( – promoted by buhdydharma )
Kevin Holsinger’s diary today reminded me that certain people on the political right like to characterize websites such as Daily Kos, Media Matters, and MoveOn as “far-left”.
Holsinger quotes O’Reilly:
The reason the Democratic candidates boycotted Fox News was that the far-left Internet crazies told them to do it. Websites like the Daily Kos and Media Matters, which spit out anti-conservative hatred everyday, made it clear to the Democrats that anyone dealing with Fox would be punished. The creepy radical-left organization MoveOn.org, which raises serious money for liberal candidates, seconded the motion.
Clearly, certain people on the right are so denuded of imagination that they really don’t understand what “far-left” means. I think it might be good to give them an education.
So. Mr. O’Reilly,
Allow me to explain something.
The policies advocated on Daily Kos would, for the most part, get laughed out of town in an average civilized nation as being far, far, too right. By “average civilized nation” I mean “on planet Earth”, and by “policies advocated on DailyKos” I mean “compromises with a government and a political culture not on planet Earth, but Pluto, in terms of acceptable debate.”
By way of contrast, your own views, Mr. O’Reilly, would not be considered “conservative” or “right-wing” in an average civilized country; they would be considered quite literally insane, deluded, indications of a touched mind. Your views are views that, if actually carried out, with no resistance from those desperately clinging to moderation — with no resistance, that is, from those you charactize as “far-left crazies” — would result in the destruction of any country that implemented them. In about a week.
[Bill] O’Reilly: Alright. That’s basically a signal that he [George W. Bush] wants to reform Social Security and by privatization. He wants to set up medical savings accounts ..
[Dick] MORRIS: And a flat tax.
O’Reilly: … and he wants to reform the tax code.
MORRIS: Wants to move to a flat tax.
O’Reilly: All of those things are noble goals, but he again – is going to meet resistance form the hard left that doesn’t want to do any of them. Why doesn’t the hard left wanna do any of this?
No, Bill. Those are not noble goals. Those are adolescent goals which, if enacted, would ruin the lives of millions upon millions of people. They are fantasies cherished in a masturbatory rightist Middle Earth. The BDSM of conservative politics — policies which you like to play at wanting but which would cause you to run whining home to your blankie in the same calendar month they were enacted.
There’s a 15% flat tax in Iraq, right now, Bill. Bremer foisted it on them. He then left Iraq.
So, Bill, those of us you so ignorantly disparage as “hard left” have to waste our time talking about how we don’t “wanna do any of this” and as much as anything we do it to save your pathetic scrawny ass from ending up either under a bridge or on the end of a pike raised triumphantly by your own biggest fans, after they inquired as to why you told them to vote for their own starvation.
“Hard left” is not the rejection of your positively murderous “noble goals,” Bill. It’s much more than that. Some of us on DailyKos, some of us, have actual “hard-left” views. We don’t talk about them much, these views have little use in the Plutonic Tundra of contemporary American political discourse, where we all, center, left, “hard-left”, and, increasingly, “center-right”, huddle together to keep warm.
But since you seem to need the education, Bill, here is what an actual “hard-left”-winger, like me, believes.
You better take a breath.
We believe that the treament of labor and land as commodities is the most violent fiction ever imposed upon the human species.
We believe that if labor were really to behave like a commodity, it would almost always be on strike, as workers bargained for the best price of the day’s trading for their labor. Workers cannot do this because workers need to eat. This is the double-lie of the “labor market” at work, and it results in “wage-slavery”, which is not called that for nothing.
We believe that seperating human needs from “human rights” gives the violence of the market a white-wash and a pass. Denying a person a house is the same as kicking her out of one, and it is only the fiction of an impersonal “market” that lets anyone think, or forces them to think, that they are not their sister’s keeper.
We believe that all depersonalized power tends to centralize, and the only question is whether it will centralize into institutions open to democratic discussion — i.e. governments, or else into institutions not open to democratic discussion — i.e. “corporations”. We believe that an atrocity committed by a company is no better than one committed by a goverment. Speeding up the private factory line is no different than ruining the public water-works, in terms of the people whose lives it makes worse.
We believe that debates over “social values” are a distraction, an indication of what the corporate-owned media does not consider important. If everyone is debating abortion it’s because it’s better, from a top-down point of view, than debating workers’ rights, or slave-labor in China. That we have no choice, because we also believe abortion is a human right, does not make this less frusterating.
In other words, Bill, we think your “Culture Warrior” facade is part of one of the biggest shams in American history.
We believe every African American should be given $100,000, cash. Tomorrow morning.
We believe every member of a Native American tribe should be given $100,000, cash. Tomorrow morning.
We believe, at the least, that that is the frame in which debates about reparations should be couched. And we believe above all that African Americans and Native Americans should get the first and last word in that debate.
We believe that the military industrial complex should be disbanded. We believe the United States should have no standing Army. None. Zero. We think Dick Morris might be on to something when he said, talking to you . . .
No democracy would ever start a war of aggression.
. . . but we take that comment, unlike Dick himself, to be evidence that we don’t live in a democracy.
We will not consider women to have achieved equality until 51 Senators, 218 Congresspeople, and 5 Supreme Court Justices are women. We will at least consider that, if it becomes the predictable norm, to be a start.
We believe in community theater. We believe in funding the arts. We believe art that never offends is not doing its job.
We believe typical foreign policy discussions in the United States are nothing short of insane.
We don’t hate America. We criticize America because we believe it is the bare minimum of moral honesty to criticize institutions over which we have at least nominal control first. There is no bravery and not much efficacy in criticizing Putin. Further, we believe America is the most powerful country in the history of the world; as such, like Excalibur, it is dangerous.
We believe there is something extremely suspect about a political party that does not think the Bill of Rights is worth 3,000 civilian lives.
We believe George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Douglas Feith, Frederick Kagan, Henry Kissinger and Condoleeza Rice should be in the Hague.
Further, we believe Bill Clinton, George H. W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, and quite possibly Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford should be or should have been in the Hague.
We believe Madeleine Albright is one of the worst human beings we have ever seen on television, for her “We think it’s worth it” comment, and policy. But she has a long, long, long list of competitors.
We believe life is not a competition.
We believe human happiness is possible.
We believe in the essential goodness of people. We do not think that finding, say, four people in North Carolina who gamed the welfare system is evidence of anything at all about human nature, though it says something about the people who would claim so.
We believe people can be tricked. We think the system is the trick. We think it is immoral to trick people.
You want “hard-left”? There it is, Bill. That’s part of it.
For right now, though, I will settle for hating you, and laughing at your lack of imagination.