Back in October of 2010, I posted an essay called “Today I Am A Green”. It’s been 17 months, and now I am going to eat those words without benefit of salt or ketchup. A lesser person would simply take down this embarrassing blog post and hope that people have the grace to forget I ever posted it. Taking H.L. Mencken as my role model, I’m keeping the post up as a record of where my mind was during that period.
It comes down to me refusing to vote for anybody as psychotically antisemitic as Cynthia McKinney, and she is reasonable compared to some of the Greens I’ve run into on Facebook. Each and every one of them were obsessed by the International Illuminati Conspiracy or the Jewish Lobby. (Or is it the International Jewish Conspiracy or the Illuminati Lobby? It’s hard to keep the two straight.) It’s like each and every one of them are obsessed by Jews or Masons. I came back to the Green Party and found myself in an Edgar Allen Poe story, The System of Professor Tarr and Dr. Fether
It seems that the lunatics are taking over every asylum. The right refuses to acknowledge Evolution and the left denies Relativity. Everywhere I go, I run into people who insist either god magicked the universe into being, or that Dick Cheney was so mighty, relative mass doesn’t apply to the planes that hit the Twin Towers. The left is no saner than the Tea Party, they just have different obsessions.
This is Dunlap’s Law: Crazy people drive sane people out of American political movements. Crazy people respect no limits, be it social boundaries or the inflexible laws of Mathematics. If scientific evidence contradicts their delusions, scientific evidence is a conspiracy. They then must save the rest of us from the voices in their heads. They aggressively persecute anybody who does not suffer from their delusions. Hence we have born again Christianoids out to save us from the evils of evolution and homosexuality, and left wingers out to protect the world from FEMA work camps and Jews infiltrating American government. The insanity of both sides have driven most people to the sidelines.
But how does it happen that a small handful of delusional people get to dominate both the left and the right? It’s easy enough to see how it happened on the right. The GOP organized the religiously insane into a massive voting block. Starting with Falwell’s “Moral Majority”, and leading into “Focus on the Family”, the GOP turned insanity into a family value. They also proved that insanity tends to grow into an uncontrollable mass of destruction. Once Jesus became the flavor of the week, the Aryan Nation and the KKK all found Jesus. The result is Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, Rick “Rooster” Santorum, and the rest of the GOP wrecking crew.
Isn’t nice that we also have a left wing? The problem is that they are as bat shit crazy as the right. The left is just not as well organized. All Reince Preibus needs to do is get in touch with the key preachers, and the GOP is voting as a solid block. Trying to get the left to work together is as futile as trying to herd Schrodinger’s Cats. We either know where they are, or we know how fast they are going, but never both. Just look at any Occupy protest. You’ll see signs blaming Jewish bankers, Masons, Illuminati, Obama, Bush, and signs supporting Ron Paul, Obama, Marx, Che, Move on, The American Communist Party, et all. They can’t even agree as whether to be violent or non-violent. There are plenty of splinter groups making life miserable for everybody. The Berkeley People’s Park crazies have regular Friday evening “Fuck the Police” marches in Oakland. They march through the streets, picking fights with the cops.
What’s happened is the left abandoned the tactics that worked for our grandparents, and are trying experimental means of organization. Old fashioned democracy was good enough to bring us the 40 hour work week and the weekend, but it’s not good enough for today’s modern leftists. Now they have something called consensus. With consensus nothing is decided until they have 100% agreement. While I have seen this work in small groups of under 15 people, it becomes a time bomb when you’re dealing with large crowds..
Even in small groups, all it takes is one nut to stop progress entirely. Some unbalanced person joins the meeting and starts insisting that The Mossad planted bombs in the World Trade Towers, and progress is stopped even if the subject is mortgage crimes. It’s just a small leap of logic and faith for a crazy person to link the housing crises with the Mossad. Even if the nut is shouted down, he’s not defeated, only persecuted. He’ll come back with his friends, and the same thing will happen that happened with the GOP. The nuts will make common cause, and before you know it, they will take over.
This is why attendance at peace rallies dropped. One day, I went to a protest and all the speakers obsessed about 9/11 being an inside job and How Israel is the cause of all the world’s problems. Then there was Bob Avakian and his “New Synthesis” of Marxism, which sounded to me like the same damned propaganda that Edward Bernays wrote up during the forties and fifties. The more the crazy people took over, the faster the sane people started avoiding peace marches. So with declining attendence, the nutters railed about how the rest of the world just doesn’t understand THE TRUTH! It wasn’t that people became in favor of the war. The wars are even more unpopular than they were during Bush’s reign. Sane people have better things to do than to listen to somebody ranting about the Illuminati foreclosing on people’s homes, especially when they are looking at evictions of their own.
I don’t think that Obama’s victory in 2008 was due to any sort of radical beliefs of the left. I think he won because the sane people of the country didn’t have anything else to hang their hopes on. Who were they supposed to vote for? Cynthia McKinney and her Zionistphobia?
There are sane people on both sides of the political spectrum. Sane Republicans are shouted down by the Tea Party in the same way that Sane leftists are shouted down by Truthers. The whole country is suffering the effects of Dunlap’s Law.
When asked, I tell people that I am independent. I have no patience with either side of the spectrum, and I’m willing to work with anybody who wants to see a better world. Generally I’m treated like a traitor or pariah for not trying to save the world from the International Gay Menace or from creeping Zionism.
The scariest thing about libertarians is that they can vote. As a general rule they cannot tell the difference between The Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and The Federalist Papers. They are so gullible they actually believe the income tax is illegal and so ignorant that there is no way to explain it to them. As Glen Cook puts it, they fell out of the stupid tree and hit every branch on the way down. Unfortunately for us and the rest of the world, there are no IQ provisions for citizenship. Libertarians can vote. Small wonder the economy is tanking around us.
In Libertarian Land, I think the American Revolution went down something like this. Little Tommy Jefferson went into their clubhouse (with the no icky girls allowed sign on the door.) and said, “That George III is a real poophead. I don’t want to play with him anymore.”
And little Al Hamilton replied, “Me too. Let’s get rid of him.”
Georgie Washington added “I’m tired of playing with this hatchet. Let’s have a revolution instead. You got book learnin’, Tommy. Why don’t you write him a letter and tell him to go soak his head?”
In the real world, the founders of America were a very diverse group. Many shared a common tie with the Masons, which only reaffirms the Mason’s mission of bringing different people together. Jefferson and Washington spoke for the southern agrarian plantation owners. Alexander Hamilton was the most progressive of the founders, but even he spoke primarily for the northern industrialists. Then there were other founders such as John Adams and John Jay who were determined to see to it that the wealthy had the same special privileges as they had under England. All these people were brought together out of a common need to escape British rule. Jefferson wanted an agrarian utopia while Adams wanted a hereditary Senate in imitation of the British House of Lords, but all put aside their differences to achieve a common goal.
The Declaration of Independence was a legal document telling the British Monarch that the colonies were demanding independence. It has no standing in American Law. It was an inspiring piece penned by the inimitable Jefferson. It had the effect of winning the loyalty of those who were going to die in the upcoming war. Still, the Declaration of Independence was written in the proper legal language of the time. When they said “All Men are created equal”, it was not the generic term as it is generally used. Men was defined as people of substance with money or property. It did not include women who were still chattel. It did not mean slaves or children. They were legally chattel as well. Men meant upper class white males.
By the end of the revolution, African slavery was still an accepted institution. Children were still sold into apprenticeship and adults could still sell themselves into indentured servitude. You could still be jailed for your debts and most of the thirteen states limited the vote to people above a certain income level. In the State of Maryland you had to be both wealthy and Catholic to vote. In Massachusetts you were only allowed to vote if you were a Congregationalist. Each state was autonomous and sent representatives to Philadelphia mostly to negotiate trade. Britain was killing the colonial industries by supplying finished goods at prices local craftsmen would not beat. The south still sold its cotton to England but at much lower prices. New York and New Jersey went to war over access to New York Harbor. The Free Market reigned supreme and the only one happy about it was England.
Thirteen independent nations were being eaten to death by England and internal rivalry. Free Market capitalism was tearing the fledgling US into shreds and leaving the door open to England walking in and taking America back without a shot being fired. This is why there is a Constitution. This is why we are not the Confederated States of America. The wealthiest and most influential men in the new nation joined together to create a more perfect union. That is why they needed the Federalist Papers.
Keep in mind there was a lot of resistance to a Constitution. On the whole the southern states wanted it. They needed protection from England purchasing their cotton for too little money. On the other hand, the northern states had influential citizens who were making a fortune by buying cheap finished goods from Europe and a tariff would cut into their trade. So Madison, Hamilton, and Jay got together and wrote newspaper articles in favor of the Constitution. Put together, the Federalist Papers are a fascinating document. It outlines the philosophy behind the Constitution. It explains the economic and political conditions of the day. It has little to do with the Constitution itself.
You will find nothing inspiring in the Constitution. This is why the libertarian propagandists rarely quote it and libertarians never read it. It is as bland as oatmeal and as exciting as watching hot grannies knit sweaters. Alexander Hamilton did not conceive it after a night of peyote buttons and cheap tequila. The Constitution of the United States was written by a committee. Many people worked on the Constitution, and the finished document had little in common with the hopes of the Federalist Papers. Alexander Hamilton fought against the Bill of Rights. Jay must have cursed when the rabble were awarded the vote, but managed to slip in the electoral college anyway. The south was happy to get a central government which could both ratify and enforce treaties with Europe. The north was pissed because the new Federal Government could impose and enforce tariffs, ending England’s domination of American trade. More to the point, the new Federal Government had the right to impose and collect taxes. How and when the Federal Government can regulate business is written into the Constitution, even though Hamilton and Madison both argued against it.
The most frustrating thing about the Constitution is its vagueness. It was a document that was designed to change with the times. You can peruse the constitution all your life but you will not find one word that enshrines capitalism as our only possible economic system. There is no clause that makes the income tax illegal. There is nothing that says we have to vote for either Democrats or Republicans. The people who joined together to create the Constitution understood that conditions change. They expected their tomorrow to be different than their today, and they left it to us as to how we wanted to interpret the Constitution. The Constitution shall not fall because we voted for the single payer system. There is nothing unconstitutional about unions.
The libertarians have forgotten that the American Revolution was more than the hand full of dead statesmen they canonized into their lords and saviors. They forgot that Jefferson had very little influence on the Constitution. Alexander Hamilton created the first American Tax, and that Washington lead troops to put down the Whiskey Tax rebellion. They are like Christianoids and the Bible. They have no idea of what the Constitution says or represents but parrot any damned babble that their leaders tell them. Laws that protect American industries, impose taxes, and impose limits to unacceptable behavior are written in the Constitution. Libertarians can hold their breath and kick their heels all they want, and it will still not change the fact that they are the greatest threat to the Constitution since George III.
I have watched a trend towards atheism in the United States. I think this is definitely a step in the right direction. The world has been run by imaginary friends for way too long. Just picture two little kids talking together. One kid says to the other kid, “this is my invisible friend, Mikey. He sees everything and he knows everything. If you’re bad he’ll blast you with lightning.” Soon all the kids on the playground are afraid of Mikey. They do everything that the teachers say, because they don’t want Mikey to be pissed off at them. Of course the kid who created Mikey is going to be the teacher’s pet. They are going to give him special treats and extra breaks, because Mikey is such a big help. What would they do without him?
For time out of mind, being a holy man meant that you never had to find honest work. Buddhist priests went around with their begging bowls and were fed through the largess of the villagers. The funny thing is that the villagers never stopped to think that if they didn’t feed the priests they would go away. The Hindus and the Chinese had huge temples that were funded by offerings. Nobody stopped to think that they could starve those parasites out and use the money for more useful things. That would piss off the make believe friends. If you read Leviticus in the Old Testament, those Levites lived the life. The Hebrews had no end to the sins that had to be washed clean through blood sacrifice. The Levites got to eat all the best parts of the sheep and bulls that were slaughtered.
Where would government be today without religion? How would the Chinese emperors have faired without Confucian temples? Where would European Royalty be without Popes Doubtless they would have been forced to survive by their wits alone. They would have survived by listening to their subjects and promising them anything as long as they kept their jobs and positions. When you stop and think of it, European royalty would have had to behave like American Congressmen. So then why are we in our present straits today? Why do we have American jobs in the mysterious east? Why is our economy sinking faster than the Titanic? We can blame everything on God.
Even in the computer age, politicians still have God to fall back on. God can always be depended on to support the powers that be. James Dobson tells his brain washed minions that national health will fund abortions, and the brain washed minions will vote against national health. All Ron Paul has to do is tell his crowd that Tom Jefferson was against national health and the libertarian crowd will vote against national health, because Jefferson has replaced Jesus in their hearts.
The idea that there has to be some invisible force manipulating the world seems to be an essential part of the American culture. Perhaps it’s because the United States was founded by a bunch of religious crackpots who wanted to be isolated from liberal influences. Even otherwise intelligent people who have rejected religion fall for conspiracy theories. Conspiracy theories state that invisible forces are manipulating the world for their own benefit. That certainly fits into anybody’s rational definition of God. Quite often, such modern religions as neo-Paganism will fall into conspiracy theories in order to have a Satan to believe in. After all, America was founded by Christianoid lunatics. You have to have a Satan in order to be an American religion.
I doubt that we will ever have a free society until we get rid of the need for invisible friends. Someday people will realize that God is an idealization of their present leaders. Someday people will realize that conspiracy theories fill the void that is left when Americans stop believing in Satan. When libertarians realize they are deifying Jefferson, we will have a truly free society. Politicians will no longer have an invisible friend to hide behind, and this is Bill holding his breath.
In Libertarianville, the government is always committing crimes against the public. Most of these crimes are only violations of the Libertarian sense of morality. By the same token, Libertarians are constantly accusing the government of violating the Constitution any time the actual Constitution contradicts the Federalist Papers. Quite often, Libertarians ignore actual crimes and constitutional violations.
Ron Paul’s crusade against the income tax is a good example of this. Paul’s handlers have spent massive amounts of money on a campaign claiming that the 50 states were fooled into ratifying the income tax amendment. They falsely claim that the tax is illegally collected, and they cite the Federalist Papers as their proof.
If Paul cited the actual Constitution, they would have to concede that the income tax is perfectly Constitutional. The Founders were not setting themselves up as prophets. They realized that time marches forward and there needed to be a mechanism for change. Otherwise the Constitution would have collapsed from the weight of supporting a United States with 50 states and billions of citizens. The Founders foresaw that the world would change and were wise enough not to try to predict what these changes were. Being men of vision and not religious lunatics, the Founders did not try to predict the future. They left us the mechanism of the Constitutional amendment so that we, the living, could better manage our affairs without the dead hand of the past holding us back.
This is not to say that the federal income tax is perfect. Far from it. There is a tremendous need to reform the institution and the offices that surround it. Most certainly corporations need to pay their fair share and not place all the burden on the employees. When running for President in 1976, Jerry Brown proposed a straight 2% across the board income tax. No exceptions and no refunds. Not only would that streamline government offices, it would also clear out the parasitic industries that grew up around the income tax.
Libertarians would punish rather than reform. They would eliminate the income tax and fund the federal government through a system that ceased to work over a century ago. Unable to financially maintain itself, the federal government would fall into 50 rival countries. Multinationals would have 50 third world countries they could rape and ruin as they do in the Middle East, Africa and South America. With no federal government providing a minimum of oversight, even our presently poor ecological laws would be repealed. Industrial cities would return to choking in their own wastes. There would be no oversight of interstate commerce, and nothing to keep a c orporation from shipping a load of poor kids from Oakland to work in Los Angeles factories for slave labor. If the state governments were enough to provide oversight, the federal government would not have taken on the job. The Constitution cites that the Federal Government oversees what the State governments cannot.
The crimes that Libertarians obsess over are the crimes of growth and change. The world changes and the Constitution changes with it. The nation changes and our roles of citizens change as well. The United States grew out of small capitalism over a century and a half ago. Federalist Papers based morality will not change that. The clock ticks only one way, and that is forward. It does not matter what Jefferson wrote over 200 years ago. We, the living, must take care of today’s problems with tomorrow’s solutions. Looking to the past will only make us the slaves of the corporations. That is the greatest crime of all.
I think that everybody goes through a Libertarian phase while growing up. This phase tends to begin during college and lasts all the way up to the point where the you actually have to live in the real world, make a real living, and realize that the world around you doesn’t really give a damn. Libertarianism lasts until you have two kids, rent or a mortgage, and your job has been outsourced to Timbuktu. That social safety net starts looking pretty damned good when you have to explain to your landlord why the rent will be late, or your sitting by the phone afraid it is going to be the bank asking about your mortgage payments. To give another example, when Mr. or Ms. Libertarian comes down with cancer and cannot cough up the co-payments for the treatments and feed the kids, then suddenly it looks like the government just might be able to do something better than the private sector after all.
From my limited experience, internet companies tend to be Libertarian. This really makes sense to me. If I were the CEO of an internet company I would certainly foster a Libertarian corporate culture. Could Yahoo have supported their Chinese overlords in the suppression of human rights if Yahoo programmers and technical people had a union that could strike in support of human rights? Would Google be able to discriminate against older workers if there was a union to file a discrimination suit? Now that the major internet companies are outsourcing their jobs to Israel, it’s too late to unionize. All they can do is sit in their foreclosed houses and wait for the sheriff to turn them out in the street. Maybe if they pray in front of a picture of Ron Paul, the great god Market Place will readjust the economy in their favor.
Another thing I have noticed about Libertarians is that they entirely miss the correlation of cause and effect. They remind me of my oldest boy when he was three years old. We would tell him not to touch the stove and he would touch the stove as soon as our backs were turned and then get angry at us because he got burned. Five minutes later he would be trying to touch the stove again to see if it would burn him again. Our oldest grew out of that phase, but I have met Libertarians in their 60s who are still don’t believe that a hot stove will burn them every time they touch it. I am still waiting for them to make the basic correlation between the rise in the cost of food and the persecution of undocumented workers. On the subject of undocumented workers, I cannot believe that a group of people who are so paranoid about “big government” can support a fence across Mexico. I cannot believe that a group of people who are so adamant about the sanctity of property rights would support a wall that illegally cuts through Apache-owned lands, and which disrupts and destroys the Apache’s livelihood. The United States and Homeland Security have no right to build anything across the Apache Reservation. I suppose that sacred property rights only apply to White Anglo Protestants. I can’t wait until the Libertarians figure out that governments only build fences to keep their own citizens in. I can’t wait until the penny drops on that one. I will laugh myself into a hernia when the border guards turn their guns on U.S citizens for trying to follow their outsourced jobs into Mexico. You will be able to tell which U.S citizens are Libertarian, because they will be the ones who charge at the armed guards a second time.
It also never ceases to amaze me the other basic results of cause and effect that Libertarians simply don’t get. In one breath they will berate the FCC and then kvetch about Fox News. I understand that many of them are simply to young to understand that the FCC had prevented obscenities like Fox News before Reagan deregulated it, but I simply cannot believe they have not made the correlation between corporate crime and deregulation. They keep insisting that corporate crime and the Media can be controlled through some mysterious, unseen omniscient force called The Market Place with the same vehemence a Christianoid argues about The Rapture and with just as little evidence.
As a salesman and former Public Relations worker, I often wonder what attracts otherwise intelligent people to a political cause that accomplishes the opposite of their stated goals. Libertarians claim to be in favor of liberty (hence the name) yet their entire philosophy guarantees the opposite. They reject unions and labor laws and then they blame “big government “when they are illegally fired and there is no union to protect them. They claim that business laws and regulations are a waste of tax payer’s money and a threat to their liberty, and they don’t seem to notice that it’s not their mortgage broker who is losing his house. Government deregulation has successfully disempowered everybody and has made us all subject to the whims and fancies of the corporation without any legal recourse, and yet Libertarians continue to place the blame government for their problems and see the solution as continuing to surrender more of their legal rights to the very corporations that are screwing them.
Of course a big part of it is that Libertarians identify with those whom they see as having power. This is the same social force that inspires Bill Cosby to blame his fellow African-Americans for the very bigotry that oppresses them and which made a flaming queen like J. Edgar Hoover to hide in the closet and oppress his fellow homosexuals. It is the basic psychology of the schoolyard; if you stand behind the bully, defend the bully, and do what the bully tells you, and bully those you see as weaker than you, the bully won’t pick on you. This is why Libertarians who claim to support the separation of church and state support a flaming Christianoid like Ron Paul. As Libertarians surrender all their power to the employers and live in constant fear of outsourcing, workplace discrimination and, illegal termination, they pass on their fear and frustration by supporting Ron Paul. Ron Paul would allow discrimination against women by removing the federal protections for abortion. Ron Paul would remove the federal civil rights laws which would allow corporations and the southern states to continue and increase their discrimination against minorities. Libertarians have already supported Bush, Clinton and the rest of the neocons in taking away the social safety net, but Ron Paul would take away what few shreds were left. Ron Paul would end the drug war, the Libertarian would argue. If American society was a schoolyard, Ron Paul would be the bully who beats up the little girl, the black kid, the poor kid, and the disabled kid for their lunch money, and ending the drug war could be seen as Paul giving his schoolyard cronies a nickel of it.
In my opinion, this is why so many internet Libertarians are also trolls. Rather than empower themselves through unionization, political unity against corporate abuse in the economy and the workplace, and aiding others to empower themselves through an intelligent and compassionate social safety net, they take out their abuse on others. Then, when they discover that their victims also have power and legal protections, they cry and scream like elementary schoolers being sent to the principals office. They cry censorship and constitutional violation with the same immaturity as a little kid screaming obscenities in the classroom to see what the teacher would do. I suspect that most Libertarians have deep seated boundary issues, and that would certainly fit into my school bully analogy. Ultimately I think that is the true appeal of the Libertarian party. It appeals to the inner child who still thinks that he can have ice cream for dinner every night when he grows up. Libertarian propaganda stresses the concept that nobody has the right to say no to you no matter how badly your actions inflict the rights of others, and ignores our responsibilities to our fellow person, our children, our grandchildren, our nation, and the world.
So is it any wonder that a rapture believing Christianoid like Ron Paul would become the candidate of choice for internet trolls?