Saturday, December 10, 2005

Alternate Universe

Visiting the right side of the blogosphere is a rather surreal endeavor. If you have never been there, and I can understand why a sane person would decide not to, it is truly an alternate universe. One might even say it is a bit Orwellian. From the supposed war on xmas to the belief that the Iraq war is going well, the right side of the universe is more than a bit out of synch with reality.

First, let's look a bit more into this supposed war on xmas. Up until about two or three years ago, most conservative (and even many liberal) christians decried the over-commercialization of christmas. After all, what does running up your visa and mastercard or standing in line for an Xbox have to do with the christian savior? But now, the same people who lamented the crassness of the holiday are ready to take up arms against those retailers, and others, who dare to wish them a "happy holiday" rather than a "merry christmas."

It's hard to see what has changed, in substance, over the past few years. The only difference is that the right wing media empire has made hay of this supposed war on xmas. From Falafel Bill O to John Gibson, the outrage seems to seep out like blood from a stuck pig. But it would seem that Billy and Johnny have taken their cues from the overall Republican strategy to keep "conservatives" feeling as though they are under siege.

This has been a common theme for the past twenty or more years. One has to look no further than abortion to see how the GOP has used "moral" issues to divide the country. After all, the GOP has had ample power and opportunity to roll back the clock on Roe, yet they have done nothing more than pay lip service to ending abortion. Unfortunately, the people who continue to support the GOP seem to be too ignorant to realize they are being played for fools.

It is these same people who imagine that the liberal, humanists control the country. I cannot count how many times right wing bloggers and their commenters have made use of this strawman/ghost. Do these people not realize that the GOP controls all three branches of government and the vast majority of corporations in America? And, it is not a recent phenomenon, the GOP has controlled the federal government for the past five years (almost).

But what has the GOP done in those five years? Aside from their ridiculous adventure in Iraq (all at a time when Osama bin Forgotten) and their massive run up of debt, all the GOP has given the right wing is some good rhetorical love. Abortion is still legal. Gays are still out of the closet. Women can still vote. Etc.

Yet none of this matters to the mouth breathers on the right. Everywhere they look, they see a country plagued by liberals (can you say McCarthyism). They simply refuse to confront the stark reality that their beloved GOP and their anointed savior, GW Cokehead, have failed to give them any substantive change. If a person didn't know better and got all their information from Faux, Rush et al. they'd be left to believe that the US was run by a liberal cardre intent on destroying the traditional values of America.

It is amazing what nonsense people are willing to believe in order not to face reality.


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