by Doug Muder, The Weekly Sift, 7/22/19
Trump is using the same tactics that failed so badly in 2018. It’s not some stroke of genius. It’s all he knows.
I know. I felt it too.
When that crowd in North Carolina started chanting “Send her back. Send her back.”, it was like watching the videos of the Nazi book-burnings, when the flames shot into the sky, and people kept tossing more books onto the pile with a look of revelry on their faces.
The world just goes crazy sometimes. And once it starts, why should it stop? Why won’t that wave of insanity just sweep away everything in its path, leaving behind a country forever changed into something dark and unrecognizable?
The news coverage didn’t help. Pundits of the left and right alike were telling us that Trump had seized control of the narrative, and so the 2020 election won’t be about health care or climate change or anything Democrats want to talk about. It will be Trump against “radical”, “socialist” women of color. You may want to discuss democracy and corruption and the rule of law, but the only response you will get is to be asked why you hate America so much….
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excerpt from Doug Muder, “Unwarranted,” The Weekly Sift, 8/25/14
The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria beheaded American journalist James Foley — and posted the video on YouTube — after the U.S. government refused a 100 million Euro ransom demand and a rescue attempt failed. This sparked a lot of discussion about widening the U.S. involvement in Iraq beyond the current air strikes.
I don’t doubt that a lot of people in ISIS are bad guys. But it gets old watching the pro-war spin machine work. Once again, we face a group of insane, unstoppable monsters far worse than the last group of insane, unstoppable monsters we were warned about. Rick Perry thinks they’re coming over the Mexican border, and a former CIA deputy director warns us that they could get an AK-47 and shoot up a mall — not because either man has any evidence that such things are in the process of happening, but because we have a new name for the Boogie Man.
The problem with the panic-mongering is that it just raises the pressure to do something. It doesn’t increase the effectiveness of any of the somethings we might do. Couldn’t we someday have a rational discussion of what our options really are, and what good or bad things are likely to result from the various things we might do?
[n.b.”Every war, when it comes, or before it comes, is represented not as a war but as an act of self-defense against a homicidal maniac.” — George Orwell]
by Doug Muder, The Weekly Sift, 10/10/11
For the longest time I didn’t get Occupy Wall Street, but then Herman Cain helped me out: He said something so monumentally wrong that my reaction against it pointed me in the right direction.
“Don’t blame Wall Street, don’t blame the big banks, if you don’t have a job and you’re not rich, blame yourself! … It is not someone’s fault if they succeeded, it is someone’s fault if they failed.”
That’s when I got it. An unjust system’s first line of defense is shame. As long as we’re ashamed to admit that we’re victims, as long as we’re ashamed to identify with the other losers, we’re helpless.
It would be great to have a 10-point plan that solves everything. It would be great to have a party that endorses that plan and a get-out-the-vote movement to put that party into office. But none of that is going to happen until large numbers of us cast off our shame, until we turn the shame around: We need to stop being ashamed that we couldn’t crack the top 1%, and instead cast shame on an economic system that only works for 1%. The people who defend that immoral system and profit from it — they should be ashamed, not us.
That’s what Occupy Wall Street is about. OWS isn’t about plans and parties and votes. That all comes later. OWS is about casting off shame and learning to identify with the other losers….
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