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Sunday, September 18, 2005
On this day:

Of Lefties and Righties

What strikes me most about fellow armchair pundits of antipodal positions is an overview of emotions that leak out in our writing. Us on the political left suffuse our writing with frustration, resentment and sometime with humor. Those I find on the political right, however, share only one emotion: Rage.

Despite the obvious difficulty of reading expressions of opposing political views, discourse is necessary for Democracy to thrive. To be forced to read the conservative hoipoloi spewing hatred is counterproductive to any healthy debate; one cannot win an argument by shouting. One cannot foster modern political debate by promoting hatred, intolerance, or by subscribing to hate-speech.

As example, read this article. Now read a Righties' take on it, and a Lefites' viewpoint. Pam, on the left, does insert a few derogatory monickers, but largely sticks to reportage. Trodwell, however, blasts right in, using as many inflammatory references as he can fit in his junior-high sentence structure - talk about a festering gob, to use Trodwells' own phrase.

Such open hostility is killing national debate; partly because somewhere within their tiny, charred hearts, the right-o-sphere knows their inflammatory pustules cannot hold up to logic and erudition inherent in objective debate. Better to gun down opponents - figuratively speaking, of course - than to withstand the brutal reality of not owning the Truth-As-I-See-It.

Real men (and women) can admit to being misguided; our current crop of Republican keyboard know-it-alls cannot. To most people branded by the scarlet letter "L" by the spittle-flecked and fiery-eyed, it's no big deal to be found wrong. To admit error is to grow, and growth is advantageous on both the personal and political spectrums. Therein lies the essence of what being liberal means: being broad-minded; accepting.

How can that be a bad thing?


At 9/20/2005 3:11 PM, Blogger BadTux said...

In reality, human characteristics such as logic, reason, hope, charity, caring are rather recently evolved, and sit uneasily atop the psyche of what was, until maybe 15,000 years ago, just a bunch of jumped-up monkeys with delusions of grandeur. All those old monkey instincts are still there -- the instinct to divide the world into "us" (our tribe of monkeys) and "them" (some other tribe of monkeys, which is to be hated and derided as a threat to our tribe's prosperity). The instinct to hoot and howl and throw feces at any monkey not a member of our tribe. The instinct to follow an alpha male everywhere, regardless of what he does. All those instincts are still there in the human animal, and the human animal still tends to devolve to those old instincts whenever placed in a position of fear.

And fear is, of course, what the right wing hate machine is all about -- inducing fear in its victims, in order to devolve them back to their monkey instincts and away from that aweful "thought" and "peace" and "hope" stuff. Peace and prosperity are despised by the right wing hate mongers because they lead to people loving each other and living in peace and harmony. Thus they continually push fear, rage, hate, relish the thought of war, continually do their best to destroy prosperity for the majority because prosperity threatens the very core of their power, the ability to devolve millions of two-legged primates into monkeys willing to follow whatever alpha male the hate-mongers have proppped up today.

Civilized discourse is not what they want. Hate, fear, and rage is what they want. For only by devolving human beings into monkeys can they retain power.

- Badtux the Non-primate Penguin

At 9/20/2005 4:56 PM, Blogger Tannish said...

"Civilized discourse is not what they want..."

Of course you're right; discourse is not what they want - all the more reason to force thim into it. With all due respect, Friend Penguin - and I *do* respect you, to continue to beat the monkey-men drum is to reduce yourself to "talking points" of your owm making. This is not discourse; this is - to use your terms - "hooting and hollering."
As a wolf myself I understand the necessity of broadcasting how removed I am from *that* particular branch of the evolutionary tree, yet I urge you to try to do the near-impossible: force a wingnut to think through discussion and reason.
Even blunt tools can be sharpened through repeated scraping against hardened objects.


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