Saturday, June 26, 2010

Home of the Slave

Okay, if they're not "conservatives," and you can't really shorthand their true hideousness in such historical terms that, no matter how apt or carefully considered, won't turn milquetoasts Americans off, how can we characterize American right-wingers?

How about this? They're authoritarians. They waste a lot of breath about how they want a small government, the government which governs (and provides) least, and yet they want a government that polices our private morality quite a bit, and a government that supports a vast and aggressive military/secret police system. They actually like (in fact, they grow sexually excited at the idea of) vast power concentrated in a few hands. They just don't want that power to be elected in the conventional sense. They much prefer the idea of power, even unaccountable power (Is the another kind?) in the hands of corporate executives.

It often seems to me that there is an underlying assumption, even among many Democrats, that the private sector, because people vote for its offerings with their pocketbooks, is somehow more of a meritocracy than the government or academia -- as if white collar workers were actually held accoutnable when their products suck, or people just fail to buy them. Indeed, somer MBAs suffer when their companies tank, but more often the hard working people who actually tried to make things work properly suffer first, or most, and the sociopathic credit hogs at the top cash in or move along to the next sinecure. I mean, who believes that Tony Hayward is going to fall on hard times now that he's poisoned the Gulf of Mexico.
In any case, any honest person who's ever worked for a big corporation will tell you, it's a bureaucracy like any other, rife with dead wood, corruption and inanity. Spasmodic efforts to hold people accountable there almost invariably weed out the nonconforming, not the nonperforming.
So, if the winger objects to being called an authoritrian ("I'm for small government!"), try corporate authoritarian. Only if CEOs have diplomatic immunity are markets really free.


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