Wednesday, August 28, 2013


The Republican enigma should be obvious to small government conservatives; especially to the Grover Norquist who say they want the government so small they can drown it in a bathtub. The enigma is the flag waving conservatives, the chauvinists, who are so proud of America and all it has done and is doing would want to end all of that by drowning the USA in a the bathtub.

It seems ridiculous that anyone in any country anywhere in the world has to make a case for having a strong involved government. A government that does for us what we can not do for ourselves. George Lakoff did all of us a great service by discussing the moral formats of government in his book, The Political Mind. In comparing and contrasting “liberal” verses “conservative” governance as different conception of moral order; a nurturing government verses an authoritarian government. The extremes would be a democracy verses a dictatorship.

I look at radicals like Rand Paul as having a form of insanity for those who live in a society; they are people who think they can live in a complex world as individualist who care only for themselves—a bestial world which evolution has left in the distant past. In such a world, there is no need for organization, taxes, budgets or getting along; it is only the individual against the environment. It smacks of evolutionary psychology.

This type of thinking grades into organization with one individual clearly and permanently at the top of the peck order, which is at least gives recognition that there are other people in the world—a family or tribal world. Ayn Rand and her sycophants such as Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan and Reince Priebus gave form to this philosophy: the takers and the makers, the givers and the receivers. Thus, they expanded the Rand Paul idea by substituting the individual with the ‘economic elite’ as the ones in charge.
They see themselves as royalty. They have this belief so deeply imbedded that it is no longer a belief, it is permanent knowledge.

Finally, representative democracy was born; it grew out of one-man one vote and into a representative democracy, which requires refined organization including the concept of ‘losing’ power. The concept of an individual losing power to anyone for any reason seems anathema to a republican. In addition, it requires sharing of wealth. Republicans refer to this with extreme distaste as “redistribution of wealth”. Liberals see sharing of wealth through taxes and salaries as the normal course of human activity. They see caring for each other as morally correct. In contrast, Republicans see altruism as the height of foolishness; you worked for it is yours and it is insane to give it away. They see altruism as being morally wrong.  

The punch line of this post is that righteous Republicans see democracy, which sustains them, as something insane; as something immoral and want to destroy it; drown “it” in a bathtub. What they want is counter to self preservation; that is the enigma.
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