Neoneocon rouses me from my couch that I may link to her fascinating post, one that seems relevant to our day. She offers a quote from a book (written by an American “man of the left”) recounting the attitudes of his interviewees regarding a certain moment in the history of Germany:
National Socialism was a repulsion of my friends against parliamentary politics, parliamentary debate, parliamentary government—against all the higgling and the haggling of the parties and the splinter parties, their coalitions, their confusions, and their conniving. It was the final fruit of the common man’s repudiation of “the rascals.” Its motif was “throw them all out.” My friends, in the 1920’s, were like spectators at a wrestling match who suspect that beneath all the grunts and groans, the struggle and the sweat, the match is “fixed,” that the performers are only pretending to put on a fight. The scandals that rocked the country, as one party or cabal “exposed” another, dismayed and then disgusted my friends…
While the ship of the German State was being shivered, the officers, who alone had life preservers, disputed their prerogatives on the bridge. My friends observed that none of the non-Communist, non-Nazi leaders objected to the 35,000 Reichsmark salaries of the cabinet ministers, only the Communists and the Nazis objected. And the bitterest single disappointment of Nazism…was the fact that Hitler had promised that no official would get more than 1,000 Reichsmarks a month and did not keep his promise.
Fascinating stuff – read it all over at Neo’s. Seems pretty timely to me, whether you’re thinking about the ’08 elections or the ’10.
I know some might easily think that the election of the deft and dishonest Barack Obama mirrors the rise of Hitler, but it seems to me that in ’08 we were not quite as utterly fed up with the leadership of both parties as we are, in ’10. I don’t know about anyone else, but hearing Nancy Pelosi say there has “never been a more open process” than the one surrounding their backroom-written-bribe-supported-GOP-locked-out Obamacare bill made me feel like I was living in bizarro world, and confirmed to me that Our Demented Lady of the Perpetually Angry Little Fist really believes that reality is created on her very breath. She speaks a word, and it is so! Harry Reid, Obama, and too many on the right as well, are convinced (not without reason) that they can say any damn thing they want, and history will become malleable, and reality will adjust itself accordingly.
Under these circumstances, and with the Imperial president signing some very curious (and far-from-transparent) Executive Orders at an amazing clip, who the hell knows what will happen? I don’t. But as the center continues to break down because it “cannot hold” and things begin to resemble the wobbly, widening gyre of Yeat’s “Second Coming” it does seem to me that someone who claims to be even more “above it all” than the melodramatic Obama pretended to be, would find many welcoming him or her into the public arena.
I still have a fever, and am a little out of it, so I may not be reasoning rightly, but here is what I say to Neo:
It’s funny you wrote this. I was just thinking this morning -seriously, as I showered- that we are ripe for the arrival of someone on the political scene who is not a career politician, who can say he or she is “untainted,” and can then exploit the tumult we’re currently embroiled in.
1) (Cantor aside) They’re all going to vote in this health bill and then skip town.
2) They wouldn’t end their political careers for “nothing;” book deals and gigs as lobbyists are small compensation for the loss of power, title, access, so they all must have gotten something else that induced them to vote-and-run-for-it. Perhaps that is where the stimulus money sent to fake congressional districts and fake zip codes has actually gone – into their pockets.
4) Look up: Universal Voter Registration. As I have said before, the dems are not concerned about polls or representative government anymore, because they don’t actually believe they’re ever going to have to deal with “real” elections again.
5) Those conservatives who are gloating about how they’re going to “win in 2010!” and who think these Dem resignations are evidence of a coming “bloodbath,” are thinking precisely what the dems want them to think. Americans may not be loving the land of liberalism, but Obama is still the self-esteem president; he still has the bully pulpit (and the “Obama-do-me” press), and he’s proven that he knows how to pivot for expediency’s sake.
Back to my invalid couch. Sorry if this sounds a bit disjointed. Or more disjointed than usual.
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