the same thing in other countries for decades.
The US intelligence community always finds someone willing to take the money and accept the help. Those people don't believe they're “betraying their country.” (For the most part.) Some of them even really have been forces for local good. Others, let's say not. But someone accepts the help.
Now we get to see it happening in the other direction. My point isn't “we desurv it lol.” My point isn't even “UR dumb 2B surprized.“
My point is, we could wait a very long time for the GOP to be outraged at treason they don't consider treason.
Of course we deserve it BTW. “The judgments of the Almighty are true and righteous altogether.” I don't care.
Turnabout is fair play, but that doesn't mean I want to be on the wrong end of a global white, patriarchal counter-revolution.
I don't want to watch poor folks, black & brown folks, queer folks & others have their lives further blighted to prove a point.
Putin's Russia is the nexus of an international revanchist movement and I want no part of it — not because it's Russian. Because it sucks.
But to the Republican Party, white revanchism is America. Plutocracy is America. The authority of bosses & dads is America.
What the Trump campaign & GOP congressional leaders abetted may be treason against the America that exists, but not the one in their hearts.
Therefore, do not anticipate them getting unduly upset about Russian “meddling.” To them, Putin isn't the foreign power.

We are.

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