Krugman said that Howard Dean simply phrased it
badly. When Dean said he wanted to reach out
to guys who "fly confederate flags," he wasn't
saying he was after the support of dumb racists
with questionable loyalty to America. Krugman
thinks that Dean meant that he and Democrats
in general have to get guys like that to understand
where their own best interests lie, and make sure
they understand that Democrats would be a better
choice to serve those interests.
as usual, was right.
ability of the elitist class warriors of the GOP
to capture the Bubba vote is something that is
going to puzzle historians for many years. Here
is a party of social Darwinist plutocrats who
are devoted, body and something, to comforting
the comfortable and afflicting the afflicted,
and they are able to win the unwavering support
of Bubba, who is making $20K a year, slightly
less than he made in 1980, and who no longer has
anything resembling decent medical coverage, and
have him declare that liberalism the core of
what makes America America is a socialist intellectual
fact is the Republicans have a gigantic game of
bait-and-switch going, and through their well-funded
propaganda machine, are running one of the biggest
scams in history.
Let's look at so-called "partial birth abortion,"
a political term used to describe an emergency
procedure done in the third trimester of a pregnancy
when the life of the fetus has ended or the life
of the mother is in imminent danger. A rare and
tragic procedure, it's done most often because
the mother is at risk of dying, or suffering severe
injury. Like amputations and sterilizations, it's
a procedure not done on healthy patients, and
it's never done without a damned good reason.
during Clinton's second term, he stated that he
would sign a ban on these procedures provided
they contained a stipulation that the health of
the mother must be considered. In any normal society,
this would be considered just, humane, and rational.
In the GOP-controlled House and Senate it was
unthinkable, and they promptly passed bills without
such a provision, indeed going so far as to strip
one bill of that provision, and Clinton vetoed
being an unthinking and unfeeling clown, signed
the same bill that Clinton wouldn't, and now courts
are lining up coast to coast to strike it down
as unconstitutional, because the government cannot
order a doctor to refuse to provide a treatment
that might save the life or health of a patient.
In other words, the law is unconstitutional because
it refuses to factor in the health of the mother.
would the GOP do this? Because the abortion issue
is a great way to lead the fundies around by their
collective noses, and pose as the party of morality
and Christendom. The only trouble is, they don't
want to lose abortion as a hook to keep the religious
zanies in line, so they deliberately crafted a
law that they knew Clinton wouldn't sign, or that
the courts would strike down as unconstitutional.
wanted an approach that would fail, because if
they successfully ban abortion, they kill it as
a political issue, and they don't want the zanies
looking at where they stand on other issues.
this also gives them the opportunity to characterize
the courts as villains (always the courts, and
never the Constitution they uphold; they don't
quite dare attack that, and so they settle for
saying it stands for the opposite of what it actually
stands for). They know the zanies will never,
ever, ask what happens if Congress passes a dumb
law (oh, it could happen, it could happen...)
and there are no courts to strike the law down.
Just as they never ask what these voters could
do if a corporation cheats them or sickens or
injures them due to a defective product, and they
can't sue due to the magic of "tort reform." Perhaps
they can depend on the kindness of strangers.
GOP are masters of bait and switch. By giving
huge breaks to agri- business, they convinced
small family farmers that the GOP was on their
side when in fact the GOP was busily cheating
them. They've pushed the "everyone can be rich"
fable so hard that a fascinating poll taken earlier
this year showed that 17% of all wage earners
believed they were in the top ONE PERCENT of income.
They pushed the so-called "death tax" (the estate
tax, or what I prefer to call the "aristocrats'
tax") so hard that people who have never seen
$1.7 million in their whole lives are indignant
over the fact that the "death tax" will cheat
their children out of their vast estates of $500,000.
might be a yahoo, but he knows that the Republicans
aren't sneering at him. They're robbing him blind
and laughing like hell behind his back, but they
aren't sneering at him for his racism and his
right: the party needs to be able to approach
Bubba and tell him that he's getting screwed by
the GOP and HOW he's getting screwed by the GOP,
and not be overcome by the vapors because Bubba's
got a confederate flag decal on the side of his
truck and a rifle rack in the rear winder. That
shit just doesn't matter much. Just because Bubba
has the confederate flag and the rifle rack doesn't
mean Democrats are defiling themselves somehow
by talking to him. In fact, neither of those elements
are doing the Democrats a damn bit of harm, but
slapping Bubba around for them is. Democrats like
to talk about how Republicans are exclusionary
idiots who chase people out of the party, and
yet here they are, doing the same thing with Bubba.
fact is, the GOP is screwing the country hollow,
and Bubba is going to get the worst of it. He's
what the rich white trash at the WSJ refer to
as "a lucky ducky" someone who is poor and thus
in a low tax bracket. He's the one who loses all
his health benefits, who can't get good full-time
work, who stands to lose his social security,
his public schools, his good roads. The GOP waves
the flag and the cross in front of his eyes and
keeps him mesmerized. His kids will go to Iraq.
(does anyone think Putsch curses fate every morning
for making him President so he can't go over there
and fight alongside Bubba's kids? Seriously?)
It's the curse of the GOP that when their country
calls, they've got pimples on their asses or bum
knees they can only run ten miles a day upon,
or bad shoulders that limit them to dead end careers
quarterbacking in the NFL or some damned thing
like that. It must be terribly frustrating.
is front and center, the biggest victim in the
GOP's class war against America. He should be
the Democrats' strongest ally. But Democrats are
sticking their noses in the air because they don't
like the confederate flag, or gun racks and
then they can't figure out why Bubba votes Republican.
fact of the matter is, Republicans are far more
contemptuous of Bubba than the snottiest of Democrats
could ever be. But the Republicans are very smooth
liars, and they don't mind using Bubba, playing
him like a toy drum.
don't have to slide to the level of the Republicans
to approach Bubba. Democrats, at least, aren't
out to turn Bubba into a consumer unit in a corporate
fascist state. They can approach Bubba openly,
on his own terms, and appeal honestly to his own
best interests. They don't even have to play bait-and-switch
games, like the GOP does when they exploit Bubba's
figured it out, but picked a really stupid way
of saying it. And he got pasted for it.
in the end, I think he gained more from it than
those who blasted him.
figured out something the others seem to be missing.
He knows what makes Bubba tick.
Posted: November 9, 2003