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View Diary: "Newsbusters" Has A Sad About Something I Wrote. Well Allow me to Retort... (208 comments)

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  •  That about covers it. (34+ / 0-)

    It's like those magical thinking flow charts:

    Step 1: Destroy everything other than the Big Idea.
    Step 2: ???
    Step 3: Paradise on Earth!

    I think in truth people like this are a kind of drug addict chasing the emotions that an idea makes them feel, and really not caring about consequences.  Christianity or Islam or Nazism or Communism is such a "beautiful" idea in their fantasies, they just want to keep looking at it forever even if they have to turn life into a horrific farce in order to make other people go along with it.  It's basically taxidermy, what they do to society - kill it, stuff it, and pose it into a shape that mocks the paradise they promised.

    In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

    by Troubadour on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 09:46:05 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  That's About It (14+ / 0-)

      Communists were more economic and pseudo scientific Determinists.  They were "materialists" in the Reformation sense because they believed in natural laws (which were crackpot).  The Nazis rejected "Jewish Materialism"  (they're talking Einstein, not money) but they believed in a Determinism that was "spiritual" (as Hitler said about a million times).  Blood and nationalistic spirit determined pretty everything about a person.

      Of course, the biggest proponent of Hitler's idea of racial determinism is Dinesh D'Souza who says Obama can never be a real American because he is tainted by his jungle blood.  

      There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

      by bernardpliers on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 09:53:02 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  They all have one thing in common: Aestheticism. (18+ / 0-)

        The veneration of form over function, and the devolution of means and ends into a single violent statement of will.  They all know down deep that their ideas don't work, and that all they can really do is try to imprint the shape of their fantasies into the collective psyche through acts of atrocity.  If they can't sculpt society into the form they want, they'll blast a hole in that shape and hope no one notices the difference between a positive and a negative.  If one were to define a practical, real-world version of Satanism, that would be it - invert the human being into its moral photographic negative.

        In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

        by Troubadour on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 10:21:42 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Marx saw machines. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Troubadour, Dirtandiron, Shockwave

        so future social progress depended on building the right social machine. Didn't work.

        Thump! Bang. Whack-boing. It's dub!

        by dadadata on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 04:27:56 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Common failing among the cerebral. (13+ / 0-)

          The academic works written by the Marxists are the driest, most unbelievably mechanistic things you'd ever see this side of Kant.  They forgot one thing: Life is the power source, and life ultimately shatters all control forms.  That's why so little of the abstruse material they wrote is still relevant.

          In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

          by Troubadour on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 04:59:08 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yeah. Confusing cause & effect. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Troubadour, Dirtandiron, Shockwave

            Thump! Bang. Whack-boing. It's dub!

            by dadadata on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 05:04:32 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Isn't thaty why Marx said (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            that Communism would be a perfect system, if only humans were not involved?

            Nurse Kelley says my writing is brilliant and my soul is shiny - who am I to argue?
            Left/Right: -7.75
            Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.51

            by Bud Fields on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 10:43:03 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Good quote - hadn't heard that one. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              DarkLadyNyara, Bud Fields

              Any ideology that treats a system as an end in itself is bound to become an enemy of humanity.  In the 20th century, it was (briefly) Nazism and then for a longer period Communism.  Now it's these nuts who worship markets as if they were magic.  Humanity has to reclaim its prerogatives from people who want them to serve markets rather than making markets serve them through democratic governance.  "Because the market said so" is not a reason to do or not do something.

              In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

              by Troubadour on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 01:52:06 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  George Orwell On Machinery And Maintaining Poverty (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Troubadour, chmood

            In 1984, O'Brien explains that the challenge has been to destroy all the benefits of mechanization so as to maintain a useful level of misery:

            ...........................The primary aim of modern warfare (in accordance with the principles of
            DOUBLETHINK, this aim is simultaneously recognized and not recognized by
            the directing brains of the Inner Party) is to use up the products of the
            machine without raising the general standard of living. Ever since the end
            of the nineteenth century, the problem of what to do with the surplus of
            consumption goods has been latent in industrial society. At present, when
            few human beings even have enough to eat, this problem is obviously not
            urgent, and it might not have become so, even if no artificial processes
            of destruction had been at work. The world of today is a bare, hungry,
            dilapidated place compared with the world that existed before 1914, and
            still more so if compared with the imaginary future to which the people of
            that period looked forward. In the early twentieth century, the vision of
            a future society unbelievably rich, leisured, orderly, and efficient--a
            glittering antiseptic world of glass and steel and snow-white concrete--was
            part of the consciousness of nearly every literate person. Science and
            technology were developing at a prodigious speed, and it seemed natural to
            assume that they would go on developing. This failed to happen, partly
            because of the impoverishment caused by a long series of wars and
            revolutions, partly because scientific and technical progress depended on
            the empirical habit of thought, which could not survive in a strictly
            regimented society. As a whole the world is more primitive today than it
            was fifty years ago. Certain backward areas have advanced, and various
            devices, always in some way connected with warfare and police espionage,
            have been developed, but experiment and invention have largely stopped,
            and the ravages of the atomic war of the nineteen-fifties have never been
            fully repaired. Nevertheless the dangers inherent in the machine are still
            there. From the moment when the machine first made its appearance it
            was clear to all thinking people that the need for human drudgery, and
            therefore to a great extent for human inequality, had disappeared. If the
            machine were used deliberately for that end, hunger, overwork, dirt,
            illiteracy, and disease could be eliminated within a few generations.
            And in fact, without being used for any such purpose, but by a sort of
            automatic process--by producing wealth which it was sometimes impossible
            not to distribute--the machine did raise the living standards of the
            average human being very greatly over a period of about fifty years at
            the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries.

            But it was also clear that an all-round increase in wealth threatened the
            destruction--indeed, in some sense was the destruction--of a hierarchical
            society. In a world in which everyone worked short hours, had enough to
            eat, lived in a house with a bathroom and a refrigerator, and possessed
            a motor-car or even an aeroplane, the most obvious and perhaps the most
            important form of inequality would already have disappeared. If it once
            became general, wealth would confer no distinction. It was possible, no
            doubt, to imagine a society in which WEALTH, in the sense of personal
            possessions and luxuries, should be evenly distributed, while POWER
            remained in the hands of a small privileged caste. But in practice such
            a society could not long remain stable. For if leisure and security were
            enjoyed by all alike, the great mass of human beings who are normally
            stupefied by poverty would become literate and would learn to think for
            themselves; and when once they had done this, they would sooner or later
            realize that the privileged minority had no function, and they would sweep
            it away. In the long run, a hierarchical society was only possible on a
            basis of poverty and ignorance. To return to the agricultural past, as
            some thinkers about the beginning of the twentieth century dreamed of
            doing, was not a practicable solution. It conflicted with the tendency
            towards mechanization which had become quasi-instinctive throughout almost
            the whole world, and moreover, any country which remained industrially
            backward was helpless in a military sense and was bound to be dominated,
            directly or indirectly, by its more advanced rivals.

            Nor was it a satisfactory solution to keep the masses in poverty by
            restricting the output of goods. This happened to a great extent during
            the final phase of capitalism, roughly between 1920 and 1940. The economy
            of many countries was allowed to stagnate, land went out of cultivation,
            capital equipment was not added to, great blocks of the population were
            prevented from working and kept half alive by State charity. But this,
            too, entailed military weakness, and since the privations it inflicted
            were obviously unnecessary, it made opposition inevitable. The problem was
            how to keep the wheels of industry turning without increasing the real
            wealth of the world. Goods must be produced, but they must not be
            distributed. And in practice the only way of achieving this was by
            continuous warfare.

            The essential act of war is destruction, not necessarily of human lives,
            but of the products of human labour. War is a way of shattering to pieces,
            or pouring into the stratosphere, or sinking in the depths of the sea,
            materials which might otherwise be used to make the masses too comfortable,
            and hence, in the long run, too intelligent. Even when weapons of war are
            not actually destroyed, their manufacture is still a convenient way of
            expending labour power without producing anything that can be consumed.
            A Floating Fortress, for example, has locked up in it the labour that
            would build several hundred cargo-ships. Ultimately it is scrapped as
            obsolete, never having brought any material benefit to anybody, and with
            further enormous labours another Floating Fortress is built. In principle
            the war effort is always so planned as to eat up any surplus that might
            exist after meeting the bare needs of the population. In practice the needs
            of the population are always underestimated, with the result that there is
            a chronic shortage of half the necessities of life; but this is looked on
            as an advantage. It is deliberate policy to keep even the favoured groups
            somewhere near the brink of hardship, because a general state of scarcity
            increases the importance of small privileges and thus magnifies the
            distinction between one group and another. By the standards of the early
            twentieth century, even a member of the Inner Party lives an austere,
            laborious kind of life. Nevertheless, the few luxuries that he does enjoy
            his large, well-appointed flat, the better texture of his clothes, the
            better quality of his food and drink and tobacco, his two or three
            servants, his private motor-car or helicopter--set him in a different world
            from a member of the Outer Party, and the members of the Outer Party have
            a similar advantage in comparison with the submerged masses whom we call
            'the proles'. The social atmosphere is that of a besieged city, where the
            possession of a lump of horseflesh makes the difference between wealth and
            poverty. And at the same time the consciousness of being at war, and
            therefore in danger, makes the handing-over of all power to a small caste
            seem the natural, unavoidable condition of survival.

            War, it will be seen, accomplishes the necessary destruction, but
            accomplishes it in a psychologically acceptable way. In principle it would
            be quite simple to waste the surplus labour of the world by building
            temples and pyramids, by digging holes and filling them up again, or even
            by producing vast quantities of goods and then setting fire to them. But
            this would provide only the economic and not the emotional basis for a
            hierarchical society. What is concerned here is not the morale of masses,
            whose attitude is unimportant so long as they are kept steadily at work,
            but the morale of the Party itself. Even the humblest Party member is
            expected to be competent, industrious, and even intelligent within narrow
            limits, but it is also necessary that he should be a credulous and ignorant
            fanatic whose prevailing moods are fear, hatred, adulation, and orgiastic
            triumph. In other words it is necessary that he should have the mentality
            appropriate to a state of war. It does not matter whether the war is
            actually happening, and, since no decisive victory is possible, it does
            not matter whether the war is going well or badly. All that is needed is
            that a state of war should exist.

            There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

            by bernardpliers on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 02:12:36 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Orwell's genius can't be overstated. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              He illustrated a monstrous phenomenon that was almost too abstract for language to express.  If he erred at all, it was in the perfection and indestructibility of his nightmare world, because real nightmares always end even though they seem not to while they're unfolding.

              I've always thought the most profound visionary of all time was actually Frank Herbert, who didn't just extrapolate the fears and disasters of his time into some perfect nightmare future, but actually lived in a time of plenty and optimism but foresaw a future where humanity was both high-tech and yet oppressed by a complex feudal system fed by an irresistible commodity.

              In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

              by Troubadour on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 05:55:13 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  Okay, I gotta read '1984' now.... (0+ / 0-)

              "Reagan proved deficits don't matter" - Dick Cheney
              "[S]omeone needs to tell Boehner that he isn't King" - lawstudent922

              by chmood on Mon Jan 07, 2013 at 07:51:01 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  "socialism" rises in polls (12+ / 0-)

          I noticed polling results released in past year or so that poll respondents have an increasingly favorable response to "socialism".   Probably not a mass conversion to collectivism amd marx. More likely a result of the right wing's constant drumbeating use of "socialism" as an allpurpose confabulated epithet. For anything they oppose. As a result, an undereducated public gloms onto the word as a positive thing - " whatevr it is, must be ok if dose guys hate it".  Namecalling can boomering in amusing ways.

          •  It is pretty funny. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Heiuan, DarkLadyNyara, Alden

            A city-funded community bake sale is tantamount to a forced parade organized by the Soviet nomenklatura.  But ever notice these geniuses have no objection to $2 billion NFL stadiums built with taxpayer money?

            In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

            by Troubadour on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 02:05:17 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  "Socialism" is a word like "sin" or "witchcraft" (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Troubadour, Alden

            as used by severely religious people. It's nothing more than a trespass against their theology. You could replaced "I have sinned against you" with "I have socialisted against you" (yes I just made that a verb).

            liberal bias = failure to validate or sufficiently flatter the conservative narrative on any given subject

            by RockyMtnLib on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 02:51:40 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Because conservatives redefined it (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            They keep slapping the word socialism on things like:

            - fair, affordable, nondiscriminatory health insurance

            - union wages

            - support for the unemployed

            - watchdogs on credit card companies

            - fines on polluters

            - enforced fair play on mortgages

            - the idea of public parks, beaches, etc.

            - disaster aid

            And Joe and Joleen Sixpack start to think, "Oh.  Really?  That's all socialism means?  Well that sounds pretty good, actually."  Even though none of that is actually socialism.

            That's why conservatives started with the name-calling in the first place.  Because it's been clear all along, and redocumented over and over by polls of the last few decades, that when you talk actual specifics of the progressive agenda, a majority support it.  It's only when you start characterizing them or overt name-calling that you can peel away large-scale support for these things

            But crying wolf is a losing proposition whether you're not believed, as ought to be the case with these labels of socialism, or you are believed.  Either you lose all credibility or people simply decide they disagree with you.  Or preferably both.

            And so we see MSNBC soaring in the last year with Fox News sinking.

            Ideology is when you have the answers before you know the questions.
            It is what grows into empty spaces where intelligence has died.

            by Alden on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 09:34:42 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  We'd Call Marx A "Futurist" Not An "Economist" (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dirtandiron, Shockwave, Troubadour

          If you think of him as being more of an Alvin Toffler kind of guy, he's more credible, because what he did was not what we'd call "economics."

          There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

          by bernardpliers on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 09:01:35 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Seems like counterfeit economics is an ongoing (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            problem, although on the opposite pole these days.  Most economics programs seem to be endowed now by banking interests that basically want a priesthood to make up excuses for doing whatever they want, not an academic discipline to give governments advice about how to serve the general prosperity.

            In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

            by Troubadour on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 02:09:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  I am not sure if (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Troubadour, bernardpliers

      lumping "Christianity" and "Islam" (labels-names given to certain belief systems, involving beyond physical/material existence, that vary from individual to individual) with "Nazism" and "Communism" (political 'isms' used collectively, promising to achieve utopias here on earth) is fair Troubadour. You may personally feel negative about such systems of belief (which at times are indeed responsible for collective manipulation of peoples by the manipulators who choose to do so) which I respect but I think it is better not to mix apples with the oranges, if you get my drift.

      The complexity of the individual(s) belief systems cannot be lumped into observed or/and calculated judgments, no matter how sensible and logical those judgments may seem to us.

      ps# some who would like to mix these above have also coined the so called "Islamism" already, and although I haven't heard the Christianism yet, it will likely to show up somewhere soon.

      "Corruptio Optimi Pessima" (Corruption of the best is the worst)

      by zenox on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 10:17:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Eric Hoffer's "The True Believer" (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        zenox, StrayCat, Troubadour, 417els

        was a very nice treatment of this topic and here's a diary.

        There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

        by bernardpliers on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 10:35:40 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you for sharing your insightful analysis (4+ / 0-)

          ...of the subject

          The people yelling the most about "tyranny" will be the ones trying to become tyrants, the people screeching the most about "the Constitution" will be trying to prevent constitutional rule, the people who talk the most about religion will be the least religious.
          And we certainly saw these happening, did we not?


          "Corruptio Optimi Pessima" (Corruption of the best is the worst)

          by zenox on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 10:55:23 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Thanks! If You Like Dialectics.... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            zenox, Troubadour

            There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

            by bernardpliers on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 10:59:59 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  It's the old "Methinks you doth protest too much" (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Ice Blue, DarkLadyNyara, zenox

            phenomenon.  Hitler in the '30s: "Ze Jews and Ze Communists are going to destroy European civilization!"  Hitler in the '40s: Destroyed European civilization.

            In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

            by Troubadour on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 02:13:20 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Liars Yell "Liar!," Thieves Shout "Thief!" (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Troubadour, zenox, chmood

              The arsonist does not accuse others of stealing, he accuses them of setting his fires.

              There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

              by bernardpliers on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 02:28:34 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  The only defense is to respond to actions (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                bernardpliers, zenox

                and filter words down to apparent intent rather than face value.  It's a lot cheaper and quicker for them to lie or say something nonsensical that serves their purposes than it is for their opponents to debunk it, so they try to provoke a rhetorical war of attrition - they spend a few minutes spewing pure bullshit, you spend hours logically dissecting it, and then they just totally ignore everything you said while you continue to respond to their output.

                The only way to deal with conservatives as they presently exist is as a set of actions, because their language is now completely corrupt and Orwellian - they communicate nothing real, it's all an attempt to manipulate and control other people's emotions.  Fortunately most of them are not very bright, and their attempts to manipulate people are every bit as transparent as a 5-year-old throwing a tantrum.  The truly dangerous ones aren't really that bright either, but just smart enough to win over some fraction of moderates needed to sabotage government.

                In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

                by Troubadour on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 06:13:37 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

      •  "Christianist" (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        zenox, Troubadour, 417els, RockyMtnLib

        is a term I've seen used for years now, applied to an adherent of the type of socially conservative, politicized Christianity that the American right wing thinks is the only type of Christianity. If you are offended as a thoughtful and sincere Christian, you shouldn't be. It doesn't apply to you.

        I think it's a very good way of distinguishing it from the metaphysical belief system commonly known as Christianity, just as I think "Islamism" is a good way of demarcating the political use of Islam.

        "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

        by sidnora on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 10:50:40 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Fair enough. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I just separate belief systems from the individuals who subscribe to them.  Form a human chain long enough, and the people in it don't necessarily know whether the large-scale shape is a giant smiley face or a noose.

        In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

        by Troubadour on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 02:21:05 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Faith is simpler than science. Thus easier. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Ideology is when you have the answers before you know the questions.
      It is what grows into empty spaces where intelligence has died.

      by Alden on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 09:20:15 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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