April 25, 2011
What it takes to be a Republican, the Loughner-Phelps/Republican connection
By Ed Martin
The things it takes to be a Republican are all negatives. Insufferable arrogance, invincible ignorance, proud hypocrisy, total irrationality, deceit as a virtue, mental vacuity, and the list goes on.
::::::::In no particular order, here are some observations on that peculiar phenomenon, Republicans.
Republicans follow a dogma which is by definition, authoritative, not to be disputed, doubted, or diverged from. It means "That which seems to one, opinion or belief." In other words, no evidence or facts are to be used in Republican dogma.
Wray Herbert had an article on the Huffington Post titled, "How to Catch a Liar: The Cognitive Clues to Deceit." I have yet to hear anything from a Republican that is actually true. The first and only clue you need to know if they're lying is, Are they a Republican?
Republicans can lie to you very convincingly and authoritatively because they can ignore contradictions and invent their own facts to fit Limbaugh"s "how it's supposed to be" to bring it into line with their dogma.
Republican Rep. Paul Ryan, hell bent on destroying Medicare/Medicaid, said that libertarian/conservative Ayn Rand was the reason he entered politics. Republicans Clarence Thomas, Ron and Rand Paul, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, John Stossel and Andrew Napolitano are all Rand devotees. The Randian viewpoint is one of extolling the sanctity of greed, of YOYO, you're on your own, economics.
There's just one thing about all that. It's all based on a colossal fraud. Rand vehemently opposed government intervention in helping the less fortunate. No welfare, no Social Security, no Medicaid/Medicare. And, all the while she was espousing this hard right, libertarian/conservative viewpoint, she was actually taking Social Security and Medicare from the very government she despised.
Republican/libertarian Rand Paul rejects government and all its works. If so, then why has he worked so very hard to get on the government payroll at $174,000 per year?
A recent article making the rounds says that the brain structure of liberals and conservatives are physically different. The brain area that controls analytical ability is larger in liberals than in conservatives, and the area that controls threat assessment is larger in conservatives than liberals. The study didn't look into the ability of conservatives to invent threats, to see threats where none exist. Republicans see just about everything as a threat.
State Senator Bruce Caswell of Michigan proposes that children in foster care be allowed to purchase clothing only in used clothing stores. No more needs to be said about such blatant disregard for poor children.
Caswell is a Republican.
Rep. Cliff Stearns tacked on a provision to the bill providing health care to the 9/11 first responders that requires them to be checked against the terrorist watch list before receiving health care.
Stearns is a Republican
The most thoroughly complete statement of what it takes to be a Republican is the statement made by Barbara Bush while viewing the refugees from New Orleans in the Houston Astrodome:
"And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this, this is working very well for them."
Right there, encapsulated in one statement, is the entire Republican philosophy. Here are thousands of people with nothing, homes destroyed, no job, no income, no prospects, with nothing but the clothes they're wearing, and Barbara Bush, who has lived her adult life on a government provided salary, is highly resentful, jealous even, that these underprivileged, destitute people are getting something for free, however little, from the government.
This is an expression of the conservative/Republican idea that economics is a zero sum game. Whatever those people were getting, whatever social programs benefit the poor, the sick, the old, is money that is being taken away from the Republicans.
She also said, when considering the death and destruction that would follow on her son George Bush's declaring war on Iraq:
"It's not relevant. So, why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that?"
I don't think "beautiful" is the word to describe her mind.
Barbara Bush is a Republican.
As mentioned above, Paul Ryan proposes to end Medicare and Medicaid. As an article by Wendell Potter here on OpEdNews points out, this would be a windfall for the insurance companies. There are two benefits to Republicans in Ryan's proposal. One, it turns over trillions of dollars to the insurance companies that they haven't been able to get a cut out of, yet. Two, and most important, it absolves Republicans for the denial of medical care for the needy and allows them to point to the insurance companies as the deniers.
It's insane to turn over responsibility for medical care to companies whose very existence is based on the ability to prevent as much medical care as possible.
As noted, Paul Ryan is a Republican.
Several decades ago, the leader of a central European country said, "All the worldly goods we possess we owe to the struggle of the chosen, all benefits of culture must be introduced more or less with an iron fist." A pretty good synopsis of Republican ideology.
He then went on to bring his country to total collapse and defeat. There are some Republican governors passing a law that allows them to appoint a Gauleter to take over cities they deem in need of a dictator, with the power to occupy the city, usurp the democratically elected leaders, sell off public property to corporations at the corporations price, and take over all assets to do with as he pleases. Welcome to the Republican Reich.
The Thousand Year Reich lasted 12 years. We can hope that the Republican Reich lasts only 730 days. Be sure to vote. I don't have to tell you who never to vote for.
By now, you've gotten the general idea of what Republicans are. They can only see things in black and white. As George Bush said, you're either with us or against us. Nothing in between. But, everything is not either/or. There are degrees that run the spectrum from 0% to 100%. You've known of some people who may be 20% or 40% or 80% psychotic, or paranoid, or psychopaths. And, some of us, called liberal/progressives, can see in color, which no Republican can.
Jared Loughner was caught with a smoking gun at the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson. The Republicans were quick to point out two things. One, it was not a political shooting. They said this, even though the primary target was a politician and it was at a political event. Two, the shooting was in no way motivated by the violent rhetoric of the Republicans.
Item one above is obviously false. It was political. Item two is probably true. When it's shown that Loughner was the shooter, it will also be true that he didn't have to be motivated by violent rhetoric. He merely dug down into that same Republican viewpoint expressed so eloquently by Barbara Bush and took it to it's ultimate extreme: that there are some people who are undeserving of consideration as fellow human beings and are undeserving of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Republicans in congress have varying percentages of this viewpoint, none approaching the 100% level, because they haven't yet started going around shooting people at random, but still, it's there. They don't have enough of whatever it is that took Loughner all the way there.
Fred Phelps demonstrates at military funerals, saying that he's glad for dead soldiers and that we're going to hell because we are tolerant of gay people. The Republicans are notoriously anti-gay, against any and all efforts to allow gay people to share our culture and society. Phelps is just doing the same thing as the Republicans and gets his inspiration from the same place as the Republicans. Instead of being only 40% or 50% or 60% anti-gay as the Republicans are, he goes the full route to 100%. It's the same thing, it just varies by amount.
President Obama is proud of his "compromising" with the Republicans. The Republicans told him that they had some demands that they might be willing to compromise on. They asked him for two arms and two legs. Obama compromised by only giving up one arm and one leg, and hobbles to the microphone on double crutches and brags about how well he did. He doesn't notice that all of the Republicans still have both arms and both legs and are sniggering at him as he hobbles around.
The US has some severe problems. Recession, unemployment, financial crisis, housing crisis, decreasing income, increasing poverty. But, we only have one really big problem.
You guessed it. Republicans.
Ed Martin is an ordinary person who is recovering from being badly over-educated. Born in the middle of the Great Depression, he is not affiliated with nor a member of any political, social or religious organization. He is especially interested in the phenomenon of those who view the glaringly obvious with total incomprehension, in other words, out political, social and religious leaders.