Thursday, September 6, 2012

National Review ironically reveals another deep truth about the current GOP

Kunstler ranted about the current state of the major parties over at his blog on Monday.
In the vicious vacuum that national party politics has become, the Republicans and Democrats are already dead. They choked to death on the toxic fumes of their own excreta. They are empty, hollow institutions animated only by the parasites that feed on and squirm over the residue of decomposing tissue within the dissolving membranes of their legitimacy. Think of the fabled Koch brothers as botfly larvae and the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association PAC (SIFMA PAC) as a mass of writhing maggots.
I disagree with him about the state of the Democratic Party, otherwise I wouldn't be a precinct delegate for them,* but I thought he was on track for the GOP.
I think you're onto something, but you may have the wrong metaphor. Think of something much more sinister.

As I tell my liberal friends who keep thinking that the GOP should be dead by now, the GOP as a traditional party engaged in electoral politics is already dead. What it is now, as described by "EscapefromWisconsin" over at the Hipcrime Vocab, is an authoritarian movement. That makes it an undead party in a democratic system. As Bela Lugosi's Dracula said in the eponymous movie, "There are far worse things awaiting Man than Death." Yeah, and one of them has happened to the GOP.
Here's Bela saying that line in a fan video of "Bela Lugosi's Dead."

As if to prove the point, cover of The National Review portrays the Republican ticket in the socialist realist style of Soviet propaganda art.

AmericaBlog pointed out that this was an obvious tribute/imitation to a Soviet propaganda poster.
If you're a student of history, this style will be familiar - it's communist. And this image below is clearly the Soviet propaganda poster the Romney/Ryan image was based on.

There's no way this is a coincidence. Down to the flag it's the same poster. Some of the commenters noted that Romney's and Ryan's arms are suggestive of the hammer and sickle, but the books and architectural plans take the place of the hammer, their curved arms are the sickle.

I get that the National Review thought they were being ironic or satirical, but I'm not sure portraying Romney and Ryan in the guise of America's biggest enemy of the last century is politically wise.
Just as I described in Old man yelling at chair accidentally reveals a deeper truth, people who are supposed to be the messengers of the GOP are unintentionally showing the authoritarian reality behind the party's republican facade.

AmericaBlog is not the only one to notice this. In Republican war on higher education and social science, I quoted Paul Krugman from The New Political Correctness, who remarked about the similarity to the Soviets.
And then there’s the teaching of history. Eric Rauchway has a great post about attacks on the history curriculum, in which even talking about “immigration and ethnicity” or “environmental history” becomes part of a left-wing conspiracy. As he says, he’ll name his new course “US History: The Awesomeness of Awesome Americans.” That, after all, seems to be the only safe kind of thing to say.

Actually, this reminds me of an essay I read a long time ago about Soviet science fiction. The author — if anyone remembers where this came from — noted that most science fiction is about one of two thoughts: “if only”, or “if this goes on”. Both were subversive, from the Soviet point of view: the first implied that things could be better, the second that there was something wrong with the way things are. So stories had to be written about “if only this goes on”, extolling the wonders of being wonderful Soviets.

And now that’s happening in America.
As you can see, I finally got around to presenting more evidence supporting the comparison to the Soviets--and there's plenty were that came from. Until I return to the subject, I'll leave you with "Eye spy the GOP's authoritarian impulses on display."

*That doesn't mean I can't see where he's coming from.  After all, Bill Clinton was able to get a bunch of left-leaning delegates who dislike Simpson-Bowles to cheer for it last night, and President Obama is rumored to be speaking about entitlement reform tonight, another topic that the left doesn't care for much.  Just the same, the Democrats are still a normal party pursuing electoral politics in a democratic system, so they're not undead like the GOP.


  1. Hail Eris!

    Your images doth seem to have vanished, forsooth! Also, whilst I would stop far short of unfavourably comparing the Democratic Party to the GOP, being near-constantly attacked (for years, yet!) by the Undead Flesh-Eating Zombie Ghoul Party *will* tend to have deleterious effects.

    OK, never mind about the images. It's just Opera acting up -- Mozilla's fine with everything.