Archive for the ‘Conservatism’ Category

Bill Kristol Joins The NY Times

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on December 29th, 2007

Media Matters reports that neocon, Bill Kristol, has joined the NY Times editorial page. So much for the NY Times being a bastion of liberal opinion. The report is worth reading in full. I also reprised a July 15, 2007 ECA post on Mr. Kristol’s integrity.

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As ECA as written before the movement called “Neo-conservatism” is perhaps the most disruptive, dishonest, and dangerous political movement in the history of the nation with the exception perhaps of Joe McCarthy and his cohorts. Of this group, William Kristol, of the Weekly Standard and Fox-News, poses the greatest threat to American democracy. Consider the following example of his calculated duplicity, an examplethat reveals the tenor of his character as well as his political strategies of choice. Iran in his view “feels free to use nuclear weapons if they had them.” What’s Kristol’s justification for this claim? Iran’s chief nuclear envoy, Ali Larijani, has said “We oppose obtaining nuclear weapons and we will peacefully use nuclear technology under the framework of the Nonproliferation Treaty, but if we are threatened, the situation may change.” Is this the same as saying that Iran “feels free to use nuclear weapons if they had them”? Hardly! It is simply a statement of the right to self-defense. Is Kristol’s position that Iran has no right to defend itself if attacked by the United States? If so, he should explain why Israel has such a right, as it surely does, if threatened by extinction by Arab armies. The hypocrisy is inexplicable unless we regard Kristol’s rhetoric as just one more neoconservative example of the big lie. Kristol will say anything, true or false, accurate or distorted, in support of the perfidious neoconservative fantasy of militarily imposing his values on the rest of humanity. Where have we heard similar rhetoric?

Now Mr. Kristol, this craven duplicitous autocrat, is bullying those Republicans fleeing the Bush position on Iraq. He calls them “pre-911 Republicans” denigrating them for withdrawing support for the neocon-orchestrated and calamitous occupation of Iraq. The “pre-911 Republicans” crack mocks these Republicans for allegedly learning nothing from the catastrophic and brutal attack on 911 against innocent Americans. Hmm, they’ve learned nothing? With Mr. Bush’s war spiraling out of control, Mr. Kristol cannot bring himself to appreciate the folly of a war for which his support was instrumental. Mr. Kristol will say anything to serve his nefarious strategy of creating a neoconservative “caliphate” having dominion over the rest of humankind.
Credit for First Image
Credit for Second Image

Is “Conservative” Republican Oppression Coming to an End?

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on October 15th, 2007

Check out the following piece of speculation.

New evidence suggests a potentially historic shift in the Republican Party’s identity — what strategists call its “brand.” The votes of many disgruntled fiscal conservatives and other lapsed Republicans are now up for grabs, which could alter U.S. politics in the 2008 elections and beyond.

Some business leaders are drifting away from the party because of the war in Iraq, the growing federal debt and a conservative social agenda they don’t share. In manufacturing sectors such as the auto industry, some Republicans want direct government help with soaring health-care costs, which Republicans in Washington have been reluctant to provide. And some business people want more government action on global warming, arguing that a bolder plan is not only inevitable, but could spur new industries.

Already, economic conservatives who favor balanced federal budgets have become a much smaller part of the party’s base. That’s partly because other groups, especially social conservatives, have grown more dominant. But it’s also the result of defections by other fiscal conservatives angered by the growth of government spending during the six years that Republicans controlled both the White House and Congress.

The most prominent sign of dissatisfaction has come from former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, long a pillar of Republican Party economic thinking. He blasted the party’s fiscal record in a new book. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, he said: “The Republican Party, which ruled the House, the Senate and the presidency, I no longer recognize.”

A similar transformation is occurring regarding political terms that stand for people whose time has come and gone. The “L-word,” for “liberal” of course, once vilified as representing the most despised of political outlooks, seems to have relinquished its place of disgrace to the term–”neocon“–a “political philosophy” so foreign to the founding vision of this great nation that one wonders how it ever came to be. Indeed, the neoconservative movement designed to bring “democracy” to the rest of the nations of the world even if it had to jam it down their mouths, seems also to be in decline. Is it possible that the fiscally conservative, but socially liberal Republican Party is being reborn? Could it be that the mean-spirited religious right is in decline? Is it likely that the imperious neocons have fought their last war? Only time and the next election will answer these questions.

Ann Coulter & the Jena Six

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on October 13th, 2007

I feared that someday I’d be compelled to blog about one of the premier know-nothing “shoutocrats,” Ann Coulter, and I vigorously tried to resist it. But Coulter, who has made some bone-headed remarks in the past, recently expressed a clearly anti-semitic position that must be confronted. I realize this redounds to her financial benefit, and that worries me, but her remarks must be confronted and denounced for what they are: ignorant, nasty, and dangerous. “Ignorant” because not all Christians believe that Jews need to be “perfected” in this lifetime, not at least if that requires formal conversion. “Nasty” because telling a person he or she needs perfection, hurts, especially when what’s alleged to be wrong about the person is his or her religion. “Dangerous” because Coulter’s irresponsible remarks may be taken to mean “perfect Jews if you can, but if not, eliminate them.” Coulter ought to know better, but apparently she does not. Consider the transcript of the relevant part of her interview:

DEUTSCH: … we should just throw Judaism away
and we should
all be Christians, then, or …

COULTER: Yeah.

DEUTSCH: Really?

COULTER: Well, it’s a lot easier. It’s kind of a fast track.

DEUTSCH: Really?

COULTER: Yeah. You have to obey.

DEUTSCH: You can’t possibly believe that.

COULTER: Yes.
Ms. Coulter’s comments include the following justification of why anall-Christian America would be better than one containing Jews and other minorities. In Coulter’s perverted perspective when there were only Christians “[p]eople were happy. They’re Christian. They’re tolerant. They defend America …” Mr. Deutch the interviewer interjected: “Christian … so we should be Christian?” Deutsch interrupted. “It would be better if we were all Christian?” Ms. Coulter’s reply was ‘Yes’. We just want Jews to be perfected . . . . That is what Christianity is. We believe the Old Testament, but ours is more like Federal Express.” Ms. Coulter’s empty-headed, shoot-from-the-hip mumblings that some take as intelligent commentary are mind numbing. Joe Scarborough, a fellow conservative Republican denounced Ms. Coulter’s “Marketing-machine” tactics.
Well, you know, I think Jesus had a different take than Ann Coulter, which he quite clearly says, time and again, that Christianity is about helping — feeding the poor, visiting those who are sick in hospitals, visiting those in prisons, giving hope to the hopeless, doing all the things that have nothing to do with condemning other people like Ann Coulter just did. (Boldface in original) Perhaps, the only way to respond is to tune her out. Unfortunately that has its price also. A whole bunch of little Ms. Coulter’s can grow up to be extremely dangerous to Jews and other racial or religious minorities, harmful to the republic.

With nooses–a piercing symbol of the oppression of southern blacks–being hung on trees in Jena, Louisiana,

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and on the door of a professor at Columbia University,

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with a Rabbi brutally beaten in New Jersey, shouldn’t Ms. Coulter temper her need for notoriety and lust for greater book sales in favor of reducing racial and religious hate crimes? Or is it that conservative Republicans such as Ms. Coulter needn’t (mustn’t?) worry about the common good?The underlying problem is that corporate media, like other corporations, obsess about the bottom line. When will they learn that they are part of the problem? Please don’t shout “political correctness” or “censorship.” The media consistently airs some stories and leaves others on the cutting room floor. Ms. Coulter’s remarks aren’t funny; nor do they have any value whatsoever in a deliberative democracy. Moreover, her remarks are far worse than Don Imus’ racist comments about the Rutgers women’s basketball team. Free speech requires responsibility. And when the media is irresponsible, the First amendment gives the public every right to express its disdain by threatening to boycott media who think more about the buck and less about fundamentally import values sustaining a deliberative democracy. As Ira N. Forman, director of the National Jewish Democratic Council puts it, “While Ann Coulter has freedom of speech, news outlets should exercise their freedom to use better judgment.” Enough is enough. Ms. Coulter should be shunned by any serious democrat and those media outlets that air her intolerant comments should likewise be shunned.

Where Do Disgraced Conservative Defense Secretaries Go? Why to the Hoover Institution, of Course!

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on September 19th, 2007

Donald Rumsfeld seems to court personal antipathy. Consider the following report: “Stanford University faculty members are protesting former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s appointment as a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution. . . . Renowned professor emeritus of psychology Philip Zimbardo, who has publicly blamed Rumsfeld and other Bush Administration officials for the notorious abuses at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, is among a protest petition’s ‘instigators,’ as he put it. . . . ‘We think he has distinguished himself for all the wrong things than what the university should stand for and what America should stand for,” Zimbardo said Monday, adding that about 118 people had signed the petition by Sunday, but the number should increase rapidly when the academic quarter begins next week. . . . The Hoover Institution announced Sept. 7 that Rumsfeld will be a visiting fellow serving on a task force of scholars and experts focused upon issues pertaining to ‘ideology and terror.’ . . . ‘Hoover is in a sense independent of Stanford but it’s always linked to Stanford,’ Zimbardo said – the conservative public-policy think tank is located on the university’s campus, but the faculty senate has no input on its appointments. ‘”They can have any fascist they want there, and they do… We’ve never protested before but this seems to be egregious.’ For us, the critical question is whether ‘think tanks,’ in this case the Hoover Institution, have any scruples in hiring notorious individuals? Or is the individual’s visibility sufficient?

Karl Rove: The Sociopathic Advisor/ George W. Bush: The Sociopathic President?

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on August 19th, 2007

Check out this report about Rove’s departure. Then take a look here at Rove’s influence in the “macaca” incident, which effectively destroyed Senator Allen’s bid for re-election. Here’s a taste of the latter: “This incident had resonance well beyond Virginia and Mr. Allen for several reasons. First, it crystallized the monochromatic whiteness at the dark heart of Rovian Republicanism. For all the minstrel antics at the 2000 convention, the record speaks for itself: there is not a single black Republican serving in either the House or Senate, and little representation of other minorities, either. Far from looking like America, the G.O.P. caucus, like the party’s presidential field, could pass for a Rotary Club, circa 1954. Meanwhile, a new census analysis released this month finds that nonwhites now make up a majority in nearly a third of the nation’s most populous counties, with Houston overtaking Los Angeles in black population and metropolitan Chicago surpassing Honolulu in Asian residents. Even small towns and rural America are exploding in Hispanic growth.” Cleansing the nation of the last vestiges of the de facto (at least) commitment to white (Republican) supremacy will take a new generation of Republicans, the members of which are Republicans because . . . .?

Karl Rove has been touted as the third most powerful man in the country, Although he has made some tactical mistakes or blind spot , which may have ultimately brought him down, it seems as if he simply has no capacity for feeling shame or guilt. In running presidential campaigns, Rove has clearly revealed he simply has no conscience. Rove was an equal opportunity demonizer; he trashed Democrats and Republicans alike. In the 2000 run for the Republican nomination for president Rove trashed Senator John McCain just as brutally as he trashed and demonized any Democrat. The Bush-Rove political strategy is this: Do anything at all–except get caught–to win an election or to make sure that one’s policy proposal prevails. Neither has any concern for the rights or feelings of those politicians that stand in their way. Neither empathy nor statesmanship is possible. within their pigmy moral characters. Winning at any cost is not only permissible but is required when the result is to save the nation by electing its savior, George W. Bush or whoever rove is supporting at the time. With a savior like Mr. Bush, who needs Satan? Mr. Bush did. Satan in the form of Karl Rove–”Bush’s Brain” or as Mr. bush himself called him “the architect“–stood, pitch fork in hand, at Mr. Bush’s side until now when after seven years under Satan’s tutelage, Mr. Bush can properly do the job himself. Until Americans understand sociopathology and its cousin psychopathology can afflict even those wearing suits and praising God, the moral character required by the electorate will continue to amount to such prohibitions as not cheating one’s spouse and other such “categorical imperatives.”

Neo-Conservativist Goverance & The New World Oder

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on August 17th, 2007

Word has it that the world bank attempted to de-legitimize the idea of global warming as a relevant factor in approving investments. Consider: “The Bush administration has consistently thwarted efforts by the World Bank to include global warming in its calculations when considering whether to approve major investments in industry and infrastructure, according to documents made public through a watchdog yesterday. . . . On one occasion, the White House’s pointman at the bank, the now disgraced Paul Wolfowitz, personally intervened to remove the words “climate change” from the title of a bank progress report and ordered changes to the text of the report to shift the focus away from global warming.” What can motivate people to reject even the possibility of an impending environmental crisis? This represents more evidence of the devastating effects of neo-conservatism has had in “the new world order.” Mr. Bush and the neo-conservative movement generally make a compelling case for the dangers of government, but only when they are actually in power.

Jesse Jackson on the GOP-Neglected Infrastructure

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on August 9th, 2007

Check out Jesse Jackson’s piece in the Chicago Sun-times. Here’s a sample:

One trillion dollars squandered in the debacle in Iraq. A clamp on vital investments here at home. Those are the stated priorities of modern-day conservatives — a far remove from those of President Dwight Eisenhower, who built the interstate highway system while putting a lid on military spending and balancing the budget. Ike knew that infrastructure was important; military adventurism was dangerous and fiscal balance was common sense. Modern-day conservatives have abandoned every part of his lessons.

Of course, conservatives will deny that they are responsible for the crumbling of America. In the Republican debate in Iowa, every leading Republican presidential contender called for staying in Iraq and opposed increasing taxes on the wealthy even as they admitted the need to invest in our infrastructure. They are peddling fantasies to a people in desperate need of the truth.

Posted: 7:00 PM

Blumenthal on the Mob: The Bush-Cheney Mob,That Is

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on August 5th, 2007

Check out Sidney Blumenthal’s piece at Salon.com. Here’s a taste: “Aug. 2, 2007 Omerta (or a code of silence) has become the final bond holding the Bush administration together. Honesty is dishonorable; silence is manly; penitence is weakness. Loyalty trumps law. Protecting higher-ups is patriotism. Stonewalling is idealism. Telling the truth is informing. Cooperation with investigators is cowardice; breaking the code is betrayal. Once the code is shattered, however, no one can be trusted and the entire edifice crumbles.” This description of Bushian conservatism without a conscience rings a bell. Doesn’t it? Indeed, it depicts the Mob or any lawless enterprise. Yet, it is presently this nation’s government. Something–the Constitution, citizen apathy, corporate ownership and operation of the media, the electoral system, the perversion of the electoral system, something–is fatally damaged. The question for any reflective American must be how to fix it.

William Kristol: The Quest for a Neoconservative “Caliphate” for Twenty-First Century America

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on July 14th, 2007

As ECA as written before the movement called “Neo-conservatism” is perhaps the most disruptive, dishonest, and dangerous political movement in the history of the nation with the exception perhaps of Joe McCarthy and his cohorts. Of this group, William Kristol, of the Weekly Standard and Fox-News, poses the greatest threat to American democracy. Consider the following example of his calculated duplicity, an example that reveals the tenor of his character as well as his political strategies of choice. Iran in his view “feels free to use nuclear weapons if they had them.” What’s Kristol’s justification for this claim? Iran’s chief nuclear envoy, Ali Larijani, has said “We oppose obtaining nuclear weapons and we will peacefully use nuclear technology under the framework of the Nonproliferation Treaty, but if we are threatened, the situation may change.” Is this the same as saying that Iran “feels free to use nuclear weapons if they had them”? Hardly! It is simply a statement of the right to self-defense. Is Kristol’s position that Iran has no right to defend itself if attacked by the United States? If so, he should explain why Israel has such a right, as it surely does, if threatened by extinction by Arab armies. The hypocrisy is inexplicable unless we regard Kristol’s rhetoric as just one more neoconservative example of the big lie. Kristol will say anything, true or false, accurate or distorted, in support of the perfidious neoconservative fantasy of militarily imposing his values on the rest of humanity. Where have we heard similar rhetoric?

Now Mr. Kristol, this craven duplicitous autocrat, is bullying those Republicans fleeing the Bush position on Iraq. He calls them “pre-911 Republicans” denigrating them for withdrawing support for the neocon-orchestrated and calamitous occupation of Iraq. The “pre-911 Republicans” crack mocks these Republicans for allegedly learning nothing from the catastrophic and brutal attack on 911 against innocent Americans. Hmm, they’ve learned nothing? With Mr. Bush’s war spiraling out of control, Mr. Kristol cannot bring himself to appreciate the folly of a war for which his support was instrumental. Mr. Kristol will say anything to serve his nefarious strategy of creating a neoconservative “caliphate” having dominion over the rest of humankind.

Why Is Bruce Fein Virtually Alone in Calling for Mr. Cheney’s Impeachment?

Written by Robert Justin Lipkin on June 30th, 2007

Check out Bruce Fein’s call for impeaching Cheney at Slate.com. Here’s a taste:

Under Dick Cheney, the office of the vice president has been transformed from a tiny acorn into an unprecedented giant oak. In grasping and exercising presidential powers, Cheney has dulled political accountability and concocted theories for evading the law and Constitution that would have embarrassed King George III. The the most recent invention we know of is the vice president’s insistence that an executive order governing the handling of classified information in the executive branch does not reach his office because he also serves as president of the Senate. In other words, the vice president is a unique legislative-executive creature standing above and beyond the Constitution. The House judiciary committee should commence an impeachment inquiry. As Alexander Hamilton advised in the Federalist Papers, an impeachable offense is a political crime against the nation. Cheney’s multiple crimes against the Constitution clearly qualify.

Among major political players Mr. Fein is virtually alone in calling for the Vice-President’s impeachment? It should be apparent to anyone that the Vice-President has only contempt for republican democracy and for We the People. Indeed, Mr. Cheney’ tenure as Vice-President is the closest the American people have come to autocratic rule in recent memory. His obscene reply to Senator Patrick Leahy is emblematic of his attitude toward the American people. Cheney’s political philosophy is dedicated to perfecting authoritarian rule. Ms. Pelosi must begin the impeachment process now if the United States Constitution is to be more than a “parchment barrier.” We must not be lulled in to acquiescence simply because Mr. Cheney has only 570 days left in his term. His impeachment is required for us to sincerely say to our children: “The Constitution is meaningful.” We must not permit Mr. Cheney to merely slip away in January 2008. He must account for his commission of high crimes against the American people. We must wait no longer.