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in the same river?

I’m always surprised that a trait as common as white-skin pigmentation is all the information required for someone to start spamming out crazy right-wing emails to new acquaintances.

I have reconnected with an old high-school classmate (graduation date for both of us: 1971.) We have spoken by phone and communicated via a few emails.  That; apparently, was all it took to get me on his email list. The kind of messages one receives through the medium is well known by anyone living in the connected world.

But the last email struck me a little differently because my first diary on Kos was about immigration.  Not a week after that entry I get an “immigration” email from my old new-friend – and it gets right to the heart of the real immigration debate in this country.

I have tried to plug it into this message so you can see it - but I am having technical difficulties with that.  Maybe I’ll figure it out in the future but I’m guessing many of you have already seen it.  In a nutshell it’s a caption juxtaposed with the cowboy actor Sam Eliot.  The caption is a story that old Sam tells about a seeing a Muslim with a backpack full of bombs and a Mexican with a backpack full of drugs – and bottom line – they both drown in the Rio Grande River and old Sam doesn’t care too much.  And why would he: Aren’t all Muslims terrorists and all Mexicans drug mules?

This message, and others like it are rampaging through the wired-universe of the Republican Party base almost hourly – it is hateful, racist and ubiquitous among the same people who love Jesus and think women’s vaginas need more probing.  This is who they are.

One of my biggest problems with Mitt Romney, Fox News, and the corporate boys down at the Wall Street Journal is their thinking that a disconnect may exist between their code filled cable news rhetoric regarding race and immigration - and the insanity of their base.

I assume they truly believe their discussions about self-deportation, illegal’s as criminals, and mosques at ground zero – don’t feed any oxygen into the constantly burning embers of racism and hatred, well evidenced by the spam mails piling up in their bases’ inboxes.  I assume they believe that - - because they still believe less regulation of bankers and a tax cut for Mitt Romney would be good for me…go figure!

But here’s the problem with racism through code – it’s dulls the sensation, it’s a condom for your emotions, and it’s not even ribbed. Real old-school racism should cause pain – it needs to burn away the flesh and leave brittle bones and a barren soul.   That’s why I prefer Rush Limbaugh to code talkers like Romney, Fox News, and Wall Street Journal. I prefer to get direct doses of racism, not oblique references that become raw meat for screen humping dogs to chew on.

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Comment Preferences

  •  hmm, very well spoken diary (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hnichols, cassandracarolina, elmo, Smoh

    don't quite agree with this

    I assume they truly believe their discussions about self-deportation, illegal’s as criminals, and mosques at ground zero
    No way the ones at the top are huffing their own talking points. Thats a drug for the masses, not the republican "in" crowd. They say that shit because it makes them popular. Sure, there are a few nutjob truebelievers at the top, the Ron and Rand Pauls of the top political echelons in the country, but most (at least corporate "suit" type) republicans spout this non-sensical bullshit for two reasons: money and power.

    In my humble opinion.

    Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

    Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

    SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

    by rexymeteorite on Sun Jul 08, 2012 at 02:23:30 AM PDT

  •  I do have a question though (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I didn't quite understand that last para there...

    I don't get what is "better" about Rush Limbaugh style direct racism, and the oblique references to welfare queens and other dog whistles the run of the mill rethugs are so used to. It would seem to me that both are just a bad, at least rhetorically. One is sneakier than the other, I suppose that makes it a tad worse, but I would assume both feel same to the person receiving the racism -- degrading and dehumanizing.

    Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

    Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

    SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

    by rexymeteorite on Sun Jul 08, 2012 at 02:32:34 AM PDT

    •  The overt racist is the easiest to recognize and (0+ / 0-)

      more difficult to hide behind.  It's hard to find cover behind the David Duke's of the world (Is he still around?) Romney makes racism feel like it's something moderate:  'Self-deportation' is so innocuous compared to 'starve them out.'

      Yes, they are both bad but the Romney style can be calmly expressed at the lunch table like it's a reasonable idea...and of course as you point out - it's all the same thing.

  •  Untemptable virgin ignorance +Google (6+ / 0-)

    I used Wetback: The Undocumented Documentary with a class of 18 year olds. They were to do a research paper on a cultural dilemma and analyze a "why" or "how come" topic related to it. Thus, "How to stop the browns" and "Why Obama is a muslin Kenyan" was not on the menu. They were not supposed to condemn or praise, just analyze. I spent at least four classes trumpeting that.

    Nevertheless, I got it. Again and again.

    It was "researched," too.

    1. Go to a public library computer or one that is fresh.
    2. Go to Google and Yahoo and search for "immigration" and then "immigrants" and "immigrant stories," and see what happens. The fake neutral Fair and Negative Population Growth and others -- mainly linked to Scaife and Gafney and Geller and the same old creeps and cretins -- dominate the searches.
    3. Imagine you are ignorant. Search. Imagine you have few critical thinking skills so far. Read.

    So, having seen a documentary that traveled with Central American migrants, having heard from ministers in Guatemala and Mexico, having heard from monks and U.S. Border Patrol, and all of these saying, "Migrants are economic, and they have no choice," they write, "Most immigrants are drug mules" and "America is being invaded" and "violence is increasing thanks to lax border policies."

    Every reductio ad absurdum will seem like a good idea to some fool or another.

    by The Geogre on Sun Jul 08, 2012 at 04:20:24 AM PDT

    •  Discouraging (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Geogre

      isn't it?

      But then it makes perfect sense that the Texas Republican Party has a plank that calls for removing the teaching of critical thinking from public schools.

    •  Serendipity is a strange event but not uncommon. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Geogre

      I feel as if I were struck by it this morning. As  I read your comment I have near me a used book bought on a lark containing a compendium of essays deemed significant, at least by the editior.  Essay one on page 1 - Sir Francis Bacon -

      Doth any man doubt that if there were taken out of men's minds vain opinions, flattering hopes, false valuations...and the like...that it would leave the minds of a number of men as poor shrunken things...full of melancholy...indisposition [SIC], and unpleasing to themselves.
      As long ago as 1625 when Mr. Bacon wrote these words he recognized that so many men sought answers that peel away complexity to make thinking easier - and to create the belief systems that can bring value to their lives - even if it means destroying the value of another.

      I will be trying very hard in the next few months to get a teaching job at a junior college. Hopefully, I will be struggling soon to get 18 year-olds to think as well.  However, my own experiences and the one you shared here - make it certain the internet will not be an acceptable research tool in my classes (should I actually get a teaching job in California.). I still believe in books.

      quote taken from
      Gross J., The Oxford Book of Essays, Oxford University Press, New York, 1991, p. 3.

      •  You may not accept it, but... (0+ / 0-)

        The battle is lost, I'm afraid.

        Certainly, I agree with Bacon's False Idols, but he was, alas, merely dealing with the self-affirming tendencies of the human mind that, like the tide, we wall out and yet never defeat. What you will be doing is what I am doing, which is trying to equip students with scales and rulers and teaching them that the system of weights and measures is not a liberal conspiracy against their parents.

        The Internet is going to be present in your classroom in the form of the smart phones, and the cell phone has risen to become the top college distraction, in my experience. (I say that any student using a cell phone for any thing, including checking the time, has used the phone, which means she or he is not present, which means an absence. No fighting or arguing, just an absence.)

        Because the Internet simply will be a fact, I feel like I have to teach them critical thinking with the Internet. I will talk about page rank boosting, show them SourceWatch, and talk about how, after the Deep Water Horizon BP made sure that all Google searches went to BP's own pages. To me, this should help them realize the degree to which their teenage cynicism is not sufficient, that actual standards of determining good from bad will aid them. Books (journals, really) are going to be best. Our third research paper of the term requires those.

        [What's wrong with disposition? Indisposition is just a disposition gone wrong. (I'm an 18th c. guy.)]

        Every reductio ad absurdum will seem like a good idea to some fool or another.

        by The Geogre on Sun Jul 08, 2012 at 01:49:42 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Oh, and Sam Eliot and Logic (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PowWowPollock, hnichols, elmo, theboz, Smoh

    I prefer Sam Eliot in "Life Guard."

    I blasted my racist student papers, incidentally, on the basis of logic.
    "So, drug cartels are going to give their product to transients who are poor? They give the only thing they have of value to people who are wanting jobs, and send them north and say, 'Be sure, now, to not meet your relatives and disappear, but give us the money?'
    Why would they do that? Why wouldn't they instead work with American gangs made of American citizens (bikers, Mafia, etc.) and have the U.S. citizens load their vehicles with guns legally purchased in Florida or Utah and cash, travel south, legally, get the drugs, and then go back north? That's logical. It's lucrative.
    These stories about guys who hang out in front of the Home Depot being drug mules simply make no logical sense, and your sources do nothing to document the incidence."

    Every reductio ad absurdum will seem like a good idea to some fool or another.

    by The Geogre on Sun Jul 08, 2012 at 04:26:33 AM PDT

    •  Stop making sense. (0+ / 0-)

      I go all the way back to the fact that for millennia all the two-leggeds, four-leggeds and no-leggeds crossed that river whenever they felt like it. To try to stop that now is inane. It is a dumb border through an area that is exactly the same on both sides.

      We're fools whether we dance or not, so we might as well dance.

      by PowWowPollock on Sun Jul 08, 2012 at 05:11:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  these stories about using human "mules" to pack (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Geogre, Mannie

      100 lb packs of weed over the border seem suspect, as if the people reporting this have never humped a ruck on a 20 mile march to think these "mules" can hump a ruck of that weight for 100 miles over desert terrain with no water stations and only a couple of gallons with them.

      Most of the drugs entering this country come in through shipping crates in our harbors where volume can be tons and not lbs or in 18 wheelers again where bulk shipment is possible.

      Regarding interdiction, the gangs figure in a certain "shrinkage" due to interdiction and figure it into their operations as the cost of doing business.  

      •  Cocaine stories in a pot world (0+ / 0-)

        That's another comment that I would make when my hand cramped from the first one:
        "The drug mule stories you cite are all from the days of cocaine trafficking. The narco gangs of Mexico are marijuana sellers. Pot is the cash drug now, thanks to relatively successful efforts against the cocaine cartels and internal political issues in Columbia. No one swallows a balloon of 200 kg of pot."

        The "mule" with "dope" in the luggage is transporting heroin or cocaine and walks off of the public theater's imagination in the 1970's and 1980's. Today, all the kids smoking pot and "chronic" and thinking that they're ok, because they don't do the real drugs that cause crime, are, in fact, doing the drug that fuels the Zetas.

        The Moonie Times is happy to confuse them, too.

        One of the cited stories talked about how the cartel was invading Texas (the single blogger account of a ranch being taken that was discredited everywhere, but the right wing assumes that all the law enforcement that testified that nothing happened were liberals and therefore lying) and then local people protested the gangs, and the gangs cut off the heads of local bloggers! [Only omitting the slight connectors, there, that the imaginary ranch seizure was in Texas, and the real beheading was in Juarez, and, of course, neglecting to mention that the people of Juarez got very angry and banded together to stand up against the cartel.]

        Thus, "The Zetas are decapitating American bloggers and taking American territory." I couldn't slap the kid, but I could say, "So, why, um, do you think this news is in only one source? A vast conspiracy or a bad source?"

        Every reductio ad absurdum will seem like a good idea to some fool or another.

        by The Geogre on Sun Jul 08, 2012 at 08:01:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  yep those headless bodies in the desert meme (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          The Geogre

          so beloved of AZ and TX pols as well as stories of Mexican army regulars in full dress uniforms doing home invasions in Phoenix.

          I would also add the cartels are moving their production to public lands in CA and other states so as to remove the hassle of importation.  They have found it is easier to grow the stuff in the US than it is to import it.  

      •  Obviously facts are not critical to the story (0+ / 0-)

        Bringing sharks to frenzy requires meat not facts.

  •  Meantime LA legislators learn to their horror (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Smoh, JGibson

    that Jindal's plan to siphon money from public schools to religious schools via vouchers means Muslim schools can apply for public funding.  Horrors and vapors while all clutch their pearls:
    Legislators have vowed to fix the legislation so only truly American schools (i.e. Christian) receive public funding

  •  Hi, its you again (0+ / 0-)

    with your views on racism, particularly against the brown
    skin pesky immigrant. It never stops. It never will.

    There are stories out there that tell why White American is
    really, really afraid of the brown people -- the browning of

    I would praise you if you wrote about that..Here I can only say, oh, its you again.

    Yes, I am following you.

    Old men tell same old stories

    by Ole Texan on Sun Jul 08, 2012 at 05:58:24 AM PDT

  •  Galex4life, read what I (0+ / 0-)

    have for you.

    Dear White American, Letter to New Minority

    This makes more sense of why such racism against brown
    people exists today. Not only brown but all other not white
    skin people.


    Old men tell same old stories

    by Ole Texan on Sun Jul 08, 2012 at 06:21:51 AM PDT

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