Category Archives: Leftism

Ralph Nader…Unsane at any speed!

Ralph Nader has a two-minute hate on for Obama.

Nader made his comments at a breakfast with reporters in Washington, D.C., sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor. It was not the first time that the perennial presidential candidate has been critical of the Democrat who would be the nation’s first African-American president. Back in June, in an interview with the Rocky Mountain News, Nader accused Obama of downplaying poverty issues, trying to “talk white” and appealing to “white guilt” during his run for the White House.

The fratricide between the different factions on the left is no surprise, because the left does not have a coherent philosophy that unites it, only the tacked-together, failed ideologies of socialism and progressivism, leavened with populism and a paralyzing devotion to political correctness and multiculturalism. So, when Nader the nemesis of the Corvair discovers that the Messiah, Lord Obama the Most Merciful doesn’t live up to the hype, he loses what’s left of his composure.

Thanks to commenter Liberty or Death at Hot Air for the post title.

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America’s accidental energy policy

J. R. Dunn has a terrific article over at American Thinker about how America’s energy policy has come about, literally, in response to accidents.

One thing consistently overlooked is that American energy policy is literally the result of a series of accidents. Each of these incidents set off a blizzard of activity intended to “rationalize” the energy industry and its practices, prevent further mishaps, increase government control, and not the least, usher in the new Green Age. Each thrust American energy policy deeper into stagnation.

The accidents Dunn lists are:

  • The Santa Barbara Union Oil oil spill of 1969, caused by a USGS-approved deviation from standard procedure for piping in 1969. The aftereffect was to ban drilling for oil off the East and West coasts of the US.
  • The Three Mile Island nuclear meltdown of 1979, which caused a minor release of radiation but nothing major since the safety systems at the plant functioned according to plan, happened a couple of weeks before The China Syndrome came out, and not a single nuclear plant has been built in the US since then.
  • In 1986, technicians at Chernobyl nuclear plant in the Soviet Ukraine experimented with shutting off the plant safeguards and running the reactor at its most unstable point, at which point the roof blew off and dozens of people were killed. This was a major nuclear accident that irradiated a large area of the Ukraine.
  • In 1989, the captain of Exxon Valdez was drunk when he piloted his supertanker onto a reef off the Alaska coast and dumped 11 million gallons of crude into the Arctic Ocean.

Rather than addressing the obvious management failures in these accidents and filling the gaps in official policy, the US legislature and judiciary have passed or reinterpreted statutes to cripple the US energy industry. The result is what we have today, with US gas at $4 and going to $5 and the US sending $700 billion to terror sponsoring states for their oil every year. Corn ethanol is a boondoggle that has doubled the price of raw food ingredients such as grains, meat, and dairy. This is a Potemkin kind of environmentalism, with the location of the mines shifted to another part of the world and inferior technology and work habits used to extract the oil from the Earth. CO2 production is higher from Iranian or Venezuelan operated mines than it would be from US mines. By shifting production from the US to other countries, the ManBearPig environmentalist movement has actually increased world-wide CO2 levels. (Not that CO2 levels drive global warming, they actually trail global warming trends by some number of years [if I recall correctly, 500 years], showing they are a result of global warming rather than a cause.)

Read the whole thing. It’s worth it.

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4GW/xGW: Identifying Tibet Protest Narratives

Clearly, the Tibet protests in America and the rest of the world are unusual. They are not led by professional, ideologically Marxist protesters from International ANSWER, the Revolutionary Communist Party, World Can’t Wait, Code Pink, or any of the other communist front-groups that usually play such a significant role in the so-called peace movement. They are actually being led and filled out by people who care for the inhabitants of Tibet.

These protests are led by amateurs! And they are not popular with China or Cuba. This is not a coincidence.

This fact shows that protesters can be convinced to protest against Communist and other anti-American tyrannies if they are presented with a congruent narrative that appeals to them.

The conspiracy-minded hunter-seeker posted a link to a narrative about Tibet that reveals some of the structural and linguistic keys to creating a meme that will prove compelling to leftists. The very interesting “alternative journalist” Larry Chin, who shares the name of a spy who infiltrated the CIA, sold secrets to China, made a million in real estate using money he earned from espionage, and (supposedly) killed himself in prison by suffocating himself with a plastic grocery bag, attempts to shepherd leftists and protesters away from protests against China and back to the protests of which he approves (anything opposed to the US, UK or Israel).

Anti-Imperialism

For Applebaum the events in Tibet represent one manifestation of a wider reaction of “captive nations”, Uighurs, Mongols, Tibetans, rising up against the tyrannical rule of an old imperial and foreign power that has long oppressed smaller countries and societies surrounding it. Applebaum includes even such independent nations as North Korea and Burma in this category, hence, quite accurately, relegating Kim Jong Il and the Burmese military junta to the role of Beijing’s surrogate dictators. [link]

Every morality tale needs a good guy and a bad guy. What bad guy is worse, and by worse I mean better for the purpose of the narrative, than a tool of the evil empire? Nobody cheers for Darth Vader.

Echoes of Revolution

Then under the direction of the Prime Minister Samdhong Rimpoche, the exile cabinet and parliament created a special “Solidarity Committee” to take over the various independent campaigns and activities taking place around the world. It appears that members of the Committee approached the leaders and representative of these campaigns and organizations, and instructed them to terminate their independent activities and operate under the direction of the Committee. [link]

The word “Solidarity” reminds the listener of a revolution. Yes it was the Polish revolution against the USSR occupation, meaning that it will never find favor among ideological communists. But the Solidarity revolution won, and that cannot be discounted. The vocabulary of the revolution is of utmost importance, for the correct vocabulary will allow the narrative to be accepted by protesters.

The Movement Betrayed

Circulars have been sent from Dharamshala to NGO’s and support groups instructing them to stop using the term “FREE TIBET”. Earlier, only the term independence or Rangzen was regarded as taboo, but now even such a broad and inoffensive term as “freedom” is seen as too provocative. Instructions have also apparently been issued to the Tibetan public not to tear, burn or step on the Chinese Communist Flag. A week ago, Tenzin Choeden, a member of the Solidarity Committee spoke before Chinese UN mission in New York where Tibetans have been keeping up a vigorous demonstration since March 10th. The Solidarity Committee representative gave a lengthy and roundabout speech where he called on Tibetans not to shout slogans demanding Independence for Tibet, and a boycott of the Beijing Olympics. Much to the annoyance of the crowd he also told protesters not to display a large banner they were carrying which read “China Out of Tibet”. [link]

The official leadership of the Tibetan Solidarity movement have been suborned by the imperialist power. The leadership is working against its own people in an attempt to crush the revolution from both sides, hoping that increasing the pressure does not create an uncontrollably violent reaction.

The test to this theory is in Larry Chin’s article, titled “Is the CIA behind the China-bashing Olympics protests?

The legions of pro-Tibet activists also seem largely unaware of the historical fact that the “holy land of compassion” has been a CIA pawn since the end of World War II. The infamous Tolstoi Mission sent CIA operatives into Tibet, with plans to establish it as a US military base, from which the US could control the entire Asian region. This activity flourished under the US-supported, opium-banked Nationalist Kuomintang regime of Chiang Kai-Shek.

Notice Chin playing the same themes we found against the Tibetan Solidarity movement. America the real imperialist power: check. Tibet has been betraying China since WW2: check. Just like the Kuomintang counter-revolution: check.

Use these themes when constructing a narrative for why protesters should get together and protest against Saudi Arabian imperialism of the muslim world (and the west). Choose the name of a successful and popular revolution from the past. Identify a villain who has betrayed the revolutionary movement in order to assist the imperial enemy.

Other uses for the narrative should be obvious.

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Leftism is a Gnostic perversion of Christianity

And that’s not good. At all. So says Gagdad Bob in a brilliant essay, via Dissecting Leftism. Here is a taste.

Being that we all live in “Christendom” — that is, a culture shaped and animated (in the literal sense of “given life”) by Judeo-Christian principles — I guess it shouldn’t be surprising that we share its underlying assumptions about the “brokenness” of man and the world. But where the progressive goes off the rails is in supposing there is some secret political formula that can reverse the fall and restore us to wholeness. Thus, the ubiquitous frenzied moral passion that always animates the left. Leftists are always exaggeratedly pessimistic about the present state of the world, but “optimistic” in a crazed and manic way that steamrules over anyone who would dare delay the immediate implementation of paradise.

From Marx on down, the leftist fallacy follows from turning spiritual Truth on its head (or “inside-out”), so that man’s spiritual crisis is seen as a material one (e.g. “robber barons,” “global warming,” “global cooling,” “nuclear power,” “income disparity,” “corporate greed,” etc.) instead of a psycho-spiritual one. This is the “fundamental assumption” which adherents of all the variant progressive systems within our epoch unconsciously presuppose.

For example, the progressive would say that Palestinians aren’t evil, they’re just poor. Which precisely inverts the truism that they are poor because they are evil (except for the few who are extraordinarily wealthy because they are evil, having been enriched by the largesse of Western progressives who give them money because they think it will stop them from being evil, when it always does the opposite, thus ensuring a constant cash flow from backward progressives).

Read the whole darn thing.

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Minneapolis-St. Paul Radicals plan to have tasers just in time for Republican National Convention

In its own words:

MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL – The RNC Welcoming Committee (RNC-WC), an anarchist and anti-authoritarian organizing body based in the Twin Cities, announced today that it has ordered tasers for each of its members and friends. The announcement comes on the heels of last month’s St. Paul City Council approval of a St. Paul Police Department (SPPD) request for 234 tasers. Due to a unique corporate-anarchist confidentiality agreement, the exact number of tasers or documentable evidence of this new order will not be disclosed.

Both the SPPD and RNC-WC taser orders are scheduled to arrive before the September 1 so-called Republican National Convention (RNC) in St. Paul.

Of course they claim the timing is coincidental. Wink wink. Right… To add to the winking, jocular tone of the press announcement, the RNC-WC adds:

Once the RNC-WC order is finalized, the St. Paul Police Department will no longer have a monopoly on the weapons that have been implicated in hundreds of deaths nationwide, including the killing of a Fridley man by Minnesota State Troopers in January.

The Welcoming Committee has no plans to purchase machine guns, rubber bullets, pepper spray, tear gas, concussion grenades, batons, water cannons or helicopters, all of which will be at the disposal of local police and federal agents in September.

Aren’t violent anarchists tres amusing?

h/t: Pat Dollard

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’68 Flashbacks

The Recreate 68 organization is an alliance of local to Denver anti-Globalization protestors and “anti-racist,” “anti-war,” “direct action” types (this means they are neo-communists, the evil shadow to neo-conservatives) who admit they are sick and tired of being pandered to by the Democratic National Committee. They are so over the whole two party system they want to tear down the ramparts and storm the Bastille, behead the King and all that.

We are committed to resisting and overturning a system of violence inflicted daily on people of this country and the world, and against the natural environment, by political and corporate power, in the pursuit of profit. We are resolved that our group will not instigate violence against human beings as a means to end this system of violence and injustice. However, we recognize the right of the people to self-defense and community defense.10 Mutual Assurances Between Groups And Organizations Planning DNC Related Activities:

  1. To publicly support rights of free speech, the right to organize, and the right to dissent for all.
  2. To maintain solidarity with and respect the guidelines of all permitted activities, recognizing that there are many individuals who seek a safe and peaceful protest.
  3. To support and participate in efforts to assure civil liberties for everyone in Denver, including the right to organize civil disobedience and nonviolent direct action without that organizing being criminalized or disrupted.
  4. To speak out against any pre-emptive arrests, raids on activists spaces, or attacks on independent journalists and other media.
  5. To be conscious of and speak out against police targeting and differential treatment of people based on race, gender, sexual orientation, accent, or appearance.
  6. Not to turn people over to the police, or share information with the police about other groups.
  7. Not to publicly criticize the tactics used by other parts of our movement or cooperate with media efforts to be divisive or portray good protester/bad protester.
  8. To publicly condemn police repression and brutality.
  9. To be conscious that if violence or property destruction does occur, we will do what we can to help prevent it from being blown out of proportion and dominating the media coverage.
  10. To remember that, when all is said and done, our greatest victory will be an activist community with a renewed sense of strength and unity.

How do you like #6 and 7 basically agreeing to non-cooperation with the police in the case of any crimes committed by violent allies of this “non-violent” movement? Seems like malice aforethought to make these preparations. Maybe they claim to be non-violent as a form of camouflage.

In a second irruption of ’68 nostalgia, the Black Liberation Theology of Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s Trinity United Church of Christ church has risen to a considerable measure of infamy. Barack Obama has been shaken by the recent publicity about the preacher who converted him to Christianity, married him to his wife, and baptized his daughter. Though Sean Hannity had been on the Rev. Jeremiah Wright story for over a year, it didn’t get going in the media until Obama’s church started selling Wright’s sermons on DVD. A producer from ABC bought it and it became a story. Note, this is important. This was a collection of Wright’s speeches put out by his own church. These were the speeches that his own church agreed were the most important and presumably they were typical. So any claims that Obama didn’t know Wright was saying this are disingenuous. These are Wright’s greatest hits. It’s like being a Chicago Bears fan faced with a Greatest Plays by the Chicago Bears DVD and not recognizing any of the games. Where were you all these years? Apparently not watching football. Either Obama wasn’t paying attention in church or he is lying about it. Neither is good for his credibility.

Perhaps this summer’s Olympic games will feature American sprinters raising black-gloved hands in protest of American policy, allowing China to make excuses for its totalitarian repression of Tibet and internal groups such as the Falun Gong. I hope not.

And in third place we have the Manson Family. Taking a back seat to none in his Helter Skelter days Manson and his gang of murderers now live in obscurity, some still jailed. But years of jail-house braggadocio have given the authorities enough evidence to search the desert for the decomposed bodies of people who disappeared in the late 60s after being seen at or near the Manson Family compound. The have used advanced technology to identify several possible graves. (h/t: Jammie Wearing Fool)

The machine detects fluorinated hydrocarbon compounds, one of the approximately 400 types of volatile organic compounds emitted by human bodies during decomposition. Focusing on these compounds is important because Vass believes they’re formed as the fluoride added to urban drinking water is released after death.Their presence helps differentiate a human bone from bones from wild animals, explained Vass, who has spent years developing a decomposition odor database using bodies donated to the Oak Ridge lab.

The instrument beeped at regular intervals. As it approached the ground, the beeping accelerated until it was a steady stream of sound.

“That’s impressive,” said Wise, a senior researcher at Oak Ridge specializing in environmental analytical chemistry. Vass agreed.

Using a thin, 3-foot long probe, Vass tested the soil in the area. It slid into the ground without much effort.

“Undisturbed soil isn’t this easy to probe,” he said.

“The loose soil area is roughly like this,” he said, using the tip of the instrument to draw a long oval on the ground. “It’s about three feet deep.”

A reminder of what Manson was all about. His intention was to use the murders to ignite a race war of white against black in the USA. He thought that racism was hotter and more violent than it really was back in those days. It’s too bad that those who think like him, the “anti-racists” in Recreate ’68 and their neocommie friends, haven’t yet figured that out. America is not a racist country the same way it was before the civil rights movement finally buried the last shreds of the Democratic Party’s Jim Crow laws in the South. And that was 50 years ago. Many Americans have grown up to middle age without being taught racism by their parents and feel bewildered when they are accused of being racist, all because of the color of their skin.

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David Mamet: the ideological journey of a former “brain-dead liberal”

But for the fact that I am not a famous and wealthy writer-director for stage and screen, who mostly works in iambic-pentameter, David Mamet’s story of his ideological awakening could be my own. This is how he describes his initial realization of where his long-established assumptions had been wrong.

I had been listening to NPR and reading various organs of national opinion for years, wonder and rage contending for pride of place. Further: I found I had been—rather charmingly, I thought—referring to myself for years as “a brain-dead liberal,” and to NPR as “National Palestinian Radio.”This is, to me, the synthesis of this worldview with which I now found myself disenchanted: that everything is always wrong.

But in my life, a brief review revealed, everything was not always wrong, and neither was nor is always wrong in the community in which I live, or in my country. Further, it was not always wrong in previous communities in which I lived, and among the various and mobile classes of which I was at various times a part.

And, I wondered, how could I have spent decades thinking that I thought everything was always wrong at the same time that I thought I thought that people were basically good at heart? Which was it?

Read all about it at the Village Voice, David Mamet, Why I am No Longer a ‘Brain-Dead Liberal’

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