An “Ideological Left?” Are you kidding me?

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

(I wrote this as a comment in Budhy’s essay about forming a left ideology, and decided to write it as an essay.)

An “Ideological Left?”  Are you kidding me?    

Talking about a “progressive agenda” is like people sitting around talking about what they’d do if they won the lotto, or prisoners talking about what they’re gonna eat as their first meal once they get out of jail.

The world is not left-and-right any more, not one bit.

The whole notion of even calling something “left” is, frankly, kind of silly.

Listen, what we currently have in place is a thoroughly corrupt government, corrupt media, and corrupt corporate system, all of which exist in a conspiratorial circle-jerk where they all help each other out, to continue their consolidation of corrupt power.

There is only one way to get ANYWHERE right now, and that is to eliminate corruption from the system.

I mean, we cannot even TALK about a “progressive agenda” or “right vs left” until these things are addressed and dealt with.

Right now the entire government exists to provide Corporate Welfare and legal protection to a corrupt corporate class.   The media is there to do the same, and to propagandize the people into not being aware of any of this, and for the people to blame each other rather than those who are behind all the corruption.

In this battle, politics shouldn’t play a part.   Corruption is corruption, thievery is thievery, gangsterism is gangsterism.

All Americans need to realize that they are being SCREWED, and band together to get rid of the screwers so that we can get back to the quaint notions of discussing whether we should have small government, states’ rights, etc. etc. etc.  

We are being robbed blind by a ruling class who has hijacked the government itself, and has bought the media.

Listen, one year ago, I had to travel to visit my father, to help him out because he had fallen seriously ill.    He is a very intelligent man, an engineer with three graduate degrees, a career Army veteran, and is about as well informed as I am, only on the opposite side of the universe.  He is an unrepentant right-winger.    And so is his wife, my stepmom.    She is ignorant, relatively uneducated, racist, fearful, and superstitious.    She listens to Rush like he’s a member of the familiy.   They watch only Fox News.   They are the die-hard, right wing fundamentalist “Christian” types that represent a significant portion of the electorate, probably in the 25% range.  

As I was travelling is when the stock market fell 777 points, and the “bailout” was announced.

Never before in my life, and in a way that I never thought would happen, we were all on the same page.   We, for ONCE in our lives, AGREED on what was going on — that we were getting ripped off and SHAFTED.

It was, really, a beautiful moment.   We could talk about what was going on and be in agreement, for the first time ever.  

Americans all across the country felt the same way.  For, oh, about a week or two.   Then we all got distracted by the bullshit election (and the election WAS bullshit, seeing as how Obama is just another tool of the same fucking elite rich bastards who committed all these crimes), and we all moved on, and we all thought “oh well there’s really nothing we can do”.

But underneath all of that is STILL a festering realization that we’ve all been shafted.  Not the left, not the right, not the moderates, but ALL of us.

And that is what needs to happen, is we all need to get together and realize “okay, wait a minute, lets put our idealogical issues aside for a while and GET RID OF THESE LYING THEIVING MOTHERFUCKERS WHO HAVE TAKEN ALL OUR MONEY and who are LAUGHING THEIR ASSES OFF AT US.”

Which leads me, for one, back to TocqueDeville’s essay on the Guillotine.

I, for one, am for peaceful acts rather than violent ones.   Although I do honestly believe that a few brooks-brother-suited corpses hanging from lamposts would have a MONUMENTAL affect on the way these people operate.

How much shit will Americans eat?

That is really the only question worth talking about.

Beyond that, who really gives a shit about progressive agendas?   A progressive agenda is never gonna happen as long as pirates are running the show.   Talking about it is pure fantasy, it’s masturbation.

I’ve long advocated a new party, one that represents nothing but Common Sense.  In fact, I would call it the Common Sense Party.   It wouldn’t have anything to do with “left” or “right” or any of the crap that’s entrapped us for generations now, it would be about looking at problems and figuring out how to fix them.

The biggest problem right now is that Corporate Welfare has destroyed this country.  Corporate Welfare has led to the corruption we now are experiencing.

Military spending?   It’s not “defense”, it’s Corporate Welfare.   The money we spend on the “war?”   It’s not really spent on a war, it’s Corporate Welfare, i.e. $400 a gallon for gasoline.   Who gets that money?  Corporations!   Marking up the price every step of the way!    I mean, think about it.  

The money comes from us, goes to the government, and is handed out, sometimes literally, to corporations who then rent PO boxes in the Cayman Islands so they can avoid paying taxes and avoid all the American laws.   They build their factories in China so they can avoid all the American laws including those designed to protect the environment, workers, and so they can avoid paying American workers American wages.

Talking about a “progressive agenda” is like people sitting around talking about what they’d do if they won the lotto, or prisoners talking about what they’re gonna eat as their first meal once they get out of jail.

Talking about “revoking their corporate charters” is the same.  Fantasy.  Ain’t gonna happen.   “Sending them to jail” is a fantasy.  They own the judges, they own the lawmakers, they own everybody.  

So really the only thing worth talking about right now is how do we get out of jail?    Let’s come up with a foolproof escape plan, then we can start bickering about the details of our future.  

Right now there is no future.  There’s only more of the same.


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    • Inky99 on October 26, 2009 at 07:32
  1. eat a ton of shit, if they believe small incremental changes will create the illusion that they get to keep their stuff.

    You have to divorce capitalism from democracy which is precisely what nobody wants to do. For the conservative elite who are robbing you blind those two concepts are wedded so it translates as an attack on democracy itself. FOX perpetuates that constantly, critique capitalism and be seen as an enemy of democracy. Freedom has come to mean consumerism in this country.

    And let’s face it look at China they have capitalism without freedom or civil rights so it is entirely possible to structure a society that way. I think many believe (not you) that the Chinese have some corner on the market of cultural authoritarianism and there is something unique about the American character that makes us naturally more freedom loving and somehow immune when all of the evidence suggests otherwise.

    Even so called progressives lament the passing of America as a positive influence in the universe and want to go back to some mythical good old days when everybody liked us and the economy was good and we set the example for what democracy was supposed to be. I wonder: was it ever really that way at all? For a brief time after WWII white Americans enjoyed some affluence and had decent jobs and it lasted for barely a generation. And even then nobody really gave a fuck about the rest of the world. We helped squash democratic movements in developing countries. We were never all that interested in democracy for other folks unless it merged with capitalist/corporate interests.

    Americans want to like themselves and feel good about themselves and get all defensive when others critique us. When you let adults with the ambitions of kings and the psychological development of three year olds run the world this is what you get. We have been doing it badly for a few generations now. Chicken meet roost.

  2. while reading your piece, what structure you propose to address the obvious problems that you point out and that we all agree on.

    Since our current structures aren’t working

    Then I got to the part where you want to start a new party.

    While saying this shouldn’t be about politics.

    Now I admit that my essay yesterday expressed badly what I am trying to say, (and I am working on that) but…we need a new place to proceed from, a new and different ground to stand on to address all this shit. We are currently standing on the RW’s ground, playing defense, and trying to change the system from within the system that they have already corrupted.

    We need a new place to proceed from, a new ethos.

    Just as you would need to have to start a new party. To start a new party you have to have a platform, a clear delineation, a real distinction from the other parties.

    Imo, in expressing that distinction, no matter what you call  your new party, I will bet you dollars to donuts you would end up having to do EXACTLY what I am talking about….develop an ideology as a moral and ethical frame of reference for your party to deal with the real problem behind all the issues….

    Immorality and lack of ethics that ALLOW everything you talk about in this essay.

    Add to that that you cannot succeed in anything you do if you are just against something. You have to have a positive vision….you have to be FOR something to succeed in building any kind of meaningful movement…otherwise you are just playing defense again.

    To start your party you need an ethos, to do anything to change from the corrupt ethos we now live under you need a new positive ethos to replace it.

    Defining and popularizing that ethos is how I think we will START to get out of jail.

    Thanks for continuing the discussion in your own unique way!

  3. There is only one way to get ANYWHERE right now, and that is to eliminate corruption from the system.

    What’s “corruption”?  The system is, by its own standards, doing perfectly well.  Politics, like everything in a capitalist society, is a commodity.  Political decisions can be bought and sold, like the insurers’ purchase of health care policy currently being processed now in Congress.  It’s business as usual.  For it to be “corrupt,” there would have to be some standard of purity, away from which “corruptness” could be measured.

    Where is that standard of purity?  Candidates need money to fund election campaigns.  Capitalist governments survive to the extent to which they can maintain a “healthy economy,” and a “healthy economy” is something that business oligopolies are good at holding hostage, because they have the power to stage capital strikes.  So politics is going to follow money as long as political decisions are up for sale.  Is it “common sense” that they not be up for sale?  Are you trying to interfere with the “free market” or something?  In short, are you some kind of leftist?

    So you see, then, that you will have to descend into the ideological muck if you wish to deal with what you call “corruption.”   You might even have to address the formations which call themselves “Left” and “Right.”

    Oh, sure, the political classes of all stripes embrace the neoliberal “Washington Consensus” in deed if not in word, and so they are all busy throwing all other structures overboard in order to sustain the monster that corporate profit has become.  But that’s just the political classes.  The people are a different thing.  The politicians adopt masks which say “Left” and “Right” because they have to appeal to the people.  

    Among the “people,” the Right has gotten stuck on ideological notions such as “private property” and the “free market,” thus making it a vehicle for present-day corporate domination.  There is no imagination there: it’s all “God,” “America,” “being a contributing member of society,” “private enterprise,” and other such cliches.  The Left, meanwhile, has become too chickensh*t to do what it used to do, which was to demand alternatives to the existing system of political economy: economic democracy, socialism, anarchism, ecological discipline.  Instead the Left has gotten into begging for crumbs, which allows it to become a vehicle for corporate domination too, but for different reasons.

    The reason I post here and not at RedState is couched in the existence of those popular social/ political formations.  Oh, but I get your point about how “we are being robbed blind by a ruling class who has hijacked the government itself, and has bought the media.”  Whatever you want to do about it, if it’s effective enough to overthrow the elites we probably can’t talk about it online, not without protecting our IP numbers from surveillance.

    What we can do here, however, is inflame the imagination.  People have no mental picture of radical change, and thus they do not anticipate the radical transformations which will take place in their lives and in the lives of their children with the further onset of (to give just one example) abrupt climate change.  What we can do here is paint those pictures for them.  The Left might be open to such pictures of the imagination — the Right, I doubt it.

    • robodd on October 26, 2009 at 20:32

    or displaying corporatist tendencies the subject of such social ridicule and opprobrium that no one will even dare to be one.

    This is about an acceptable “manner of being,” not ideology.  This is really what the sixties was about.

  4. either inside party reform or a new party? Historically political parties who don’t generate support or are obsolete die off or get merged into new coalitions. I vote for both. Inside and out. Locally it’s easier to invade the Democrats, precinct by precinct as Dean said. We already in a way have a third party in the Indies who are huge and going to get bigger as this ‘change’ unfolds. They have no ideological loyalty to either the right or left. I think it would take decades which we don’t have to build a new party not to mention a lot o’money. If somehow the Democratic end of the party could combine with the left leaning common sense indies it would be enough, the combination’s, coalitions are actually endless as far as politic goes. Populous is grassroots, and if your starting from scratch people are going to be dubious about the legitimacy of a new party, unless it has the backing and support of known leaders.  The Senate and Executive would be really hard to  win as it is so centralized, and funded.      

    We have the beginnings of mutiny within the Dems already speaking up the progressive caucus and Grayson, Dean, Kucinich, more… The House is where we can make a difference as the actual people in the districts and precincts are more willing to listen and take on the machine pols who are funded by the big money. you can effectively primary out the bad dogs. I think that the Dems could easily lose so big that they could end up like the Republicans a shell with only the most ignorant supporting it. Meanwhile work on issues like campaign reform and be the trouble making rabble who won’t STFU or be marginalized. Seems like a new party would benefit from systemic reform that would allow it to even begin. Just my two cents.

    btw.. The hippies had one thing wrong. They were a counter culture, they sought change outside the system or via revolution. I once went to a political rally consisting of the so called poliical leaders Jerry Rubin, Eldrich Cleaver , a bunch of them  and they were scary I wouldn’t have wanted these dudes to have power any more then chest thumpers we had in power then or now.  

    The peace love values were great but easily co-opted once they hit the wall of the real world. Most of the good social change is from  the 60’s. Too bad they cooked up the culture war to tear these values down. Also too bad that a lot went right from being peace and love into screw you yuppies.                

  5. …I’m gonna buy Post 306, American Legion, and paint it red with five gold stars. Gonna donate half my money to the city so they have to name a street or a park after me. Gonna buy all the girls on my block a bottle of French perfume and a quart of the finest Highland Scotch.

  6. Right now the entire government exists to provide Corporate Welfare and legal protection to a corrupt corporate class.  

    IN fact, it’s the hegemonic ideology.

    Anyone that thinks that they are “non-ideological” is simply admitting that they subscribe to the elements of the hegemonic ideology of their society.  In contemporary America, those ideological components are neoliberal capitalism, individualism, American exceptionalism, and increasingly, authoritarianism.  

    The failure to mobilize the public against the bank bailout was precisely due to the lack of an antithesis to the hegemonic ideology of neoliberal capitalism, and since that IS the right wing ideology, therefore the failure was precisely the lack of a left ideology that could provide a basis for critique and organizing against the double-plunder.  The fact that “right-wingers” were upset at the ripoffs doesn’t mean that the ripoffs were contrary to right-wing ideology, it means that no alternative had been presented to them.  That if a clear cogent, intellectually consistent social critique that exposed and rejected the systematic imposition of the plunder on us (ya know, an ideology) then maybe those people would realize they aren’t right-wingers at all and you’d find them agreeing with you on more and more issues.

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