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View Diary: Rosa Parks, Misremembered (154 comments)

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  •  Narrative (4.00)
       The theme of the overall narrative which can only sanctify Ms. Parks by pretending that she was "apolitical" is one that pretends that politics and political action is a bad thing, which taints anything associated with it: when, in fact, a response to some issues must of necessity be political.

       Take, for instance, the response to Wilson's whistleblowing on the Niger-Yellowcake fraud.  The Republican response? "That's just politics.  Wilson was just playing politics."  Meaning what?  That Wilson wasn't really concerned about whether the government spouts lies as part of its official propaganda, but was... uh... coming up with this story as a front for his concerns about, oh, social security or civil rights or religious freedom?  Come on.  
       OF COURSE questions about whether the country should engage in aggression and whether the government has the right to lie in order to further that aggression are political!  And there's nothing wrong with that.  Is Joe Wilson political?  Is Cindy Sheehan political?  Yes they are, very much: the fact of being involved in issues of this sort makes them political.  The media would have us believe that the only credible witness to an event is the non-partisan idiot who has never had an idea on a political question in his or her life, and then suddenly, spontaneously, magically expresses the will of the whole people in an unpreconceived action.
        Well, that's not a democratic theme.  That's a fascist theme: the idea of the apolitical savior on the white horse who saves the country from the squabbling of the undependable, venal politicians (the last word said with a sneer).  And it's a narrative we should be very uncomfortable with, and we should not let the media get away with it.  We need politics, good clean politics: now more than ever.  Mussolini got rid of politics in Italy in 1922, but that didn't work out so well.  It would be great to see more discussion of instances where the media imposes this narrative, condemning legitimate political action as "just politics".  We need to supersede that with a new narrative of just and popular political action overcoming the "apolitical" tycoons who are looting the country.

    •  Very, very well said nt (none)

      How can we get over it when people died for the right to vote? -- John Lewis

      by furryjester on Tue Oct 25, 2005 at 06:12:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Well said. (4.00)
      Also, a Phil Ochs song come to my mind :

      Love Me, I'm a Liberal

      By Phil Ochs

        E               A           E     A
      I cried when they shot Medgar Evers
      E                   C#m
      Tears ran down my spine
         E              A          E
      I cried when they shot Mr. Kennedy
                     F#7             B7
      As though I'd lost a father of mine
           E        A              E
      But Malcolm X got what was coming
         G#m                        A
      He got what he asked for this time
         E        C#m      A        B7    E
      So love me, love me, love me, I'm a liberal

      I go to civil rights rallies
      And I put down the old D.A.R.
      I love Harry and Sidney and Sammy
      I hope every colored boy becomes a star
      But don't talk about revolution
      That's going a little bit too far
      So love me, love me, love me, I'm a liberal

      I cheered when Humphrey was chosen
      My faith in the system restored
      I'm glad the commies were thrown out
      Of the A.F.L. C.I.O. board
      I love Puerto Ricans and Negros
      As long as they don't move next door
      So love me, love me, love me, I'm a liberal

      The people of old Mississippi
      Should all hang their heads in shame
      I can't understand how their minds work
      What's the matter don't they watch Les Crane?
      But if you ask me to bus my children
      I hope the cops take down your name
      So love me, love me, love me, I'm a liberal

      I read New Republic and Nation
      I've learned to take every view
      You know, I've memorized Lerner and Golden
      I feel like I'm almost a Jew
      But when it comes to times like korea
      There's no one more red, white and blue
      So love me, love me, love me, I'm a liberal

      I vote for the democtratic party
      They want the U.N. to be strong
      I go to all the Pete Seeger concerts
      He sure gets me singing those songs
      I'll send all the money you ask for
      But don't ask me to come on along
      So love me, love me, love me, I'm a liberal

      Once I was young and impulsive
      I wore every conceivable pin
      Even went to the socialist meetings
      Learned all the old union hymns
      But I've grown older and wiser
      And that's why I'm turning you in
      So love me, love me, love me, I'm a liberal

      •  I Dreamed I Saw Phil Ochs Last Night (none)
        Thanks for that, Trout.  Ochs has been gone nearly three decades. It's sad how true his words remain.

        GreenSooner is the Rufus T. Firefly Chair in Freedonian Studies at the Poorman Institute for Freedom and Democracy and a Pony

        by GreenSooner on Tue Oct 25, 2005 at 07:04:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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