Verb! That’s What’s Happening (We’re All Raaaaacists Now)

19 09 2009

(read the whole essay here!)

John O’Sullivan’s first law is that groups that aren’t specifically right-wing tend to become left-wing over time. I believe this because the process is pretty easy to understand and see as it happens. The Right by its very nature as conservatives is reactionary — acting to stop some sort of social change. The kind of small-l liberalism that lies behind the great social movements begins in order to address some perceived hole or injustice in the current social structure. There is nothing wrong with this. indeed, it’s the finest tradition of “liberalism” that they are about liberty — freeing other human beings from the yoke of oppression.

That brings us to “Verb! (That’s What’s Happening)” and the sad decay of a once powerful and important word in our language — racism.

This is the latest essay in my “Politics of Schoolhouse Rock” series and it’s one I was a bit scared of writing. It’s about the health care debate, tea parties, the word “racist,” and how social movements get co-opted to serve agendas that would horrify their founders and lead those they purport to liberate to a place very different than where they think they’re going. Plus it’s got a real catchy tune.

I have no doubt that some who read it will be quick to level the charge of “racism” and it shows how much power that word still has in our society that hearing it leveled at me will no doubt sting. To this I can merely throw up my hands and say that if wishing for a society where we are judged by the content of our character rather than the color of our skin is racist, I’ll take that hit. In the end, the only way to have a truly color-blind society is start acting color-blind.

As Stacy McCain would say, please remember that there are five “A’s” in raaaaacism

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Obama Wipes the Raid

1 09 2009

This is easily the most succinct description of the health care reform debacle I’ve read in a while:

From Maggie’s farm:

Let me get this straight…

We’re going to pass a health care plan written by a committee whose head says he doesn’t understand it, passed by a Congress that hasn’t read it but exempts themselves from it, signed by a president that also hasn’t read it (and who smokes) with funding administered by a treasury chief who didn’t pay his taxes, overseen by a surgeon general who is obese, and financed by a country that’s nearly broke.

What possibly could go wrong?

Pro-reform advocates are pushing how wonderful passing this legislation would be as a tribute to the late Ted Kennedy. The thing is, love him or hate him, Kennedy was one of the most effective legislators of our time. President Ted Kennedy would have ridden a filibuster-proof majority in Congress, a sympathetic media, an opposition party that’s nothing but a speed bump at this point and the memory of George W. Bush into a signing ceremony so fast it’d make your head spin.

The greatest irony here is that no matter which side of the debate you’re on, nothing shows the ineptness of the the Obama administration more than their horrible mishandling of health insurance reform. To get it back to massively multiplayer gaming terminology, Obama’s trying to take on the biggest boss in the dungeon and he keeps getting wiped on the trash mobs. Here’s a free tip, Mr. President: fire Robert Gibbs. He’s supposed to be your Main Tank and he’s clearly not specc’ed for this.

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