U.S. liberals’ progressive conservatism(!)

To hear “conservative” politicians and “pundits,” we try to get government to help the needy, sick, and disabled, as a way of buying their votes, that is, bribing them.  Same with labor and workplace rules for workers and unions … public education for kids(?) and the teachers’ unions … a little more social justice, for city people’s, women’s, people of color’s, immigrants’, and gay people’s votes … reduced censorship and looser broadcast content guidelines for, well, pornographers’ and bohemians’ and atheists’ votes, I guess … Evolution and equality and compassion in said public schools, for, I dunno, Unitarians’, “social engineers’,” and wimps’ votes? … environmentalism for the treehuggers’, EarthFirsters’, and eco-terrorists’ votes … “well-regulated” firearms control for the “jack-booted thug” vote I guess? … and peace, for the huge Muslim vote in this country!

They talk as if we’ve all devoured the Communist Manifesto and Das Kapital, the Quran, Gustavo Gutierrez and Chairman Mao and Madalyn Murray O’Hair, all ‘baddies’ like that.  We’re all free-loving, swinging, acid-dropping, rock-and-roll-listening(!), non-breeding stereotypes from the ’60s – just like they sound!

With my own life’s study and observation, I think the large number of native-born Americans – I don’t have alot of in-depth exposure to Americans born elsewhere at this time – being American (small-R) republicans, *are* somewhat ‘ideological,’ very much attached to the words of this country’s individual liberties, to the vote (preferably free and clean and counted correctly – How hard is that?!), to the Constitution of 1787 as amended and generally as interpreted, and to our accustomed, historical/evolved form of Rationalized Capitalism.  I also think the large number of them, being what might be called center-left in social ethics(!), or such awful terms like ‘caring’ or ‘sensitive’ or ‘polite,’ also believe this status quo isn’t perfect yet, has generally been getting better through the labor of alot of people in our society over the years, and can always be tweaked and improved: “Our best days are yet to come.”  We care about the Common Good, generally for those worse-off than ourselves in this country and abroad, even those different from ourselves.  On a personal basis we are the most philanthropic in the world (though as I’ve said, that may be in part because morally we have to be, since per population or economy, our government is not; in any case, it’s not enough to meet the need and the Common Good).  We generally support fairness especially to those worse-off, even some extra help if they really need it and we can give it.  Our biggest problem is such a disconnect with our government that we always feel overtaxed, but when we’re correctly informed, we’re often even ready to adjust our stances in politics, economics, ecology, society, etc., not because we “flipflop,” but because we discover we didn’t know as much as we thought we did about this or that situation.  It’s a big country, after all, and an even bigger world!

Therefore, when our critics and (supposed) ‘betters’ accuse us of mere cynical angling for power for power’s sake, such charges are patently false.  We don’t wage “class war,” though some of us seek to *end* the one being waged against us!  And we certainly didn’t make up Global Warming because we thought it’d put us back in power, but we espouse doing what we can about it because we just don’t want the planet to FRY as much over the next couple thousand years!!!  I don’t want to engage in potentially false gainsaying, but in the era of Karl Rove, it seems our critics doth protest too much!

In fact, IOTM that the large number of native-born Americans display qualities of progressive conservatism or Red Toryism, of a kind not entirely unlike what I’m constantly discussing in this blog!  Obviously relatively few have studied the British, Canadian, and Australian constitutions and legal and political systems, or other comparative government, or consider themselves Monarchists at this time, or explicit critics so much of Classical Liberalism or Modernity, or, obviously, Orthodox Christians.  But this is only to be expected in an environment of over two centuries of school and media brainwashing.  But the large number of native-born Americans show signs of convinceability, if the truth, the facts, the history and the causes of things, can be gotten out to them, and they can be reminded to think carefully before they vote or lobby, and to remember that what unites us is far greater than whatever may be perceived as dividing us.  Their real ‘conservatism’ manifests itself as it is able, in a country where we exiled or suppressed our true Classical Conservatism, and where heartless, brainless, even unFaithful and traitorous actions masquerade under the name of “conservatism” today.  Actually, as I recently read someone else suggest, we are the ones, in the absence of any other relatively-viable alternative at this time, seeking to ‘conserve’ what good there may be from the republic as described above, while our critics and ‘betters’ defy the agreed Constitution, undermine its interpretation, neuter Congress and the States, and risk “World War 3” several times over, in the last few years alone.

Which is why I blog.

OTOH, our critics are the ones who show signs of blind faith in innovative, false, artificial, unrealistic, inhumane, lethal, unChristian, Classically Liberal and Modernist ideologies … of hypocrisy, cynical manipulation, divisiveness, and incivility … of sinister agenda on behalf of a minority of vested interests … of moral and ethical corruption … of military, foreign policy, fiscal, and intelligence-management malfeasance, misfeasance, and/or nonfeasance … of lost Sovereignty over our own and other countries’ created corporations … of “voodoo economics” which basically are the single biggest cause of most of our people’s real material problems for the whole last generation, such as increased hunger and homelessness, falling wages and health-care coverage and assistance to the needy, rampant profiteering and offshoring instead of the promised reinvestment of corporate and wealthy tax giveaways, etc.

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Predatory Lending and the “Subprime Mortgage Crisis”

If your MSM aren’t explaining it to you, go here: they nailed it before it broke!*

I’d urge Hightower to run for higher office, if I didn’t think it’d corrupt him!

(*–Before the news broke, that is. Obviously the system broke years ago!)

UPDATE: Oh, I’m sorry.  I didn’t realize non-subscribers don’t have access to the whole piece.  But hey, it just may be the best ten bucks a year you ever invest (nine for seniors and students; what about the poor and disabled?!!).  Plus they’re nonprofit – can’t beat that!

Long story short, the latest “crisis” is about guys who prey on and deceive people who want a home, get them to commit to ridiculous repayment schemes, seize their house, so they’re out on the street anyway, and loads (more) in debt too.  But Jim and Phil tell it so much better and funnier, and with cartoons too!

Corporate Media Promoting Benefits from Global Warming

This AOL link will break.  In the meantime, observe how they point out benefits to the Global North, as the NY Times and I have already said.  If you work harder, you’ll see how they don’t neglect detriments elsewhere, and planetarily, but still, this is misleading and shameful.

They also neglect the expected Little Ice Age in the Upper North Atlantic, including their favored Greenland and Iceland.  We’re already seeing fauna migrating southward from the UNA – because it’s cold maybe?!!  They could be the Gulf Stream monitoring system scientists are looking for!

Peak Oil in more detail

Someone recently looked at the Peak Oil problem in a little more personal and American detail than I’ve seen before… and it ain’t pretty.  *I* sure don’t know how to farm… and I’m crippled to boot!

GW New Report ROUNDUP

I can’t read the thing myself today – I’ve been up all night – but according to Reuters, GW can be kept to less than 4 degrees Fahrenheit in the next 50 years by means of current technology and no more than an average annual investment/effect of one-eighth of one percent of global GDP, maybe even a slight increase in GDP if we really get it right.  It includes what will be a controversial nod to nuclear power – inevitable IMHO, the lesser evil, climatologically, ‘big picture.’

Cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 50 to 85 pct., though?  I don’t think so.  This is the next chapter in that sexennial* series of reports from thousands of United Nations scientists, always tweaked by government reps, and final editing went overtime, so I have to think the governments have spun it excessively optimistically.  Of course I would love to be wrong, but with China and India powering *up,* and First World “conservatives” resistant, and oil and natural gas sooner to be replaced by old coal and worse things than by new nukes….  Maybe the actual report can convince me.  I’ll try to catch it in the next couple days.

The underreported angle is that to make that one-eighth-percent GDP investment will require heavier regional commitments from the First World: we currently have the money to spare (comparatively), we have the concentration of economic production as well as of the technology that can help make this happen, and justly, we’re the source of most of the effect we’re seeing right now (since we industrialized first, back to 1750).  Logically, OTOH, ISTM any gains will mostly be realized in China and India, where they’re not completely powered-up yet, but have alot of tech know-how even if the First World remains reluctant to share.  So we’ll have to take the hit, they’ll get the short-term economic benefit – but in the end the whole world reaps the reward.

Can short terms in office, dependent on wealthy and business campaign contributions and Republican-dominated electronic voting companies, with perhaps our wisest leaders – our hereditary constitutional monarchs – having to just take “advice,” produce or sustain the kind of long view and altruism needed to make this happen?  Again, I remain seriously doubtful.  The Bushies have already panned this report claiming it costs too much… the same (fake) reason they kicked Kyoto in the groin, even though we’re the biggest offender (for now).  And the Democrats can’t even impeach the Republicans or get us out of Iraq.

What if we just totally replaced the Dems with the Greens?  Not bit-by-bit to undermine ourselves (ala Nader 2000), but all at once!  I notice Canada’s Green Party is raising its profile (though they really still need some form of Proportional Representation)….

If it goes as I expect, maybe we can cut some deal with China and India: we share the tech with them, they do what they can to help us with the necessary “recession.”  I don’t know exactly: continued offshoring sure won’t help us, but cutting the cost to us of what’s already there would, even some givebacks.  And what if we linked the Asian and North American electric grids across the Bering Strait and shared output?  (IS there an Asian one yet? or even in Alaska? Both might need serious build-outthat’ll be good for the economy… if we can produce the juice that is… which I also have doubts about.)  And there’s always cutting the cost to us of the products they already sell us, and service for same….

(*–They might get more WWW hits if they used the word sexennial frequently!!!)