Friday, September 02, 2005

Death to conservative greed

Kingubu writes that the GOP has succeeded all these years not by making brilliant policies, but by making "a slim majority of voting America feel good about the worst aspects of their natures." And guess what? It hasn't been all that difficult:

How hard is it really to convince people that being selfish is the way to go? Where is the higher calling in predatory greed? What invention is required to pander to the lust for revenge? Where is the challenge in stoking people's fears about personal safety, or in feeding the flames of prejudice?

It’s not hard to aim for the lowest common denominator and that is exactly what the GOP has been doing. Rather than hatching a plan to make America a better place then convincing the public to support it, they have instead made a science of putting lipstick on a pig. They package greed and avarice and sell it as "sound market policy." They bind up cruelty and fear and slap on a label marked "national security." They take bigotry and hatred and push it out the door in a glossy package marked "traditional family values." There are no new ideas; only our darkest human frailties made bland with a double scoop of political weasel-words and sexed up with Madison Avenue sizzle.

Except that now, following the growing dismay over Iraq and the shock of New Orleans, people are again remembering such concepts as "empathy," "fair play," and "the common good." They're wondering if maybe they don't amount to liberal treason after all. And they're starting to notice something about their conservative heroes:

The litany of short-sighted GOP-authored legislation over the last several years - the gutting of public works, tax cuts in the face of mounting debt, the single-minded redistribution of wealth to those with plenty, the blatant cronyism - reveal the truth: the Republican Party has no plan and no vision for governing this nation. All they have is a strategy for getting elected - and then redirecting public funds to campaign donors to get re-elected....

This piece is one of the best articulations you'll ever see of what's gone wrong and how the Democrats lost their way. And it concludes with what ought to become our manifesto:

For some 30 years the Republican party has packaged humanity's darkest and most craven weaknesses and pawned them off as its greatest virtues. Well, the reckoning is here and the conservatives are found wanting. When the chips are down we are a nation that cares for our citizens and we expect our government to be strong enough, capable enough, and compassionate enough to do the same.

This piece deserves wide distribution and, from this point forward, no Democrat should even run for dog catcher without committing its salient points to memory.

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