Identifying the real "haters of America"
There they go again.
Right wing columnists and other Bush-loving extremists – hey, we get to use such denigrating terms if they do – are back on the tired theme of “America haters and Bush haters.” In the lexicon of the radical right, those terms mean anyone who doesn't support the Bush or any portion of its agenda for overturning the U.S. Constitution.
Rush Limbaugh, the non-thinking man's favorite lout, is shouting the last few days that “the left” is pleased that two U.S. soldiers were tortured before they were killed.
That goes far beyond the allowable limits of commentary.
I'm part of “the left” by today's Republican and press standards, and so are the great majority of my friends. I don't know anyone who isn't sickened by the thought of what those young men suffered.
Where we go wrong, according to Limbaugh and his zombie following – and where we are right by the the standards of most of the world – is that we are equally sickened by the almost unimaginable sufferings of those who have been and are being tortured under the sponsorship of this country's leaders.
No torture is acceptable, no torturer is anything but evil. Saddam, Hitler, Stalin, Cheney, Rumsfeld and the grinning puppet in the White House were cut from the same rotten cloth. They have no remorse for the horrors they have caused to be committed. They are less than fully human.
We're not supposed to say such things of course. Right wing propaganda, supported by what passes for journalism in this country in recent years, has persuaded the vast majority of Americans that such truths are “leftist,” at best, and that speakers of the plain, unspun and demonstrable truth hate America.
Hate Bush, which also means Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld and our own fat Goebbels, Karl Rove?
Growing up in what I recognized in my teens as an extremely backward and unthinkingly racist branch of Lutheranism, I developed a definition of “hate” that stays with me. Hate, in that personal definition, is an extremely powerful emotion; it means that you desire the greatest possible harm to come to the one(s) you hate, you want them dead, perhaps even to suffer as the torture victims have suffered.
Intellectually, I don't quite believe that definition, but it's there, deep in my gut, as are so many things we absorbed as children.
So, no, by that definition I don't hate the Bush crowd.
I do despise them. I do want them gone – away from all possibility of wielding further power, perhaps settled down in some enclave of the super rich where they can verbally abuse the help and sneer at everyone who is not them, but cannot do further damage to this country or the wider world.
In that, I know, I am in the company of millions of good Americans.
Because, in fact, it is they, the Bush, who hate America.
That is, they hate what it was until they grasped the power to transform it, and they hate the vestiges of what it used to be. Their every action demonstrates that.
They have subverted the electoral system, encouraged and engineered the theft of elections and the disenfranchisement of those who are likely to vote against them. They are a long way down the road of twisting the judicial branch of government into a tool of their political vision – just as was done in Nazi Germany and Stalinist Russia.
Having successfully gerrymandered Congressional districts to the point that it is all but impossible for a majority of citizens to elect a majority of that body, and they have made personal loyalty to themselves the sole criterian for gaining influence in the legislative branch of government. They have openly sold key governmental departments and the legislative process to giant business. Regulatory bodies are run by the industries they are supposed to regulate.
They fail miserably at protecting the public from predatory corporate giants, from natural disasters and, inevitably, from terrorists because they just don't give a damn about the people of this or any other country. Government to them is something to be run for the sake of increasing their own wealth and power and for no other reason.
Schools? They do NOT want an educated public; they are well on their way to making the people of the United States a pool of trained but fearful labor, willing to take whatever they are offered in exchange for their work.
Health care? Just enough so that enough of the people can work through their productive years without excessive absenteeism.
Share the proceeds of increased productivity with those who produce the wealth? Don't be ridiculous.
Protect the environment? Why? They're quite sure in their arrogance that there always will be safe, pleasant havens for themselves. They don't go to national parks, or fish on public waters; their getaway spots have fences and guards at the gates and outriders along the fences to keep them from contact with the rabble.
Create a lasting peace? War creates immense wealth for those who own the right corporations. And war is the perfect tool – as they have shown with Iraq – for conning the largely ignorant public into accepting the shift from a republican democracy into an imperial Republican dictatorship.
They hate America as it was created and as it was before they cheated their way into control.
Hate the Bush crowd? Not quite, but the next thing to it.
Anyone not part of their tiny club who can look at what they've done and what they are doing and not despise them is deluded beyond understanding.