Show me you really care

As I mentioned before, the beauty of having Ron Paul as a presidential candidate is the turd-in-the-punchbowl effect he has on the defenders of the political status quo, whether “left” or “right,” in our midst.  This time we have a nice twofer from the liberal camp (one, two), wherein we learn, among other things, that Ron Paul isn’t really a civil libertarian because his opposition to the Patriot Act and the War on Drugs isn’t based on any genuine concern for civil liberties but rather opposition to federal legislation.  Proof of this is that he also opposes the Civil Rights Act.  Now, if you assume that a federal law is the only thing standing between relative freedom for blacks and the return of Jim Crow, and that “states’ rights” is just code for “oppression of minorities,” then I guess you might have a point.  On the other hand, the Patriot Act and its various offshoots are pretty clearly about making it easier for the feds to trample on whatever rights U.S. subjects–pardon me, citizens–are still, more or less, permitted to enjoy.  Also, the implication that the War on Drugs is somehow not a civil rights issue, especially considering how it disproportionately screws over blacks, is just absurd (not to mention ironic, coming from people who are apparently so concerned about the welfare of the poor and minorities).

Even more ridiculous, though, is the idea that he’s not actually anti-war.  It’s just that he doesn’t care enough about foreigners to drop bombs on them.  No, seriously:

But the nature of his anti-war stance is fundamentally different from that of liberal opposition to any given war. The tipoff is in his opposition to foreign aid, and his anti-United Nations position: he’s anti-war because the rest of the world just isn’t worth it.

And what exactly does “liberal opposition to any given war” mean in practice?  Voting for a “peace” candidate, who, once in office, proceeds to continue prosecuting the wars liberals oppose while expanding them into new areas?  At least ABL is honest when she writes, “So, am I monster for caring more about my uterus and the rights of minorities and the underclass than I am about the victims of drone strikes in a foreign land? Maybe. But I’m ok with it.”

Not to get too into trying to divine motive here, but it sure seems like the real problem is that certain liberals just hate seeing a conservative take a more principled stance on their issues, while their savior, the glorious Obamalord, continues to prove that he has no principles.

But even if it’s all true, and Paul really doesn’t give two shits about civil liberties and it’s just all about hating the federal government—who cares?   If you’re rotting in jail on drug charges and somebody comes along and tells you you’re free to go, are you going to question their motives before you agree to leave?  Only if you’re a fool.  Or a liberal, apparently.

Mass Lunacy

I had the same initial reaction as Prof Crispy to the public displays of emotion in North Korea following the death of Little Elvis.  I thought they had to be fake—especially those of the news readers, who were apparently so choked up that they couldn’t even make the announcement—all part of an elaborate charade meant to assure the official minders that everyone is still firmly on-board with the regime.  Or, if by some chance these people actually were crying, it had to be the result of years and decades of brainwashing on a massive scale.  Either way, it was an inkling of how much it must suck to live in a place where the head of state is regarded with such reverence.  Then it occurred to me that here in America, a country supposedly founded on opposition to rule by powerful figureheads, we’re not too far behind.  Almost fifty years out, and people are still nostalgic for Came-a-lot, and look at all the pomp and bullshit that went along with the death of Saint Ronnie a few years ago.  I thought they were never going to put that fucker in the ground.  And, for a more recent example, of course, there’s always this.

America is like a guy who…

Nearly nine years after the start of the controversial invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein and sparked years of violence, Panetta told Iraqis “Your children will have a better future”, and said the US and Iraq would have “a new relationship rooted in mutual interest and mutual respect”.

“We are not about turn our backs on all that has been sacrificed and accomplished in Iraq,” Panetta said.

“Iraq will be tested in the days ahead by terrorism, by those who would seek to divide, by economic and social issues … by the demands of democracy itself,” he said, while adding that the US would be a “committed friend and … partner” to the country.

Aljazeera

In the spirit of dreaming up ridiculous analogies to depict America’s attitude toward its former colonial ward and now client state, Iraq, here’s one that occurred to me when I heard a clip of the speech quoted above on the radio this morning.  America is like a home invader who, after setting your house on fire and killing your husband (or wife, depending on your preference) and shooting your dog, moves in and forces you to marry him at gunpoint, whereupon he tortures your kids, shoots your cat, hires a bunch of contractors to fix the place up but instead they cash the checks and take off before finishing the job, and then, when he decides he’s finally had enough, he leaves, though before leaving, he pauses on the front lawn to tell you how much better off you are now than before he burned your house down and to announce how dedicated he is to your special friendship and to promise to come back any time if you ever need any more help with anything, really anything, and then he jumps into his already-running bright yellow Hummer and speeds off, spewing a cloud of exhaust fumes in your face.

Thank You for Your Service

I don’t generally put a whole lot of stock in the notion of a “proper burial” or “respecting the remains of the dead”—a landfill is a good a place as any for a pile of ashes, really—but I have to say, this is a pretty fitting metaphor for the relationship between the political-military establishment and the people who are stupid, or hapless (depending on how much sympathy you have for anyone who knowingly joins an institution whose mission is to murder people for no apparent reason), enough to get killed fighting in its pointless wars.  Once you get past all the maudlin bullshit about our brave fallen heroes, fighting for truth and justice and the American way, they’re obviously just so much human excrement, to be taken out back and burned and then dumped in heap with the rest of the trash.

Eat Me

Only in a place where every fourth person is a lawyer could an inane “controversy” like this even occur.  I’m sure, on the off chance that anybody outside of Vermont has ever seen one of these T-shirts, people are walking out of Chick-Fil-As all across America scratching their heads and wondering why they got pieces of fried chicken instead of a wad of dark leafy green vegetable.  Good to see that this stupidity has been greeted in Vermont with the amount of respect it deserves.  Good to see, too, that after a similar incident a few years ago, Vermont’s glorious senators stepped into the breach and passed a perfectly useless piece of legislation that did nothing to prevent it from happening again.

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