Posts Tagged ‘Republican extremism’

Our threatened democracy: Links 12/8/2021

December 8, 2021

Will You Storm the Capitol if the 2024 Election Is Stolen? by Thom Hartmann for The Hartmann Report. 

How Would the Left Treat an Illegitimate Election? by Thomas Neuburger for God’s Spies.

The pro-Trump protesters who gathered in Washington on Jan. 6 sincerely thought that the election had been stolen.  I don’t think the evidence supports this.  But suppose they had been right?  What could or should they have done?

This isn’t an academic question.  The 2024 election could well be rigged, and rigged in favor of Trump or whoever is the Republican presidential candidate.  There could be competing slates of electors from key states—a Democratic slate elected by majority vote and a Republican slate chosen by state legislators.

It’s quite likely the Republicans will regain control of the Senate and the House in 2022.  So the GOP, if it is united, would be able to decide in any dispute.  What, then, could or should Democrats do?

A Failing State by Eeggert for The Soundings.

A roundup of all the ways in which the Republican right is working to undermine democracy.  Hartmann’s and Neuburger’s fears are not imaginary.

The Radical Young Intellectuals Who Want to Take Over the American Right by Sam Adler-Bell for The New Republic.

The intellectual right’s war on America’s institutions by Zach Beauchamp for Vox.

Some conservative intellectuals believe their cause can only prevail if they abandon freedom of speech, separation of church and state and other historic small-l liberal ideals.

American Satyricon by Chris Hedges for Scheerpost.

If the USA was a well-functioning democracy, right-wing authoritarianism would not be a threat.

The Ghislaine Maxwell trial reveals how rotten the ruling elite really is, and this is true across the political spectrum.   Rich and powerful men were given free rein to sexually abuse underage and teenage girls, and for years nothing was done.  Jeffrey Epstein died mysteriously, and Maxwell may or may not go to prison, but it’s a safe bet than none of their clients will face any consequences, even in reputation.

An Empire of Dreams by John Michael Greer for Ecosophia.

The more that established authorities discredit themselves, the more willing the public is to embrace fantastic conspiracy theories.  Consider, for example, the imaginary empire of Tartaria.

‘Going easy on these people will not work’

February 4, 2021

Mike Lofgren, an anti-Trump former Republican insider, said in an interview for Salon that pro-Trump zealots need to be crushed, banished and ostracized.

It is necessary to see the historical analogies that tell us what works and what doesn’t work.  The thing that pops into everyone’s mind is the Civil War.

People tend to get all misty-eyed about Lincoln’s statement, “With malice toward none, and charity for all.”   That was his second inaugural address in March of 1865.

What were the results?  A couple of weeks later, what he got out of it was a bullet in the head.  What Blacks got out of it was Jim Crow.  What Confederates got was pardons, amnesties, dropped charges and the ability to rewrite history.

The rest of us were saddled with them, and now we have a large portion of the country — a single region that is basically a Third World state.

Source: Mike Lofgren | Salon.com

Okay, let’s look at historical analogies.  Abraham Lincoln bore no animosity toward the white people of the South.  But he was willing to wage a war that resulted in the greatest killing of white people of any war of the 19th century.  More Americans died in our Civil War than in all the wars of the 20th century.

General William Tecumseh Sherman in his march through Georgia burned crops, slaughtered livestock and destroyed farmhouses and workshops.   General Phil Sheridan did the same in the Shenandoah Valley.

Not only the Confederates, but much of the world at large regarded them as moral monsters.  All this was done with Lincoln’s approval, but not out of malice.

In his speeches, Lincoln never said anything to inflame hatred.  But this did not make him weak.  It did not stop him from doing what he thought had to be done.

The Union government for a decade made a good-faith effort to guarantee equal rights to the slaves, with some success.

This came to an end in 1876 not through an excess of Christian charity and forgiveness, but through a corrupt bargain of the leaders of the Democratic and Republican parties.

In that year, the results of the Presidential election were disputed.  Republicans agreed to allow the Democrats, then the party of white supremacy, to control the South in return for allowing the Republican candidate to occupy the White House.

Even though the two parties worked together at the top level, leaders both kept the memories and hatreds of the Civil War alive.  This diverted attention from their underlying agreement to support corporate monopoly and oppose labor rights.

Today, so-called “red America” and “blue America” are so polarized that there is talk of a new Civil War.  Top-level leaders of both parties keep these antagonisms alive.

This diverts attention from their underlying agreement to support unending war and corporate monopoly and oppose labor rights.

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Rick Perry enters the G.O.P. mainstream

September 19, 2011

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