OK

Yes, you read that correctly:  I am the one, true Antichrist, and this is my first DK diary.

Let me clarify at the outset that my quarrel is not with Jesus of Nazareth (if he actually existed) but rather with the Greek-derived title "Christ," which implies that Jesus was divine. Since I deny the existence of ALL gods, any supernatural dimension, the soul, and the afterlife, I feel confident that Jesus was a charismatic, though wholly mortal, reformer who remains as dead as roadkill.  Gods were undoubtedly invented by humans even more primitive than today's Republicans to explain natural phenomena that they could not even begin to understand.  As terrifying as it is to religious believers, who are the least sophisticated of contemporary Homo sapiens sapiens (!!!), the universe is almost certainly 100% natural, except for the products and byproducts of intelligent beings' design (and I use the adjective "intelligent" loosely).

As a new diarist I owe it to my fellow Kossacks to say a few more words by way of introduction.  A 70-year-old Caucasian male, I am also (more significantly) an atheist, an anti-theist, a humanist, a neo-socialist, a logical positivist, an environmentalist, and a passionately pro-choice feminist--i.e., I believe in abortion on demand and in the self-evident superiority of the female gender (due largely to the fact that girls have never been conditioned to experience the male sense of unearned entitlement).

My initial diary/rant continues below the squiggle.  Please stay with me.  

American right-wingers do not have a monopoly on hatred.  I hate the GOP and its corporatist puppet-masters every bit as intensely as the GOP hates people of color, non-submissive women, gay people, transgender people, working people, labor unions, science, public employees, liberals, Islam, a decent minimum wage, "gummint," etc.

"KEEP YOUR GUMMINT HANDS OFF MY MEDICARE!"  (The deathless words of a South Carolina intellectual that should be inscribed on the headquarters of the Heartland Institute, the Heritage Foundation, the Chamber of Commerce, etc.)

I readily concede that not all Republicans are compassionless monsters and morons.  Many of them are merely ignorant, having spent their entire lives among people exactly like themselves, due to the insularity of the American heartland and the durability of childhood brainwashing (the subject of a future diary, perhaps).  They have been conned by the GOP to believe that U.S. capitalism is a synonym for "freedom," when in fact the only freedom that the GOP really cares about is the freedom to make as much money as possible, using any means necessary, and to keep every dollar they acquire (NOT "earn"), no matter how dubious the methods by which they acquired it.  As other Kossacks have pointed out repeatedly, social issues such as gay marriage, voter fraud, Obama's citizenship, lazy "takers," Benghazi, and the Affordable Care Act are simply the baited hooks that the plutocratic GOP uses to lure its most simple-minded supporters to the polls.

Even though Dubya Bush is a mass murderer who deserves execution every bit as much as Saddam did (if ANYONE deserves state-sponsored murder, that is), I consider Gipper Reagan (a.k.a. Ronald the Dim) to have been the most destructive president of the 20th Century.  He "legitimized" union busting, contempt for the poor, the demonization of government, white racism, tax cuts for the rich, jingoistic xenophobia, rhetorical deceit, and any number of other anti-populist attitudes.  His popularity is easily explained:  not only did he appeal to the worst instincts of the American populace, but his doltish cluelessness resonated with voters who were every bit as cluelessly doltish as himself.  The current popularity of Sarah Palin among "real Americans" is illustrative.

Ever since Reagan, and due in no small part to his despicable presidency, the U.S. has steadily devolved into a feudal state.  Income inequality is not only an inescapable consequence of capitalism but the thinly veiled goal of Republican policies all along.  After all, rich people obviously DESERVE their wealth, just as poor people "deserve" their poverty.  Consider (if you haven't already) that the majority of wealthy Americans are white men (and their kin) who have never once reflected upon the enormous cultural advantages that facilitated the acquisition of their wealth:  i.e., white skin and testicles, accidents of birth for which they deserve no credit whatsoever.  Inherited wealth, for those such as Donald "The Self-Made" Trump, was an undeserved cake iced with whiteness and maleness.  

NEWS FLASH FOR REPUBLICANS:  Once you have more money than you need to survive, as corporate executives and shareholders do, it's relatively easy to get more.  But climbing from poverty even to the modest comfort of the middle class, though never easy, is all but impossible in feudal America.  Gee, I wonder which self-serving policies have created a socio-economic "playing field" that is not merely tilted but perpendicular?  (Reader should infer heavy sarcasm.)

Recent social-psychological studies have identified two conspicuous traits of the conservative brain:  fearfulness and a heightened awareness of negative forces (real and imagined).  Conservatives see enemies and potential catastrophes everywhere, which is why Republican and Libertarian politicians garner votes by warning "dittoheads" of Muslim and/or black and/or Latino terrorists in every corner of the U.S.  It explains Dubya's "re-election" [sic] in 2004.  It also explains why so many conservatives feel the need for guns to keep them safe--not merely in their own suburban homes but in grocery stores and Starbucks as well.  It is axiomatic that cowardice often masquerades as "toughness"; no authentic man feels the need for phallic enhancement in the shape of a firearm, even if his penis is smaller than average.  Incidentally, the Second Amendment does not authorize the private ownership of firearms, let alone carrying guns in public.  ("Open Carry" = tiny penis; white militia = overcompensating gang of cowardly retards)

However, as instructive as it is to contemplate the role that negativity and fear play in the conservative mindset, the most compelling explanation of conservatism, in my opinion, is psychological immaturity.  Conservatives are toddlers masquerading as adults.  Typical toddlers are ill-tempered little narcissists who become furious when anyone prevents them from doing what they want to do.  Incapable of forethought, they are also utterly oblivious to the effects of their actions on those around them (unless punishment is a possible effect).  They don't want to share any toy ("MINE!!!") even when they have no interest in playing with it themselves.  Conservatives represent humanity at its most primordially ego-centric, and, unlike actual toddlers, they don't have the excuse of being two years old.

For decades I have been convinced that conservatives have a transferential relationship with authority in general and the federal government in particular.  Whether they were bullied by their fathers or spoiled by their mothers (or both), conservatives simply cannot bear to be told "No," and they hate anyone who thwarts their selfish impulses--even by requiring them to pay easily affordable taxes that benefit the society in which they live and make their precious money.  When you think about it, conservatives seem to advocate a Hobbesian state of nature in which only the strong (i.e., rich and white) survive.  But their Randesque utopia is the polar opposite of civilization.  Nature necessitates competition for scarce resources, whereas civilization requires both cooperation and restrictions on individual impulsivity.  In other words, competition might be natural, but cooperation is a higher-level function that is worthy of thinking animals.  (Sorry, NFL and NASCAR fans!)  

As Katherine Hepburn remarks to Humphrey Bogart in "The African Queen," one of the great American films:  "Nature, Mr. Allnut, is what we are put on this Earth to rise above."  (I might quibble with her pious assertion that we were "put here" at all instead of evolving from simpler life-forms, but I agree that "nature red in tooth and claw" is not an acceptable model for human society.)  The capitalistic U.S. is not only increasingly a "state of nature" in the post-Reagan era, but a shamefully bloody state at that.

As long as the greediest, most selfish, least tolerant, and most fanatically religious Americans continue to elect Republicans to positions of responsibility, there will be no hope to replace our current feudal nation with anything approaching a civilized democracy.  PLEASE do everything in your power to ensure that Democrats vote in November!  For all of its undeniable imperfections, the Democratic Party respects people, and government as the servant of ALL people, incomparably more than any Republican now living.  We must strive to overturn the toxic legacy of Reagan and those who venerate him!  We must vote the bastards out!

Amen.

Originally posted to Antichristus on Fri Aug 22, 2014 at 08:37 AM PDT.

Also republished by And Now for Something Completely Different .

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.