Well, it may be turning fall outside, but inside the hot
house asylum of American politics it's definitely springtime. Springtime for
Hitler that is- or at least the mustache. That notorious, trademark tuft of
facial hair is in full bloom all over the country sprouting up like an
irrepressible weed in the most unlikely of places- the Photoshoped upper lip of
our young, urbane African American President.
Unlikely and absurd, anyways, for those of us who are a part of the non-certifiable majority who find the Hitlerian makeover of the President- that signature artwork of the GOP goon squads who have been attacking Democrats with the same mania they normally reserve for the free dessert buffet at Harrahs, something of a head scratcher.
Apparently, we lack the x-ray eyes of the tea-bagging, death-paneling elect who have been blessed with the Illuminati vision to see through the many layers of contradictory guile that our diabolical President is using to gull the guileless into totalitarian submission while he overthrows the free world. If only we had their 20/20 we too would see that our C. in C. is an Aryan loving, self hating African American fascist who is plotting a commie take over of the country starting with a mandatory government health care system run out of FEMA death camps cleverly disguised as hospitals and medical clinics.
Yes, it really is that grotesquely stupid and ignorant and might even be laughable if not for the fact that their thuggish tactics bear such a strong family resemblance to the man and the party they love to hate. The nonstop repetition of over-the-top lies and coded racial slurs, the beer hall loutishness used to disrupt meetings of elected officials, the open brandishing of firearms and other weapons to back up the undisguised threat of political violence, are all right out of the Nazi playbook.
So now we're left with the demoralizing question of how such a toxic, calculated political reaction manages to get instant traction as the anointed, all-American opposition of the politically dispossessed.
Is it because the Democrats, who have been pussies and wankers for decades, would much rather hide in the dugout like a snake bit minority party rather than face down the opposition and actually fulfill the mandate for change demanded by the voters who have repeatedly handed them the power to do it? Or is it because when the inevitable moment comes- over and over again- when they have to betray the desperate needs of the electorate in favor of the corporate interests of their patrons, they would much prefer to have a ginned up spectacle of "grass roots" opposition on the right to give them cover? (Wouldn't you?)
I could go on but what's the point. Suffice to say that our current political condition is a target rich environment of likely reasons- none of them edifying- that would explain why a patently perverse, populist uprising made up of corporate sponsored vulgarians shouting down their self interest, which would be illegal in most Western democracies and unthinkable in all of them, gets front page billing in this country as another bracing episode of the freedom loving, cracker-salt-of-the-earth sticking it to the fatuous, liberal elite while the ruling party obliges its paymasters by cowering in the corner.
So what's new? Nothing. And that of course is the real problem.
The sound and fury of a seemingly seismic shift in the electoral landscape that sweeps into office the first African American President, dozens of new Democrats in the House and a half a dozen in the Senate, signifies absolutely nothing that has made a meaningful difference in the lives of quiet economic desperation that are being eked out on a wing and a prayer by the bottom 80% of Americans.
It's not supposed to. Because were are not a Western democracy where votes are not only counted, but count. Not remotely
We are a one party corportocracy tricked out as a checkbook democracy with two political brands whose only real competition, despite the dog and pony show of partisan politics, is about which one can service the business of business better and claim the fatter check.
Ever since the Democrats started squealing at the same corporate trough as the Republicans, the Left has responded by sucking on a hopeium crack pipe that the Democrats have been more than happy to fill with fluff victories about identity politics and other class lite issues that have little or nothing to do with the basic economic interests of the vast majority of Americans. In the process it has become what would be considered in any other Western democracy an oxymoronic joke: a Left without a defining class consciousness. Hence, a Left that has never understood, let alone mobilized, the seething reservoir of class resentment that has been growing for decades in this country as more and more of the nation's wealth has flowed to the top.
What the birthers and deathers have been told to think may be certifiable, but what they feel is only too real. They are the screwees in a predatory relationship of mutual contempt with a paternalistic, economic elite that always insists on having things its own way. That the Left has been completely AWOL pursuing feel good obsessions and symbolic sideshows rather than seizing on their resentment and turning it into a compelling, progressive program of economic self interest and basic justice, is not the fault of the people we have all rightly called crazy. It is our fault: the fault of every person whose moral and critical intelligence makes them a Lefty- a liberal, a progressive, whatever.