ANNALS OF MENDACIOUS PUNDITRY: PIN-STRIPED PERFIDY
In a flagrant display of intellectual dishonesty, Kudlow reassures us of the “moral compass” guiding capitalism by referencing Irving Kristol, the godfather of the Neoconservative movement. Sinking further into a quagmire of deceit, he portrays Victorian England as “an example of a moral society.” Lawrence has a point. Those of us with a social conscience marvel at the morality exhibited by the industrial capitalists of the Victorian Era. Child labor, fourteen hour work days, pittance wages, dangerous working conditions, squalid living conditions, and workhouses exemplified a moral society driven by an undying compassion for humanity.
What Larry means when he says that “capitalism in this country has been under assault ever since FDR’s New Deal 1930’s” is that he and his excessively wealthy associates strenuously object to progressive taxes, public spending on domestic social programs, and laws that protect workers and consumers. Kudlow longs for a return to the “good old days” of the Gilded Age, Robber Barons, monopolies, and unbridled freedom for him and his ilk to inflict misery upon the rest of us.
Larry Kudlow exemplifies the Chicken-Littles of the Conservative financial pundits. Rather then admit that he and his friends are deeply afraid they will literally have some of their pocket change flow to schools, lunch programs and medical research Larry declares that black frogs and serpents will rain down upon us if Democrats get their way. It’s the financial version of Michelle Malkin’s meme that everyone to the left of Leo Strauss is a Marxist and that America is being slowly overthrown by illegal aliens. Larry was educated at Princeton and has advised presidents. He’s not some half baked AM shock jock that doesn’t know what he’s saying. He is using his credentials and media access to sell America an intellectual lemon. Only it is and always will be Larry and his French champagne drinking friends that reap most of the benefits from Republinomics, not the guy working overtime to put aside enough money so that maybe some day his kid will be able to attend a public university. Larry also said this in reference to Dubya,
“He’s also the same guy who continues to prove he has more character than most anyone serving in public office today.”
Larry isn’t joking he honestly believes that. He and his ilk believe it because they do not have any real concept of what character is.
Note that majorities of white Christians want to torture not merely actual terrorists, but they also want to torture “terrorist suspects” as well, i.e., a group that almost certainly includes perfectly innocent people.
And majorities of white Christians — Catholics, evangelicals and protestants — believe in torture not merely in the improbable-in-the-extreme “ticking time bomb” scenario; rather, they believe in torture as a matter of course (i.e., more than “rarely” — either “often or “sometimes”). (By stark and revealing contrast, “secularists” oppose torture in far greater numbers). Think about how depraved that is: what kind of religious individual affirmatively believes that people should be routinely tortured, including people who have never been proven to have done anything wrong?
Furthermore, the Pew Poll from today itself revealed that 42% of American Christians — 42% — consider themselves “Christians first,” not “Americans first.” A very substantial portion of Christians, then, place allegiance to their religion above that of allegiance to the United States.
Here it is only five months after an historic landslide election victory and while there are some encouraging trends these poll results are discouraging. There are bad people in this world, always have been. Some of those bad people are Muslims, some are Christians, some male, some short, some white – why is it then that the Right has turned all Muslims into the gravest threat facing the U.S. and possibly mankind in the last thousand years when there is no data to support that assertion.
* Every two minutes, somewhere in America, someone is sexually assaulted.
* In 2002, there were a total of 4,854 cases of aggravated assault in Washington DC. On a daily basis, this computes to 13.2 aggravated assaults a day.
*In Maryland, there were 3,228 cases of larceny and thefts per 100,000 people in 2002. This is one-third higher than the national average rate of 2,445.8 cases per 100,000.
* In Detroit, there were 41.79 murders per 100,000 people in 2002. This is alarmingly way above the national average rate of 5.6 for the same year.
* In 2002, with the exception of burglaries, Philadelphia led all crime levels which were above the national average rates for murder, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assaults, larceny/theft and motor vehicle theft.
The idea that people feel more allegiance to their religion then their country is alarming and should those people ever gain control of our government they’ll soon see why. Our being a secularized society is what makes so many people belonging to so many different religions free to worship as they please. Tilt that balance in America toward religion over religious neutrality and one only has to look at the sectarian strife in Iraq to see the results. While some Catholics work with Evangelicals on some issues they have deep differences in their dogma. The same is true of many denominations. If let’s say the followers of James Dobson and Pat Robertson have their wildest dreams granted and we became a authoritarian theocracy – the day after that happens the struggle for power among religious groups will start. Religious freedom in America is utterly dependent on that official separation between the state and religion. That the fringe Right doesn’t see that or tries to convince its followers otherwise is one of the things that makes them dangerous. It has always been democracies weakness that those with a ignorant mob mentality use their vote to undermine the very foundations for their freedom.
“The neurosis in which the search for safety takes its clearest form is in the compulsive-obsessive neurosis. Compulsive-obsessive to frantically order and stabilize the world so that no unmanageable, unexpected or unfamiliar dangers will ever appear.” – Abraham Maslow