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When Roger West first launched the progressive political blog "News From The Other Side" in May 2010, he could hardly have predicted the impact that his venture would have on the media and political debate. As the New Media emerged as a counterbalance to established media sources, Roger wrote his copious blogs about national politics, the tea party movement, mid-term elections, and the failings of the radical right to the vanguard of the New Media movement. Roger West's efforts as a leading blogger have tremendous reach. NFTOS has led the effort to bring accountability to mainstream media sources such as FOX NEWS, Breitbart's "Big Journalism. Roger's breadth of experience, engaging style, and cultivation of loyal readership - over 92 million visitors - give him unique insight into the past, present, and future of the New Media and political rhetoric that exists in our society today. What we are against: Radical Right Wing Agendas Incompetent Establishment Donald J. Trump Corporate Malfeasence We are for: Global and Econmoic Security Social and Economic Justice Media Accountability THE RESISTANCE

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Republican Manifesto

NFTOS is enjoying the holiday off, so enjoy a blog from our friends at Open Scandal

There are five basic precepts that, individually or collectively, contribute to the birth of a Republican Party ideologue. They will tell you that it involves limited government, low (or, preferably, no) taxes, rugged individualism and a “free” market environment which demands the lack of governmental oversight and the ability of workers to organize. Within these parameters lies the black heart and soul of a socially responsible Republican (conservative, libertarian).

But, in reality, there are five conditions that might give birth to this sort of person and no one person needs to possess more than one of these conditions (although they often share several).

1. You are super rich. You are a bona fide member of the nouveau riche, admittedly a meritocrat, but nevertheless part of the one or two percent of the global population with resources the other 99 percent can only imagine (and not fully). You are globally financed and hardly nationalistic. You see four people climbing out of abject poverty in India and one American falling out of the increasingly fragile middle class due to chronic unemployment and see this as acceptable. In reality, you have moved the sources of your sickening wealth to countries where the government knows how to control its workers. It is 21st century exploitation but you define it as competitive market and blame the exploited worker for his failures.

2. You are a devout Christian. This means that you are so full of religious dogma and superstition that it consumes you from your ass to your eyeballs. You can no longer perceive cause from consequence and obliterate the lines separating facts from fiction. Socially this translates into an inability to recognize human suffering whenever your church (or personal belief system) decides it is anti-god. Abortion, contraception, homosexuality, legalization of pot, the so called “war” against Christmas, liberals, progressives, Marxists, Nazis, socialists, anti marriage groups, ACLUs are just some of the issues and beliefs that cause you to froth at the political and social mouth. You are a climate change denier but you see transubstantiation as “proof” that god exists. Often, you can wax poetic about creationism because magic is a far superior alternative to accident.

3. You vehemently oppose social programs. Welfare is the bane of your existence. You see this as a program that guarantees poverty and is responsible for crime, reprehensible social values and slums. It is only given to the poor. Welfare given to the rich is called subsidies and is not the same thing. Head start and education in general leave you suspicious because you know only socialists are teaching these days. This leads to trouble later on. Social Security and Medicare fall into the category of social programs, too. Of course, you realize that these programs may one day (or perhaps already are) vital to your own survival. But you know these benefits are extended to illegal immigrants and people who have never worked a day in their lives. Even when shown that this isn’t the case you revert to # 2. The lines between fact and fiction are indecipherable and you tend to believe the hate mongers at Fox News.

4. Your own educational background is suspect. This means that even if you attended a school of higher education it was probably a trade school. Literature, philosophy, humanities, social and political science are foreign subjects. Your defense for this is to talk louder, wrap yourself in a flag and blame everything on liberals in government. At night, you sit down to mindless sitcoms or reality shows. If you’ve read a book since high school it was either romantic fluff or it was written by Bill O’Reilly or Sarah Palin (and then you skipped huge parts in the middle). If I went to the bathroom in your house I would find nothing to read except the toothpaste box. Your dearth of education is palpable and leads to prejudices such as the one implicit with # 5.

5. You are a white supremacist. This doesn’t mean that you run around with a sheet over your head (but it might!), it means that you tend to distrust people of color, latinos, even white foreigners with accents. You are highly suspicious of languages other than English and demand that people in this country speak English. You believe that “native” born Americans are exceptional (ask Karl Rove) and that god put you here in the US because you are exceptional. Illegal immigrants should be shot as they cross over our borders. President Obama, in Rush Limbaugh’s tortured lexicon is a “half-ican”. Limbaugh is your natural hero as he fits into every category presented here.

Somewhere in here stands the issue of guns and a perky, if misconstrued understanding of the Constitution. Yesterday I read a conservative who felt that constitutionally our government should not fix roads or bridges or worry about infrastructure because it isn’t in the great writ. He goes on to say that “James Madison wrote in 1817. . .” I’d already read enough.

Ron Paul claims that guns are necessary to prevent our government from becoming tyrannical. That’s why our founders wrote the second amendment. Obviously he sees this as superior, or at least equal to, the ballot box. Sharron Angle, who but through the grace of a poorly organized Republican effort, was defeated in Nevada, suggested that the second amendment was an acceptable route to take when the ballot box doesn’t yield acceptable results. Conversely, and tongue in cheek, Rachel Maddow suggests that if redress of grievances (ie tyranny) is the real objective interpretation of the second amendment, then everything should be on the table. That means from machine guns to privately owned nukes.

Antonin Scalia interprets the “equal protection clause” to pertain to white men only. Samuel Alito (and others) interpret corporations as people. The Republicans proposed 42 amendments to the constitution last year alone, leaving one to wonder precisely which constitution these people revere? The spirit and intention of the real one or the religiously tainted, plutocratic, white supremacist mush that pollutes the air waves and the printed page all too often.

The right to bear arms and freedom of speech are the hobbyhorse for republicans.

I hear there’s an auction next door with assault weapons and religious icons, really cheap. But first I have to accost my children for not having given their children good Christian names and for not voting for a real American hero like John McCain. Satire is a wonderful gift and it should be shared.