Tuesday, October 27, 2015

When Voters Become Abusive

No More Mr. Nice Guy!
Is it time to just "blow a gasket?"

Hey! Lighten up! After you die, we still have to live here. [image]

"Escaping the surly bonds of 
false tolerance and painfully "good" manners."
Finally! MeanMesa running "wild and free!"
When one has simply...had enough.

There is no shortage of folks in almost any crowd who would insist that "getting angry" is quite the negative approach. However, MeanMesa firmly holds the opinion that this nonsense has reached a crippling level on the Republic. Far too much utterly intolerable nonsense is floating about these days, and all the while that same nonsense is being "tolerated" as, variously, "good manners," "equanimity," or simply as etiquette amounting to some obscure form of conveniently Stoic cognitive dissonance. A precise listing of these modern "intolerable schemes, utterances and actions," when viewed in the cold light of day, is shocking. 

Quite predictably, this post focuses on, of course, the hilariously outlandish narrative of contemporary religion and politics.

In both of these areas the "day to day traffic" has become an embarrassment for Americans, in fact, for humans, in general! The constantly eager perpetrators of these "breathlessly urgent, modern style, burning questions of the day" are grotesque.

"But wait." 
We hear almost automatically. 
"Are you forgetting that there are always two sides to every case of such issues? Can it possibly be reasonable to simply deem those with such obnoxious ideas as 'grotesque' simply because one disagrees with them?"

Okay. Yeah. It's reasonable.

See, there are NOT two sides when one of those two sides amounts to absolutely nothing more than utterly irrational, GROTESQUE blather. At least, there are not "two sides" in the mannerly, logical sense of it's being "discourse within an informed electorate" as envisioned by the founders. When "one side" of what one might possibly consider "political discourse" amounts to nothing more than an irritating, craven, relentless flow of cheaply designed ideology, one finds himself in a conversation with something no more valuable than bulk propaganda produced as an industrial commodity, that is, in a conversation with the equivalent of a stale, fetid wind drifting in very slowly from the nearest feed lot.

It amounts to "conducting political discourse" with a worn out, sun bleached bill board stranded and rotting aside an abandoned two lane highway in the flattest possible spot in Oklahoma. This sort of discourse only has redeeming value if one is interested, say, in the political positions of tattered tumbleweeds making their way mindlessly on their endless journey in the summer wind. 

Clearly, there are voting Americans who are quite comfortable filling precisely the role of these "noble vagabonds" of the tumbleweed universe.

Good manners have, shall we say, "had their day." That "day" has ended.

If you are still interested in "just a little more" of this stuff, we can begin with you placing yourself in the front row of the "news"conference being held in the basement of the local Baptist church. Next, carefully imagine your facial expression as you listen to an overweight, dirty shirt preacher from deep within the Confederacy threaten "self immolation" if gays are allowed to marry. Getting the picture?

Now, How Dare They?
Neither "they" nor anyone else should dare.
Possibly, not even comedians.

Rather than tacitly accepting these "heart felt lamentations" as no more than the daily ramblings of some "twelfth tier," geriatric, high desert blogger, let's just imagine a few examples of fascinating comments which have been "media-validated" as the "second" side of a "two sided" thing. One might have had to continue listening beyond the next commercial for the craftily implied, justifying innuendo which was to serve as an explanation for exactly why "something or other" which had just been said was, in fact, the "second" side of a "two sided thing."

If precisely the same words as those just uttered by this "two sides of everything" guy were written in bold, san serif letters on a sheet of otherwise blank typing paper and handed to one of these "listening Americans" who, by this time, was quite resolutely nodding his head in agreement, he would have stopped in his tracks saying,

 "Oh no! I was believing this garbage??!!"

Thom Hartmann characterizes the modern Republican Party as one formed almost exclusively by two groups: billionaires and suckers. MeanMesa couldn't agree more strongly. It is as if the entire Party were comprised of a legion of Donald Trump clones, angry because their rental applications for a North Carolina trailer park had just been declined.

Self-Aggrandizement and Resentment as a Political Platform

S.E. Cupp: 
GOP Voters Are Mean, Irrational, Reactionary,
 and Very, Very Delicate
by GrafZeppelin127
AUG 28, 2015
[Visit the original article here: DailyKOS]

For years I've been asking my friends and acquaintances who vote Republican why they do so. Their answers, for the most part, once they get past the standard bumper-sticker slogans and finish congratulating themselves for not being whichever caricatures and strawmen they've been programmed to believe Democrats, liberals and "the Left" represent, always invoke some variation of the same basic theme: There's someone out there, real or imaginary, that they want to be mean to, and Democrats/liberals/"the Left" won't let them, but Republicans will. Democrats/liberals/"the Left" actually think we should be nice to Those People, who are undeservedly benefiting at our expense, and refuse to criticize, condemn or punish Those People for their transgressions, inadequacies and inferiority, while they fail to properly praise, honor and reward Us, the Real Americans, for being ... well, Us, the Real Americans. Voting Republican, supposedly, will fix all that. Republicans will punish Those People for their sins and give Us, the Real Americans, the honor We deserve.

As I've written many times before, it boils down to self-congratulation and resentment. I have yet to talk to a Republican voter about the basis for that political preference without hearing some variation of the above. There are people out there that they resent, who aren't being punished; they feel insufficiently honored (or unjustly criticized) for their own virtues; and they blame Democrats, liberals and "the Left" for all of that. Voting Republican is, for them, an act of aggression and retaliation.

Sometimes, these feelings are couched in a professed disdain for "political correctness" (or "PC culture") which, again, is solely attributed to and entirely the province and fault of Democrats, liberals and "the Left." There's no question that "political correctness" sometimes goes too far, sticking its proverbial nose in where it's really not needed. But generalized complaints about "political correctness" are just a variation on the same theme: We want to be mean, "the Left" won't let us, Republicans will.

Which, of course, brings us to the Donald Trump "phenomenon." Donald Trump has shot to the top of GOP primary polling by, inter alia, being really, really mean to a particular group of Those People, viz., "illegal" (read: non-white) immigrants. Yes, he's a blowhard; yes, it's probably an act; yes, he'll never be elected President, but that's not the point. He, or at least the character he plays in the campaign, is just plain flat-out mean to the people his fans, the GOP voting base, desperately want to be mean to, and in a way that the other GOP candidates aren't, won't be, and can't be. His supporters will say that he's "honest" and "refreshing" and that he's "not afraid to tell the truth" or "speak his mind" or whatever it is any political candidate's supporters tell themselves in order to justify their support. What they're really saying is, He's mean, he's making it OK to be mean, and we love it.

Cue conservative commentator S.E. Cupp, who has, unwittingly and without a hint of irony, penned a column at Townhall called -- wait for it -- "Blame Liberals for the Rise of Trump" that thoroughly vindicates my theory. 

Here's S.E. Cupp, describing the current front runner for the presidential nomination of the Party of Personal Responsibility:


Trump is the result of liberal political correctness run amok.


Thanks to unrelenting demands by the left for increasingly preposterous levels of political correctness over the past decade, people are simply fed up.


The new era of liberal political correctness ... has reached critical mass. If not for the loony sensitivities foisted upon us by the left, someone like Trump would be immediately dismissed as unprofessional and unserious, an incoherent blurter. Instead, he's the equally extreme response to extreme correctness[.]


[In] a world in which nearly everything could be considered a microaggression, a macroaggressor like Trump is inevitable. Thanks, political correctness.


Delusions aside, Cupp's basic thesis is that "political correctness," promulgated entirely and exclusively by Democrats, liberals and "the Left," has driven Us, the Real Americans, straight into the arms of an unprofessional, unserious, incoherent "macroaggressor" like Donald Trump. We, the Real Americans, are so sick of being told -- by Democrats, liberals and "the Left" -- that we can't be mean to Those People, and of their "demands" that we be thoughtful and sensitive instead, that we can't help but want the meanest, coarsest, least-thoughtful, least-sensitive candidate we can find to be the Leader of the Free World.

This is supposed to be a virtue? This is supposed to be an indictment of "politically correct" Democrats, liberals and "the Left," not of a cohort whose desire to be mean is so strong that the mere suggestion that they not be mean causes them to make wholly irrational choices about who their elected leaders should be?

Think about what she's saying: Conservatives wouldn't take Trump at all seriously, let alone vote for him, if they weren't being told that in some situations it's preferable to be thoughtful and sensitive than mean and coarse. Does that make any sense? Forget for the moment the fact that the only consequence of not being "politically correct" is that other people might say things about your "politically incorrect" behavior (i.e., "political correctness" does not actually prevent anyone from being mean, coarse, thoughtless or insensitive). Cupp is openly admitting not only that Republican voters are irrational and reactionary, but that it really doesn't take much to drive them to make wholly irrational political choices. How, in any sane universe, is this an indictment of "political correctness" and not of the GOP base?

You have to wonder also; is this something that's actually happening, that these people are experiencing first-hand? Who, exactly, is making these "demands" that Cupp is talking about, that "people" are supposedly "fed up" with? Are people really having these "demands" directed at them personally every day, by real people? Or is this just something they're hearing about on Fox News and talk radio? 

In the end, Cupp's commentary is just further confirmation of my theory that GOP voters, by and large, vote Republican because they want to be mean, regardless of who they want to be mean to or why, and they feel that Democrats won't let them be mean but Republicans will. Democrats just scold them for being mean, while Republicans will honor them for it.

Republican politicians and their media enablers haven't done much lately to dispel or undermine this idea. If anyone has heard (or can think of) a better reason to vote (or consider voting) Republican in 2016, please share. As it is I'm hard-pressed to understand the party's appeal beyond the desire to be mean and have that meanness validated by powerful people.

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