Friday, September 07, 2012

Same planet, different worlds...

From the alternate universe where Spock has a beard (also known as the comments section of an article at npr.org):
- Here's the thing: Americans have got to make up their minds. Either they want to follow the model of the modern Western world, which is Leftist or they want to return to the short brutish lives under Rightwing regimes.

We've chosen to dismantle our democracy, and we are removing the last of our social safety nets. The Koch brothers have actually started challenging bike paths and parks in courts all over the country, and, in many areas, they are buying up public parks for pennies, as we transfer all of our public domain to corporate hands.

When Americans chose to embrace old pre-Enlightenment forms of govt over our democracy, it left us to pay the price of the stability of those Rightwing govts. Our life expectancies will fall, and, typically, people will have no real value beyond the age of 30-35. So, dying early and being replaced by the next poor generation (like kleenex) will be the natural course of things.

Left and Right are opposites. The policies of one destroys the other. They're incompatible.
Wow. Just wow. I wonder what color the sky is in that world?

I read her words and I am not sure that there can be peace between our weltanschauungen. This runs into a comment I left at Joel's place regarding that "government is the only thing we all belong to" sound bite that the more disingenuous on the right have been making hay with, despite the word "belong" being used in the sense of "I belong to the Antioch Baptist Church":
These people do not have the worldview that you and I do. The government, to them, is not a separate entity, but rather is composed of all of us enfranchised citizens. Remember: They’re down there in Charlotte engaging in a veritable orgy of democracy, proving to themselves that we all belong to this wonderful organization called the American Government, which is made up of We The People, and that ‘the system works’.
It is hard to reach a compromise with someone when, not only do you not share a worldview, but you in fact use the same words to mean completely different concepts. Where does one hire an English-to-English cislator?

58 comments:

angrymike said...

Someone should explain the death panels in obamacare to this f-ing idiot............

Yrro said...

Can we dump all of those people into the same starship as the black helicopter and FEMA camps guys and ship them all off to the moon?

The most dangerous thing I've noticed about only hanging out with people on the same "side" as you... you stop noticing the crazy people on your side as much. They move from "crazy" to merely "eccentric, but their hearts in the right place."

And you stop pushing back and telling them to go away or stop being crazy... which means that anyone else who walks in on your community from outside is going to see a bunch of crazy people that everyone is tacitly agreeing with.

Yrro said...

Oh, and I find their choice of the word "belong" hilarious, but obviously not ill-intentioned. I'm sort of surprised that it made it past all of their guys who check these videos for "things that the Republicans can use against us."

Anonymous said...

The third crazy comment in the main post sounds a little like Logan's Run

-SM

Tam said...

Yrro,

That was what surprised me, too.

Ted N said...

Huh. So Sliders was a documentary. 'Cause there's no way these people are from the same dimension.

Matt G said...

"Left and Right are opposites. The policies of one destroys the other. They're incompatible."

No. They're not.

Anonymous said...

I figure the gov't. belongs to me-after all, I pay their salaries, I keep them in business, and they serve at my will.

Ancient Woodsman said...

Nice Charlie Daniels reference.

The other side doesn't like to admit it often as they don't seem too keen to examine their family tree much deeper than those roots that peek out of the surface of the carefully manicured suburban lawn, but that fella with green teeth who was a faithful follower of Brother John Birch was more often than not reflexively voting in the "D" column.

Armed Texan said...

I did not see many who were being disingenuous about the "belong" video, but were just making fun of the poor word choice. Admittedly, I tend to not patronize the more silly elements of right of center punditry.

Then I saw this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OHbNCWSVOjc

LC Scotty said...

cislator-seriously, that is so awesome it defies description.

Derfel Cadarn said...

More people babbling on about American democracy WRONG!!! It is a Constitutional Republic at least be bothered to get it right. At present the government is not made up of a free association of the People. It fancies itself your master, a situation that is wholly untenable. It is individuals that have allowed this country to prosper. The government as it now exists is a subtracter from society yielding little if any positive influence. It would be best to ignore until it goes away.

perlhaqr said...

I was made most agog by the author's ... "understanding" of what the Enlightenment was.

Anonymous said...

My EX-sister-in-law is one of those. Shes an east Tennisee hillbilly who has spent her whole life on the public dole. They have fed ,educated, grad schooled and employed her.Her "job" is giveing out "Obama money"+Free Phones. The silly bitch divorced my brother,Cause he wouldn't qwit his job and become a Obama campain worker(she got the house,sold it and gave her "brown jeasus" the money.) You are right Tam They ARE NOT from our world,and they will NEVER stop.

Scott J said...

As Vanderboegh has said two nations sharing only a common language and border.

Of course as you point out the language is starting to diverge.

As for the "belong to" thing the left doesn't get to (IMO) use the meaning you suggest while also arguing it's OK to use the police power of government to compel me to buy a product simply because I exist.

Anonymous said...

The only thing that remains is to see which side will eventually be herding the other into the death camps.

I hope I'm wrong.

Tasso said...

Hobson meets Hobbes. Birth of a fallacy.

Firehand said...

Yrro, considering the numbers coming out from real polls(not over-sampling D's, etc.) they may have decided, like the 'We need a assault weapons ban!', to go for broke.

Or they may actually be so tone-deaf they didn't realize how this would strike a lot of people.

Anonymous said...

Next thing you know they'll be tearing Wallace stickers off the bumpers of cars. -8notch

Anonymous said...

To paraphrase someone's comment.

"All you right wing, "liberty" freaks, with guns, limited government & stuff, that believe in God, I wish you'd get your own country..."

"We did. Who let YOU in?"

Crotalus said...

When I first heard that "we all belong to the government" meme, the first thing I thought of was that the government presumes to own me. It didn't come a cross as "we are members of such and such a community".

Panamared said...

If we all belong to the Government, then it only makes sense that the Government should redistribute the success to best serve the Government. I think that's the same thing as make sure they get reelected.

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

If there was a "like" button on this here blog, I'd be pushing it for the post in general, but I'd have to add an extra push for Anon 9:49's comment. Classic. I almost spewed coffee on my keyboard. Well bowled, sir or ma'am.

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

Sorry that would have been "Anon 9:43". See why I need the coffee?

Anonymous said...

But you have to try.

Retreating further towards the poles and lobbing larger rocks at each other is not a good solution.


AuricTech said...

Wow, I can smell the Victory Gin fumes from that National Proletariat Radio commenter from here.

Anonymous said...

"Wow. Just wow. I wonder what color the sky is in that world?"

Communist Red.

Government is their God. It will tolerate no others.

Shootin' Buddy

rickn8or said...

The difference between belonging to the government and belonging to the Antioch Baptist Church is that church membership is optional.

Anonymous said...

When I think of gubberment I think more along the lines of the devil came down to Georgia.

Gerry

Tango Juliet said...

The "belong" notion appeals to those afflicted with the herd mentality, which appears to be a goodly portion of the Democratic Party.

global village idiot said...

The comment was boneheaded and tone-deaf, to be sure. I truly believe the reason it got past the DNC is because it was a throwaway line that, being as generous as possible, a DNC staffer would find perfectly innocuous.

I happen to disagree with even the most open-minded premise of the comment but that's just me.

The NPR commenter is delightful. For one who is using a yin/yang metaphor for political belief, he forgets the part wherein each carries in it the essence of the other. That and he can't make his verb agree with his subject.

The older I get, the more strongly I find myself, during election seasons, wishing I were from someplace where grown-ups run things. I wish I were Swiss.

gvi

Bubblehead Les. said...

"Clowns to the Left of me, Jokers to the Right.."

"Meet the New Boss, same as the Old Boss..."

I think I've lived through this Political Insanity before.

Michael Bane said...

In one of those weird little quirks of timing not long after the Dems used their ostensibly poor choice of words, I was standing in the gas chamber at Auschwitz, looking at the deep scratches on its concrete walls. I wonder if the final thoughts of some of those poor people who clawed their last moments on those walls was, "Hey, we thought the government was something we all belonged to, but it turns out we all belong to the government!" Just sayin'...

Michael B

Kristopher said...

Anon 10:16:

Uh, no.

Violence can solve problems. It solved Rome's Carthage problem, and it solves violent criminal caused problems every day.

It can also solve the issue of an attempted Marxist take over of the US.

og said...

"Government is their God. It will tolerate no others."

SB: have you seen the Obama calendar with Obama being portrayed as the Only Begotten Son in John 3:16?

http://www.slate.com/blogs/weigel/2012/09/02/dnc_2012_still_kitschin_.html

Scroll down to August. made me sick to my stomach.

Anonymous said...

Kristopher -

It could also solve the problem of an attempt to impose a Christian conservative theocracy, but I still maintain that it's not an ideal solution.

Robb Allen said...

I disagree with the left right dichotomy. I think of it like a triangle where the normal left-right concept is horizontal, libertarian vs. authoritarian is vertical. The closer you get to the top, the less you will be likely to use the force of the state to impose your beliefs on others.

You can believe that we should eat nothing but the spores Gaia allows to enter our mouths and if you're not willing to use the force of the government to make me follow your views, then we can co-exist.

You can believe that every last person should have a gun and hit the range 3 times a week but if you believe it's the state's function to force everyone to do so, you're just as much my enemy as the guy who wants to take my money to pay for hypodermic needles for lesbian Siamese twin heroin addicts.

Those at the top of the triangle believe their views are self-evident and do not require coercion to get others to believe them (or are comfortable with their own lives to just deal with it). The closer you get to the bottom, the division between 'left and right' exists only as a way to consolidate more authority.

alanstorm said...

"The difference between belonging to the government and belonging to the Antioch Baptist Church is that church membership is optional."

I belong to the First Baptist Bar & Grill, myself.

global village idiot said...

Mr. Allen,

As a lesbian Siamese twin heroin addict, I take considerable offense at the callous manner you and those like you attempt to dismiss and de-legitemize our community and our concerns.

And it's not shaped like a triangle either. It's shaped like a burrito.

gvi

Ed Foster said...

Similar debate with a very Democrat family member (by marriage, not blood, thank you God).

Whatever the party does is good, and by "cherrypicking' isolated facts w/out contextual balance anything can be belived. Belief is all, and facts are tailored to reenforce said party declarations.

If the Constitution actually means what it says, it has to be ignored or replaced. Only strong government can save us from ourselves, can properly divide and redivide an ever shrinking pie.

We need cultural disipline, and we have to all sacrifice some of our personal needs to the common good.

It goes on, ad nauseum. My take on the entire thing is that Democrats want a strong leader to show them the way, and conservatives want an employee who reflect the values they have determined constitute their own self interest.

I at first thought the recent buzz about a genetic element in political alignment was a bit over the top, but it makes more and more sense. There are people so opposed to even the most benign and necessary risk taking that they seem set in cement.

Total, short sighted security freaks, disproportionatly from cultures that got here after the settlement of the Great Plains, and heavily urban. If a family leaves Lower Slobovia and moves to a Lower Slobovian ghetto in Chicago or New York, did they ever really become Americans at all?

All the more reason to allow the big coastal cities their independence, a la the relationship between Monaco and France.

We let them go, they guarantee full American civil rights to U.S. citizens resident at the time of the division, and they're free to make their own sad little worlds out of LA, Portland, Frisco, Chicago, New York, and New Orleans.

All of which would act like greedy sponges, soaking up most of the professionally selfrightious class in the rest of the USA.

It would be droll, watching the liberals left trapped behind American lines making cause with the libertarians and staunch constitutionalists to attempt to balance out the religious right, and they might not succeed, but at least there would be more jobs, fewer multigenerational welfare recipients and we would all keep our guns.

Kristopher said...

Anon: Don't make assumptions. I'm an atheist.

I took exception to your statement that violence is not a good solution. This is not always so.

Violence is often not the ideal solution. But still a solution, and sometimes the only good one.

Ken said...

Yrro, why the moon? We might want it for something at some point. :-)

They like solar, don't they? They like Floyd, don't they, most of 'em? (Okay, I like Floyd too.) Set the controls for the heart of the sun! ;-)

Brad K. said...

"return to the short brutish lives under Rightwing regimes. "

And I was under the impression that modern medicine, in the few cases it actually extends life, mostly only affects the *quality* of life. You know, working and paying taxes and debit card fees, instead of being bed-bound but not direly medically dependent.

My understanding is that it is public health, and particularly clean water and rigorous sanitation practices, including personal hygiene, that have had any appreciable impact on length of life.

The left are already driving doctors out of medicine. Do they really think that paying for health care with, like, dollars, instead of government and insurance forms, will drive even more doctors into retirement?

deadcenter said...

Check Hayek's Road to Serfdom for a pretty good explanation and reasons for the deliberate use of different definitions for the same words, prime example freedom as used by the individualist vice the collectivist.

"Wow. Just wow. I wonder what color the sky is in that world?"

It's red, just like everything else.

Anonymous said...

Much of the left is in a state of hypnosis. That I think is clear, so the only way to reach them would be through that understanding. -- Lyle

Joe in PNG said...

And it was my understanding that the short, brutish lifstyle was what the Environmental movement wanted for the masses.

Drang said...

Objectively, The Left Is Crazy | Daily Pundit

JC said...

"And I ain't even got a garage, you can call home and ask my wife!"
(Oops, don't have one of them, either. The ex now has a garage, though.)

farmist said...

@Ed Foster, a genetic component? Would that be like Morlocks and Eloi?

Anonymous said...

Joe -

What could be more conservative than living in a manner that could be sustained indefinitely?

Mikael said...

Unfortunately, the right is just as bad.

Both sides are corrupt, and will screw you over any chance they get, they just have different priorities in what ways to do it.

Ed Foster said...

Mikael, the real right, the Minarchist/Jeffersonian Democrat/"He Rules Best Who Rules Least" types, regard government as a necessary evil, to be kept to an absolute functional minimum.

They stand at a diametric opposite to the control freaks of the left. What they propose, beyond traffic lights, courts, and a military and state department function for the feds, is a LACK of government, with it's concommitant reduction in both bureaucracy and the chance for corruption.

What I have disliked about the Republican Party is that it is centrist and craven, wanting a "reasonable compromise" between the two extremes, the freedom and risk of the real right vs. the regimentation and steady decline ofr the American Socialist Party, AKA the Democrats.

A "Reasonable Compromise" means that everything the left wants will happen, but at a slower pace.

Preferable to a quick collapse, as it gives me time to get that well in and finish the wall, but not preferable in it's self.

Ed Foster said...

Farmist: Exactly. The genetic makeup of any population will shift toward whatever norm is maintained over a multigenerational period, increasing the likelihood of heavy losses when conditions change. What sociologists call a "Noyaux".

amcz said...

Declaring "We all belong to Christ." will certainly piss off any atheists in the room...

Brad K. said...

Anon 6:36,

"What could be more conservative than living in a manner that could be sustained indefinitely? "

Actually a change to anything, even a stable and unchanging state, is liberal.

Conservative means just that, making things comfortable and satisfying -- without changing anything of substance. The Reactionary is the one that presumes everything is as good as it gets, and any change is to be opposed, bitterly. The Conservative presumes that everything is pretty good, and only minor adjustments should be contemplated, as long as they increase comfort and satisfaction.

Death is pretty sustainable, and there are few successful devotees rushing to get to that state. Um, don't drink the kool-aid, etc.

The drive to "sustainable" is a chimera of liberal thinking. Just defining what is sustainable in a general and broad sense is tough -- is the period of sustainability measured in weeks, in decades, or centuries? Are we talking resilient, too, such that disasters and those not devoted to sustainable living cause only minor disruptions? What levels of social structure, authority, and power are to be supported -- and how do we get those invested in current structures (such as for survival or ambition) to transition?

Who decides what "sustainable" means -- at the personal, family, community, and state levels?

The myth, and political tyranny, of "sustainable" stuff and antrhopomorphic climate change is all about taking from others for gain, about social and economic upheaval to discommode those considered "others". Quite a liberal agenda, in fact.

Kristophr said...

Sustainable living is not.

There are over 6 billion folks on this planet. Demanding that countries like the US stop feeding them through agribusiness will condemn most of them to immediate death.

Ken said...

"Who decides what "sustainable" means -- at the personal, family, community, and state levels?"

That's an easy one -- Kunstler (hawk ptooey) and his New Urbanist hipster buddies.

Joe in PNG said...

I'm a libertarian, so the conservitive thing doesn't really work for me.
But every time we give a very few people absolute power to determine what is best for everyone else, bad things happen.
Thus, if one chooses to live a low impact, sustainable lifestyle, then more power to them. However, if you want to use the government to force me to do same, then I will oppose it at every possible turn.