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Spotlight on the Mainstream Maniac Machine

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-Comrade Jack

Today’s enlightened rant is sponsored by Paul Krguman of the New York Times, as seen here. This observer has noticed this trend of madness that has become more and more acceptable in the ever more homogenized American infotainment/media/news(?)/crap sector. However, what this observer missed was how the recent right-wing lunatic murderers of abortion doctor George Tiller and the white supremacist shooting up the holocaust museum, show how right the Department of Homeland security was in a recent report. Jack did notice the report, and at the time and without much attention, believed it to be an over-exaggeration made by a department Jack never liked in the first place (mostly because of its connections with America’s dumbest president). It seems that all the critics of this report have some explaining to do. Jack feel a little humbled, and I’m sure the offended teabaggers and RNC flaks would if they weren’t so deluded by our media’s maniac machine.

Jack doesn’t blame the right wing for being upset by Obama winning the election, he would feel more than a little peeved if old man McCain had won. What he is bothered by is how more than a few folks on the right end of the American political spectrum have given in to what appears to be a media feed madness/temper tantrum. Obama is not the Antichrist, and no one should have to argue against that. A 3% tax hike is not “oppression”, and makes anyone who would claim it look like a douche (as in, try explaining to a Chinese factory worker that you’re being oppressed by a minor tax increase).

Perhaps most disturbing to Jack, is the idea that Obama is a Marxist. To anyone who will, (and they will) claim that Obama is a Marxist, please be prepared to defend your point based on Marxist principle (site actual Marxist theorists or you will be ignored). If you don’t think you can do that, it explains why you are not qualified to offer an opinion on who is or is not a Marxist. Let me clue you in on a basic fact ignored by almost every single person in North America. Government control is not socialism, per se. Socialism is direct democratic control of the economy. As the decisions of the Fed are not democratic, it is not a socialist body. Obama is a social democrat, a capitalist who believes in a social safety net and Keynesian economic theory. End point.

To return from Jack’s ideological rant tangent, what Krugman has shown us is that there is a serious problem in the lunatic right today. Unlike the American lunatic left, which today is mostly pacifistic and narcissistic (see Jack’s last rant), there is a tiny fragment of the right that is not only fanatically crazy, but homicidal at that. It is receiving serious ideological support from a large segment of the media that seems to have completely lost its mind. Jack would like to take this moment to speak to all Americans and ask for people to calm the f*ck down.

Bush nor Obama is the END OF THE WORLD. Put your guns back in their lockers, and try not to treat your fellow Americans like something you just scraped of your shoe.

Since When Did We All Become Middle Class?

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-Brother Jack

It must be a good thing to be middle class, everybody seems to have their back. Wait I take that back, because everybody also seems to also be oppressing them. If you’re middle class you’re both the friend and foe of both the Republican and Democratic parties, because the other one apparently wants to eat your children. Uh, what doe middle class mean again?

Lets look it up in Jack’s Compendium of American Politicalisms and Assorted Patriotic Prognostications (in state of publishing limbo). Middle Class – Noun – The middle class is everybody that is not poor or rich. Since class does not exist in America, unlike in the barbarian wastes of Canada/Mexico (see rest of world), everybody is middle class. The middle class own small businesses or at least have a “really good idea” about setting up one. The middle class lives in apartments, houses, or are in a state of “extended camping” (see foreclosures). Terrorists want to kill the American middle class because they love freedom. You are middle class (see you – put down the dictionary retard, find a mirror).

So roughly 95% of the country, from a conservative estimate, is “middle class”. Virtually everyone in the US that doesn’t live under a bridge or in a mansion, when asked about economic standing will almost unfailingly respond with middle class. To our political ruling class this is an incredible advantage. It gives them the coveted ability to speak to all of us, without speaking to anyone at all.

It also allows a way for Americans, not just politicians, to deny that economic class plays a major role in our society. Americans have since the time of Tocqueville’s critic of our early democracy, have wanted to believe that we are the coveted classless society. That if you work hard and persevere you too can grab the American dream. The vast majority of Americans seem to believe that they are entrepreneurs destined to commercial success. We all are small businessmen/women, the other great abstraction of modern American politics, is likewise used to deny anything resembling class conflict.

The sanctification of the middle class is a compromise we make with politicians. We let them use an obviously meaningless word to obscure their political agendas and personal ambitions. In return, they kiss our collective asses and we don’t have to admit that not everyone is cut out to own a fortune 500 company by virtue of enough elbow grease. More importantly we don’t have to admit to anyone that maybe we aren’t destined for success and glory.

This is where our pride shows itself to be a fatal weakness. Our inability to admit that we are more than likely not going to set the world on fire with our brilliance leads to policies that hurt most of us. We have to admit to ourselves not that we are failures, but that statistically and logically, most of us have to be just normal. Some of us, by the cruelty of indifferent fate, are literally born to fail. When we assume that we are a meritocracy born of a majority class of winners, we spawn polices that ignore the normal and punish those unlucky to be born with deformity or poverty.

We also have to admit that economic class is not representative of self worth. Some very rich people are special in “oh my, isn’t he special” kind of way. Remember that our last president was somehow floated from failed oil company to failed oil company to the White House and was almost assassinated by a salted pretzel. On the other side of the coin, some very brilliant people toil away with the rest of us. There is a good chance you know not only someone that was a better president than our previous example, but someone who could probably be rich if they wanted to be. They just don’t apply themselves because they’re lazy or don’t care for fame and fortune or just plain unlucky, or some combination thereof.

Furthermore, worth is measured not simply in ability, but in intention. Yeah, its an obvious point, but it seems lost in the discussion on American economics. Free market capitalism doesn’t serve the inept, no matter how noble they may be. Under the “free market” ideology peddled in our country these people are dirt, provided they weren’t lucky enough to be born to a wealthy enough to support them for their entire lives. The myth of the middle class would have you believe that even though some people are untalented, unskilled and poor, they too will succeed if they try hard enough. It ignores the fact that this doesn’t happen, and we ignore this because we want it to be true. In the end, our lies about our own status fuel a system that if we were more conscious of, we would detest.

Part of being a good person, either in terms of morality or mental health, is one who is willing to challenge unconscious assumptions by bringing them to their conscious mind. The biggest moral failures of our political system are laid bare by the light of conscious criticism. All that is necessary is that we face these failures and test our political theories by not allowing them to be abstractions.

The middle class doesn’t exist. What we often mean is the term we used to use, before it became politically untouchable by those opposed by what it started to represent. That term my friends is working class. If you work for a living, whether its pushing a broom or a pencil, whether your pay is by the hour or year, you are part of this class. If anything this shows not the divisiveness that those who raise middle class banner claim it does, it shows unity. If you work for a living, you deserve a wage that can be lived upon. Yeah, people should be rewarded for accomplishment, but not at the expense of the rest of us.

So when someone asks you where you are on the economic ladder, tell them that you are part of the working class. That is if you work for a living!

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Originally published in Dynamic, the publication of the Young Communist League USA.


Written by jackofspades83

May 19, 2009 at 5:23 pm

Debunking the McCain Myth

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Jack O’Spades

Hello dear readers, there is something I feel that I need to discuss with you. Many people hold misconceptions about Senator McCain. He is widely seen as being more of a maverick and more progressive than he actually is. These distortions are not held by one segment of society, but are nearly universal, affecting everyone from the lunatic right to even moderately progressive individuals. Most recently we have seen this erupt from the right wing luna-pundits, who seemed to believe that McCain was horribly progressive because he appeared on The Daily Show to often, and *gasp*, actually questioned the Republican line. He also did the unthinkable for a conservative politician by calling the amazingly dickish pastor Jerry Falwell one of the political “agents of intolerance”.

Granted for a progressive these things are amazingly refreshing to see in conservative leaders, but it certainly isn’t enough. Going on the Daily Show isn’t going to make you more progressive, just as appearing on Fox News doesn’t turn you into a complete duchebag, and everyone knows Jerry Falwell was a jackass. However, for all his maverick posturing it simply hasn’t been enough to win him the White House for the last two times he has ran. So in short order our friend McCain has completely ditched whatever claim he had to being a maverick to become what he is now, a neocon boot licker. Going so far as to prostrating himself before religious conservatives by giving the commencement address at Falwell’s Liberty University back in 2006.

McCain’s voting record eliminates any doubt as to his conservative credentials. He has consistently low ratings from unions and womens’ groups (rough average of about 20%), often low rankings from environmental groups, dismal ratings from peace minded organizations, and nearly consistent 0% ratings from the ACLU, NARAL Pro-Choice America, and Planned Parenthood. While he supports the neo-liberal (as in “Free Trade”, not to be interpreted as, in any way, liberal) CATO-Institute about 80% of the time, is fast friends with tax cut groups and big business lobbies (although he has made enemies among government contractors), and has a life time rating with the American Conservative Union at 83.2%. All of this information was obtained from Project Vote Smart (www.votesmart.org), an organization that is ironically supported by John Sidney McCain III himself.

Although this refreshingly available voting record has already hit the blogosphere, many on the right hemisphere of it are still choking on the “maverick” image of John McCain. Their claim, in a nutshell, is that 82.3% isn’t really that much, and that he is one of the most progressive republicans. First off, I’d challenge anyone to argue that being 82.3% dead, or 82.3% paralyzed, is not really that bad. For those of you who really don’t think that’s too bad, you may want to talk to some of our Iraq war wounded, although they’re probably still over there. If you can’t get a hold of them, you could always try it yourself, although from a moral standpoint I should probably tell you not to.

As for being one of the most progressive Republicans in the Senate today, thats not exactly a big deal. We are perhaps the most conservative nation of the advanced industrial democracies, and being the most progressive of the most conservative party in our country, in one of the (or just the) most conservative eras in our history, is that really saying anything? Uh, probably not.

McCain has accepted virtually all of Bush’s policies verbatim. If anything he is even more dangerous than Bush, who’s own effectiveness has been limited by his obvious cronyism and incompetence. McCain is replaying the same Republican political maneuvers of 2000 and 2004, which seem to be still effective. Employing his “outsider” status, the oldest, perhaps most effective American political tactic, of which issues such as being a longtime Senator never seem to offer much of a damper to. In addition, he holds the Republican ideological trump card, “stability” which is achieved both through martial action abroad and prisons at home.

It is perhaps the former where McCain is the most dangerous. He has accepted the ideological framework of “Islamo-facisim” to a tee, the basic concept of which is that Islamic militants are going to take over the world unless we bomb all Islamic countries into a fine slurry of rock an bone. The ones that we don’t bomb must have a pro-western government, regardless of how undemocratic it will be.

McCain has a multitude of ideas which will help to further strain our military and diplomatic capacity to the breaking point. In addition to wanting to bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran (to which he has been quoted singing to the Beach Boys’ “Barbara Ann”) he also seems bent on re-starting the Cold War, because James Bond movies are so much better when you have those rascally Russians with their funny accents and furry hats. He has openly advocated expanding NATO to the Ukraine and Georgia, and placing missile defenses there. Such a move would infuriate Russia, and place it on the defensive, not a move that you want to make with a nuclear superpower.

In addition, McCain has also called for Russia to be removed from the Group of Eight, a relatively informal meeting of some of the world’s leading industrial and military powers. Although this is mostly a petty gesture, it is the diplomatic equivalent of the bitch slap. Considering his already threatening stance towards Russia, this will only exacerbate diplomatic problems of his own making. Granted, Russia has problems with democracy and civil liberties, but confronting them in a martial fashion will only give Russia more of an excuse to continue such practices. Furthermore, it should be remembered that Russia’s potent nuclear arsenal puts it in a powerful position, and it will not be frightened into negotiations from a military standpoint, particularly when it knows that we are already overstretched in our military capacity. We’re not even in a position to start a good ol’ fashioned proxy war.

Further “brilliant” foreign policy ideas by Mr. McCain include developing a “League of Democracies” and reviving the Office of Special Services. The first of which sounds like a brilliant plan, reminiscent of President Wilson’s League of Nations or perhaps the UN. The big difference is that the League of Democracies is not an inclusive body, it is essentially to be a forum for nations that the US believes to be democracies. Considering our track record of what we will be willing to accept as a “democracy”, such as nations ruled by one time American allies Mobutu Sese Soku and Saddam Hussein, I’m not terribly enthusiastic. It will essentially be a UN in the model of the “Coalition of the Willing”, ie. anyone willing to get on board with American hegemony. More than likely it will be used to provide the fig leaf of international support that the UN was unwilling to grant the Bush administration back in 2003, when Saddam had his magical, vanishing, anthrax warheads.

The idea of reviving the OSS, is yet another foreign policy idea from hell. The Office of Special Services was the precursor to the modern CIA. It has been considered, if it can be at all possible, even more reckless than the CIA has been. This comment has been made due to the more lax regulation that was afforded to the OSS and also to the early CIA. McCain believes that the CIA is over regulated, and that we need a “can do” intelligence organization. While I certainly do not dismiss off hand the necessity of an intelligence organization, I would argue that having yet another one would simply add to the alleged problem McCain is trying to solve. We already have the FBI, the Homeland Security Administration (AKA FBI II), the National Security Administration, and Dick Cheney, adding yet another voice to the cacophony doesn’t seem prudent. If anything it will only provide a greater ability to tailor military intelligence to fit whatever mold you want it to. CIA not being agreeable enough about telling us what we want to heat? Set up a new intelligence agency!

To conclude, McCain is NOT a maverick, he is for all intensive purposes Reagan III or W II. Although he has made some appreciated headway in issues of campaign finance reform and has taken military contractors to task, these achievements do not make up for his nonexistent social policy and militant foreign policy. He will only stay the course into America’s economic, military, and cultural ruin.

Intelligent Design Does Not Belong In Science Class – PERIOD

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by Jack O’Spades

Regardless of whether you believe in intelligent design or creationism, neither belong in a science class. Simply put: these theories are not in any possible way scientific. To qualify as a scientific theory an argument must be able to be tested empirically. If you cannot use the scientific method to judge an argument, it cannot be considered science.

 

Intelligent Design rests on the idea of “specified complexity”, which is really just stating that something that has a specific purpose and complex must be made by something intelligent. This sort of incredibly generalized statement cannot be tested empirically, and is on the same level of absurdity as attempting to scientifically prove or disprove the existence of God. The theory of evolution on the other hand, can and has been tested empirically, and is therefore worthy of being considered in a class of science.

 

Intelligent design and creationism are theological theories, religious philosophy. As such they can, and should, be taught either in a class of theology or philosophy. To not do so would be to deny view points that color the beliefs of many individuals. Seeing as the point of teaching philosophy, as well as its more specific branches such as political theory (secular philosophy) and theology (religious philosophy), is to understand the motivations of sentient beings, to not teach these ideas in such classes would be to deny important motivations in western society.

 

However, the converse of attempting to color these theories as scientific is even more dangerous as it begins to separate the scientific method from science. One of the key reasons we refer to the dark ages as “dark”, is because empirical testing was simply non-existent. Emotional judgment and theology were used in its stead, creating a society based upon myth. Do we really want to emulate such a society?

Written by jackofspades83

March 2, 2008 at 2:12 pm