Political Fiction

Tonight on PBS “News Hour,” came the latest in utter silliness from the Republican-controlled House of Representatives; the GOP decided that public campaign financing should be eliminated to “save money.” Quite beyond what the Democrats charged about the special interests who can feed GOP campaign coffers with unlimited contributions; was the expressed utter contempt the GOP now hold for the American voter. As well as demonstrating a self-interested greed and corruption barely into their two years of “governance” in the House. If money is a form of free speech so opined those people who opposed any form of restriction on lavish use of money in any political campaign, then the GOP are not so much “saving money” as they are denying “speech” from the public. The Democratic-controlled Senate will proceed to block this legislation as they had the “repeal” of Health Care Reform. It says a great deal about the GOP, they lied to the American voter to get into office, now; the mask has come off.

Moyers: So if you criticize the United States policy toward Nicaraqua, you’re encouraging Moscow.
Doctorow: Exactly. Dissent is seen as a form of betrayal. Free speech is seen as being most appropriately exercised when it is not exercised at all. Democracy is maintained by not thinking democratically.

Continuing on reading Bill Moyers, a “World of Ideas,” his next interview was with E.L. Doctorow, novelist. The quote that was headlined above was from that interview. Ever hear of Soviet Doublespeak?  Doctorow described it exactly.  However, this interview back in the late 1980s concerned those whom Mr. Doctorow called “neo-conservatives.”  Not Marxists, not “Commies” or “Socialists,” neo-conservatives.  An interview of about three decades old that can still in fact be relevant in this day and age.  What is interesting, is that the “neo-conservatives” who ended up aping Stalin and his successors, their successors then turn around and claim to be “victims” if they are challenged on obviously failed ideology.  Then they argue that any such challenge stifles dissent.  Shall we put it bluntly that the neo-radicals merely project the worst nature of their own fringe onto others.  E.L. Doctorow recognized that this element of the GOP did not support any form of a democratic agenda or system.  They still don’t.  So, if you are anti-democratic, then what are you in support of?  Totalitarianism, I guess.  Refer back to the GOP in the House of Representatives who wanted to “save money” by denying the American public their monetarily paid for political “speech.”  Meanwhile, the U.S. Supreme Court argues against there being any form of barriers by the well-heeled and well-connected funding favored parties and candidates.

On the “Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” the coverage of the “State of the Union.”  There was plenty to laugh about especially when the various “Daily Show” correspondents started rebutting Mr. Stewart’s jokes about what actually went on during the “State of the Union” speech from the night before.  John Oliver was especially good about tasking the 24/7 news channels such as CNN for such banal reporting as discussing Obama’s tie.  With an ending with a rebuttal of the sad state of  “The Daily Show,” itself by yet another correspondent, Larry Wilmore (sic?)  One reason for being practically addicted to watching this show on Comedy Central.

When it comes to Paul Ryan who was selected to provide the official rebuttal, I actually had turned the HDTV off, listened to music on my home theater, and untangled yarn for the afghan I am working on.  Then, I went out to see to my dogs.  Today, when Ryan’s rebuttal was presented on “The Daily Show,” you would have swore that he borrowed the vision of big government lock, stock, and barrel from LBJ’s “Great Society,” with just a couple of twists:  government that must be big enough to protect fetuses (protect innocent life) and secure the borders.  A Republican member of Congress who almost completely agreed with the big government of the LBJ era, is hardly in a legitimate position to rebut Obama.  Jon Stewart asked, “So, you’re a Democrat?”  LOL!

Why is this about political fiction?  E.L. Doctorow bemoaned the fact that we didn’t seem to have the great writers in the present era (circa the 1980s) that had existed in the nineteenth century and even in the earlier twentieth century.  Political fiction writers that certainly included Charles Dickens.  (Yes.)  Well, maybe there is a reason why good political fiction seems to have gone the way of the dodo bird.  It is simply too much fun to write hard facts about the political  fictions that announce their candidacies and ultimately get elected to government.  They may claim to be a voice of the people, that they are acting on the behalf of “Americans” who want this or that or even expect this or that.  But, showing nothing but contempt for the Democratic process isn’t in fact doing anything on the behalf of the voters, or Americans in general.

As to that GOP decision to eliminate public funding for political campaigns (and furthering corruption in their own); for anyone who has checked out their IRS 1040s or State income tax forms, more often than not, a percentage of your taxes (paid to the state of fed) would simply be donated to fund various political campaigns of either the GOP, Independents, Democrats, etc.  It changes nothing about the taxes paid or the refund that potentially the individual receives.  I have never donated.  I don’t have much use for both main political parties.  I’ll also vote for whom I choose irrespective of party.  And yes, I am over all not in favor of too much government.  Something that even the GOP via Ryan promises.  Or for that matter the “too much government” the GOP promises all of us when they tell the American citizen that you will not engage in paid speech on the behalf of general political candidacies.  Or for that matter, the big government that Idaho politicians decided to promise us by saying that Senators should no longer be elected by popular vote.  Yes, Houston, we have a problem.


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