Category Archives: Interviews
Question: Are you an activist outside of the blog world? Or are the risks tied to being an activist and working in corporate America too great?
Ed Encho: Now I have actually served in the military and I will tell you that it has nothing on oppression and humiliation and the crushing of the human spirit that even comes close to corporate America. I have been burned very badly by the corporate world in the past and am very wary of it as well as and I hate to use this word respectful of the way that it can destroy lives of those who aren’t lining up at the Kool Aid trough behind whatever bullshit H.R. initiative happens to be the flavor of the week. One thing that I have learned during my time in Corporate America is the utter uselessness of anybody who practices the dark arts of Human Resources, a term that is about as dehumanizing as you could possibly imagine for a corporation’s internal intelligence department.
I totally hate the corporate system in all of it’s life sucking vileness so naturally since I do have a mortgage to pay I feel that it is a great risk to write about anything of substance under my real name other than pseudonyms, it is my guess that you will find a lot of this out there with the other people that you survey. The majority of my screeds even the ones that are not expressly critical of the looter capitalist gulag system contain something that could be used as an example of something that I could be hauled into an office and made to face disciplinary procedures for potentially offending anyone. I certainly don’t share my blog postings with coworkers out of a simple matter of survival, I understand that it is a predatory environment in which in order to survive (other than being a completely broken subservient blob of easily controlled protoplasm) that one has to understand the basic laws of the jungle and number one is to maintain a low profile.
The only sort of activism that would really matter in one of these protected by law monstrosities and the bullshit of being an “artificial person” would be to work to organize the employees into a union and that is never going to happen given the multi million dollar union busting cottage industry in modern anti-labor America. Corporations are very authoritarian institutions where free thinking is forbidden and nonconformity is what gets somebody labeled as “weird” and shunned by fellow employees and management. In most corporations, obedience is pretty much browbeaten into an employee from day one and in the larger ones there are reinforcing systems of propaganda that one is constantly subjected to. Obedience and conformity are not only not accepted but management cultivates networks of snitches and spies to ensure that any unity against the toxic corporate environment can be nipped in the bud immediately and any potential bad seeds can be purged from the organism itself.
Anyway, I have been in the belly of the beast for far too long now and if I chose to do so could write exclusively about the corporate gulag system and never be lacking for material. I have had some thoughts of going into a few different corporations under false pretenses like Barbara Ehrenreich did with her great “Nickle and Dimed” but given my current situation that really couldn’t happen unless I was cut loose in some sort of restructuring plot but if and when that happens I very well may do that and start a blog (or maybe a larger organization) about the general fucking over that workers get these days by these unaccountable behemoths. I suppose that I would be more into actual activism if not for the fear of losing my job and therefore my primary source of income. While the particular corporation that I work for is pretty out front that they don’t seek to influence political views I just can’t possibly think that they would dig some of the things that I have written over the years or be too understanding if my picture happens to appear in the local paper in connection with say anti-globalization protests, especially not when they are offshoring jobs by the thousands to keep their stock price up. For the time being it would probably be in my best interests to keep my activities confined to the blogosphere and to continue to do so under a pseudonym because no matter what the shills for the “ownership society” might say about the general health of the economy I read the foreign news and fully understand the instability of the entire financial system so why push my luck right?
I have in the past tried working with some of the local activist groups but there is such a lack of focus on any particular issue that it’s really to me just a waste of time. Take for example our antiwar group, well they end up getting hijacked to start appearing as counter protestors to offset the haters that some radical local church sends out to harass the crowds at our annual gay pride day parade. Now while I really do not feel that any sort of discrimination should be tolerated and brownshirts bearing false Christian messages of hate and persecution are despicable my point is that the antiwar group showing up at the gay pride parade distracts from what they really need to be doing and that is protesting the illegal wars of aggression. And really, you just have to acknowledge that gay rights isn’t exactly something that is widely accepted by large segments of the population who could otherwise be allies. These phony cultural sideshow issues are meant to divide and I feel that it is idiotic for any serious activist group to get sucked into these sort of things but that is what you find out there in the liberal/progressive community that is so different from the right – organization and cohesiveness.
Now if you want to read something that identifies this to some degree and that is extremely worthwhile I would recommend Scott Ritter’s “Waging Peace: The Art of War for the Antiwar Movement” that has some very good suggestions on what the activist community should really be doing rather than wandering right into the traps that have been set for them. I also would recommend “Rules For Radicals” by Saul Alinsky as well as this wonderful 1972 Playboy interview with Alinsky that I ran across because some of this stuff that he talks about is hilarious and classic, like the great O’Hare Airport “Shit In” which you will have to read the interview to get the gist of it. Saul Alinsky is a great role model for activists and it is a shame that he is not given more credit in regards to our history but that is the point isn’t it? Just do the revisionist thing to erase the contributions of the entire labor and progressive movements that laid it all on the line so that the ignorant sheep milling about their cubicle stockyards can enjoy their 40 hour work weeks. I don’t have the exact date but Amy Goodman just recently aired an interview with the legendary Studs Terkel where he told a story of how he berated two yuppies for their ignorance on those who fought to ensure that they could be smug and not made to work 80-100 hours a week, it was beautiful. I am sure that the transcript is on the Democracy Now website. Americans are so damned ignorant of history, that is the great shame of our times.
Question: How do you see yourself fitting into the PB movement/netroots? What role do you play?
Ed Encho: What I really would like to start to do would be to work at trying to not only write more pieces that have crossover appeal but to actively work to the best of my ability to bridge the gap between progressives/liberals and libertarians, independents and principled conservatives who are all getting screwed by the same system but have yet to realize that we are really all on the same side. In the beginning of my internet experience I really went after Bush and the Republicans tooth, fang and nail which was justified considering the damage that they were doing to this country with their flag wrapped, cross carrying brand of fascism. Now that is ok but sooner or later you really limit yourself to preaching to the choir and not really changing any minds or bringing in new people to a larger movement. Now with the betrayal of the Democrats after November 2006 I have been bringing a good deal of heat down on them that don’t seem to be quite so funny to some of the people who used to love attacking the right but now there is quite obviously a double standard. Actually I think that anybody who is doing this now and there a lot of people out there who really understand the true foulness of the entire system is much more honest than those who still cling to the traditional paradigm which really exists only to divide us all along lines other than class which is the true issue here especially now that the damage to the mythical American Dream is being realized due to massive exportation of jobs, an economy based only on debt, soulless consumerism and the need to have all of those things on television that never quite fill the emptiness in the souls of consumers (god I hate that word it is so fucking inhuman) whose money is needed to be sucked out to ensure that the system has grist for the mill.
I do want to add that television is in my opinion the worst possible thing for the American mind as well as the best possible tool for the system in that it creates passivity, false sense of reality, the sort of insecurity and lack of self esteem that is essential for the consumer society and the application of control. I am not going to go into this here because I am telling you, some of the research that I have seen into television and mind control (aka advertising) just blows me away, the effects on the mind by the electronic crackpipe right down to the proper flicker patterns that would make a viewer more susceptible to persuasion is analyzed by some very brilliant people who make a hell of lot of money and it is very frightening. Maybe I’ll try to get involved in spreading awareness on that at some point but there really are so many aspects of this society that really need to be exposed for what they are.
I think that as far as PB activism goes the best thing for me to do is to try to teach and create awareness that is able to reach a much wider audience than just progressives. I do see a sort of an unwillingness in a lot of places to take a look at any aspect of say the libertarian point of view because to many of the politically correct liberals and progressives anything short of acceptance of certain ideas at least to the point where a common ground can be found is treated as heresy and elicits very nasty responses. For example I wrote some favorable things about Ron Paul while I personally disagree with much of what he stands for and the intensity of the responses in the form of pure vitriol was pretty amazing, and this was from people who pride themselves on being open minded and like to brag about it. I now realize that whether someone identifies themselves as a liberal or a die hard conservative there are certain areas that are just treated as though those who have a particular belief as the earthly personification of Satan.
Now I haven’t always been like this but have gradually evolved to the point where I just don’t unequivocally hate anymore but that is because I read and listen to views from both the traditional left, right and center, of course I eliminate the obvious party shills like the Rush Limbaugh’s and Randi Rhodes’s of the world along with others like them because they are just like cheerleaders for their team and everyone else can go fuck themselves as far as they are concerned. I make it a habit to read many magazines in addition to the mainstream propaganda rags like Newsweek and Time that are really only parroting and spinning the talking points of the establishment. I also read on a regular bais Harpers, Mother Jones, The Nation, Pat Buchanan’s The American Conservative among others and even on occasion The New American which is the official magazine of the fucking John Birch Society for Christ’s sake so you can’t possibly tell me that I am not open to a diverse range of ideas. That being said I do have to say one thing for the JBS in that they have pretty much been much more outspoken and defensive over the erosion of our civil liberties and the lousy trade pacts that have beggared this country than the Democrats have over the course of the last few years. I read all of this and I listen to probably 6-8 hours a day of talk radio including lectures from the far left to the far right and to clue everybody in on a little secret there is a hell of a lot of truth out there on the fringes for both sides because it is where those who dare to call it like it is are marginalized. I just take all of this stuff and kind of synthesize it and then mix it into whatever I happen to feel like writing about which really varies from day to day and is wholly based on how I happen to feel at the time.
So to sum it up I see myself in the future acting more as a bit of a critic of the system itself as well as the wars, the worsening financial situation and the true atrocities in how this society very cleverly uses the American brand name to dupe people into doing things that are against their own self interests and result in a lot of death, sorrow and human misery both here in The Homeland (there is that word again) and abroad in the lands that we spread our murderous form of disaster capitalism and plundering.
Question: You stated “I have in the past tried working with some of the local activist groups but there is such a lack of focus on any particular issue that it’s really to me just a waste of time. Take for example our antiwar group, well they end up getting hijacked to start appearing as counter protestors to offset the haters that some radical local church sends out to harass the crowds at our annual gay pride day parade. Now while I really do not feel that any sort of discrimination should be tolerated and brownshirts bearing false Christian messages of hate and persecution are despicable my point is that the antiwar group showing up at the gay pride parade distracts from what they really need to be doing and that is protesting the illegal wars of aggression. And really, you just have to acknowledge that gay rights isn’t exactly something that is widely accepted by large segments of the population who could otherwise be allies. These phony cultural sideshow issues are meant to divide and I feel that it is idiotic for any serious activist group to get sucked into these sort of things but that is what you find out there in the liberal/progressive community that is so different from the right – organization and cohesiveness.”
Do you feel that the PB has this focus? Or is it just broad enough that it can spread itself out to many of these issues?
Ed Encho: It is big and can address many issues simultaneously but it is not to this point yet organized enough to hone in on the one or two major issues of great importance, dare I say existential importance with a laser like precision and bring enough heat on a consistent basis to push for change. The thing with liberals and progressives is that by nature they are really more open and free thinking so of course they largely all have their own issues which while important are really meaningless unless the creeping fascism can be stopped. If we are unable to restore the civil liberties that have been stolen away from us during the Bush years then nothing else really matters. The organization and focus of the right (at least in areas not in the blogosphere) is what is going to be needed to undo the damage that has already been done let alone stop the slide into the abyss.
Right now you can legally be disappeared and held in a secret prison indefinitely without anybody even knowing what happened to you, you have no right of habeas corpus, you can be tortured and then you can be labeled as a ‘terrorist’ under some vague definition that is deliberately that way in order for a wide net to be cast for dissidents and critics of the state. Now you also have this incredibly anti-American piece of legislation that was initiated by Rep. Jane Harman who is somebody who has shall I say questionable priorities and associations called H.R. 1955: Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007 passed overwhelmingly last year which really makes every one who dissents potential terrorists subject to those wonderful things that were legitimized at Gitmo. The Senate version (S.1955) is in front of none other than Joe Lieberman’s committee so what do you think is going to happen there? This legislation also sets up a committee to determine what sort of literature would be considered to be ‘terrorist propaganda’. This is very scary stuff and it really proves that the entire phony war on terror is total bullshit, it is a war against the American people. At the same time you have Michael Chertoff out there saying that regular household chemicals can be used by potential ‘terrorists’ to produce IED’s.
What do you have under your sink? What is in your bookcase?
So what I am trying to get at is that there are far bigger fish to fry than electoral politics, divisive social issues and the myriad of minutiae that passes for discourse. We are in very serious trouble right now because this entire infrastructure for a police state is being slowly erected right in front of use bit by bit, it’s like the saying that “if you throw a frog in a pot of boiling water the frog will immediately jump out but if you put that same frog in a pot of warm water and very incrementally increase the temperature the frog will sit there until it cooks to death” that frog is us. The damage to this country undertaken by this rogue administration, it’s neocon policy makers and the with the totally feckless acquiescence of the Democratic party is nothing short of stunning. Every day you will see more and more police brutality over minor infractions, it’s like the role model for law enforcement is Jack Bauer. You also have this huge paramilitary force of mercenaries for hire called Blackwater that is unaccountable to anybody and has already been used on our domestic streets in New Orleans. You also have the recent tweaks to Continuity of Government consolidating all power in the executive office in the event that a declaration of martial law becomes necessary, the legalization of spying, the essential voiding of the Posse Comitatus (that prohibits the use of the military against civilians that has been in effect since right after the Civil War) in last year’s National Defense Authorization Act, the construction of detention facilities by Halliburton subsidiary KBR for undefined “special programs” and any other number of very serious steps to construct a fascist system of control. Naomi Wolf wrote a good piece on this Fascist America In 10 Easy Steps that I would recommend.
So no, I don’t feel that the PB has much focus on things that are imperative for our very survival as a free society and I am not even getting into the wars and the economy in my response to this question. The only way that this all can be stopped if it can be or at least slowed down is to draw in libertarians, paleocons and other concerned Americans into a unified movement. All of the rest of it just isn’t going to matter unless the police state infrastructure can be dismantled (at best) or brought under some very tough laws that once again restore our Constitutional protections.
To Be Continued…
I don’t have a good feeling on what is yet to come which is why I am blogging, it is a way to not only keep my sanity but to in my own little way rage against the machine. I am also a military veteran who finds both the ubiquitous and alarming worship of the military that is now present in our society very troubling and I am utterly nauseated at the cynical “support the troops” bullshit that is being practiced by both political parties in order to prolong the military industrial monster that has made death our number one export.
As for the blogging thing it really came about as an outlet for my anger, frustration and a general sense of powerlessness over the creeping fascism that was all being implemented by the extreme right wing Republican party using 9/11 as justification much like a cult like leader used the Reichstag fire in that certain European country back in the 20th century. Those were very scary times because the right had pretty much achieved full spectrum dominance in regards to the media, they were having organized rallies to destroy Dixie Chicks cds aat the time for God’s sake.
In the beginning right after 9/11 I was pretty much like most others in that I had bought into all of that bullshit hook, line and sinker. Slowly though I began to realize that something was terribly wrong, my sister turned me on to NPR which in our local area has Amy Goodman’s Democracy Now and some other great programs on it and it was at that point that my education into just how much of the real news was being turned into nothing more than propaganda to further the interests of a power mad extremist element that had manifested itself in the Republican party.
Those were very scary days, down here in Florida there were suddenly billboards everywhere with the face of George W. Bush emblazoned upon them, every SUV had one of those silly assed yellow ribbon “support the troops” magnets on it, any dissenting views were labeled as treasonous and it was very horrifying to someone like me who had only recently become aware that something was amiss. All the flying flags, the shrieking nationalism, the cheerleading for war were all like Weimar era Germany and I am far from the only one who has made that comparison, I recommend a great book that I picked up during the early period of my reeducation entitled Homeland by Dale Maharidge that goes into a lot of what was going on at the time. Now keep in mind that criticism of any of this was really a big taboo and it took Hurricane Katrina to finally pull back the curtain on the myth of George W. Bush as the great warrior in the flight suit with the big codpiece to the mentally troubled, petulant, incompetent naked emperor that he truly always had been.
The one thing that really pushed me over the edge though was that hideous period when the Republicans were using poor brain dead Terri Schiavo as a political football and everybody from the Christian fascists on the Religious right to the Catholic church to Tom DeLay, Karl Rove and George W. Bush were running amok to essentially rape this poor shell of a woman for their own vile political ends.
I had this little mini cassette tape recorder that I had purchased several years back and I just took it with me every morning to work and ranted into it on the way to and from my place of employment. I had like a 45 minute commute each and since I have satellite radio (I was going insane listening to the Clear Channel crap) I would put on CSPAN’s Washington Journal and you know kind of make my comments into that little tape recorder. It was my intention to do something of an experiment and then try to do some transcripts on it all after a month or so and kind of build upon them and get some stuff down in actual writing. Well after a month of the circus with Schiavo (which incidentally was going on not very far from where I live) and all of it I actually sat down with these like 25 or 30 hours of taped commentary and my raging at anything that came to my mind on the way to work. There was some pretty wild stuff on those tapes as you might imagine.
When I tried to transcribe that first tape I wound up with something like 20,000 words and I was off to the races – I had the basis for most of my first several months off of that tape alone and I have never even gotten to the rest of them. It was total insanity man because I had never done anything like that other than posting stuff on sports websites largely inspired by sardonic humor along the lines of the Jim Rome Show or now the great sports blog that takes no prisoners, Deadspin. So I started writing the political stuff and I started educating myself. I have read hundreds of books over the last five years that I never would have been inclined to read before and I have a pretty good idea of just how much that we as a society have been lied to about nearly everything. I think that really the transformation of the mainstream media into nothing more than a propaganda arm of the government, big business and the military industrial (and now surveillance) complex in many ways has backfired in that millions of people have now truly begun to educate themselves and if there is ever going to be a course correction for this country back into something resembling a free country it will be those people who will be instrumental in bringing it about.
As for the actual blogging somebody that I had met online in a discussion encouraged me to do it although I was a bit shy and lacked self confidence but I started Station Charon in the summer of 2005. I started slowly and over a period of time I gradually built up the confidence to post on other larger blogs and websites. I had a brief fling with the Daily Kos which ended badly because while it was one of the first new weapons in the info war it soon was seduced by a Democratic party that is if not as outwardly fascist as their Republican counterparts it is certainly corrupt and complicit in America’s fall from grace and my blogging has now become more critical of the system itself rather than any political party as you can see if you take a look.
I had a regular gig over on Taylor Marsh’s blog which is very popular with establishment Democrats and she was a great help in assisting me with developing my writing and confidence but after the betrayal of the Democratic majority in 2006 in ending the wars and holding the criminals in the Bush administration accountable it just didn’t feel right to be putting my voice behind a party that had failed so miserably and continues to do so for political purposes so I stopped posting there although I will always be grateful for the forum that she gave me, it’s just a matter of conscience to me to play political games when we need to stop fascism first and foremost or nothing else is going to matter. I pretty much confine myself to my own blog and My Left Wing which is a great place for all those who truly value free speech and a free exchange of ideas and at Rob Kall’s Op Ed News.
I feel that bloggers are really the pamphleteers and essayists of the modern era and were it not for the blogosphere we as a society would be in far worse trouble than we already are. The exiting thing though is the future and the coming realignment that transcends the traditional right/left paradigm and the two party sham democracy. There is going to be a peeling away of the antiwar base from the Democratic party and a merging of sorts with antiwar libertarians and paleoconservatives into a pro Constitution, non interventionist coalition that will shake the system to its very foundations. I honestly believe that and whoever is out there right now trying to push this is on the cutting edge.
1) Do you see the PB as a social movement into itself? or is it just a publicity arm for a social movement?
The internet model of organizing, activism and information gathering is already very successful though and you can see it in the large amount of individual donors that Barack Obama is receiving that has him in the heretofore unthinkable position of halting the Hillary Clinton express. This is a truly amazing thing because Obama is much better at using the blogosphere and internet than either the Clinton machine or the Republicans. The Ron Paul movement is also a great example of the raw power of the blogosphere and if it can stay together after Paul has been formally run out of the race there will be an immense and historical opportunity to siphon some of the ideas and energy. This is where progressives should really be looking because after the Vichy Democrats betraying the antiwar movement there is much common ground there that could create a synergy that could be the establishment’s worst nightmare if egos and differences can be set aside.
Regarding my comments on Daily Kos I can speak from personal experience that it is not exactly a forum where free speech is welcomed although it is often seized on by the lazy and unimaginative in the mainstream media as some sort of liberal cyber Mecca. It is however the most well known blog and has gotten to the point where prospective Democratic candidates feel that they must line up to kiss the ring of Markos-Moulitsas Zuniga but truthfully it is all a lot of hype. Sure Daily Kos is the biggest and most mentioned of the so-called progressive blogs but McDonalds is the largest restaurant chain in America it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is good for you to eat there.
First and foremost you have to realize that Daily Kos is about Kos himself and his ability to ingratiate himself with the establishment. Note that he has been frequently quoted in Howard Kurtz’s Media Notes column in the Washington Post and Kurtz is a notorious lackey for the status quo. He was instrumental in the destruction of Gary Webb who was the guy that wrote those stories for the San Jose Mercury News on the Dark Alliance and the Contra/CIA links to the explosion of crack cocaine into the Los Angeles area back in the 1990’s and any serious activist or progressive would know this and consort with the likes of Kurtz. You can do the research on the whole sordid tale of Gary Webb who ultimately ended up killing himself after his life was destroyed for what was a very accurate and hugely embarrassing story on how the intelligence apparatus in this country links up with the most reprehensible of types in carrying out their covert operations. That alone shows that Kos is not very principled and his work with Kurtz is far from the only thing that makes him a problematic figure in the progressive blogosphere. What it all comes down to is that you cannot really be an agent of real change if you are eager to be welcomed into the establishment and Mr. Markos Moulitsas-Zuniga has obviously found that crashing the gates is really not necessary to gain access to the master’s castle, it is just far easier in the end to have them install a doggy door. Kos doesn’t run an honest game and that is why you find so many bloggers who are critical of both him and his megablog.
When you do some research you will find a lot of negativity out there regarding Daily Kos which I feel is mainly attributable to the admins and hive mentality of the assorted sycophants who have been given free reign to police the forums, hide comments and to engage in some of the most vicious flaming that I have ever seen outside of the right-wing. It is really very juvenile and sophomoric and just plain mean spirited, total swarming, smearing, hiding of comments, troll ratings etc. I have personally been banned twice under completely different names and no longer bother even visiting, why drive up the hit count? Very important issues are totally taboo over there especially anything that questions the official story of 9/11, attempts to address the evidence that there was massive voter fraud in 2000 and 2004 that allowed the Republicans and George W. Bush to steal both elections and any sort of criticism of the actions of Israel that may tend to portray the Palestinians in a sympathetic light at the expense of millions of dollars spent by the Israel Lobby for public relations and perception management here in America.
But I digress….
I noticed the other day that Larry Johnson the outspoken former intelligence agent who is given a lot of play in the alternative media largely for the Valerie Plame outing ran afoul of the front pagers over at DK who labeled him a racist over some comments that he had made in a diary. Johnson of course has some clout and cred and didn’t take kindly to being treated like just another cyber schmuck by the smarmy little pricks at DK:
Okay Mr. Kos. Here’s a word for you: GO FUCK YOURSELF. (Actually, that’s three words. My bad.)
This wannabee poseur and his gang of Animal Farm pig imitators have lost touch with reality.
Well Markos and crowd. Orwell was right. Fuck you people. I won’t post and I won’t read. But most of all, I won’t apologize. I have nothing to apologize for other than making the false assumption that you clowns gave a shit about freedom of expression or liberty. You guys are John Bolton and Dick Cheney in drag. You are welcome to kiss my ass.
I found that rather amusing given my experiences there, the link to it all is on Brad Blog which is a site that I happen to like that is more interested in breaking news, focusing on election fraud and investigating mischief than in assimilating into the establishment.
Another internet based activist organization MoveOn was great when it came to organizing a counterforce to the right-wing think tank infrastructure but has since also become less of a change oriented organization outside of playing electoral politics. Now I belong to MoveOn and I just feel that in becoming less oriented on building local groups, real issues and the like has really damaged them and they are painted by the right-wing slime machine as though they are the second coming of Karl Marx when they really aren’t left at all but center left. The real left in this country was pretty much eradicated during the McCarthy years and the subsequent war on labor unions that really kicked into high gear with the Reagan administration after he fired the air traffic controllers. But not to wander too far from MoveOn I recently found out that they are part of this faux antiwar coalition that really exists for political reasons rather in stopping the flow of dead and mangled bodies that we import from Iraq cynically called Americans Against Escalation in Iraq that I first heard about through a Matt Taibbi piece in the latest Rolling Stone called The Chicken Doves and then in a response to a post I did last week from John Bruhns who actually worked with the group and wrote an op ed piece in the Philadelphia Daily News canned The anti-war phonies. Now to me this is morally repugnant that the Democrats play the same type of politics with this lousy war and it shows just how badly that the antiwar movement needs to break free from the politics as usual system altogether.
We also see just how much that antiwar messages from MoveOn really mean after the Vichy Congress shanked them in the back over the “General Betrayus” ad campaign by basically calling them out as traitors on the Senate floor back when “the surge” product rollout was in full swing. The surge has always been total bullshit and is nothing more than slick marketing but the Dems of the Pelosi,Reid,Hoyer triad allowed this to even come to a vote is unconscionable. This really shows that the blogosphere is really resented by the war party (Justin Raimondo’s term for the entire ruling political establishment) and while they are all too eager to harvest the votes are only going to do the usual and stab them in the back when it comes down to it.
And when you really think about the Democrats as an antiwar party, what sort of horseshit is that? Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Lyndon B. Johnson had the four bloodiest wars of the 20th century during their terms in office so it is really the system itself that needs to be changed and just changing management of the Washington whorehouse isn’t going to cut it. As Randolph Bourne once wrote “war is the health of the state” and if we are unable to control the war making powers of what is now rapidly becoming a police state by taking all of that money spent on munitions and spending it here at home were we really need it then we have a very, very bleak future. The necessary change is only going to come about by working to inform and work on changing perceptions of more people who are outside the party and who then can work to bring the rogue politicians to heel because they aren’t going to change just by being put into office, there has to be an external threat to their ability to exploit the system and stay there indefinitely.
Ed Encho: Probably this was put best by Maryscott O’Connor of My Left Wing (where I am a regular contributor and a front pager) in a long article from Mother Jones magazine entitled Meet The New Bosses in which she talked about the “schism” in the blogosphere and that:
“I think that certain bloggers, the big ones, think politics is sexy,” she said. “They want in, and they’re getting in. They’ll do anything to get in, almost. They want a seat at the table. They want to be in the inner circle of the Democratic Party.”
Maryscott who is very talented and passionate and who respects free speech has also run afoul of Cyber Stalin and has been banned unceremoniously from Daily Kos for her outspoken posts and refusal to just fall in line with the other lemmings.
In my opinion the PB is much more impressive as a sum of its parts rather than as a whole and to a large degree has been subverted for political purposes rather than a force for real social and economic change. Take Daily Kos for example, at one time it was a legitimate counterforce against the right wing machine but has now been turned into a website that is all about electoral politics and landing the consulting gigs for the best shills in an upcoming Democratic administration and that is not where the change is going to come from. It is going to be the netroots working with on the ground grassroots forces that have no party loyalty but are loyal to American ideals and fresh ideas on how to once again become the proverbial shining city on the hill. Look at history with any large group that has been successful, it is infiltrated, key individuals are seduced with promises of more influence and perhaps positions as shills or consultants or in the worst case if they don’t play ball are destroyed from with, this is activism 101.
You need to look no farther than COINTELPRO to see the usefulness of this sort of thing to those who have power and influence and want to retain it. There has been in my opinion a good deal of this going on in the last few years with mainstream media forums, cocktail parties, television appearances etc but when you really think about the real results all that Daily Kos has done is make that duplicitous little rat Joe Lieberman far more powerful after the much touted support of tomato can Ned Lamont in 2006 went up like a flaming bag of dogshit when Lieberman ran as an independent and cleaned Ned’s clock. Another potential fiasco was the great idea to have Democrats vote for Mitt Romney in Michigan instead of throwing support behind someone like Dennis Kucinich or even John Edwards, this is not going to look very good if it plays any part in overturning the will of the voters and helping to throw the nomination to Clinton.
I feel that at one time there was a lot more unity especially in the earlier days but the territorial squabbles and pissing contests that are especially evident now with the split between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama that has become so acrimonious regarding the Clinton diehards is causing more fragmentation into opposing camps. This is something that is going to have to just work itself out and it mirrors what is going on in society itself and the battle between the establishment and more progressive elements.
The wild card though is the Ron Paul movement because I have had some contact with these people and they are very energized, this would seem to be an unprecedented chance to unify in a broad based social movement that transcends the traditional left-right paradigm and with a rallying cause of restoring the Constitution after it was shredded by the Bush administration, ending the wars and holding the corporate and Wall Street looters accountable could unite millions in an organized movement with serious clout in that it is not a part of either of our dueling national political cults of the elephant and the jackass.
Now my disdain for electoral politics is obvious, the system as it currently exists has rotted and been corrupted to the point where nothing less than a total flushing of the toilet is going to be sufficient. This is a bipartisan thing because the money spigots from lobbyists, big pharma, defense contractors and now all those seeking to grab a ride on the global warming cash cow are the ones who really control this country. We sadly are a democracy in name only, we are really an oligarchy and an empire and one that if you pay attention to the real financial news is going broke very quickly.
It is really my hope that cooler heads in the progressive and antiwar movements can merge into a true social movement in the very near future and abandon electoral politics altogether. From many polls nearly three quarters of Americans are against this fucking war and no matter how much lipstick is slathered on the pig in the way of spin that ‘things are getting better’ removes it from the public consciousness the sad fact is that Iraq is still a charnel house and the empire is going bankrupt. Ending the illegal wars should be the top priority of all activists, bloggers and other Americans concerned about our future and the future of the coming generations because it must be stopped and the keys to the war machine need to be taken away from the two-party sham democracy and their pocket media kingmakers.