April 22, 2004
America's Fun House Politics
A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION
In the old amusement parks, there was always a "fun house" that had twisty and shifting floors, burst of air from below...and warped mirrors that made you look thin, or fat, or upside down. These days, American politics have come to be a fun house mirror reflection of the politics in any other country in the world.
Back during the Cold War, the Republicans were always trying to claim that, as conservatives, they believed in not only smaller taxes, but less government spending, in preserving the rule of law, that no one was above the law, but also in keeping government out of our lives. They said they stood for American traditional individualism and for the pursuit of happiness.
With the rise of Reagan, and then the Cold War, all that changed. Under the heading of "coming to resemble what you oppose"...or, perhaps "you are what you eat," the parties seemed to become a warped mirror image of the other.
It was the Republicans who, under the pretext of "protecting children and family values," moved to expand government by putting the law between a woman and her doctor, looking over our shoulders seeing what we read or look at, trying to protect tobacco companies while creating and expanding the so-called "War on Drugs," and fighting to drastically scale back the rights guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment to be "tough on crime."
Most perniciously, they have created a "cult of personality," exactly like that of the Former Soviet Union under Stalin, or China under Mao. They have created show trials, such as the impeachment of President Clinton, the same way that Stalin had his purges in the thirties. Big-money capitalists in their ranks unleashed attacks against not only the Left, but Democrats, and everyone to the left of where Barry Goldwater was forty years ago. It literally appears to be an attempt to create a literal one-party state.
Given the assertions over the last half-century by the GOP that the Democrats had gotten us into wars, it is ironic that they are the ones who have now gone on a program of imperial expansion by war, with Iraq as only the first step. This is made obvious from President Bush's statement on April 21, noted in the Washington Post , that Iran "will be dealt with, starting through the United Nations," and no doubt, should he take the 2004 election, by war.
With all of this, the Democrats and the liberals have come to stand for the so-called conservative values of the rule of law (such as for the detainees in Guantanamo, and those in this country), for getting government out of private lives, and protection of the guarantees of the Bill of Rights in general.
Perhaps it is appropriate that the GOP has chosen the color red to represent "their" states in this election, where forty years ago they would have chosen blue, and accused the Democrats of being "commie-loving pinkos." In the Bush family, they seem to have picked their "little father."
A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION
2) "little father" was the name used colloquially by the Russians for the Czars, and later for Stalin.
Articles in the BuzzFlash Contributor section are posted as-is. Given the timeliness of some Contributor articles, BuzzFlash cannot verify or guarantee the accuracy of every word. We strive to correct inaccuracies when they are brought to our attention.
otherwise noted, all original