Daddy TeaBagger Weeps: My Tea Party Turned Corporate Whore! (how spoiling the Boomers broke America)

Which is what I’ve been suggesting for some time now.

Boomers, on the whole, just don’t get it. Because, sadly, they never really “got” it in the first place. From the moment their collective purchasing power was recognized way back in the 50’s, every speck of an idea rising from that generational cohort has been microscopically scrutinized in order to figure out how it can be sold to the public at large. They are the Co-opted Generation, brought to you by the makers of Pepsi. “It’s the Herd Mentality that’s GOOD. And so GOOD for you tm“.

If they had been self-aware enough to take control of their own message, they could have actually have been a force to be reckoned with. But having been raised in a bubble that catered to their every whim, they assumed all that corporate fawning meant Power and Money were actually in agreement with their ideals. The sad reality: Corporations were using the 900 lb gorilla as a social and economic wedge; handily stripping out the substance and selling the pre-packaged, easily digestible product to the public at large. And if the rest of the country didn’t like it, the collective ire of a massive generational cohort would rain down fire upon your head.

So we end up with McDonald’s. Because kids on long trips don’t like eating unfamiliar food in unfamiliar places. ad infinitum

Once the pattern was established, it was easily and handily manipulated – for profit of course. And as time went on, it became increasingly easy to steer groups with special interests into their own intellectual cul-de-sacs. After all, wasn’t every egoistic whim they ever had worth exploring in deep navel gazing, cash-costing detail, regardless of the price to society at large?

Whittling away the generational mass, fracturing it, was a simple thing really. By their late 20’s most people’s interests and life path have gelled somewhat. They are no longer a “puppy-pile” of mate-seeking, group-thinking, exploratory youth.

At that point, it was just a matter of seeing the broad trends within the cohort and nudging them a little farther along the path. And this is less conspiratorial than it sounds. Because, bottom line, it’s always been about the Benjamins.

It was the Corporate sycophants in politics who saw the possibilities of using those differences for both corporate and political ends. They married Richard Nixon’s ground breaking political strategy of “us disenfranchised slobs” vs. the “elites” to the Corporate consumer group micro-marketing.

Minor personal digression: Ol’ Dicky Nixon was not attractive, he was not from a wealthy or politically connected family and he was not charismatic. But was incredibly intelligent. And most importantly, he was a political shark. He never stopped moving and he was a vicious bastard when crossed. In the end, I loathed him a bit less and respected him a bit more because of these things. But only a bit.

Fast Forward: Tea Party. The perfect blend of the Boomer ethos of “ME, ME, ME and to hell with how it affects other people” wedded to a political platform, funded by Corporate dollars.

Here’s the interview with Daddy TeaBagger “himself “. And since he’s not a Corporatist, unlike 99% of Washington, he’s pretty pissed that his brainchild has been Frankenfurtered to keep boot-licking Corporate butt-monkeys in power.

“In short, The Tea Party was and is about the the corruption of American Politics and the blatant and outrageous theft from all Americans that has resulted. It is about personal responsibility and enforcement of the law against those who have robbed, financially ****d and pillaged the nation.”

Ahem….. Excuse me. That’s “WAS.” No longer “IS”. Welcome to the real world, where you and what you want are irrelevant. Enjoy your stay. And please remember: It’s a Class War and the Rich are winning.

Advertisements

The Lie Machine: Rolling Stone Report on the Health Care Debate

The story here.

On the first day of August, a mob of 200 right-wing Texans stormed the parking lot of a Randalls grocery store in southwest Austin. They were united in a single goal: Disrupt the “office hours” that Rep. Lloyd Doggett, the district’s congressman, had scheduled for his constituents. The protesters targeted Doggett for his role in crafting the House’s bill to reform health care, brandishing signs that read “No Government Health Care” and “No Government Counselor in My Home!!!” But their anger seemed to encompass a universe of conservative fears: higher taxes, illegal immigration, socialism. The threat of violence was thinly veiled: One agitator held aloft a tombstone with the name Doggett. Screaming, “Just say no!” the mob chased Doggett through the parking lot to an aide’s car — roaring with approval as he fled the scene.

Conservatives were quick to insist that the near-riot — the first of many town-hall mobs that would dominate the headlines in August — was completely spontaneous. The protesters didn’t show up “because of some organized group,” Rick Scott, the head of Conservatives for Patients’ Rights, told reporters. “They’re mad about the stimulus bill, the bailout, the economy. Now they see that their health care is about to be taken over by the government.”

In fact, Scott’s own group had played an integral role in mobilizing the protesters. According to internal documents obtained by Rolling Stone, Conservatives for Patients’ Rights had been working closely for weeks as a “coalition partner” with three other right-wing groups in a plot to unleash irate mobs at town-hall meetings just like Doggett’s. Far from representing a spontaneous upwelling of populist rage, the protests were tightly orchestrated from the top down by corporate-funded front groups as well as top lobbyists for the health care industry. Call it the return of the Karl Rove playbook: The effort to mobilize the angriest fringe of the Republican base was guided by a conservative dream team that included the same GOP henchmen who Swift-boated John Kerry in 2004, smeared John McCain in 2000, wrote the script for Republican obstructionism on global warming, and harpooned the health care reform effort led by Hillary Clinton in 1993.

A Poker Run for Danny, 10 am Saturday as a form of Socialized Medical Care.

The name has been intentionally altered.

The name has been intentionally altered.

There seems to be a number of  willfully misinformed people who continue to insist that Socialism is solely a political system. A system imposed by an Authoritarian structure. Well, in its most complex incarnation that is a completely factual assessment.

But socialism (small “s”) fundamentally, is a group in which each person contributes what they can, so that all are supported as necessary.

By way of example: When Widder Walkins needs a barn raised, because her man was crushed dead felling trees for lumber; her neighbors get together and do the job for her. They don’t do it because they benefit directly. Some might. But most do it because it is the human and humane thing to do.

And as part of the social contract (which is the part that seems to be getting lost in the shuffle, so to speak) the good Widder will do her part in the future, when Gladys Mays needs help with that new baby’s teethin’ or Macon Tally comes down with the influenza and needs some chicken soup delivered to his bedside.

If these people don’t help each other, by neglect or by refusal, eventually they will all stumble and fall. Some, if not all, will perish. They will fail to thrive individually and as a community, because there are too many hardships for each to bear alone. Without a loose communal or tribal support structure to help them in times of need, they will, without question or exception, come up short somewhere along the line.

So lately, to satisfy my own morbid curiosity, I have been taking a loose count of the number of local requests for help with medical expenses through individual and community actions. These would include: Poker Runs, Cycle Runs, Bar-B-Que Dinners, Church fundraisers, Bake Sales, plastic jars on the counters of locally owned gas stations, posters on store windows and so on. This, by the way, does not include formally organized requests (i.e. recognized charities or non-profits) or those found in the newspaper or on the Internet.

In my very small range of territory (20 miles or so) I estimate that there is at least one fundraiser every 2 miles in any direction within a 360 degree radius. Now granted we are not talking an infinite number of points leading outward from me. (See, I’ll even admit I’m not the absolute center of the universe). But yesterday I took note of two local stores, a church, a fire station and a fruit stand all within 4 miles of me. There were 6 requests. That’s on 2 roads. I live in a very rural area, in one of the least populated parts of this county.

As I see it, allowing someone a little more savvy and organized than Henry Lee down at the Stop and Shop to manage and distribute that money allows for a number of positive things to occur:

  • Henry Lee can go back to shilling for the Stop and Shop instead of working for Suzie’s parents, keeping track of the money bucket, taking phone calls, answering questions and the like. He can work for himself as a shop keeper, rather than working for every underinsured or uninsured family in crisis.
  • Suzie’s parents can go to one place to request help. They don’t have to rely on the generosity of their neighbors who may be in worse shape than they are. They won’t have to worry that Henry Lee won’t keep an eye on the till so that drunken lout George Sacks, can’t pilfer through it and drink away the last hope for their daughter’s treatment.

There are some who are so set against any entity larger than a gas station collecting and using their money for the common good that they would rather cut off their noses to spite their faces.

Following this masochistic path to its logical conclusion, let’s say if these folks don’t want to participate they should be allowed to opt out. They will pay no more monies (taxes, surcharges, user’s fees) that are collected and utilized for a collective good. (read also as: lower costs for everyone participating because greater participation lowers costs)  In doing so, most will opt out of use of systems and lifestyles that utilize:

Fire departments

Water and sewer use and maintenance

Trash collection

Postal delivery

Police protection

Clean air

Clean water

Meat inspection

Paved roads

Traffic signage and signals

Structurally sound buildings with safety features like emergency egress and fire suppression, along with handicap access.

Public education

Elevator safety and inspection

Driver’s licenses

Public libraries

Public hospitals that treat everyone, regardless of ability to pay

So in the end, these folks suggest, by logical extension, that they can live in a poorly built shack with no lights, air conditioning, refrigeration, or running water. They will use an outhouse, heat and cook with wood, walk to get food from their garden or the nearby woods (as available), hunt their meat, burn or bury their waste, never travel on paved roads to any towns or cities and be utterly illiterate, uneducated and unemployable.

I can see that working out for them.

Interestingly some of the people I hear howling the loudest about creeping socialism are Medicaid recipients or have parents on Medicaid or Medicare and who literally could not survive without government assisted prescription coverage. Some work for state, local or county governments or the postal service, have cushy jobs and sponsored benefits like health insurance. Benefits and jobs that my taxes pay for. Go figure.

Some folks will say that they will gladly chip in and help others in need; so it’s not the collectivistic aspect that bothers them. They claim the problem is having a government run program. All the while failing to consider that our government is made up of people who elect representation to develop, run and maintain these very programs.

As long as we are a Democratic Republic we are a collective of people who run the country through representation. If we were simply a Democracy, them with the most votes would get their way. But we are not a democracy. Our system is designed to consider those who are so weak and so powerless that their voices get lost in the crowd. Like Suzie’s parents, who need help paying for her medical treatments. Or like Margaret in Hospice or Wanda with lymphoma or the half a dozen folks whose names, faces and personal tragedies are plastered on plastic buckets in the Stop and Shop or on a 5 foot sign in front of the local volunteer fire department that reads: Poker Run for Danny, starting at 10 a.m. this Saturday.