Saturday, August 20, 2011

Once there was class war but not any longer, 'cause baby we are all bourgeois now...

So there is this Daily Show clip (part one, part two) that does a good job of taking apart all the bullshit right-wing rhetoric we hear about the importance of simultaneous deficit reduction and tax cuts for the rich. Not that it should be any sort of revelation to anyone that alleged concern about the deficit is invariably just a smokescreen for the real agenda--slashing any program that helps the non-rich and funneling that money to our porcine plutocrats--but it's still nice to see it crystalized. It's funny, too, though it's admittedly a little hard to laugh through the blinding rage.

It seems I don't pay enough attention to wingnut rhetoric, though, because some of the clips actually managed to shock me. As far as the bits with pundits and politicians sobbing about how cruelly private-jet-owners are oppressed by anyone suggesting they could live with higher marginal tax rates (I can't decide whether these are crocodile tears or the real thing, nor which would be worse), well, no surprises there, I guess. The shamelessness might at some point have seemed shocking, but we're well beyond that. No, what really got me was the naked, seething contempt in which the poor (or the "poor," as the fux news graphic puts it, with their fancy refrigerators 'n' microwaves 'n' everything!) are held by these people. Have I ever seen the unspeakably ugly face of genuine class warfare exposed more fully and willingly? Sometimes it's hard to keep track of these things, but I'm inclined to say not. When that…creature…snarls, "it is all…out…WAR on the productive class of our society for the benefit of the moocher class?" The fact that people can un-self-consciously say such things in public--and the fact that their profound, white-supremacist-level indecency is not universally acknowledged by the public at large--is horrifying in the purest sense of the word. If the goal is to funnel all the money possible to the richest in society, and fucking over everyone else is just a side effect--that would be understandable, if still evil. And maybe that's all it was at one time--but now, as we see all-too-vividly, indifference has metastasized into something much more malignant. Indicative of a vestige of shame, no doubt--ie, if we admitted to ourselves that poor people are people too, we'd feel bad about what we're advocating, so let's comfort ourselves by refashioning them all as contemptible, worthless parasites. Oddly enough, this may actually be a case in which more sociopathy would be preferable, so we could at least avoid the sickening rhetoric--though that could be a "be careful what you wish for" thing: if these guys are this bad when they're not literally serial killers, imagine what they would agitate for if they were.

Residual shame or not, though, these are still bad people who deserve to have bad things happen to them. Instead of mewling piteously about it, they should be thanking whatever evil, twisted gods they believe in that 63.7% of poor people have satellite or cable TV--otherwise, without such idle amusements to keep the masses distracted and complacent, they'd be hanging from lampposts. 'Course, I'm more merciful than that. I think a blunt, karmic lesson in empathy would be in order: let these overpaid fux news motherfuckers subsist on minimum wage for a couple three years. Oh, and during this time, let's have them contract life-threatening diseases that are easy but very expensive to treat (I ain't THAT merciful). Should be relaxing--give 'em a chance to just kick back and "mooch" for a while. I mean Good lord. "Productive class?" "Moocher class?" Just so we're clear: minimum-wage dishwashers="moocher class." Fux news bloviators and Paris Hilton="productive class." People really think like that. They really, really do. You know how you sometimes think "Hollingsworth Hound" in Ruben Bolling's recurring "Lucky Ducky" strips is a bit of a caricature, and nobody would literally be like that? Well, joke's on you! I'm sure people like our "moocher class" fellow would read them and be absolutely infuriated by the way Lucky Ducky always gets all the breaks.

(As always, let's have an extra-big fuck-you-very-much to that infamous, child-murderer-idolizing sociopath Ayn Rand for making this sort of thing respectable--and also, incidentally, for making the word "moocher"--one of the goofiest words on record--a part of "serious" discourse. It would be like if in the debate over healthcare, people kept talking about what to do about "boo-boos." This is a sobering, cautionary object lesson as to what happens when you let crazy Russians write in English (Nabokov notwithstanding).)

The eternal question remains: how the heck did we GET to this state? You would think that a party that tells huge swaths of Americans to their face that it holds them in utter contempt and wants to hurt them as much as possible would, I dunno, not win elections? But that doesn't seem to be happening, does it? It's certainly a multifarious problem. The following are all factors:

1. The Democrats fail to offer a meaningful alternative (in spite of which, "I REFUSE to vote for the guy who's merely going to beat me unconscious and leave me for dead! I DEMAND the full BTK-killer treatment!" seems like an odd thing to say).
2. The media relentlessly frames issues in damaging ways (though given that the media is playing a big PART in telling poor people how much they suck ass...).
3. There's always someone doing worse than you, giving you someone of your own to look down on, and fostering the illusion that it's not you that your party hates; it is, eternally, those other people.
4. Gays!
5. Baby-killers!
6. Mooslims!
7. Mah guns!
8. Élitists like me who look down on people just because they repeatedly vote for politicians who pledge to stab them in the throat!

Of course, if people were rational, four through eight would immediately vanish, and three wouldn't play much of a part. It really makes you wonder: are we as a species just so fundamentally broken that tribal signifiers always win out over everything? A frightening thought. The arch of the universe bends towards justice they say, but I'm not sure "they" were familiar with America c. 2011.


Anonymous Anonymous pontificated to the effect that...

"what happens when you let crazy Russians write in English"

Man, I hate to be the guy who reads a long post, latches on to a throwaway phrase that's not really relevant to the main point, and then gets all like, "how DARE you look down on medieval barmaids in paragraph 16 of your essay on environmental sustainability?" But this sentence jumps out because, in fact, Ayn Rand regularly expressed pathological ethnic hatred toward Russian people. As she did toward nearly everyone else, only in this case, she barely even bothered covering up her racism with capitalism-related slogans.


11:31 AM  
Blogger GeoX, one of the GeoX boys. pontificated to the effect that...

Well, that seems to reinforce the "crazy" part of the sentiment!

1:26 PM  

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