Friday, April 12, 2019

The Politics of Hate and Totalitarianism

From Chronicles:
During an Iowa town hall last week, "Beto" O'Rourke, who had pledged to raise the level of national discourse, depicted President Donald Trump's rhetoric as right out of Nazi Germany. Trump "describes immigrants as 'rapists' and 'criminals'" and as "'animals' and 'an infestation,'" said Beto. "Now, I might expect someone to describe another human being as 'an infestation' in the Third Reich. I would not expect it in the United States of America." The crowd lustily cheered the analogy. 
By week's end, Beto's Third Reich comparison had been matched in nastiness by Bernie Sanders' description of the president to the cheering activists of Al Sharpton's National Action Network: "It gives me no pleasure to say this but today we have a president who is a racist, sexist, a homophobe, a xenophobe and a religious bigot." 
Sanders managed to appeal to almost all elements of the Democrats' coalition by accusing Trump of hating blacks, women, gays, foreigners and Muslims. Sanders' outline of Trump calls to mind Hillary Clinton's now-famous attack on the white working-class folks who would give Trump his victory: "(Y)ou could put half of Trump's supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables . . . racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic—you name it . . . he has lifted them up." 
Where Hillary's slander of the Donald's MAGA constituents as a thoroughly rotten crowd of Americans came two months before the 2016 election, Bernie's assault on Trump's character comes fully 20 months before the 2020 election. If this is the level of discourse from Beto and Bernie, two of the leading candidates for the nomination, two years from Election Day, 2020 looks to be one of the ugliest campaigns in American history. And what does it say about democracy if this is the character of politics at the highest level in the world's leading democracy? When such language is deployed without admonition from the major media, what does that say about the sincerity of the media's calls to unite and heal the country? (Read more.)

Why stupidity is dangerous. From Intellectual Takeout:
Upon closer observation, it becomes apparent that every strong upsurge of power in the public sphere, be it of a political or a religious nature, infects a large part of humankind with stupidity. … The power of the one needs the stupidity of the other. The process at work here is not that particular human capacities, for instance, the intellect, suddenly atrophy or fail. Instead, it seems that under the overwhelming impact of rising power, humans are deprived of their inner independence and, more or less consciously, give up establishing an autonomous position toward the emerging circumstances. The fact that the stupid person is often stubborn must not blind us to the fact that he is not independent. In conversation with him, one virtually feels that one is dealing not at all with him as a person, but with slogans, catchwords, and the like that have taken possession of him. He is under a spell, blinded, misused, and abused in his very being. Having thus become a mindless tool, the stupid person will also be capable of any evil and at the same time incapable of seeing that it is evil. This is where the danger of diabolical misuse lurks, for it is this that can once and for all destroy human beings. (Read more.)

The siren song of socialism. From The American Thinker:
The younger generation of Americans do not fear a totalitarian state, where they pay into a system in which the benefits can be accessed only by those with government influence, because younger Americans are already living in that state. The only difference is that those who are receiving the benefit of their labor are not some elite class of rulers from among their own people, but rather those who have the political and cultural power to redirect that wealth. This is namely a migrant class that has become the dominant force in American politics as well as other groups that have been able to establish power to give themselves legal preferences in education, contracting, and protections. 
To pull the younger generation back from the lure of "socialism," we must demonstrate both that the rule of law still applies within the U.S. and reassert equality under the law — without delay and without exception. The government must also provide a minimal level of care and benefits for those who pay into the system without allowing threats of violence to pull those resources to citizens of other nations or to be used disproportionately on those who rely solely on those benefits for generations without efforts to rise above those benefits. (Read more.)

No comments: