In which Ché Pasa revises and extends his remarks
Digby has a provoctative rant up at her place that Glenn Greenwald is riffing on at his place. I, being a terminal cynic at times, made gentle mock of Glenn's post describing the widely approved lawlessness of our current Bushevik rulers, comme ça:
Re: Decay, Rot, Decadence, Disintegration, Downfall, Putrefaction
Glenn offers up a pretty good description of the lawless autocracy of Czarist Russia -- without Faberge and Tchaikovsky.
And in this version of a declining Palace Culture the roles of Marx, Lenin and Trotsky will be played by Norman Podhoretz, Rudy Giuliani, and William Kristol.
-- Ché Pasa
Some readers mistook the intent of my coda "we're doomed." In blogspeak, "we're doomed" is generally a satiric comment, not something meant to be taken seriously.
Whether or not we ARE doomed is another question altogether. That question is not addressed by a blog comment stating, "We're doomed."
That said, there are some trenchant points being made by both Digby and Glenn regarding our plight (such as it is) and what can be done about it.
Digby quotes Richard Viguerie making the case for a Republican election loss in 2006:
Conservatives are, by nature, insurgents, and it’s hard to maintain an insurgency when your friends, or people you thought were your friends, are in power.
THEY are the Insurgents. Not us. And that's why they win.
I've been making that argument for years, mostly to deaf ears in Left Blogistan, where the "leftist" rebellions of previous eras are thought to be informing the current "rebellion" against Bushevism.
No, I argue, that's not what's happening. Not at all. There is no serious rebellion against Bushevism. There has never been one, and in some ways, there can't be. The Busheviks are the Rebels. Not us. And they are rebelling against the whole political and cultural superstructure of Progressivism, Liberalism, Secular Humanism, the Enlightenment Itself.
So while DeeCee is indeed like the rotting palaces of Tsarskoye Selo and Versailles and the culture within the Beltway is as thorogoing and decadent a Palace Culture as there has ever been, that culture is at bottom our own "Leftist", or "Progressive," or "Liberal" culture; and that is what the Marxes and Lenins and Trotskys of today (Podhoretz, Giuliani, Kristol, et al) are fighting to destroy.
They believe they haven't won yet. There are still liberals and progressives out and about, they continue to speak, to write, to draw attention to themselves. And the basic operating system of government in this country continues to be secular and progressive, despite the best efforts of these Rebels to overthrow that governing system and replace it with some Medieval or even pre-Medieval rule of Religiously Insane Autocrats and Oligarchs.
They are successful in part because they are radical and absolutely determined, whereas we are reasonable and determined to find a middle way, some sort of compromise, win-win. "Reason" doesn't work in this kind of situation, as Digby is at pains to point out in her post.
And yet, we can't become like them, can we? Reason is basically all we have left, and we can't let go of that, can we?
If we realize what the real roles are here -- after so many years of Republican rebellion and depredation, I'm not sure that realization will ever come -- that they are the insurgents and we represent the disintegrating status quo, we might figure out the "left" needs to approach the question of how to deal with Movement Conservatives from a far more original perspective.
But so long as we see ourselves as Teh Rebels and them as representing the Status Quo, we are not going to get anywhere.
No. The roles are reversed.