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View Diary: Liberalism has won, which is why conservatives do what they do (259 comments)

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  •  In anything as complex (7+ / 0-)

    as American politics, I find any statement that there's one core issue at the root of it all to be, at best, a gross oversimplification.

    American economic policy of the last 30-35 years is a hugely important issue, however you want to label it, "neoliberal" or otherwise (I've come to loathe the term myself, as it's been fairly abused to the point where its meaning is diminished). Income inequality has grown to that unseen since the Roaring 20s, and that's crippling us in many ways.

    But there's a lot more going on. There's no one core.

    "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

    by raptavio on Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 12:06:54 PM PDT

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    •  I was very careful with my last sentence (10+ / 0-)
      the culture wars over the past 20 to 30 years have been a very intended (and well executed) distraction from the core issue - neoliberal economics - that's at the root of all evil.
      You may not like the term "neoliberal economics", but it's out there, and it's well understood in the battle between Keynesian adherents and Chicago School snake oil salesmen.

      Guess who's winning that particular battle?  The snake oil salesmen.

      The culture wars were purposefully fomented for a single reason: to sneak neoliberal economic policies past a low-information general public.  Ergo, the true root of everything that has sprung from the conservative agenda since at least Reagan, and to some degree, as far back as Nixon.

      •  And you lost me. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Lying eyes, DiesIrae, vcmvo2

        You've veered into CT and I won't follow you there, even to rebut. Sorry.

        "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

        by raptavio on Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 12:28:11 PM PDT

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        •  No CT there (12+ / 0-)

          Read up a bit on Lee Atwater and then move forward into Naomi Klein's "Shock Doctrine".

          I've been following this stuff for most of my adult years (I'm 60-ish), lived through the decade of raging Harvard Business School / Michael Hammer dissembling of a functional system of trade unions, and watched in awe as religious fundamentalism grew roots from the fringe and enabled the culture wars.

          No CT there.  None of it happened by accident.  It's been the result of a decades long Faustian bargain between the 1% and faith-based wingnuttery.

          •  Generic "read up on XYZ" (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            rsmpdx

            is not compelling to me.

            I know very well about Lee Atwater, thanks.

            "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

            by raptavio on Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 12:54:40 PM PDT

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            •  Some recommend reading "the Powell Manifesto" (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ORswede, LiberalLoner

              The Powell Memo (also known as the Powell Manifesto)

              The Powell Memo was first published August 23, 1971

              This was not an accident by far.  "Teh Gay, teh Guns, teh God" were ginned up to turn people out to the polls. Nothing more.

              The goal of those doing the turning out was to advance their economic agenda.  And while the culture wars have had mixed successes one way or the other, the economic agenda of Neoliberals has advanced completely unchecked, even after the greatest recession since the Great Depression.

              Prior to that memo, the Chamber of Commerce was more often about Main Street issues.  After that memo, the US Chamber of Commerce became engaged, along with ALEC and others, in national movement to establish an economic system benefitting the wealthy. And they have succeeded.

              There's no CT to the Chamber of Commerce, the Kochs' funding, the Coors' funding, Aldelson's funding, ALEC, the Heritage Foundation, and all the rest.  Are they all the one and same thing? No.  But they are working toward the exact same goal.

              That's not CT.  That's reality.  We ignore it at our own peril.

              "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 Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 05:43:04 PM PDT

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              •  Your thesis (0+ / 0-)

                is not supported by the Powell memo.  It is true the Powell memorandum may well have been the primary impetus which resulted in greater corporate lobbying and think-tanking, but Powell's zeal to wage the culture war seemed pretty darned genuine.

                I really am not interested in playing this game. Both Hanlon's and Occam's razors suggest your claims need evidence which you aren't providing.

                "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

                by raptavio on Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 06:21:17 PM PDT

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    •  Actually,given how often 'following the money' (5+ / 0-)

      explicates both policy and politics in the US, I don't see all that much complexity.

      "George RR Martin is not your bitch" ~~ Neil Gaiman

      by tardis10 on Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 12:28:24 PM PDT

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      •  Then I would suggest (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Via Chicago, DiesIrae

        you're not looking hard enough.

        People looking for a Grand Unified Theory in the political realm are going to find it by simple self-selection of data points and confirmation bias.

        People looking critically and skeptically are going to find much more of a sausage factory.

        "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

        by raptavio on Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 12:32:55 PM PDT

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        •  & I would suggest that you (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cotterperson

          aren't seeing enough.
           But then,I know how to make excellent sausage and while it isn't necessarily a pretty process it isn't particularly complex.
           

          "George RR Martin is not your bitch" ~~ Neil Gaiman

          by tardis10 on Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 12:42:33 PM PDT

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          •  Depends on the sausage, now innit? :D (0+ / 0-)

            Regardless, sausage with a single ingredient is pretty crappy sausage.

            But it's just a metaphor.

            I'd agree though -- one of us isn't seeing enough.

            "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

            by raptavio on Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 12:47:43 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

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