New liberal ad ties presumptive future House Speaker Kevin McCarthy to ‘red scare’ icon Joseph McCarthy, Peter Weber, The Week
Topics: Civics, Civilization, Democracy, Economics, Existentialism, Fascism
Debt Ceiling and Dystopia
The debt limit does not authorize new spending commitments. It simply allows the government to finance existing legal obligations that Congresses and presidents of both parties have made in the past.
Failing to increase the debt limit would have catastrophic economic consequences. It would cause the government to default on its legal obligations – an unprecedented event in American history. That would precipitate another financial crisis and threaten the jobs and savings of everyday Americans – putting the United States right back in a deep economic hole just as the country is recovering from the recent recession.
Congress has always acted when called upon to raise the debt limit. Since 1960, Congress has acted 78 separate times to permanently raise, temporarily extend, or revise the definition of the debt limit – 49 times under Republican presidents and 29 times under Democratic presidents. Congressional leaders in both parties have recognized that this is necessary.
The Old McCarthyism
Elected to the Senate in 1946, Joseph McCarthy (1908-1957) did not draw major national attention until 1950. On February 9th of that year, he delivered a Lincoln Day address in Wheeling, West Virginia, blaming failures in American foreign policy on Communist infiltration of the U.S. government. The Wisconsin Republican claimed to have a list of known Communists still working in the Department of State. A special subcommittee investigated McCarthy’s charges and rejected them as “a fraud and a hoax.” Still, the outbreak of the Korean War and the highly publicized conviction of Alger Hiss lent credibility to the charges. When McCarthy became chairman of the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations in 1953, he launched a series of investigations into alleged subversion and espionage. In 1954 a confrontation with the army led to the nationally televised Army-McCarthy hearings, which tarnished McCarthy’s public image, undermined his charges, and prompted his censure by the U.S. Senate.
The New McCarthyism, or the New Testament of the Soulless
“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic, and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”
This is an excellent definition of the “Big lie,” however, there seems to be no evidence that it was used by Nazi propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels, though it is often attributed to him.
The OSS psychological profile of Hitler described his use of the big lie:
His primary rules were: never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it.
Source: Jewish Virtual Library/Joseph Goebbels: The Big Lie
"Then if anyone at all is to have the privilege of lying, the rulers of the State should be the persons; and they, in their dealings either with enemies or with their [own] citizens, may be allowed to lie for the public good. But nobody else should meddle with anything of the kind." Plato, The Republic
We tell ourselves lies: E Pluribus Unum - out of many, one, or the "melting pot," Emma Lazarus's poem at the Statue of Liberty, whitewashing the kidnapping of Africans, the indentured servitude of poor whites and Native Americans, the disdain our immigration laws treated immigrants from the Chinese Exclusion Act, Catholics, Italians, Czecholovacians, Russians, to the recently attempted Muslim Ban.
One lie a sizable number of citizens are telling themselves: a demographic shift either isn't happening or can be mitigated by either denying electoral losses or keeping certain people from voting.
America Looks Different
The nation’s demographic changes add to the urgency of recognizing how precarious our position has become.
America is changing demographically, and unless Republicans can grow our appeal the way GOP governors have done, the changes tilt the playing field even more in the Democratic direction.
In 1980, exit polls tell us that the electorate was 88 percent white. In 2012, it was 72 percent white. Hispanics made up 7 percent of the electorate in 2000, 8 percent in 2004, 9 percent in 2008, and 10 percent in 2012. According to the Pew Hispanic Center, in 2050, whites will be 47 percent of the country, while Hispanics will grow to 29 percent and Asians to 9 percent.
If we want ethnic minority voters to support Republicans, we must engage them and show our sincerity.
Source: The Growth and Opportunity Project (the so-called autopsy), page 7, paragraph 2
A functional party would look at this and disseminate it. They might hire consultants to form focus groups. The message would be broadcast from radio stations, television, and the Internet: Republicans want to be a "big tent" party. We (republicans) want to expand to minorities, women, and youth. A function party acting on these practical, fact-based conclusions would look completely different than the fiasco we are currently witnessing. They have shown since this report to be racing in the opposite direction, heading over the proverbial lemming cliff. Maybe they tried, but most of their electorate wasn't receptive to "others" being under their red tent.
Rural Americans reliably votes republican and guaranteed the re-elections of Greg Abbott and Ron DeSantis, miniatures of Trump showing after higher infection rates and deaths from Covid, gun massacres, faux crusades against asylum seekers, undocumented immigrants - usually coming for construction jobs at American companies paying them cash under the table, and wars against Critical Race Theory (i.e., accurately taught American history), Nazi book bans, and assaulting the beach of Drag Queen story hour with AR15s - all it takes to win elections is the scare and make angry the right number of white people.
The New McCarthyism is based on Goebbels's "Big Lie," the current one given by a septuagenarian that could not accept another septuagenarian who beat him in the 2020 election. So narcissistic and pathological was the loser he fomented a coup in the 21st Century, 20 years after 9-11. Osama Bin Laden is gone, a casualty of Seal Team Six, but his chief aim of destabilizing the west of showing the "Great Satan" to be a paper tiger. To show that the ideals we espoused overseas couldn't even be maintained at home. The Civil Rights Movement, the killing of African Americans: all of this has been televised and broadcast. Osama and Vladimir Putin only pushed on an open sore and poured in salt. The culmination of Osama and Vladimir's wildest dreams was the election of a mop-headed, fake billionaire that has lost more money than he's ever earned. The book I believe he read from cover to cover and emulated in his rallies was "My New Order," a collection of speeches by Adolf Hitler. It is in its original form, 1,008 pages long. At one time, he had an attention span beyond that of a gnat. He seems to have committed it to memory. The only person who would know for sure, Ivana, is buried surreptitiously on his golf course in New Jersey.
Concealed carry devolved to open carry, in many states requiring no registration or training, studies showing the threats to African Americans getting shot elevated by such conditions. The goal of the New McCarthyism is the same as old-time American Klan-robed fascism: it frightens African Americans first, then the general public. Where does anyone feel safe now when schools, malls, and places of worship have become killing fields? The government dysfunction we’ve seen since the Speaker vote debacle and the threat not to raise the debt ceiling (25% of which was accrued during the previous administration) is by design. It is to “wear out” the electorate; it is the proverbial “pox on both houses,” and the convenient discovery of classified documents with former Vice Presidents Biden and Pence is both sides-ism on steroids and textbook gaslighting. It is to give us no reason to believe voting will change anything. It is voter suppression by gaslighting because the Growth and Opportunity Project would take too much work. and change. They are not a serious governing party: they are the comments section on Facebook reading "Green Eggs and Ham."
The Republic is a repudiation of the rights of kings to rule over a country, the lives of peasants, and hoard wealth for themselves. The new world kings/billionaires/oligarchs are trying to reestablish that through means of fear, violence, and terror.
Kevin McCarthy will cement his legacy as this nation's weakest (and likely, short-lived) Speaker of the House. He's given away his power and threatened the default of the full faith and credit of the United States. This would defund the Ukraine war on Ukraine's and Russia's sides. It would raise U.S. unemployment from record lows to third-world levels. It would pitch the world over that same lemming's cliff into the Greatest Depression, possibly the last. It would guarantee an electoral loss for the Grand Old Party that rejected the price of growth and opportunity: diversity, equity, and inclusion.