- IL politics
- teachers' letters
- pension analyses
- ed reform
- college adjuncts
- fair solutions
- fair taxation
- charter schools
- DB v. DC
- poisoning children
- Pharma Greed
- Standing Rock
- zorn v. brown
- AP students
- Apollo & Zoe
Sunday, September 25, 2011
Dialogue between a young, tea-party member and an old man
Recently, I received an email from a young man. In the Subject Heading, it read: "Still Think Governor Walker Is Bad for Wisconsin? Good Stuff Is Happening in Wisconsin!"
A list followed in the email regarding the "good stuff [that] is happening in Wisconsin" such as saving large amounts of money by cutting funds to Wisconsin’s public school districts, enacting merit-pay systems and collective bargaining reforms for public school teachers, decreasing "school" property taxes, eliminating 1,000 government jobs… You get the idea.
I wrote the tea-party member back, using the typical liberal rant about neo-conservatism and its perpetuation of the "corporatists" crusade; he instantly replied:
"With all due respect, I think you are losing your marbles. You started your article with words such as "neo" and "blitzkrieg", yet you quote and resource the likes of Naomi Klein and Robert Reich. These are two socialists who would love to see Marxism in this country. They remind me of an earlier socialist group, the national socialist party, or NAZI for short. You may be getting caught up in their propaganda and their mastery of manipulation."
Most people who call others "socialists" usually do not understand the concept of socialism; they vaguely understand even the fallacious over-simplifications of most theories that they hear reiterated typically in scare-mongering political debates and from media talk-show hosts. These people that use the term socialism use it as a negative, connotative, name-calling device to frighten others primarily to capitalize on and perpetuate their audience’s profound ignorance. This is a means of "propaganda" and "manipulation" of the populace.
For the record, I am not a socialist or a communist; I am not a fascist either; moreover, I do not believe in monarchs and aristocracies; I do not believe in theocracies and the "divine right of kings." I am not a utilitarian; I am not part of the U.S. plutocracy, (nor would I ever want to be); I am definitely not a "tea partier" (a person who utters sanctimonious platitudes about abstract concepts without intelligent understanding of the ideas or our country's complex problems)! Furthermore, I do not believe that an ideal democracy or republic can exist, for often times the majority rule (a form of tyranny in itself) is morally wrong and the minority is right. I believe in an ethical and moral capitalism but that, of course, is an oxymoron.
I have little faith in man and his political, economic and religious beliefs and objectives, for they often beget hypocrisy, greed, genocide, terrorism, slavery, oppression, and ignorance. I believe what Alexis de Tocqueville pointed out more than 150 years ago: that American democracy will never reconcile the conflicting demands of individual freedom and its civil liberties. I believe that Jefferson and Madison (who were also both members of the "privileged" class at that time) would not approve of the today's "so-called" democracy, though they would recognize that today’s American plutocracy, with its vast wealth and power, has created horrible injustices in this country and abroad.
He replied succinctly:
"What tea party are you referring to? The one seen on liberal TV networks? The tea party I know wants the government out of our way. The only un-intelligent idea this tea partier has is to let man rule himself. I guess that's too difficult for some folk!"
I am not referring to the tea-party "clowns" who are analyzed on liberal TV networks. I am referring to some of the idiotic ideas that have actually spewed from the mouths of the "so-called" leaders of this band of morons (oops! please forgive my name-calling): Bachmann, Palin, Beck, O'Donnell, Paul, Meckler, etc., those who rant on Fox News and its ilk.
It fascinates me that you want "the government out of [your] way?" Let me ask you few questions regarding "the only unintelligent idea this tea partier has is to let man rule himself": Do you want to collect social security and Medicare when you're an old man like your mom? Would you collect welfare if you lost your job right now? Will you need no government assistance in the future (because you have saved enough money for your retirement)? Would $2 million be enough for 25 to 30 years of retirement?
Do you visit public libraries, museums, and parks? Do you drive on public highways and streets? Do you walk on sidewalks? Do you discard your garbage at a landfill once a week? Do you send your children to public schools? Did you go to public schools? Do you want firemen to come to your home when it's burning? Do you want policemen to come to your home when it's burglarized? Do you want safety inspections of the food your family eats and the water your family drinks? Do you want a postal service? Do you want prisons for felons? Do you want a Veterans Affairs Department or a Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, or the Department of Justice and the court systems? How about a Department of Defense? Do you want a navy, army, Marine Corps, and air force to protect you from foreign invasions? How about the National Guard? How about the Nuclear Security Administration and NASA…? Sure, let's get rid of our officious government and privatized services!
By the way, there are literary works, historical references, and philosophical treatises that analyze the impossibility of the notion that "man [can] rule himself." Do you understand the ramifications of what tea-party people say, particularly about eliminating government and establishing self-rule?
"That's absurd, we need a government. The tea party started at the end of Bush/beginning of Obama (the over spending of all the states as well). How about spending less than the amount taken in? How about social security keeping pace with the higher average? Instead, we elect morons like Quinn who raises my income tax to fund the past, not even the future. Then (expletive deleted) [he] needs more so he raises the tolls, AGAIN! Instead of cutting useless programs, he acts like a crack cocaine addict who needs money for his habit and will steal to get it! Go ahead and compare Quinn to Walker and you will see the truth."
My final reply:
Wasn't it Rick Santelli who started the so-called "Tea Party," which is funded by the billionaire Koch Brothers and other despicable capitalists? How ironic is it that Santelli didn't rant about the major U.S. mortgage companies and major banks that brought down the economy to the brink of disaster during 2007-09. How ironic is it that Santelli's foolish Tea Party members oppose government intervention in the private sector (Big Bank regulations...) and taxation. How ironic is it that our tax money bailed out the so-called Big Banks that "couldn't fail." In regard to your statement, "How about spending less than the amount taken in?": That’s called saving, isn’t it? However, isn’t that contrary to the American way of living? And about Quinn? I’ll email you tomorrow (or perhaps never).