Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Circular Firing Squad...

Darwin was wrong.

The idea that living organisms evolve in order to take advantage of the circumstances of their environment, and adapt to changing conditions in order to assure the survival of the species, is belied by the existence of a certain subsection of the American electorate which is apparently so stupid and so stubborn that they are doing everything in their power to ensure their own disappearance.

And in the process, make life hell for everyone else.

This strange creature, which seemingly has embraced suicide as a strategy, is a certain brand of person who goes by a most deceptive, inaccurate, and self-bestowed appellation.

They call themselves "True Conservatives".

I need to back up a little bit here, and explain how it is that I got here.

The idea began, as so many ideas begin these days (sadly), with an argument on Facebook. The particular details will be talked about in a moment, but what is vital to the tale is an explanation of the mindset of this peculiar genus of human being, and the damage they are doing not only to themselves, but to an entire civilization.

A political Conservative, in the American sense, is someone who believes in the preservation of Classical Liberalism. The term has different meanings in different political cultures, and I'm not about to run down the differences between, say, the American Brand and the English or European one, because this is not necessary at present. Now, for the less politically-astute, reading that Conservatives are actually Liberals may be disconcerting. Those people are, right this very second, fighting to keep their heads from exploding. For their benefit, I will define Classical Liberalism in the hopes that their confusion over terminology might be lessened, and the local emergency room will have one less aneurysm to deal with.

In a nutshell: Classical Liberalism is a political philosophy that holds that the individual is sovereign. Not government, not bureaucracy, not The Law, not a group, but the individual. Governments and all that come with them are established only with the consensus of free individuals co-operating of their own free will, and only for the purposes of ensuring that the conditions of Liberty necessary for the individual to thrive and prosper are maintained. Under Classical Liberalism, the individual has particular rights (natural rights) which are bestowed upon them by virtue of their being alive. It holds that sovereign individuals have political, human and economic rights, and that the function of government is to protect and advance these rights. Classical Liberalism is also a philosophy devoted to progress in all areas of human endeavor.

Do not be misled by the modern bastardization of the term 'Liberal', either, for today's Liberal is no such thing. This is a deliberate obfuscation that was consciously undertaken in the early 20th Century by political douchebags in order to deceive the less politically-astute and aware into following communism and socialism. Today's Progressive Liberal is anything but: he seeks to limit the freedom of the individual by taking things away (his money, property, rights, choices), and wants to arrest progress in the cause of exerting greater control over his fellow men (see: Global Warming, ObamaCare, Welfare State).

Today's Liberal is really little more than a tyrant in democratic clothing, but he's no different from the old despots of old, excepting that he believes he's smarter than they were, more caring than they were, more enlightened than they were, and that this gives him the ability to avoid the mistakes that the older despotic governments made. Unfortunately for them, human beings are not perfect, and the flaws in their particular philosophy become all too apparent, eventually, mostly because Reality has a funny way of making it's presence felt.

What a Conservative is, in this context, is someone who seeks to preserve the tenets of Classical Liberalism under the American Constitutional System.

But even this term, 'Conservative', has been warped by those who, for all intents and purposes, act much like the 'Liberals' they despise so much. Today, the 'Conservative', especially ones of a particular religious bent, is no different than his most rabidly 'Liberal' opponent. 'Liberals' are not the only ones who try to hide their true intentions behind flowery language and false labels, you know.

In the case of this Facebook argument, it basically went like this. Some asshole posted an article on his/her wall about ObamaCare and how the government knew that it would be an unmitigated disaster. Out of the woodwork came the True Conservatives, not because they had anything intelligent to add to the ensuing posting conversation, but because it was an opportunity to engage in their favorite sports of chest beating and baiting Liberals.

These doofuses began posting their usual nonsense. Stop me if you've heard these before:

1. If only we had elected a True Conservative, and the GOP had nominated any True Conservatives in the last two election cycles, we'd not have these problems, and this failure of a President would be herding cats...sorry, community organizing... and having other people write fake autobiographies for him back in Kenya, already.

2. Now that everything is so completely fucked up, it is the perfect time for True Conservatives to rise up and take control of the GOP, and thence, the Nation, in order to save it.

3. The current political climate is such that their particularly harsh brand of Conservatism (heavy on God, Guns and anti-Gay stuff) will be exceptionally palatable to an American electorate that has only rejected it the previous 400 times it's been tried. Now, apparently, the country has no other choice.

4. President Obama is God's punishment of America for abandoning it's True Conservative principles.

5. If the GOP would just stop nominating RINO's (Republicans in Name Only), like Mitt Romney and John McCain, there wouldn't be a democratic party to have to compete with, and the country would be in wonderful shape, with a glorious future and Angels descending from the heavens to bestow lollipops and candy canes on God's most beloved people. Or something similar...

That'll do in order to make the case against it all.

Look, I'm not Liberal,  but neither an I a Conservative. I once thought I was a Conservative, but that was before the error of my ways was explained to me by the True Conservatives who skulk under rocks and lick each other's scrotums over at FreeRepublic.com (who believe in Free Speech so much that they banned me for daring to ask the question: "If Ronald Reagan was divorced and can be lionized as a great American Hero, why can't Rudy Giuliani -- who was to the right of Reagan on many issues -- be afforded the same consideration, especially when he is more conservative that Reagan?" They only like Free Speech when it tells them what they want to hear).

At that point, it was explained to me that one could not like a Gay-loving, gun-grabbing, God-hating, divorced, RINO piece of shit who once wore a dress on TV (funny, they thought that was all hunky-dory, and hilarious, when Uncle Miltie was doing it back in the day) as a Presidential Candidate and still consider themselves a Conservative, much less a republican.

Don't try to apply logic to that argument. It cannot be defended on logic, nor by facts. Because if you did try to apply both to the dialectic, and had the perseverance to hammer square pegs into round holes on the theory, you'd soon expose the True Conservative for what he  (it's usually a He. Women tend to gravitate towards the Liberal side of extremism) really is: -- a religious bigot -- and the more you hammer away at this, the shriller and nastier they get, much like Liberals are when they are in danger of being exposed.

Generalization: the True Conservative is someone who is preoccupied and obsessed with Guns, Religion and Gays. They believe in an American past which is largely folklore and fairy tales. Much like today's Liberal, they believe that only by forcing the greater mass of society to accept their mentally-constipated ideals (they call them "principles", and wear this stupidity as a badge of honor) can America be returned to a supposed Golden Age wherein we're always right, we're always the greatest, and the Ten Commandments can posted on everything from public buildings to condom wrappers.

True, most are not this ridiculously extreme. But by and large the self-professed True Conservative is an obnoxious asshole who is every bit as repulsive as the Taliban. In fact, they share a great deal, in terms of behavior, with that terrorist organization (they just haven't blown anything up...yet); they are convinced of the righteousness of the their cause because it is they, and only they, who are in possession of the ability to divine both the Will of God, and the intention of the Founding Fathers. Much like the Taliban claims to be the true inheritors of the Divine Word and the Prophet. But, I digress...

Anyway, I had the questionable taste to mention that if only certain segments of the political right had not been blinded by their mental disorders, Mitt Romney might have won and things might be quite different. I clarified this statement by saying that if the 'True' Conservatives had only held their noses, and Evangelicals hadn't been so bigoted as to not vote for a Mormon, we'd be living under a Romney administration and most (by no means all) of what they hate about the current American Condition would be somewhat ameliorated. I had the audacity to suggest that people who sat home, deliberately not exercising their franchise as a means of "sending a message to the GOP" or because Pastor Bob told them they'd burn in in hell for picking the lesser of two evils, had no goddamned right to complain about anything, or claim any special status.

This brought the usual (and expected) name calling. I'm a Liberal Dupe. A RINO. A Gay lover. A heathen. And it was all backed up with the five talking points I have listed above. But, a few of the True Conservatives took pity upon me, and they explained (usually with atrocious spelling and poor grammar) that if the GOP had only selected such luminaries as Tom Tancredo, Duncan Hunter and Mike Hucakbee as it's Torch Bearer in the last few election cycles, we'd all be golden.

The Gays would have been put back in their place.

The Mexicans would have been put back in their place, too.

The democratic party would have been shattered forever.

Socialism would be vanquished in both thought and deed.

A Second American Revolution would have taken place, and the country would be hurtling at light speed towards The Promised Land, and the world would be made safe for the return of Christ.

None of these things have happened -- and America has suffered for it -- they'll be happy to tell you, because the GOP hates True Conservatives. if the GOP actually loved True Conservatives, then we'd all be living under the Banner of God and Country, manna would fall from the Heavens, we'd all be remarkably rich, there'd be no social ills, no deviancy, no drug addicts, no dirt, no crime, no taxes, no ObamaCare, no MSNBC, the Muzzbags would learn not to mess with us, and dogs and cats would be living in peace and harmony. It is only because the GOP conspires to keep True Conservatives out of public office, and especially the White House, that we're living upon a modern-day Titanic, slowly slipping beneath the waves in a sea of immorality, lawlessness and filth.

Now, this argument needs to be taken apart at it's seams before I go any further.

First and foremost, none of the personalities noted above had a snowball's chance in hell of being elected President of the United States because, for the most part, what they're selling is simply not acceptable to a majority of Americans (remember, you do have to win a majority of votes -- preferably Electoral Votes, in order to win anything under our political system). While they might agree with a Tancredo or a Huckabee on some issues, the public is largely aware of the baggage attached to such a figure.

That baggage, largely consists of the following:

There is a belief that what motivates these men -- and whether this a fair assessment or not is immaterial; it exists -- is another agenda, and that this agenda revolves around their religion, their biases, and the need to play to a certain segment of the American population that a good many clear-thinking people would avoid like Ebola virus. This segment mainly consists of single-issue voters whose personal itches revolve around gun rights, keeping non-white immigrants out of the country, frogmarching the gays and abortionists to the ovens, and ensuring that their brand of brain-crushingly-stupid Christianity becomes the dominant force in American Life.

And yes, that is a hyperbolic generalization, so spare me the avalanche of "but, I'm different..." , or, "but, you don't understand..." e-mail.

Anyways, that is the general impression when it comes to that sort of candidate. It might not always be true, nor even fair, but it is there all the same.

Now, the idea that the True Conservative (defined as religious dickhead with a gun fetish who wants Gay People stoned in the public square) don't get an opportunity to run for the presidency is belied by actual facts. Mike Huckabee ran a close second to John McCain in 2008, and then hung around for no other reason than that he could afterwards. Rick Santorum made a decent showing in the last cycle, staying in the race far beyond any point where he could make a contribution to the public discourse. In fact, it was the more conservative candidates -- Gingrich and Herman Cain being the best examples -- that were knocked out of the race earlier than necessary. Gingrch was hounded out by -- you guessed it -- bad press mostly generated by the True Conservatives (they didn't like the fact that he was an adulterer), and Cain just wasn't ready for Prime Time.

Other candidates, like Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, and Jon Huntsman, were badly flawed in one way or another. Bachmann creeps people out (regardless of whether you agree with her or not), Perry proved that he was a dunce and a bigot with some of the things he had to say about Mormons, Paul is operating on a different level of consciousness than most Americans (debatable as to whether this is good or not), and Huntsman was simply the Little Romney.

The early primary process, which heavily favors Evangelical Christians and doctrinaire conservatives, winnowed out the worst candidates right away, but then went too far (it always does) and got rid of the only real conservative left standing, Gingrich. So, your choice was, by default, between Santorum and Romney, and since Santorum could do little more than talk about abortion and what he had accomplished as a junior senator during the Clinton Years (and nothing since) it was, in effect, the True Conservatives who selected Romney as their candidate. And then they complained about it, that their needs and ideals are being completely ignored.

But then again, they always do.

For a start, this is because they make the mistake of believing there is but one kind of Conservatism, which is to say, their kind. There most certainly is not. For while I'm all in favor of people openly practicing their faith, and owning automatic weapons with cop-killer ammo in order to hunt squirrels and bullet-proof-vest-wearing deer, and while I don't mind people expressing their biases openly and publicly (after all, it's what I do here, ain't it?), and I want the Mooselimbs all blown to kingdom come, and I don't want anymore of this Clinton/Obama/Pelosi brand of Tried-and-Failed Socialism, there's more than one way to skin this cat.

The True Conservative is mostly concerned with social issues, and this blinds him to the other side of the Conservative Coin; the world does not revolve around the issues of religion and cultural turmoil. In fact, government is perhaps the WORST remedy/ally when it comes to many of those issues. Those are issues best left to the individuals that make up society; if you wish to change people's minds about religion, about guns, about not being gay, then do what missionaries have done for thousands of years prior, and go out and convert them to your view, one person at a time. That, however, takes too long, and involves too much work, so the True Conservative instead desires to use the levers of government power to impose a dictatorship that is acceptable to them, much in the same way the Progressive Liberal does.

The two, in terms of their actions, speech and fervor, are basically indistinguishable. If it wasn't for the flannel shirt one wears, and the Man Purse being carried by the other, you'd be hard-pressed to tell them apart.

But Conservatism is much more. There are small government conservatives, low tax and regulation conservatives, law-and-order conservatives, Libertarians, and people who are quite fiscally and governmentally conservative, and yet socially liberal (these, by the way, are all derided by the True Conservative as puppets of the Liberal Establishment, willing dupes who haven't yet understood that they are tying their own noose by not throwing in their lot with people they wouldn't follow through their own front door, i.e. the True Conservatives).

True Conservatives will complain, often and loudly, that in such an electoral environment, with so many competing visions of Conservatism, that they are continuously marginalized, outnumbered, ignored, taken for granted, but nothing could be further from the truth. All one has to do is to look at how well recent True Conservative candidates for Congress/Senate fared in local elections (which was terribly), and one need only remember Todd Akin, the True Conservative candidate for Senate in Missouri last time round, who had this to say about rape victims avoiding abortions because God will be displeased:

“It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Mr. Akin said of pregnancies from rape. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something: I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be of the rapist, and not attacking the child.”

That has been the major problem with this brand of conservatism since the beginning of time; it's messengers are batshit insane, and no matter how hard they try to contain it, the crazy just oozes out of them. Akin was denounced, and rightfully so, for implying that when it comes to rape there is a distinction to be made between the "legitimate' and 'illegitimate' kinds, but in neither case, should  aborting an unwanted fetus that was created as the result of a criminal violation be allowed. Let's not get started on the Middle Ages point-of-view that statement conveys, either. It sounds like superstition grafted onto ideological dogsqueeze.

In the end, Akin did little more than deliver that Missouri Senate seat back to Claire McCaskill, one of the dumbest people alive, and one of  leaders in the fight to turn America into the Soviet Union under the enlightened despotism of Reichsfuhrer Barack Odipshit.

This is what that brand of Conservatism throws up for election, and the fact that this sort of thing (and person) disgusts the general public -- to the point where such candidates loose routinely --  is totally lost upon the True Conservative. They are unable to learn lessons from what is going on around them. They are unable to compromise. They are incapable of pragmatism (in this case, getting what conservatism you can out of the electoral process under current conditions, while keeping your powder dry when you can;'t make any).

They are in the same curious mental state that has marked most marginal left-wing political movements throughout history: it is easier and more psychologically comforting to play the part of the martyr, the lone voice in the wilderness, for it is a romantic vision. In the end, most of those marginal  left-wing political movements failed because they were stuffed to the brim with people who never truly wanted, nor ever expected, to have any sort of power, and who wished to avoid responsibility like it's a syphilitic whore, and because they are stuffed to the brim with ignorant loudmouths who don't truly understand either the foundations or the consequences of what they advocate and agitate for.

And true to form, the True Conservatives in this little Facebook morality play brought out their Big Gun. The threat that they all make when they're about to be blasted from the field of battle; if the GOP doesn't get more conservative, the True Conservatives will go home and take their votes and money with them.

And then we'll be listening to them complain about how the country sucks all over again, because no republican (or even someone who approximates their views) wins for lack of votes and support.

Which leads to another round of "I'm more Conservative Than You" chest beating, more skewed primaries producing flawed candidates, more name-calling, more pointless Facebook arguments, and another round of "if you don't get more Conservative, we'll stay home" bullshit.

The history of the Muslim peoples shows that one reason why they have never advanced beyond the 7th Century is that they are unable to learn the lessons of history. For 1,400 years, it has been axiomatic that whenever a Muslim Army has been defeated, or the ambitions of those who would rebuild the Caliphate checked, that the failure is always marked up to a lack of piety and orthodoxy by those who failed. It is never because they used the wrong strategy, or underestimated their opponents, or made mistakes, but because they lost God's favor. The remedy has always been a resurgence of religious fervor, with stricter standards of orthodoxy (we call this "Islamic Fundamentalism" today), and greater stupidity. Those who are unable to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them.

Those who continuously repeat the same action and expect different results, are insane.

True Conservatives and Islamonazis have much in common, it would appear.

Since the Islamonazi will become extinct in the future through a combination of being unable to adapt to the modern world, unable to learn from his mistakes, and the high explosives those mistakes usually bring in return for being unable to learn and adapt, so will the True Conservative, although I do hope that we don't have to blow them up in the literal sense.

The political atmosphere of Modern America is such that a return to a Classically Liberal state is a distinct possibility. People are fed up by the extremists on both sides, and they feel as if they are under assault -- economically, politically, culturally -- from their own goddamned government. The idea that what America needs right this very second is a high-pressure, high-volume True Conservative enema to flush all the crap away is patently ridiculous, and inherently dangerous. What is needed is for clear-thinking, responsible people to come together to begin the process of putting other clear-thinking, responsible people into public office.

The last thing anyone needs is some religious asswipe waving his Old testament and his Daddy's shotgun around telling us that the way forward from here is to elect people who are as conceited, superstitious and stupid as they are, just so that they can have a Fag-Free Zone established around the creche they've set up at the local shopping mall next Holiday Season. Because this is what it's really all about, for some of them.

You're entitled to your beliefs. Just stop sticking them in my face, Asshole. And No, you're not getting Raptured for your devotion to the cause, so get used to it.

Charles Darwin, methinks your theory has at least one gaping fucking hole in it. Probably because you were too busy looking at turtles an beetles, and not men..

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