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Why No Right Wing Outrage Over “Terrorist Kane”?

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Stop me if you've heard this one before.

Two terrorists are pulled over by a cop car. The older terrorist is a religious fanatic. His 16-year old son has been thoroughly indoctrinated. Since his home was under foreclosure, this religious terrorist has been traveling the country with his son, preaching ways to destroy the government of the United States by interfering with its flow of revenue and murdering government employees.

On Thursday, May 20, in West Memphis, Arkansas, this terrorist and his son were pulled over by the cops on the interstate. They came out of their car with AK-47s blazing, killing two of the police officers and then taking it on the lam.

When they were finally cornered in a Walmart parking lot, the terrorist and his son shot it out with the police, wounding two before they were both killed.

Now, let's consider for a moment that this terrorist had been named Akhmed. Fox News, Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh and all the minor league Limbaugh wannabe right wing radio racists would still be crowing about the horrible, horrible slaughter and how can Islam be a religion of peace when these filthy Mooslims murder police cops and how President Obama's cowardly apologizing to the Islamic world was causing the bloodshed and if we don't do something about this spreading cancer of Islamic fundamentalism in America, it's doom for us all.

Doom, I tells ya!

Well, we haven't heard much from Fox about this particular act of terror. Or from Hannity, Beck, Limbaugh or any of the other right wing noisemakers.

See, this guy wasn't named Akhmed. His name was Jerry Kane. The religion he was so fanatical about? Christianity. And the federal agents he wanted to murder? IRS agents.

According to MSNBC,Terrorist Kane had a long record with the cops, using the Internet to question the US government's authority over him. He once spent three days in jail and paid a $1,500 fine for driving without a license and refusing to identify himself. He called it a "Nazi checkpoint."

According to The Memphis Commercial Appeal, Terrorist Kane, in a YouTube video (no longer available online) had some pretty scary things to say about killing IRS agents.

You have to kill them all. So what we're after here is not fighting, it's conquering. I don't want to have to kill anybody, but if they keep messing with me, that's what it's going to have to come out. That's what it's going to come down to, is I'm going to have to kill. And if I have to kill one, then I'm not going to be able to stop, I just know it.

In that video, he and his son Joe joke about using a bat to "take care of" a problem with an IRS agent.

Now, they're dead. They took two police officers with them. They wounded two more. These terrorists. These people bent on the destruction of the federal government, promising to kill whoever they had to kill to do so. All in the name of their religion and their ideology. Fundamentalist terrorists.

But, apparently, not the right kind of fundamentalist terrorists for the Right Wing Noise Machine to get all worked into a lather over.

Y'see, when Jerry and Joe Kane shoot cops in the name of their religion and their ideology, it's much harder for the Limbaughs and the Hannitys and the O'Reillys and the Becks to get their audiences worked up into a racist fervor of fear than it is when those terrorists have brown skin and odd sounding names.

No, quite obviously, just like the guy who flew his airplane into an IRS office building killing himself and an IRS worker, these were two patriotic Americans who were just pushed too far by the socialist, Marxist, fascist, Nazi ersatz usurper in the White House… that dark-skinned feller what came from Kenya, according to all them signs what people carried at them Tea Party rallies.

Good, honest, righteous, hard-working, and patriotic Americans who were just pushed too far.

And if you listen to Beck, Limbaugh, Hannity and the others… there's gonna be a whole lot more just like 'em.

Just check out the Terrorist Kane Memorial Website [emphasis added]:

Jerry Kane and his beautiful son Joe (age 16) were shot to death during an alleged traffic stop by law enforcement on Thursday, May 20th, 2010. Jerry, Joe and their two dogs, while on their way back to their home in Florida have been made out to be everything from drug smugglers to hispanics [sic], which we all know is typical of the media spinners.

'Cuz God forbid they'd be drug runners, or — even worse, I s'pose — "hispanics."

I fear it's going to be a long, hot summer, kids!

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About ParkyBill

  • Cannonshop

    Did the cops kill the son of a bitch?

    YES.

    Were there a whole legion of professors, ‘culturalists’ and other titled apologists
    lining up to justify/explain why the cops shooting this turd (and his son) was wrong?

    NO.

    figure it out, dude.

  • http://parkinsondiary.com ParkyBill

    Is there a webpage lauding this guy?

    Yes.

    If his name was Abdul, would Fox and all the other yapping spaniels in the right wing media STILL be yapping about it?

    Yep.

    I’ve already figgered it out. Dude.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    An anti-government sentiment is a natural one, especially in a country that aspires to being a democracy.

    There was a relevant comment to that effect on a memorable Norman Mailer-William F. Buckley debate on The Firing Line (1967, folks).

    When I get home, I’ll provide you with the appropriate link and the relevant excerpt.

  • http://parkinsondiary.com ParkyBill

    So, Roger… you are disputing my central contention that if this guy was a Muslim the media would still be yapping about it, but since he wasn’t, they aren’t?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Not really. My point was of a more general nature. But of course you’re right.

  • Baronius

    There’s not much of a connection between this story and Christianity. Kane’s religion isn’t mentioned in the MSNBC story. The memorial site makes no mention of religion, but has a quote from atheist Ayn Rand. The other article you linked to notes Kane’s belief that the Bible calls for overwhelming force against enemies, as well as his affiliation with an Aryan Nations religious group. Everyone but those guys denounces those guys. They’re the guys that conspiracy nuts avoid. If you’re looking for conservatives to denounce Aryan Nations, ask any of us.

    Maybe you have some reason to believe that Kane was motivated by religion, but I don’t see it.

  • konan

    You sound like a liberal. That said I see nothing from Jerry Kane that he was religious “christian” fanatic like you claimed. It sounds like Kane was distraught all right…but WHY?.

    I believe our banking system and our government are culprits in a lot of people personal problems today. I also think we are going to have to Cleanse the Tree of Liberty as our Founding Fathers said we would have to do. WHatever one beleives…know this: People of various foreign and domestic colors are trying to take away what we have. They exist in our government and live here illegally…or legally. Whoever inherits this Nations future will have to kill to do it. Thats life.

    So if your one of those too many idiots who don’t yet believe we are heading for a civil war of some sort…then just keep sleeping and you will either be awakened by gunfire or killed by it.

    This government has pissed off too many law abiding citizens. We all stole this land from the American Indians and we arent going to give it away to Mexicans, foreigners, lazy ass socialists and communists. That wont happen.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    “the Tree of Liberty,” that’s a new one, konan. Which chapter and verse are you quoting from?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I happen to agree with Baronius. Kane’s alleged christianity is incidental here. No reflection on the religious Right – at least not in this instance.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Speaking of the MSM being silent about domestic terrorists, I notice that NO ONE here seems to know about the mosque bombing in Florida on the 10th of May.

    Now if a local ‘Christian’ church had been bombed after a smear campaign had been led by state candidates against that denomination, would the MSM have covered it? You betcha! Especially Fox!

    But I guess it’s too liberal to for the MSM to say a word when a mosque gets bombed.

    And did anyone on BC hear about the woman in Yuba City, CA, who took her gun and confronted a census worker, and then died in a confrontation with the police?

    But I guess it’s too liberal for the MSM to say a word when a census worker gets confronted with a gun like the owner of the far-right-wing blog redstate.com (and now CNN ‘contributor’) Erick Erickson advised his listeners to do.

    Yeah. It’s only terrorism when A-rabs or them gol-durned unAmerricun commie bastid nazi-soshulist libruls do it, I guess.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    It’s about to drop that word. It’s become useless.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Konan’s comment (#7) illustrates the author’s point rather well.

    Note the elaborate list of grievances and the implied justification for Kane’s actions.

    Would he go to the same lengths to empathise with an al-Qaeda member? Highly, highly doubtful.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    It’s not the physical act itself, Dreadful, that calls for one and the same classification – it’s the motivation behind it.

    If it issues from a patriotic, righteous-thinking American as part of a response to his grievances against his government, it’s an admirable act, worthy of emulation. But you have to meet right criteria to belong to that exclusive group.

    Come to think of it, Tea Party membership might just cut it.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Let’s turn this around, guys. A Christian extremist, one who affiliated with Nazis, who was willing to use force against legally constituted authority, was killed doing so. I let you decide if this was good or not. It’s not my problem. You live in America, not me.

    But if “Abdullah” had been the extremist blowing away all these cops, all sorts of liberal idiots would be writing apologia upon apologia for the Wahhabi trash. The lame brain media would be looking for every excuse for the poor slob to have to murder cops. And Hannity and the other “right wing” types would go after Abdullah – until the Wahhabi “person” who owns 8% of Fox News told them to shut up or find work elsewhere.

    And there would be the inevitable story in Yediot Ahronot that the government had this Wahhabi trash on their lists of threats – but did nothing about it.

    That, ParkyBill, is a far more realistic assessment.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    The reason is simple. The Left hates America for the imperialistic power it had become; it is therefore tolerant with respects to acts of retaliation. But the Left is totally unsympathetic when it comes to acts by disgruntled Americans whose only concern is number one.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Roger –

    The Left hates America for the imperialistic power it had become; it is therefore tolerant with respects to acts of retaliation. But the Left is totally unsympathetic when it comes to acts by disgruntled Americans whose only concern is number one.

    1. The left doesn’t ‘hate’ America, Roger. I am part of the left, remember, and there are many retired military like myself who are outraged when the blood of OUR military family is shed, OUR treasure is wasted for an illegal invasion committed on false pretenses…and when OUR national honor is tarnished by the use of torture that had been forsworn by George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. Honor means something to me – maybe it doesn’t mean much to some here who dismiss it as a rankly naive concept, but it means a great deal to me.

    Tolerant? No. That’s an off-the-cuff and totally unsubstantiated accusation, Roger – and I call you on it. We on the left well understand the motives of the terrorists (we’re big on empathy, remember), but we do NOT ‘tolerate’ it.

    2. Should we be any more tolerant of Americans who commit terrorism (domestic or otherwise) than we are of those who aren’t Americans?

    Rog, you need to get out of your dark place (Ruvy’s there beside you – he’s been there a long time). The great majority of the people of the world (including the Muslims and including those oh-so-traitorous few of us on the left) are good and gracious people. Please don’t make sweeping accusatory generalizations like that unless you can substantiate them.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I wasn’t talking of liberals, Glenn. Perhaps this should help.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Roger –

    I wonder how many here would think that ‘liberals’ and ‘the Left’ are two completely different things? I wouldn’t make that assumption.

  • Baronius

    Glenn, do you mean the way the Tucson church fires have been dominating the news? Oh, wait, no one’s heard about those either.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    To me they’re entirely different critters. I was speaking ideologically, not in terms of what obtains politically.

    Anyways, my account explained Ruvy’s well-put paradox. Did your?

  • http://parkinsondiary.com ParkyBill

    Look deeper than the MSNBC story. The van the dude was driving belonged to a far right church. He and his group had been disrupting church services by interrupting the services to preach their extremist views.

    If this had been Mooslims, you would have heard all about it.

  • http://parkinsondiary.com ParkyBill

    And Konan? The word is “you’re”. Not “your.” “You’re.” Since you are in a writers’ community, punctuation counts.

  • http://parkinsondiary.com ParkyBill

    Ruvy, just wondering… have you ever heard a “liberal” — one taken seriously, anyway — apologizing for Islamic Terrorists killing cops? Or did Glenn Beck tell you to say that?

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    ParkyBill,

    I don’t waste time following the lame brain American media too closely, except where your government poses a threat or an interference to my life – which is all too often. I am not a “conservative” and don’t much care for the “conservative” echo-chambers that call themselves media. In fact, if you must know, I am a syndicalist socialist.

    But I sure as hell remember all sorts of “liberal” types making excuses for that scum of a Wahhabi terrorist who killed 13 soldiers and an unborn foetus in Georgia a while ago. They were all over the place like a bad smell, from the White House press office on down.

  • http://parkinsondiary.com ParkyBill

    Well, Ruvy, here’s your chance to post links and quotes to back up that statement. Let’s see some credible “liberal types” taken seriously by the media apologizing or excusing the Fort Hood shooting.

    Ready?

    Go!

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    ParkyBill,

    OK, I’ll see how many links I can post before Aksimet rejects my comment as spam.

    On “diversity”, we have the top American military officer putting “diversity” over the lives of the soldiers he commands. I’m so grateful not to be a soldier in such a pathetic outfit. Great equipment, no moral sense at all.

    Then we have CAIR talking about this scum. You do know that CAIR is allied to the Wahhabi terrorists in “Saudi” Arabia. Poor guy from CAIR whined about how what he calls “Islam” is targeted, etc. when a Muslim kills people. One has to wonder why?

    Then we see the media spin reflected in this short blog post, which has five links in it. Five for one! Can you beat that? Guy must have an uncle in the business….

    I’m going to stop here – not because I can’t find anything else – L-rd knows, I can find plenty more. But it’s after 01:00 here in the mountains of Samaria, and I need my beauty sleep if I expect to catch a 07:40 bus into Jerusalem later this morning.

    The stuff you see above is not exactly “apology” in the precise term. That came later. But it lays the groundwork. Go to yahoo.com and type in apologies – ft hood shooting, and see what I mean.

    Have fun!

  • STM

    Rog, Silas is right … the left doesn’t hate America. The “left” in Australia, of which I consider myself part, doesn’t hate America either.

    We think it makes mistakes in its foreign policy dealings, but that’s largely the nature of a large imperialistic power having to look after its own interests because every pack of jealous thrid-world bastards and dictatorships that can’t run their own countries blame America for their own predicament.

    Plainly, they are wrong and deluded, but like I say, that’s just the nature of the beast.

    America has the right to defend uitself. Just because it’s big and kind of neo-imperialistic (corprorate HQs and naval bases all over the world instead of union jacks and railways, which means it is isn’t that different to the Poms during their pursuit of empire in the ptrevious three centuries).

    But the truth is, Rog, if the US is imperialistic – and I believe it is – then it’s a relatively benign kind of imperialism not that different to its cousins across the ditch.

    Let’s not forget that in the 20th century, it was the major player in the destruction (either militarily, by proxy or economically) of three hateful ideologies: Nazism, brutal Japanese imperialism and communism, and also had a small but quite significant role to play in the destruction of absolutist Prussian militarism in WWI.

    To me, and to most people with half a brain, the ledger is in the black – not the red – when it comes to the US and its role in the modern world, which is now largely of its own making. I mean, can you imagine the Nazis rebuilding all their conquered territories. Their main idea of rebuilding was to round up anyone they didn’t like and kill ‘em.

    I’d say right, now getting rid of another hateful ideology isn’t that bad an idea; anyone who thinks that ain’t the case should keep watching re-runs of jets being flown into NYC skyscrapers. Over and over, until the truth sinks in.

    I’ll go along for the ride on that one anytime. The only thing arseholes deserve is to have a second one torn for them.

    Count me in, and I know most – not all, but most – Aussies feel the same way.

    We have never forgotten the help the US gave us in WWII fighting the Japanese, whose brutality at the time might have been even worse than that of Hitler and Stalin, and that’s saying something.

  • http://parkinsondiary.com ParkyBill

    OK, so Ruvy posts a link to an American general saying one crazed Muslim should not mean an end to diversity in the military. (Ruvy, if a Jewish soldier kills civilians, should we blame ALL Jewish soldiers? That’s the argument you seem to be making.) He posts a video of a CAIR spokesman saying something about the shooting, but doesn’t tell us what the CAIR spokesperson says. I assume he’s saying we shouldn’t blame all Muslims for the act of this fanatic. Do you disagree with that sentiment, Ruvy? Then a link to a right wing blogger misunderstanding five newspaper stories, one from the Dallas Morning News (from that hotbed of liberal thought — Texas) which says the shooting at Fort Hood may just be a result of madness, something from the right wing nut site “News Busters,” ANOTHER from the right wing nut site, “News Busters”, ANOTHER from the right wing nut site, “News Busters,” and ANOTHER ANOTHER from the right wing nut site, “News Busters.” THESE are your “independent sources that prove the liberals were all apologetic and stuff about the Fort Hood shootings, Ruvy? Look, I know you live in Israel, I know the danger you face every day, but to tie all people of Muslim faith to an evil act is as bad as tying all people of the Jewish faith to the murder of civilians in the occupied territories. I will assume you have never murdered anyone, Ruvy. I will assume you are a good person, and I will not judge you because of the way you worship God. Don’t Muslims and Hindus and Shintos and Buddhists and Christians deserve the same right, as long as they don’t hurt anyone?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Ruvy, the point is not to be an apologist for terrorists of whatever shitstripe, but to understand them. Understanding doesn’t have to mean sympathy. Understanding means you’re better equipped to anticipate their next move, to prevent it, and even to address the conditions that made them want to attack you in the first place.

    Now, Konan seems desperately to want us to understand why Kane did what he did; I get the impression he wouldn’t have anything like the same interest in explaining the actions of a Major Hassan.

    It’s human nature, I suppose, to want to defend crimes which were motivated by something one sympathises with. One does, after all, understand where such people are coming from.

    But “know thine enemy” is a piece of good advice which seems rarely to be heeded.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    ParkyBill,

    I was going to go to sleep, but had to see your response. You evidently know very little about how I think.

    First of all, you consistently confuse “Muslim” with “Wahhabi”. The two are as different as night and day. Do yourself a favor and read my article on A Road to Peace Between the Children of Abraham. Then go to the site of Sheikh Abdulhadi Palazzi and read WHY Wahhabism is a heresy to Islam. Finally, do read this article in the Weekly Blitz (out of Bangladesh).

    Once you’ve gotten through all three, (the last is a different version of the first, but worth your while anyway), you will understand why I turned your example around the way I did. Finally, think about all the people who died because the Wahhabi whipped up riots over cartoons four years ago.

    And now, I must bid you a good night.

  • postit

    Crazy Right-Wing Extremists? … Sounds like the MIAC Reports issued by DHS … SPLC attacking this guy shows that he is on the ball and knows what he is talking about … Game Over NWO

  • Glenn Contrarian

    STM –

    Thanks for the compliments to America – and remember who we learned from. You must admit that England’s forgotten more about running an empire than we’ve ever learned….

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Baronius –

    The Tucson church fires seem to be the act of a serial arsonist…and there has been no rabid anti-church rhetoric preached by a candidate for AZ state congress…but there WAS such rhetoric against the Muslims by a candidate for FL state congress.

    In other words, your comparison fails miserably.

  • Baronius

    Right, Glenn, because we were talking about political campaigns, not the press’s reaction to violent acts against houses of worship.

  • Clavos

    We all stole this land from the American Indians and we arent going to give it away to Mexicans

    No, konan, you aren’t “going to give it away to Mexicans” because we’re going to take it back from you, since you gringos unlawfully stole the entire southwest from us in the first place.

    Por La Raza todo. Fuera de La Raza nada.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    I wonder how many here would think that ‘liberals’ and ‘the Left’ are two completely different things? I wouldn’t make that assumption.

    I certainly don’t consider them to be at all the same and I’ve said it many times here on BC.

    And Clavos, we paid Mexico about $40 million for that land, even after conquering their whole country in about 15 minutes, and most of the people living on it – including the Mexicans – rejoiced to be out from under Mexican rule.

    Dave

  • Clavos

    $40 mil? BFD — a pittance.

    Whatever the attitude of those living on it (most of whom were misfits who had fled from other parts of the US because they couldn’t get along back home), it was still taken by force, $40 mil notwithstanding.

  • STM

    Dave: “even after conquering their whole country in about 15 minutes”.

    You know as well as I do that launching an attack during siesta is cheating.

  • http://parkinsondiary.com ParkyBill

    Remember when this article was about comparing the media’s reaction to a white, Christian terrorist to that of a brown-skinned Muslim terrorist! I recall when we were discussing THAT!

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Okay, Dave – please enlighten me. What’s the difference between liberals and ‘the left’?

  • Baronius

    Parky – I see that this is your first article in the Politics section. Welcome. Threads here take on a life of their own, or sometimes don’t take on any life at all. Don’t take it personally. You could drive yourself crazy trying to keep an internet conversation on track, and you wouldn’t succeed anyway.

    That said, I disagree with your entire article, and look forward to more disputes.

  • http://parkinsondiary.com ParkyBill

    Baronius — you actually BELIEVE that Fox and Hannity and Limbaugh and everyone else would have NOT blown an anti-Mooooooslim blood vessel of this guy were Islamic? Christ! They were going nutz when Miss World turned out to be Muslim!

    And I know, it’s like trying to make a cat walk backwards. :)

  • http://www.indyboomer46.blogspot.com Baritone

    BTW – The shootings and Ft. Hood are in Texas. The great “All American” state. And I agree with Parky here, Ruvy. Show us something to back up that claim. There were no apologists in support of that “Wahhabi.”

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    To pick up the mantle, Glenn, from Dave, try to explain “Ruvy’s paradox.” I bet you won’t be able to unless you make the kind of distinction I’m pressing for.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    I’d say a true liberal can’t be of the left or of the right. It’s a centrist position by definition. Liberals acknowledge that there are good ideas on both sides, but are wary of both the left’s tendency to centralize administratively and the right’s tendency towards moral absolutism.

  • Clavos

    Liberals acknowledge that there are good ideas on both sides, but are wary of both the left’s tendency to centralize administratively and the right’s tendency towards moral absolutism.

    Absolutely!

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    :-)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    These are political definitions you’re employing, Dreadful, although you are essentially right. At least Norman Mailer would agree with you, to a point: his extreme view was, liberals are despots at heart. They obey and promote minute laws and regulations while they’re intolerant of diverging points of view. Conservatives, on the other hand, are better at appreciating the plurality.

    Your notion of “moral absolutism,” however, I think needs revising, unless of course you’re parodying the idea of absolute individual freedom and liberty apart from a human community (which I think you’re doing).

    BTW, you might want to look up the Buckley-Mailer debate on this very subject on The Firing Line. I found it most informative.

    If you’d be interested, I could readily provide a link to a full and uninterrupted program on Utube.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Well, Mailer was fuller of shit than a sewage treatment plant during a strike.

    He was also talking about “liberals” as in the current American definition, not as in the general political/philosophical position.

    By “moral absolutism” I meant that it tends to be conservatives who hold that there is an absolute set of moral values (which just so happens to be theirs, of course) and that everyone else ought to abide by them – through legislative compulsion if necessary.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    BTW, by “the Left” I means the radical Left and radical ideology, as expressed by Noam Chomsky, the late Howard Zinn, or Naomi Klein. They’re not part of the political system in place and its ideas are not part of the present political debate. It’s an intellectual vanguard in a manner of speaking, which is why people like Glenn can’t possibly identify with. It aims at dismantling the existing political and economic system.

  • Baronius

    Dread, I think that you’ve defined liberalism so broadly that most everyone born in the last 100 years falls within it. There’s not much benefit to a definition that doesn’t exclude anything.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    He was also talking about “liberals” as in the current American definition . . .

    Of course that’s what he was doing, Dreadful. And these definitions are still with us and govern the course of the current political debate. As to your intent of trying to employ them in a philosophical sense, I happen to think too much damage has been done to be able to reinstate these terms to position of respectability. Anyway, you’re talking about another level of discourse.

    As to your notion of “moral absolutism,” of course I got your drift, just wanted to dress it up a bit. And the reason why – I’m not quite ready to abandon appeal to morality, or the better in “the human instinct,” for fear that once we do that, what else is there to fall back upon.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    And BTW, I don’t think you should be dismissing Mailer in such an offhandish way that you seem to. In addition to being a superb novelist, he was also a supreme intellect and an acute observer of our times. I’ve listened to the aforementioned debate only a few days ago and though dating back to 1968, it opened my eyes, especially as regards the lukewarmness of the liberal mindset.

    Since you’re unlikely to ask for the link, I’m providing it anyway free gratis (a redundant phrase, no doubt). It’s a link only to the first segment. You can easily access the rest of the discussion if you’re moved to do so.

    So here it is.

    Even if you don’t care for Mailer’s views, it’s good entertainment, I promise, unlike anything you’re liable to find on today’s TV.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Dread, I think that you’ve defined liberalism so broadly that most everyone born in the last 100 years falls within it.

    Not even remotely true, Herr Baron. A few incidents from very recent history – let’s say, for example, the apoplexies suffered by certain country music fans following a Dixie Chick’s intemperate remark about President Bush, or the WTO riots.

    Even if it were true, we’re talking about an age of my-way-or-the-highway political posturing, in which a “conservative” will automatically oppose anything a “liberal” proposes, and vice versa, for the sake of presenting a unified front.

    You forget that as a Brit, I speak from a place where there actually is a Liberal party. The Liberal Democrats are often mocked for “fence-sitting”, but they serve an important function in British politics. As a participant in a three-party system, they’re able to exhibit political honesty and acknowledge that no one party has the monopoly on good government.

    And they’re a powerful enough presence to be able to put a brake on whichever of the other two parties happens to be in power, and ensure that they both appeal to the centre and don’t get too dogmatic.

    You don’t have that in America, which I think goes a long way to explaining the extreme polarisation you’ve got now.

  • Baronius

    99% of people believe that they’re in the middle. They think that they’re liberal, under your definition of not erring toward either extreme. They reject some elements of tradition, and are suspicious of some elements of progress.

    We are all liberals, if viewed from a historical perspective. At least most of us are. Even BC’s monarchists and theocrats are moderate, by historical standards.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    99% of people believe that they’re in the middle.

    Source?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    #54 explains where you’re coming from, Dreadful. Applications to “the American experience”?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Well, for starters it would be interesting to crank up the alternate reality generator and see what might have happened if one or other incarnation of the Progressive Party had remained viable.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Roger –

    Looking at your definitions, I would suggest that when you say “the Left”, then please further identify whom you mean by saying “the Far Left”, or more appropriately “the Extreme Left” because in the vernacular of today, to most American readers (and particularly among Republicans), “the Left” denotes anyone as liberal as, say, Bill Clinton – who as I’m sure you’re aware was fairly conservative, especially when it came to fiscal matters.

    Again, while your use of “the Left” was correct in your view, I suspect you’ll find that to most readers, “the Left” denotes a much larger subset than you intended.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I said, Glenn, that I was referring to an ideological position, not a position on the political spectrum. But that ideological position is reflected, I believe, by the position of the MSM.

    So again, it’s this ideological position, not political affiliation, which sort of explains the paradox raised by Ruvy (as per page one on this comment thread).

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Well yes, given this imaginary context, the Liberal party would naturally be centrist. But of course, we don’t have this frame of reference in a two-party system. Which is why, I argue, the term verges on obsolescence, which is to say, it isn’t very helpful.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Roger –

    Again, your position makes sense to you and to other cognoscenti that share your views, but the pedestrian everyman has a different definition of “the Left”. I’ve learned quite a bit from you…but I would recommend using terminology that is understood by the Great Unwashed in the way that you originally intended.

    In other words, you might have to ‘dumb it down’ sometime for rubes like me.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I don’t give a hoot, Glenn, what an average unwashed thinks, and the main reason being – they don’t. So no, I don’t have to dumb it down. It is they who have to raise up in order to begin to make sense of their lives. (And BTW, what was “originally intended” has a way of morphing. Nothing stands still, Glenn, not even the meaning of what once were perfectly clear terms.)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    And BTW, Glenn, lest you think I’m shooting from the hip rather than argue from previously reasoned-through positions, here is a link to a three-part series on BC, “The Hidden Dimensions of American Politics.” Though written over a year ago, the main points still stand.

    It should be apparent that I’ve been using “Left” and “Right” in an ideological sense, trying to impute more meaning into what often is a sterile political discourse.

    At least I try to give you the courtesy of perusing the stuff that you write, but apparently you are not reciprocating.

    And no, this one is not over everyone’s head, as some of my pieces tend to be.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Roger –

    At least I try to give you the courtesy of perusing the stuff that you write, but apparently you are not reciprocating.

    If that were the case, then where are all these comments coming from that I’ve made to you? Last I recall, I’m not required to check every single post you make, and for that reason you should not expect me to be aware of everything you’ve written.

    Roger, when I write, I always try to bear in mind the reader. I continually ask myself, “Am I using language in such a way that the reader is going to be able to truly understand what I mean?” Like you, I do expect a certain level of literacy by the reader – but I’m not going to demean him for ignorance of my meaning…especially if the words that I used mean something different in the everyday language used by most moderately-literate Americans.

  • http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/author/danmiller/ Dan(Miller)

    Re # 64, And no, this one is not over everyone’s head, as some of my pieces tend to be.

    A true classic. Congratulations on comprehending why some (most?) who lack intefectual ability don’t respond.

    Dan(Miller)

    PS: No, “intefectual” is not a typo; it’s my own linguistic creation. I’m so proud I get chills up my leg. Aaggugggug!

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    “intefectual”?

    I’m glad you’re so thrilled. Linguistic creations are a thing of marvel.

    As to the root, has feces got anything to do with it.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    No problem, Glenn. All I was trying to say it’s not a half-baked idea as you may have presumed.

    Consider though. Just because most use words and terms in a certain way doesn’t go to show the common usage is useful or fruitful.

  • http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/author/danmiller/ Dan(Miller)

    Re #67, As to the root, has feces got anything to do with it. Gosh darn, I hope not! I had intended a bastardization of “ineffectual.”

    On the other hand, if you prefer to import a scatological meaning, that’s OK with me.

    Dan(Miller)

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    40 mil? BFD — a pittance.

    Whatever the attitude of those living on it (most of whom were misfits who had fled from other parts of the US because they couldn’t get along back home), it was still taken by force, $40 mil notwithstanding.

    Actually, the populations of the states in question got to vote to join the union and in both Texas and California a majority of the MEXICAN population voted to join the US. You would too if you had lived under mid-19th century Mexican rule.

    And it wasn’t just US exiles in Texas. Texas was where Mexico had been exiling their political troublemakers for years. They wanted out of Mexico as much as the anglos did.

    And for the record, that $40 million adjusted for inflation would be over a billion today, which is not bad for undeveloped land in places like Texas and New Mexico.

    Dave

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I had intended a bastardization of “ineffectual.”

    I kinda figured that, Dan, just hadn’t the balls to ask.

  • STM

    Doc: “I’d say a true liberal can’t be of the left or of the right. It’s a centrist position by definition.”

    Yeah, that’s what cracks me up about Yanks: small-L liberalism is a broad church.

    In Australia, you can be a voter of the party of the Left, the Labor Party, or the Party of the right, the Liberal Party (it was, when it was first created but now isn’t), and if your position is close to the centre, then by definiation, whichever way you vote, you are a small-L liberal.

    True American-style “liberalism” is often regarded with derision by the right wing of the left in Australia, because it’s thought of as not the party of people with a genuine work ethic and a belief in workers rights co-existing with free-market economies, but as the preserve of the “chattering classes” – the chardonnay socialists who’ve never done a hard day’s work in their lives and whose only suffering for the cause is large boils on their big arses.

    I also find it bizarre that the right in the US and Australia are virtually identical in their beliefs – except that in the US, Republicans tell us we should get rid of the union jack in the corner of our flag and become a republic, while in Australia, the flag and the constitutional monatrchy (democracy since 1688!!) are the very things they will fight to the death for.

    I’m with ‘em on the last two as well. We are who we are: why try to fix something that ain’t broken, especially when our only yardstick is America!

    No thanks guys. OK for you on the other side of the big ditch because you don’t know any better, but not for us.

  • Jeff Forsythe

    Mass exodus to the Land of Oz stage left

  • Jeff Forsythe

    In addition, I dare say Stan that there exists a plethora of ignorant yanks that confuse the Union Jack with their “Rebel” flag. Contrasting their banner, which is a representation of racism and ignorance, the Union Jack is a badge of Honour.

    Jeff

  • Clavos

    And no, this one is not over everyone’s head, as some of my pieces tend to be.

    Aren’t we lucky…

  • STM

    That’s only because he’s not on his high horse this week … his head’s about the same level as the horse’s arse.

  • STM

    Jeff: I have to confess that I do have a soft spot for our American cousins. But, geez, they DO have some funny ideas …

    AND they drive on the wrong side of the road. I can never get my head around that one.

  • http://takeirorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Well, Stan baby, you’re at that level all the time when posting on BC. But I do like your journalistic pieces, on the other hand. A heckuva change of pace.

  • Zedd

    Ditto to Doc’s #12

  • Zedd

    roger,


    And no, this one is not over every one’s head, as some of my pieces tend to be”

    Its okay to think things like this but don’t post them.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Hi, zedd.