Thursday, October 22, 2009

Pat Buchanan's Ode to White, Christian, Racist Americans

Is Buchanan racist? I don't think so, at least not the KKK sort of racism that so many people think of. More accurately, he ethnocentric, not trusting anyone who is not like him. Interestingly, as a Catholic, he is among those feared (hated?) by the white, working class, racist evangelicals he champions in his recent article at WorldNetDaily.

Moreover, the alienation and radicalization of white America began long before Obama arrived. He acknowledged as much when he explained Middle Pennsylvanians to puzzled progressives in that closed-door meeting in San Francisco.

Referring to the white working-class voters in the industrial towns decimated by job losses, Obama said: "They get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."

Yet, we had seen these folks before. They were Perotistas in 1992, opposed NAFTA in 1993 and blocked the Bush-Kennedy McCain amnesty in 2007.

In their lifetimes, they have seen their Christian faith purged from schools their taxes paid for, and mocked in movies and on TV. They have seen their factories shuttered in the thousands and their jobs outsourced in the millions to Mexico and China. They have seen trillions of tax dollars go for Great Society programs, but have seen no Great Society, only rising crime, illegitimacy, drug use and dropout rates.

They watch on cable TV as illegal aliens walk into their country, are rewarded with free educations and health care and take jobs at lower pay than American families can live on – then carry Mexican flags in American cities and demand U.S. citizenship.

They see Wall Street banks bailed out as they sweat their next paycheck, then read that bank profits are soaring, and the big bonuses for the brilliant bankers are back. Neither they nor their kids ever benefited from affirmative action, unlike Barack and Michelle Obama.

They see a government in Washington that cannot balance its books, win our wars or protect our borders. The government shovels out trillions to Fortune 500 corporations and banks to rescue the country from a crisis created by the government and Fortune 500 corporations and banks.

America was once their country. They sense they are losing it. And they are right.

Problem is that he is right - they are losing their country, but not in the way they think.

Partly, and in their own version of the world, they are losing their country to postmodern, progressive relativists, those bleeding heart liberals they always complain about. This is an easy target, and in a sense, the moral and intellectual climate is shifting toward a more progressive, relativist position (although the shift is only just beginning and will take decades more to be completed). Their leaders offer up liberals (and people of color, like President Obama) as their target in the culture wars, but it is misdirection at best.

Mostly, "their nation" is being lost to corporate greed, money-based politics, and a profoundly disturbing sense of entitlement. Self-interest has devoured and killed compassion. Greed has become the basis of the economy. Everybody thinks they deserve their own reality TV show. Fame has replaced integrity has a cultural value.

Aside from a handful of atheists who have no power whatsoever and are mostly preaching to the converted, there is no war on religion and Christianity. White evangelicals have become their own worst enemy. By demanding that religion - and only their religion - be a central part of American culture and politics, they have alienated many who would defend their right to their faith, but not at the expense of the Constitution.

They are anti-science, anti-education, anti-intellectual. All three of these are the values this nation was built on. While claiming to defend the Constitution, they reject the values of the men who created the document.

And now they have a new group to add to "truthers," "birthers" and "tea baggers" (who are predominantly white, Christian, and working class, though organized by corporate interests), the "Oath Keepers."

Again, from Pat Buchanan:

Comes now, the "Oath Keepers." And who might they be?

Writes Alan Maimon in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Oath Keepers, depending on where one stands, are "either strident defenders of liberty or dangerous peddlers of paranoia."

Formed in March, they are ex-military and police who repledge themselves to defend the Constitution, even if it means disobeying orders. If the U.S. government ordered law enforcement agencies to violate Second Amendment rights by disarming the people, Oath Keepers will not obey.

"The whole point of Oath Keepers is to stop a dictatorship from ever happening here," says founding father Stewart Rhodes, an ex-Army paratrooper and Yale-trained lawyer. "My focus is on the guys with the guns, because they can't do it without them.

"We say if the American people decide it's time for a revolution, we'll fight with you."

When the revolution comes, it won't be the American people who launch it - it will be the corporate string pullers who own America. And if not them, it will be a religious war fought under pretense of Constitutional protection. And because they have become an uneducated underclass, lacking any critical thinking skills, they will be easily manipulated into waging this war by talking heads on cable networks and AM radio.

It will not be about freedom for anyone other than those who launch the rebellion - it will be a war fought for ethnocentric values, a HUGE step backward for what once was a great nation.

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