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Monday, April 5, 2010

Blogging for Cathy

Blogging for Cathy ... Or, It Ain't Over 'Til It's Over

Over at April's (the Hyacinth Girl) blog, Cathy made a comment which I wish to share with Gentle Reader --

Now, and of course, April has far more readers (and commenters) then I -- for I have only you, my Gentle Reader -- but comments may easily be lost in all that bustle. Here, in the undisturbed peace and quiet of my tranquil (i.e. dusty) little corner of the blogosphere, one may more easily reflect at leisure.

First, for context, we need April's post:
While it would be superawesome if this guy were right, (the guy Steyn quotes, not Steyn), I’m not holding my breath. Perhaps I’m too cynical, but with our near-permanent welfare class and a generation of kids who’ve been told that they are children into their late 20’s, I cannot imagine a prolonged revolt against Obamacare. As I’ve said before, ultimately. free candy wins. Of course, there will still be the core of the Tea Party, but when the outrage wanes, a lot of people are going to tell themselves that, well, if the government is giving things away, they might as well get in on it.

I mean, why fight it? If it’s going to happen anyway, might as well benefit from it. Culturally, we readily accept the idea that we must follow the whims of our “betters”-how else do you explain the thousands of “Rachels” roaming the country throughout the ’90’s? How else do you explain the persistence of Hollywood to dictate public policy and influence presidential elections? Barack Obama is our first cool president, put into office by the endorsements of our self-appointed betters. Celebrities are our new royalty, and sadly for this nation, the opinion of Jennifer Aniston is a lot more important than cold, hard facts.

We are a lazy, spoiled, ADHD culture-soft and uninterested in thinking for ourselves. At least my generation is. I’ve met women my age who are almost proud of “knowing nothing about politics.” A mom told me once, “Can you just write up a list of people we should vote for?” Her playdates, soccer games, and story times at the bookstore were much more important. Obviously.

Sooner or later, the outrage runs out. The relentless media rebranding of the “Teabaggers” as angry, racist, uneducated, violent militants becomes mainstream knowledge and a pushback against the gaping maw of massive government and taxpayer debt becomes the last gasp of the marginalized, unnecessary white male. (Which is, paradoxically, sometimes led by an attractive, young, strong and well-spoken woman. But it’s best not to think about that for too long.)

As a society, we’ve accepted the idea that the famous are better than the normals. certain educational levels render one more or less credible to form a coherent thought, where one’s diploma is from further underscores the previous point, the wealthy are inherently smarter than the poor, and that journalists have our best interest at heart, and since they’ve got degrees, we should really listen to them.

So I’m not buying the idea that Obama is effing up in phenomenal fashion and taking the Democrat party with him. If a coordinated attack on the American mainland and the deaths of over 3,000 civilians doesn’t rouse (and maintain the interest of) a sleeping giant, what makes you think that the (relatively) instant gratification of unsustainable, expensive entitlements will?
First, a side comment about the "teabagger" smear of which the "liberals" are so fond: like most normal persons, I'd never heard of "teabagging" before Anderson Cooper decided to make the smear. Nevertheless, I'm fairly confident that I understand what "teabagging" -- as a social phenonenon -- is about: it's a display of dominance and submission.

SO: if the leftists see *us* as the "teabaggers," that must mean that they see themselves as the "teabagees." They call us "teabaggers" because they're afraid of us. They call us "teabaggers" because they *know* we can win this battle for the soul of America.

And now, without further adieu, Cathy's comment:
OK, so here’s what I’m thinking.

April is half-right (wait!), and so are we ALL when we say things about “the American People”, “the voters”, “our society” ETC.

As dissatisfied as we may be with the current administration, we just discourage ourselves when we say “This is what we did to ourselves,” when actually, it was only a little over half of the electoral college that did it to all of us.

When we say “the people want” we are generalizing inaccurately, just as the majority of the media, with their “mainstream knowledge”-inducing relentless repetition of spin, “suggestion”, un-checked-gossip-as-news, and occasional blatant B.S. (corrected on page 17), intend.

It may be “half true” that Americans are” soft and uninterested in thinking for ourselves.” But if we convince ourselves that this is true for everyone, instead of the maybe-half of the society around us, we forfeit the battle, unfought, to those who want to see ALL of us “infantilized” - dependent on, and uncritical of, an increasingly socialized system.

It’s not as though all the other people who voted for Not Obama left the country. Admittedly, there may be a variety of reasons “Tea Partyers” gather to protest legislation and denounce politicians. As Ilion points out in a comment at his blog:

If the people showing up are simply protesting the hit to their own pocketbook, the nation is doomed; if the people showing up are [] protesting on *principle* we may ride out the Obamanation storm.

But the fact that they DO gather, means that they share common ground; they DO think, they DO care, and they are NOT NECESSARILY going to give up and decide “If you can’t beat ‘em…”.

And the fact that those who do attend the meetings, and rallies, and “town halls”, statistically represent many others who feel as they do, means that a reversal in the leftward trend in this country’s institutions is still possible.

But no matter how long the outrage holds out, the battle cannot be won on outrage alone.

The hard part will be recognizing that an election in seven moths, or in two-and-a-half years, might not be all it takes to put things right. The hard part will be creating a slow, steady program of reasonable, rational persuasion, by conservative voices who have not undermined their credibility with hyperbole and histrionics, and by conservative politicians who have not already demonstrated the fragility of their convictions. The hard part will be finding leaders who can draw together Americans worried about the Constitution and Americans worried about their pocketbooks; American concerned about the availability of medical coverage for their children, and Americans concerned about the tax burdens their children will bear.

The GOOD part is, the job for those leaders is already half done.
Remember this, always: just because many American should-be citizens have already sold their minds (and liberty) for the chimera of statist promises of "security," does not mean that all have. Just because many should-be citizens wish to sell your and my liberty for those worthless and empty promises, does not mean that all do.

There are still Americans!

And the Fat Lady doesn't even want to sing.

(Michael W. Smith: 'There She Stands')


cathy said...

Ilion! I am so honored -- and surprised!

And I had never seen that beautiful Michael W. Smith video -- I am so humbled.

Thank you.

Ilíon said...

Well, hey, if Daniel Dennett and Richard Dawkins can approvingly quote one another approvingly quoting each other, why can't I approvingly quote you quoting me?

I've never seen that video either; mostly I linked to it for the song.

cathy said...

I think I'd heard the song before, but never listened to it.

Ilíon said...

And that does make all the difference in the world, doesn't it?

Ilíon said...

Here is a "live" recording of MWS performing the song

Ilíon said...

Boy! Now that Rush Limbaugh has mentioned April's blog, I suppose it will really get busy over there, at least for a while.

cathy said...

It will be interesting to see who decides to stick around. (I'm definitely adding a catch-phrase.)

Did you hear Rush today? I found a delayed broadcast, so I got to hear him read the post, but I had to leave before he came back from the break to take calls from listeners about it.

Gotta admit, I'm enjoying the excitement, vicarious as it may be.

cathy said...

Of course, I'm still grinning about finding myself over here!

"It's too technical to explain to the lay mind, but Miss Emmy doesn't like it."

Ilíon said...

No, I don't listen to Rush ... or to any talk radio, really.

Mind you, I love the man, and I've bought and read at least one of his books. Perhaps only one, 'The Way Things Ought to Be;' I don't recall for sure whether there were others.

"Of course, I'm still grinning about finding myself over here!"

Well, it was an excellent comment! And it deserves to be high-lighted *somewhere* It's too bad that Steyn doesn't read Iliocentrism, so that he could realize that he ought to share your comment with others. Or, it's too bad that you have to settle for having the comment high-lighted here.

cathy said...

To tell you the truth, if I didn't forget half the time that there was anybody around besides our Discuss Amongst Yourselves gang, I don't think I'd have the nerve to make any 'serious' comments at all.