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View Diary: Are we on the verge of another 1848 or 1917? (283 comments)

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  •  I think people lust for catastrophic drama (6+ / 0-)

    and long for something  huge and cinematic to happen. And I don't think it will. Things will either continue to get slowly worse or will reverse and get better in tiny increments. And I know that makes the drama queen in us impatient.

    Ed FitzGerald for governor Of Ohio. Women's lives depend on it. http://www.edfitzgeraldforohio.com/

    by anastasia p on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 06:21:20 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  I call that "revolution porn" (5+ / 0-)

      Yes, most of the radical left is very good at dreaming about it.

      Not so good at actually organizing for it, though.

      Reality isn't a movie.

      In the end, reality always wins.

      by Lenny Flank on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 06:41:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'll add to this ... (9+ / 0-)

        It is not in the nature of Americans, as a people, to confront authority. I'm not saying they would never go down that road, but they would be more reluctant to do so than many other nations.

        This country is the most beaurocratic, and compliant place I have ever encountered.

        The most frequent response I ever see to someone trying to defend even the most minor trangression is "He broke the law".

        The relative merits of the particular law come a very poor second in the discussion.

        Yes, there are some noted exceptions but the usual response to someone caught speeding, or "rolling through" a stop sign is to suggest that the miscreant is at fault, not to question the validity of the stop sign, or the way the speed limit is used for revenue-raising.

        I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
        but I fear we will remain Democrats.

        Who is twigg?

        by twigg on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 07:57:12 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I quite agree (6+ / 0-)

          Despite all our tough-talk, deep down we are a servile and compliant culture who likes being told what to do. "Democracy" is just a word to us--few of us would actually lift a finger to defend it.  Indeed, given our societal attitudes towards unpopular views and cultural minorities, we don't even WANT any democracy, at least not for those we don't like.

          Just as the Romans, we care little about the Emperor as long as he makes sure we have bread and circuses. And we care even less about the barbarians outside our borders.

          When the world collapses around us, we'll be the last to know--and the most surprised by it all.

          In the end, reality always wins.

          by Lenny Flank on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 08:17:07 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  On that last point ... (3+ / 0-)

            and as an example ...

            The biggest problem the folk around here have with politics right now is that Barack Obama was re-elected.

            They simply cannot comprehend how that happened and the result is simply a wave of hate. What irks them the most is that they generated a "wave of hate" during his first four years and America responded by massively re-electing him.

            They think there must be some "Grand Conspiracy" at work, because they know the truth yet the White House was again stolen.

            With this mentality, borne of ignorance and fear, there is zero chance that America will ever achieve the insight required to organise an effective revolution.

            I know I speak of the Right in this example, but I am far from convinced that the "Left" is much better in this respect.

            Witness the opprobrium heaped upon Snowden and Manning.

            "We know that we need to defend the 4th Amendment, but HE BROKE THE LAW"

            I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
            but I fear we will remain Democrats.

            Who is twigg?

            by twigg on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 08:52:10 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  As usual, right on target. There are advantages to (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          twigg, Major Tom, Cassandra77

          being aware of other nations and other forms of participation and response.

          I spend stretches overseas, observing the USA from afar, then returning to see it up close, but with different glasses. Your observations about the USA are very much on target.

          It's a shame most Americans are not more worldly, in the meaning of understanding the differences between nations and social responses to government actions.

          "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

          by YucatanMan on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 08:48:55 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I always give a pass (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            YucatanMan, Cassandra77, AoT

            to Americans who do not travel abroad.

            Everything is "long-haul" from here, and expensive. It is costing us near $3000 to send our daughter to Ireland for a week with her school band.

            But there are Congressmen and Senators who do not travel abroad either. They do not take the trouble to inform themselves of other options, or learn to open their eyes to possibilities.

            Not only do they not avail themselves of opportunities they can afford, they are proud that they do not.

            This attitude is damaging to our national interest, and I'd solve it by making a law that said that if Congress votes for military action overseas, then 25% of Congress has to go on active service with them.

            I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
            but I fear we will remain Democrats.

            Who is twigg?

            by twigg on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 08:58:05 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Mexico has a vastly different attitude toward (6+ / 0-)

              government and millions visit there every year. But they don't speak the language and don't follow politics.

              Canada, especially prior to the current govt of Cons, has had vastly different attitudes toward government as well.  Having some Canadian friends in the USA frequently illustrated that at shared meals or drinks.

              Maybe I'm harder on "my people" but even trying to educate themselves about the rest of the world would help. And even when "there" in another country, we generally don't care a whit about understanding social attitudes and politics.

              Living there, dealing with the government, extended contact with local people and their perceptions of government or social mores, you get a whole different viewpoint.

              I was actually in Mexico during the Katrina disaster. The first day after, the newspapers proclaimed that nothing much had happened (as they did in the USA to a great extent).  But then the TV footage started rolling in while we were still reading the "All OK" newspaper.

              The shock of people was palpable everywhere and I was often stopped and questioned.  There was no shock about the flooding itself, but the lack of response of the government. How could the most powerful nation on earth simply stand by and not act with haste to help their own people? As the days went on, the attitude became more one of disgust than of shock. Mexico sent a military ship to lend assistance which arrived off the coast before Bush had gotten his ass in gear and noticed that a major American city was under water.

              I guess I'm rattling on, but I guess I'm not so willing to give people a pass for not trying to understand their relationship with the rest of the world.

              "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

              by YucatanMan on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 09:12:50 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Your points are well made. (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                YucatanMan, NearlyNormal, mkor7

                However, I don't consider a trip to Cancun as "visiting Mexico" :)

                It is easier for Europeans to visit many different countries, and as a result those people have extensive contact with each other ... Not just through vacations, but school and cultural exchange programs, etc.

                For example, most cities in the UK are "Twinned" with at least one city abroad, and school students, local officials and all sorts of people meet and mix regularly.

                I can leave my home in NE Oklahoma and drive 830 miles to South Padre Island, TX. Along the way I get to see Oklahoma, and Texas.

                In England, I could leave home, drive 830 miles, and be in Rome having traveled through England, France, Switzerland and Italy.

                I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
                but I fear we will remain Democrats.

                Who is twigg?

                by twigg on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 09:27:49 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  US cities also have overseas "sister cities," but (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  twigg

                  we generally only use those for commerce or politicians political purposes.  It's sad, but the interchange of people and ideas is much more limited here.

                  Just for grins, I looked up Dallas, TX sister cities:

                  Sister cities:

                      Brno, Czech Republic
                      Kolkata,West Bengal, India
                      Dijon, France
                      Monterrey, Mexico
                      Riga, Latvia
                      Saratov, Russia
                      Taipei, Taiwan
                      Recife, Brazil

                  Friendship cities:

                      Sendai, Japan
                      Tianjin, People's Republic of China
                      Qingdao, People's Republic of China
                      Dalian, People's Republic of China
                      Nanjing, People's Republic of China
                      Trujillo, Peru
                      Taguig City, Philippines

                  Yet your average Dallas resident couldn't tell you squat about any of those. Sad.

                  "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

                  by YucatanMan on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 09:40:52 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                •  people in England often told me . . . (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Ice Blue, twigg, YucatanMan

                  "The difference between the US and UK is that in the US, you think 200 years is a long time, and in the UK, we think 200 miles is a long distance".

                  In the end, reality always wins.

                  by Lenny Flank on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 11:19:17 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

        •  Americans are a self-selected nation of escapists. (0+ / 0-)

          We are a nation of immigrants who chose to come here in order to escape from a bad situation in their homelands. Perhaps it's in our genes our our national character to run from societal problems rather than fight to fix them.

          If so, then the most likely way that Americans could change things would actually be by dropping out of the mainstream economic system and creating alternative economic systems through private free choice. Maybe it's more in our national character to try stuff like that, rather than political protests.

          The most serious problem in American politics today is that people with wrong ideas are uncompromising, and people with good ideas are submissive and unwilling to fight. Change that, and we might have a real democracy again.

          by Eric Stetson on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 11:44:02 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  No, but it is in the nature of Americans (0+ / 0-)

          to ignore authority. We tend to do our own thing unless we have a damn good reason to cooperate.

          Any jackass can kick down a barn, but it takes a good carpenter to build one.--Sam Rayburn

          by Ice Blue on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 12:29:18 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Advice to all: Don't click on the doomer porn (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Cassandra77

        Those "sponsored links" at the bottom of this and other pages, just ignore them--whether from the right or the left.

        Whether it's the Evil Obommer taking away our guns, or the starving masses of the poor about to guillotine the 1%, it isn't going to happen that way.  

        What we're in the middle of is long-term, grinding adjustment and change.  Our duty is to develop sustainable and resilient economic and social systems in American society, mostly from the bottom up, not to sit on our asses and buy into somebody's clickbait.

        /rant

      •  radical left? seems to me all talk of revolution (0+ / 0-)

        in these times has come from the radical right;  The so - called Tea Party, founded and funded  by The Kochs & their minions.   The revolution - the takeover - is already in progress.  If the senate goes red, the war will be over.

        I belong to the Honey Badger Wing of the Democratic Party. We're mad as hell and we're not going to take it anymore. Have you seen our videos?

        by Cassandra77 on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 09:12:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Frankly, (7+ / 0-)

      I hope you're right, but powerful people are usually inclined not to give up their power. The police over here are considering ordering water cannon while the newspapers are claiming that the economy is improving. That makes me wonder how non-violent things are fixing to get.

      "The 'Middle' is a crowded place - that is where the effective power is - the extreme right and left might annoy governments, but the middle terrifies them." Johnny Linehan

      by northsylvania on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 06:41:59 AM PST

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      •  The police everywhere are adding riot control gear (4+ / 0-)

        and massive 18ton bomb-proof trucks from the military. They've long since added heavy weaponry and combat (swat) teams.

        I liked the response of the grandmothers in Ukraine:  mirrors to show the police/soldiers their faces.

        "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

        by YucatanMan on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 08:50:32 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  18 Ton armored cars (0+ / 0-)

          may be intimating but for a police department they are white elephants.  They are gas guzzlers and require extensive maintenance.  

          I'm a 4 Freedoms Democrat.

          by DavidMS on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 10:29:34 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  And some places have asked for another (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            RiveroftheWest

            in addition to their Humvees and other armored vehicles. And it is all paid for by the friendly Department of Homeland Security "anti-terrorism" grants.

            Because even little burgs and places like Ohio State University are all overrun with IED-making terrorists these days.

            "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

            by YucatanMan on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 11:13:30 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Colonialism coming home (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ActivistGuy, northsylvania

        They learned these tactics in North Ireland and now they're being brought back home. Same as it ever was.

        If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

        by AoT on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 10:47:57 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Some also lusted for war against any & all (0+ / 0-)

      Muslims after 9/11. That didn't turn out well.

      Any jackass can kick down a barn, but it takes a good carpenter to build one.--Sam Rayburn

      by Ice Blue on Sun Feb 02, 2014 at 12:21:43 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  yes drama (0+ / 0-)

      on BOTH sides

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