Friday, August 07, 2009
File Under Cabaret, Final Scene
I've been in a bad mood all day. I'm tired and achey and slept poorly last night, but I fear that the real reason for my grump is that I read this must-must-must-read piece from Sara Robinson this morning, and it took all the dark, nagging thoughts I've had about the outbursts of right-wing mob thuggery at town hall meetings and pulled them all together into a cold hand of dread, which it then clamped firmly around my spine. From her conclusion:
It's so easy right now to look at the melee on the right and discount it as pure political theater of the most absurdly ridiculous kind. It's a freaking puppet show. These people can't be serious. Sure, they're angry -- but they're also a minority, out of power and reduced to throwing tantrums. Grown-ups need to worry about them about as much as you'd worry about a furious five-year-old threatening to hold her breath until she turned blue.You can't spell dread without read. Go.
Unfortunately, all the noise and bluster actually obscures the danger. These people are as serious as a lynch mob, and have already taken the first steps toward becoming one. And they're going to walk taller and louder and prouder now that their bumbling efforts at civil disobedience are being committed with the full sanction and support of the country's most powerful people, who are cynically using them in a last-ditch effort to save their own places of profit and prestige.
We've arrived. We are now parked on the exact spot where our best experts tell us full-blown fascism is born. Every day that the conservatives in Congress, the right-wing talking heads, and their noisy minions are allowed to hold up our ability to govern the country is another day we're slowly creeping across the final line beyond which, history tells us, no country has ever been able to return.
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