What Can We Do?

reclaimMy niece commented on a post of mine a few weeks ago.  I don’t remember the exact words.  They asked what can we do to make people understand what’s happening in our country.  How can we wake up those who support the likes of Scott Walker and Sam Brownback and Rick Scott who are destroying their states in furtherance of a fundamentalist ideology that seeks to privatize everything.  I was thinking about pulling together my thoughts on the subject and writing a post, but this morning I heard Hedrick Smith on PBS.  He has set up a website, Reclaim the American Dream, that answers the question much better than I can do.  Check it out if you want to get involved.  Also, look into Hedrick Smith’s biography to ensure yourself of his top-notch credentials.

A New GOP

We need a new name for conservatives.  Many of their proposals are actually reactionary and dangerous.  They are nineteenth century.  They are supported by Fox TV.  They are the Nineteenth Century Fox movement.

We need something funny yet descriptive.  One idea is to change the symbol of the GOP from an elephant to an ostrich.  After all, they are the head-in-sand party.  How else to explain their refusal to accept facts, logic, reason except that they consciously refuse to listen?  Instead of referring to the states that vote Republican as red states, how about we call them yellow states.  Yellow because Republican politicians are terrified of offending their tea-party base and their deep-pockets donors like the Koch brothers and Sheldon Adelson and the Menard dude in Wisconsin who secretly funded Scott Walker with over a million dollars.  (By the way, I am now boycotting Menards in addition to Wal-Mart.)

ostrich.jpeg

The editors at The Daily Kos posted a diary today that has this to say:

Julian Sanchez, a CATO Institute [a conservative think tank] fellow who specializes in the areas of privacy and surveillance, was perhaps the first to concisely distill the alternate reality that has been created by the continuously cross-referencing circle of conservative media outlets. Conservatives live in a bubble of epistemic closure in which narratives and ideas that feed a particular narrative are introduced, reinforced and then judged to be accurate simply by virtue of having been presented by the correct media authorities. It doesn’t matter if whatever is being claimed has an actual basis in objective reality: once an idea that pleases the conservative id has taken root, it is mighty hard for truth to pierce the bubble of fantasy.

This is why President Obama can in the conservative mind be a Kenyan, a Muslim, a socialist, and a black liberation theologist all at the same time. It’s why no amount of evidence can ever convince conservatism the climate change is real. It’s why they view it as a fact that Obama is killing jobs and exploding the deficit, even as the facts are exactly the opposite on both counts. And it’s also why the Affordable Care Act is simply known to be a disaster that is ruining lives, damaging employers, and constraining freedom, even as in reality it is reducing costs, saving lives, and making health insurance affordable for people who have gone far too long without it.

Read the diary in full if you want to find out what happens

when conservatives are forced to venture outside the circle of epistemic closure and actually confront the world outside the bubble, the results are hilarious. . .

What can we use as a substitute for Grand Old Party (GOP)?  How about God Awful Party (GAP)?  Party of Idiots (POI) seems too obvious and not especially clever.  How about the POOL Party – Party Of Obstruction, Obfuscation, and Lies?

If I think too much about what I’m trying to do with this post, I get sad.  It’s hard to be funny about something that has brought our country to ruin.  Where else to turn but to humor?  Perhaps humor is the best defense against today’s GOP.  They do so many laughable things.  How can one take them seriously?  Let’s use the humor that the GOP seems so willing to deliver while remaining oblivious to how they open themselves to ridicule.  When Senator Jim Inhofe, a Republican from Oklahoma, produced a snowball on the Senate floor as evidence that climate change is a hoax he actually seemed serious.  Why didn’t Senate Democrats simply laugh him off the floor?  Their laughter would have been justified.

Let’s all join in and start laughing at these fools.  Laughing is much better than despairing or crying.

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