Establishment Dems are now smearing progressives with the “alt-left” tag to draw a moral equivalency with bigots and fascists. Alternative lefty media has always existed as a counter to mainstream corporate media, so I don’t reject the label. In SF, the San Francisco Bay Guardian shone a light on the crony Dems FROM a leftist perspective while the establishment-friendly Chronicle kissed their ass. So yeah, I’d rather be alt-left any day. What I reject is the cynical timing of their new little talking point.
So let’s see: the alt-right wants minorities to die; the alt-left wants everyone to have health care; and the corrupt, sellout, crony capitalist establishment and their cowardly apologists take the middle road…so fewer deaths, but only for economic reasons, because racist reasons are evil. Ya gotta compromise.
Hey sellouts: if both the alt-left and alt-right represent emerging populist attitudes against establishment politicians, doesn’t that just make you alt-relevant?
The Charlottesville protests went from “nah we’re not racists” to “yeah, we’re all Nazis, but not killers”, to “okay, we’re killers”. Trump is a symptom of a problem that was allowed to fester for too long. Conservatives have been allowed to slip into fascism and they don’t even know it.
But what did you expect when the left embraced neoliberalism? Where was the right wing to go but even further right?
Yes, I’m also blaming fake liberals for Charlottesville.
You are the Reagan Republicans now; where did You expect conservatives to go? How were they to define themselves against you after you conceded the economic argument to them and staked a claim into their ideological territory? You pushed the conversation to the right while still keeping social issues, never realizing how the two go hand in hand. The conversation moved to the right even as the social fabric in the nation moved to the left, in favor of diversity, representation, LGBT rights, and so on.
But when the right went fascist, it wasn’t just their economic principles that went right, it was everything. The echo chamber that gave them a home (Fox News, Breitbart, Stormfront) also told them that the social movements were evil, that their heritage was under attack, that Obama was a Muslim who came to take their guns.
What did you think would happens when that radicalized right found themselves in the middle of a social order that they didn’t recognize as their own? You got Charlottesville.
That’s not to say that the left must ease up on social change – hell no! We must double down. We must get angrier, more hostile towards hate speech, bigotry, racism, and unprincipled Islamophobia (that’s the singling out of one religion as opposed to criticism of all religions).
But if we are to stop conservatives from falling off the edge, then the economic message must also shift left. The fascists will never move; they’ve chosen their side. The shift will speak to those who feel the Democrats (and in their minds, by extension the left) doesn’t care about their economic needs). The right stole populism from us; we must take it back. We must abandon these phony, corporate Democrats, let them go join the Republicans – hell, maybe as GOP they can turn conservatism around instead of dragging progressives to the right.
Time to beat these fascists back. Conservatives, now you get to decide if you’re one of them…or an American.
If you want to see a guy verbally jerking you off, listen to Chuck Schumer talk about his great new vision for the Democratic party. God, these people are hopeless.
And the DNC has already chosen their standard bearer for 2020. It’s not Bernie or Warren. It’s gonna be Kamala Harris. It makes perfect sense. She looks the part. She’s good branding. She’s also friendly with the machine. Kamala Harris is a corporate machine politician through and through. In San Francisco she allied herself with the Willie Brown/Gavin Newsom/Dianne Feinstein/Nancy Pelosi wing of the Democratic party. They are not true progressives. They wine and dine each other, attend all the same fundraisers, hobknob it up with power and fame; they belong to the same exclusive club – and you are not a part of it.
Bernie Sanders wouldn’t be caught dead at one of their little fundraisers with these fake ass so-called liberals. That’s why true progressives and even some conservatives respect Bernie. Many of us might not be able to articulate why we were so drawn to Bernie, but I do believe that his sincere allegiance to we the people, as opposed to they the affluent, is the reason he’s so loved. But instead of a real progressive, we’re going to get more of this corporate bullshit.
So now they’re grooming Harris to be the president, as if it’s a done deal, as if we’re just supposed to accept her as our standard bearer because they say so. I say we can do better than her. I’m pre-emptively striking against Kamala Harris – if she’s the DNC nominee, fuck it, I’ll vote Green again.
ENOUGH rewarding corporate politicians for pledging allegiance to money and power!
WE CAN DO BETTER.
Some people say that the most vile attacks on Obama are racially motivated and that latent racism is perhaps the real motivating issue behind the protests; others say that Obama is a Kenyan-born Muslim, attended an Indonesian madrassa, and is both a communist and a fascist.
Some people say that evolution is a fact; others say not only that evolution is just a theory, they also think that Intelligent Design is an acceptable alternative.
The first statement was a matter of opinion; it really is possible that Obama is the victim of racist attacks, but it is not possible for Obama to have been born in Kenya. I only put them together because when some people point out the stupidity inherent in believing that Obama is a Muslim, they retort “well, you believe all protesters are racist” – as if that puts me on equal footing with you. It is not the same to make a valid opinion (racist motivation) and to be flat out wrong (it is known for a fact that Obama was not born in Kenya).
The second statement compare two ideas; one is science, the other is not. One is fact, the other one is belief. And just to make it perfectly clear, evolution is a fact. To contradict fact is to be wrong.
Notice how I didn’t bother putting a label on the people who say these things. That’s because it should be fairly obvious to you who I’m talking about, but if I said “conservatives say this”, one tends to think that I mean to say “all conservatives”. I figured that people are having a lot of difficulty understanding that distinction lately. I also did it because I wanted to demonstrate these contrasting ideas without all the ideological baggage attached, if only for a split second. Sometimes, there really aren’t two sides to a story. Sometimes, it really just boils down to truth vs. stupid. Reality is not up for interpretation. When both arguments are given equal time and weight before the media, we have what is known as false equivalence. It’s a form of political correctness that tries to find a middle ground between competing ideas by saying that one side is just as crazy as the other, or one argument is just as valid as the other. It’s putting appearances before truth is what it is. It’s cowardice.
I remember a review that Roger Ebert wrote a few years ago for the film “Team America: World Police”, in which he calls out Trey Parker and Matt Stone for treating “both sides” as if they were two sides of the same coin. Ebert said then that the problems were too great for somebody to refuse to stand for principle; now, the problems are even greater.
Let us not pretend that the nuts on the left are the same as the nuts on the right – when Bush and Cheney eviscerated the Bill of Rights and subverted the Constitution at ever turn, they acted far more Hitler-ish than anything Obama has EVER done. When the Supreme Court handed Bush the election, that was an undemocratic subversion of the will of the people and the right to have every vote counted; do you mean to tell me that the left accusing Bush of stealing the election is the same as the right accusing Obama of being a Kenyan-born Muslim – despite the FACT that he isn’t?
When Keith Olbermann rails against an enemy, at the very least he is backed up by FACTS – that is not something you could always say about Bill O’Reilly and it something you could NEVER say about Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh. Olbermann and O’Reilly are NOT simply batting for their own teams; they’re not even playing the same sport.
Which brings me to the difference between Keith Olbermann and Bill O’Reilly. There’s a reason Stephen Colbert prefers “truthiness” to facts. It’s because one of these two prefers “truthiness” to facts. People often compare one to the other on the grounds that they are both talking heads and on different sides of the ideological divide. But the facts are what sets them apart – one of them bases his strongly worded opinions on fact while the other basically lies. What sucks is that I can’t prove any of it to you if you don’t believe in facts. You’ll just have to look at their track records – why not start with O’Reilly? 15 minutes on Media Matters or FAIR.org should give you an idea of who’s shooting straight.
I believe that while not all liberals and progressives argue from facts, most of them do. I wish there were a way to measure this. There already do exist organizations that measure accuracy in reporting – the aforementioned Media Matters and FAIR.org – and they always seem to go after Fox News. It’s not that their biased. It’s just that, as Stephen Colbert once said, because reality has a decidedly liberal bias. I agree with facts and valid opinions; over the years, I have come to the conclusion that it is the reason I call myself a progressive.