Thursday, June 17, 2010

Who are the real "crazies" in our political culture?

Glenn Greenwald
Salon.com -

One of the favorite self-affirming pastimes of establishment Democratic and Republican pundits is to mock anyone and everyone outside of the two-party mainstream as crazy, sick lunatics. That serves to bolster the two political parties as the sole arbiters of what is acceptable: anyone who meaningfully deviates from their orthodoxies are, by definition, fringe, crazy losers. Ron Paul is one of those most frequently smeared in that fashion, and even someone like Howard Dean, during those times when he stepped outside of mainstream orthodoxy, was similarly smeared as literally insane, and still is.

Last night, the crazy, hateful, fringe lunatic Ron Paul voted to repeal the Clinton-era Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy (or, more accurately, he voted to allow the Pentagon to repeal it if and when it chooses to) -- while 26 normal, sane, upstanding, mainstream House Democrats voted to retain that bigoted policy. Paul explained today that he changed his mind on DADT because gay constituents of his who were forced out of the military convinced him of the policy's wrongness -- how insane and evil he is!

In 2003, the crank lunatic-monster Ron Paul vehemently opposed the invasion of Iraq, while countless sane, normal, upstanding, good-hearted Democrats -- including the current Vice President, Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, Senate Majority Leader, House Majority Leader, the 2004 Democratic presidential nominee, and many of the progressive pundits who love to scorn Ron Paul as insane -- supported the monstrous attack on that country.

In 2008, the sicko Ron Paul opposed the legalization of Bush's warrantless eavesdropping program and the granting of retroactive immunity to lawbreaking telecoms, while the Democratic Congress -- led by the current U.S. President, his Chief of Staff, the Senate Majority Leader, the Speaker of the House, and the House Majority Leader -- overwhelmingly voted it into law. Paul, who apparently belongs in a mental hospital, vehemently condemned America's use of torture from the start, while many leading Democrats were silent (or even supportive), and mainstream, sane Progressive Newsweek and MSNBC pundit Jonathan Alter was explicitly calling for its use. Compare Paul's February, 2010 emphatic condemnation of America's denial of habeas corpus, lawless detentions and presidential assassinations of U.S. citizens to what the current U.S. Government is doing.

The crazed monster Ron Paul also opposes the war in Afghanistan, while the Democratic Congress continues to fund it and even to reject timetables for withdrawal. Paul is an outspoken opponent of the nation's insane, devastating and oppressive "drug war" -- that imprisons hundreds of thousands of Americans with a vastly disparate racial impact and continuously incinerates both billions of dollars and an array of basic liberties -- while virtually no Democrat dares speak against it. Paul crusades against limitless corporate control of government and extreme Federal Reserve secrecy, while the current administration works to preserve it. He was warning of the collapsing dollar and housing bubble at a time when our Nation's Bipartisan Cast of Geniuses were oblivious. In sum, behold the embodiment of clinical, certifiable insanity: anti-DADT, anti-Iraq-war, anti-illegal-domestic-surveillance, anti-drug-war, anti-secrecy, anti-corporatism, anti-telecom-immunity, anti-war-in-Afghanistan.

Read it all.