September 24, 2005

LEADING US BACK HOME:

What Yale women want (Karen Stabiner, September 23, 2005, LA Times)

IF THE LAST generation of women obsessed about cracking the glass ceiling, a new crop of college undergrads seems less interested in the professional stratosphere than in a soft — a cushy — landing.

The New York Times recently got its hands on a Yale University questionnaire in which 60% of the 138 female respondents said that they intend to stop working when they have children, and then to work part time, if at all, once the kids are in school. A reporter talked to students at other elite East Coast colleges who echoed the same back-to-the-future sentiment: Work is but a way-station; a woman's place is in the home.

The young women think they're doing the right thing for their eventual children, having watched too many of their moms' generation try to juggle career and family. And at least one male student at Harvard finds the whole lord-and-master idea "sexy." This, from excellent students who have clambered over the backs of other, merely good students to gain entry into schools that traditionally have incubated tomorrow's leaders.


Leading the culture out of its atomized dead-end is leadership.

Posted by Orrin Judd at September 24, 2005 5:38 PM
Comments

Now if we can just get the men who've attended Ivy League Schools to stay home too...

Posted by: carter at September 24, 2005 5:53 PM

Sly, Carter. Very sly.

Posted by: David Cohen at September 24, 2005 6:35 PM

A women not having to work is a privelege thats afforded to an increasingly small number of families is today's America; as long as you're reminiscing of the good ole days where women stayed home and cooked, why don't you ask for slaves to do all the work in the fields while your at it.

It is sad, but true, that its gotten a lot harder to raise a family on one person's income; let me throw one out to every one out there: how many of you were raised with both parents working?

There are more single-mother/divorced parent households than there has ever been in America = many many more women have been forced either on 1) welfare and other public assistance; which has only nurtured the workless, lower-class single-mother household more than probably any other factor (some women have kids just so that they can collect welfare) or into,
2) work.
Men stay out of living with mothers and children because they don't have the means with which to support them.
So thats why i think we should get rid of welfare for single mothers, subsidize day care centers, and provide tax incentives for encourage lowerclass father-mother households.

Posted by: at September 24, 2005 7:03 PM

Anon: It would help your argument immensely if it didn't happen to be based on a complete misunderstanding of the facts.

Posted by: David Cohen at September 24, 2005 7:46 PM

We can give much of the credit for this to Dr. Laura. She has been "nagging" women to stay home at least until the child enters elementary school - and they should! If families were more preoccupied with raising their children correctly and nurturing them rather than keeping up with the Jonses, they wouldn't need 2 breadwinners per household.

We make choices, but our children pay the price for these choices.

Posted by: obc at September 24, 2005 7:48 PM

Karen Stabiner was apparently personally insulted that these bright young women rejected the choice that she made, saying:
"As a working mother, I have nothing but empathy for the desire to avoid what author Arlie Hochschild rightly calls the second shift in her book of that name the double workday that most employed mothers put in. I have nothing but anger at the proposed solution."

In other words, misery loves company, and nobody likes it when it's pointed out how foolish one has been.

Ms Stabiner also has a curiously warped view of reality - she writes:

These future moms betray a startling combination of naivete and privilege. To plot this kind of future, a woman has to have access to a pool of wealthy potential husbands...
Fewer than 25% of American households survive on one paycheck, and in a few years that number will decline to fewer than 20%.

Well, no.
David Cohen and obc are correct, living on one income doesn't need to involve a rich spouse. It just requires a willingness to live a middle class or lower middle class lifestyle, both of which, by global standards, are the height of luxury.

All of the couples with children that I know get by on one middle class income, and they all have food, shelter, access to medical care, copious entertainment, and privately-owned transportation - what more could one ask ?

More tripe from Stabiner:

These future moms [have] to ignore the history of the women's movement.

By acting as though NO GAINS in freedom of choice for women have been made ?
Way to grab defeat from the jaws of overwhelming victory.

They seem to have learned one lesson I'm in it for me far too well, confusing personal comfort with social progress.

Hilarious.
Staying home to raise kids is selfish, and all about personal comfort !

Stabiner claims to be a mother, but displays no evidence whatsoever of having taken any lessons from raising her child.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 24, 2005 8:20 PM

David:

Not really.

Posted by: oj at September 24, 2005 8:33 PM

It's quite simple. Stabiner hates younger women who are smarter than she is.
One doesn't need a hedge-fund income to live well.
Stabiner apparently wants to "have it all," materialistic luxuries and boutique children. Others, smarter than her, would prefer happy ones.

Posted by: steve at September 24, 2005 10:40 PM

OJ: I was being kind.

Posted by: David Cohen at September 24, 2005 11:25 PM

I thought most men who have attended Ivy League schools DO stay home. I mean, when they aren't attempting to spread the imperialism around the world which oj is so fond of.KB

Posted by: KB at September 25, 2005 1:14 AM

KB:

Why do you think that "imperialism" is bad ?

After all, if it weren't for the relatively recent imperial ambitions of the Dutch, English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish, and before them the Greeks and Romans, literally BILLIONS of people would have lived shorter and less pleasant lives.

Those empires spread knowledge and technology, and brought back luxury goods and new staples - such as corn, the real treasure of the New World.

Granted, the empires of the 20th century were a mixed and motley bunch, but the 21st century seems to be starting out on the right foot.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2005 2:18 AM

Michael,
I hope you aren't being serious.

David Cohen,
I'm sorry, the facts?

Posted by: at September 25, 2005 3:10 AM

Does anyone realize that this contributes to inequality? Entrance into elite schools is eminently a zero-sum affair. Smart young women take the place of men who otherwise could have made it in.

Harvard looks a lot better on the resume than a second- or third-tier school.

Whom are these women going to marry? Other ivy-leaguers, of course.

A Princeton female going to marry a Rutgers grad? Only if he has a lot of money or a great employment future, which Princeton is more apt to guarantee. Remember, a lot of it is who you know. Connections, baby.

And when they go back to work, how many men are they going to leap frog? Men who haven't had the luxury of taking years off or working part-time.

The meritocracy and equality of opportunity going hand in hand.

Posted by: Brent at September 25, 2005 3:31 AM

Anonymous:

Yes, quite serious.

What do you take issue with ?

You seem to be the earlier anonymous too, so the facts are that supporting a family on one income isn't a "privilege", it's just a choice.

Buy a small house and only one car, and you'll get by. Tens of millions of families do.

Nor is it any harder to raise a family on one income than it was in the past - in fact, it's now easier than it was in the '50s, since food and autos are cheaper, in real terms.
The primary difference is that families in the '00s are living in, and paying for, MUCH larger homes.
That's a choice, not a necessity.

Also, American families now average TWO vehicles per household, another major optional expense.

Brent:

Entrance into elite schools is eminently a zero-sum affair. Smart young women take the place of men who otherwise could have made it in.

While I don't know what's in your heart, that sounds awfully whiny.
Maybe you should have hit the books harder while in high school.

And when they go back to work, how many men are they going to leap frog? Men who haven't had the luxury of taking years off or working part-time.

Why do you believe that men can't take years off, or work part-time ?

While most DON'T, that's a choice.
Men are just as free to pursue happiness as women are, as long as they recognize the same central fact: You can't have it all.

Pick your poison.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2005 4:20 AM

Michael:

You assume too much. I made it into West Point in the mid-1980s. You know, over 12,000 applicants for 1200 slots. So I hit the books plenty. Got a 30 ACT score.

I'm talking public policy, thinking macro. You assume I'm aggrieved, thinking micro.

Posted by: Brent at September 25, 2005 5:49 AM

I made it into West Point in the mid-1980s. You know, over 12,000 applicants for 1200 slots. So I hit the books plenty. Got a 30 ACT score.

I'm talking public policy, thinking macro.

You're obviously much smarter and more learned than I am, although at least I was wise enough not to attend a service academy.

What was your macro public policy suggestion, again ?
I failed to see one in your previous post.

Were you suggesting that women should not be allowed to attend Ivy League schools, or simply that they should be required to sign a pledge of barrenness before being admitted ?

Posted by: Michael Herdegen [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2005 6:23 AM

Brent - I take it you're complaining about Ivy League schools accepting women, when they could ameliorate social inequality by being men-only, forcing Harvard men to date Simmons women rather than Radcliffe women, and Radcliffe women to date West Point men? It seems to me this makes social equality far too high priority a goal. Better to accept inequality and let people do what they prefer.

Posted by: pj at September 25, 2005 7:33 AM

Michael,

You failed to mention that not only are Americans living in MUCH larger homes (upwards past 2500 sq. ft.) they are also having fewer children. It's a sad thing when an evening spent "at home with the family" boils down to everyone in their own room watching one of 5 TVs or playing computer games and not interacting with one another.

For the record, my wife and I live on 2 acres in an 1050 sq. ft. home.

Posted by: Bartman at September 25, 2005 8:43 AM

And single women are buying those houses, bigger than their fathers could afford.

Posted by: oj at September 25, 2005 8:56 AM

Just for the record, could someone please tell me what they mean by imperialism and how it applies to the U.S. As far as I know, our "possessions" have repeatedly declined to be independent of us.

Anyone who thinks staying home is the easy way out may have forgotten this is what was expected of the little woman back in those good old days.

Take it from someone who did both, staying home, raising the kids, and managing on my husband's salary without domestic help is by far more difficult and less appreciated than the most demanding job.

Posted by: erp at September 25, 2005 9:55 AM

erp:

Imperialism, for our purposes, means reshaping other nations cultures to suit your own purposes, something we and the Brits have done by making innumerable nations into liberal democracies.

Posted by: oj at September 25, 2005 10:04 AM

Taranto pointed to something similar to the Roe effect. Women who took the feminists seriously enough to put work before, family did not have daughters, or at least ones who got into Yale (obligatory Scandinavian accent joke inserted here), and are thus unable to pass their values on to their daughters.

My wife, who is a Smith grad from the pre coed ivy days. is resentful also, she thinks the places at Harvard and Yale should be reserved for students with more serious career ambitions, such as our 18 year old son.

Me I don't care, I want him to stay in the Midwest. Educations are just as good and the attitudes are a lot better.

Posted by: Robert Schwartz [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 25, 2005 11:36 PM

Well, I really hate to do this to you, not really, but I was asked by oj and Michael about imperialism, the notion that the U.S. is moving in a Nazi-like facist direction. So, here goes. I know this is long, but from previous experience if I were to simply leave a link most folks wouldn't go there and I'd end up having to type this all anyway in dozens of smaller portions. So, rather than wasting time and space doing it that way, I'll leave it all at once. If you don't like it, I could really care less. And if it's erased, I'm sure I'll know exactly why, as well as the usual lectures about "blog etiquette" or some such nonsense. Anyway, I was asked, so here it is. Most of the right which I've encountered on most blogs pretty much display everyone of these 14 characteristics. If you think you don't, I'd be interested to know exactly how you perceive yourself not. When I read this, oj, Raoul, Michael, etc...are all over the place. It hardly takes any interpretation or second-guessing to realize this either. I'll be waiting.KB

1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism - Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.

2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights - Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.

3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause - The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial, ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.

4. Supremacy of the Military - Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.

5. Rampant Sexism - The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homosexuality are suppressed and the state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution.

6. Controlled Mass Media - Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.

7. Obsession with National Security - Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.

8. Religion and Government are intertwined - Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government's policies or actions.

9. Corporate Power is protected - The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.

10. Labor Power is suppressed - Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed.

11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts - Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts and letters is openly attacked.

12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment - Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.

13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption - Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.

14. Fraudulent Elections - Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections

(Source: The Fourteen Defining Characteristics of Fascism, Dr. Lawrence Britt, Spring 2003, Free Inquiry)
[via PrudentBear where the author Marshall Auerback says : Dr. Lawrence Britt has examined the fascist regimes of Hitler (Germany), Mussolini (Italy), Franco (Spain), Suharto (Indonesia) and several Latin American regimes.]

Posted by: KB at September 26, 2005 1:10 AM

It's a dirty job, but somebody has to do it:

1. So a 4th of July parade is a fascist display?

2. I never knew that Castro's Cuba was fascist. Fascinating.

3. So the Allies in WWII were fascists? Or, it's only legitimate to unify against fascists, but not the Commies (who imprisoned and killed many more people) or the Islamofascists (who would like to eliminate the Jews just as much as the Nazis did)?

4. Given the amount of wasteful spending in my own city (Minneapolis, run by Democrats on the take from developers), I guess I don't see a lack of resources, much less a lack of resources because of military expenditures (which constitutes about 3% of GNP). If you're looking for a fascist country on that score, try Eritrea (+27% of GNP, while people are actually starving).

http://www.straightdope.com/columns/040611.html

5. So Condoleeza Rice is a man? As to suppression of homosexuality, I guess that makes Cuba more fascist than the U.S.

6. Huh? Last I heard, The Nation was still publishing.

7. You mean like global warming scaremongering, right?

8. I guess I don't think saying "under God" in the pledge of allegiance (or overturning Roe vs. Wade, for that matter) amounts to theocracy or fascism. My parish priest is more than a little left, and in a real fascist state, he'd have been jailed and replaced with with someone more pro-Bush about 3 years ago.

9. Money=power=money is not exactly a new idea. In the US, the money and power are more fluid than in just about any other developed country.

10. "Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government." Gee, I never knew it was the unions that exclusively beat back the Luftwaffe and the Panzer divisions.

11. Name one U.S. academic who has been censored or jailed. Mumia doesn't count.

12. I wish the local police got the message that they had such power. My local liason officer said (in explaining why nothing could be done about the obvious drug dealer living across the street) "If Osama himself were living there, there's nothing we could do about it."

13. Sounds like the Minneapolis City Council.

14. So Kennedy was a fascist in 1960? And Chicago was run by fascists, too?

Posted by: Ted Welter at September 26, 2005 11:06 AM

Ted:

Isn't it quicker and more productive to just bang your head on your desk?

Posted by: oj at September 26, 2005 11:11 AM

Perhaps, but I don't want to disturb the person in the cubicle next to mine.

So, we all know many on the left consider Condoleeza Rice to be an "oreo" (i.e. black on the outside, white on the inside). Is there a similarly insulting term for women with which the left disagree (something "man with breasts" but more clever and catchy). I suppose they can't come up with one for fear of offending the transgendered community.

Posted by: Ted Welter at September 26, 2005 1:09 PM

KB:

A fine list, but it says nothing whatsoever about why YOU think that the U.S. is moving towards fascism.

Further, as Ted Welter points out so ably, each point is vague.
Based on those points, one could argue that America is already a fascist state, or that it's nowhere near - and each side would be correct.

It's all about interpretation, which is why I asked for your thoughts, not your shopping list.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2005 11:55 PM

oj said in a fit of delusion, though not to me:
erp:

"Imperialism, for our purposes, means reshaping other nations cultures to suit your own purposes, something we and the Brits have done by making innumerable nations into liberal democracies."

Really? Where? Most every country the British and the U.S. has "assisted" have underdeveloped. And who the hell gives you the right to try and "reshape" anything? Do all other countries have the same rights? If so, then you've just made apologetics for any terrorist act committed anywhere in the world. I'm sure bin Laden would agree with your assessment as all he was doing was trying to "reshape" the U.S. Anyway, let's take Brazil. Under U.S. care for 50 years and was referred to as an experimental ground for capitalism. After 50 years most people still live/lived as they do in the worst parts of sub-Saharan Africa, and perceived the advances made by the Soviet Union within one generation to be spectacular. For about 5% of the people U.S. "care" was a success, in the usual fashion. For the other 95% it was a complete disaster. This happened all over Central and South America. Where have you been? Even rightwingers, the honest ones, like Reagan insider Thomas Carothers recognizes this: "In US domains, leading scholars recognize frankly that Washington's 'democracy enhancement' programmes were designed 'as a means of relieving pressure for more radical change, but inevitably sought only limited, top-down forms of democratic change that did not risk upsetting the traditional structures of power with which the United States has long been allied". Of course, for oj this isn't a problem as long as we're the ones with the force and are at the top of the pyramid. I think you'd be singing a different tune if you were in the weaker camp. What's funny is that your position is completely totalitarian and you don't seem to have the faculty of recognizing it. Your cynical arrogance and pseudo-patriotism isn't cute.KB
=================================================
Ted said(though he missed the point on virtually every characteristic):

"It's a dirty job, but somebody has to do it:"

Not you.KB

1. "So a 4th of July parade is a fascist display?"

It's just a way to try and pump up the crowd into asome sort of jingoistic fervor, which, is exactly the kind that leads to fascist behaviors and ideas. It doesn't mean that 'must' be fascistic, but these are some of the features, and this is the way it starts. "We're number one! We're number one!"

2. "I never knew that Castro's Cuba was fascist. Fascinating."

I never said it was. However, Cuba isn't and shouldn't be YOUR concern anyway. YOUR concern should be those fascist dictatorships which YOUR country uses YOUR tax dollars to fund, as these are the ones YOU'RE responsible for. I thought you folks on the right were all into taking responsibility for your actions. Well? Here, how about a little insight from someone much more qualified than you or I when it comes to these matters:

John Stockwell, former CIA Station Chief in Angola in 1976, working for then Director of the CIA, George Bush. He spent 13 years in the agency. He gives a short history of CIA covert operations. He is a very compelling speaker and the highest level CIA officer to testify to the Congress about his actions. He estimates that over 6 million people have died in CIA covert actions, and this was in the late 1980's.
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article4068.htm

3. "So the Allies in WWII were fascists?"

What does this have to do with #3. But, to answer your question, some of them were. Some were even communists. Remember? They did most of the fighting and dying, by far. Anyway, it's quite common for dictators such as those the U.S. has long supported to be fascist. And, it should be recalled that the U.S. State Department had no problem with Hitler and referred to him as a "moderate standing between the extremes of the right and left." But then again Saddam, Suharto, Gramaco, and dozens of others were moderates as well.KB

"Or, it's only legitimate to unify against fascists"

Who needs to unify behind anyone? Once again, YOU are responsible for who YOU support. Doesn't matter if every other country on the planet wants to support a communist dictator of the North Korean type. YOU don't have to support one. Anyway, as usual, the tyranny of the Soviet system came from within, NOT from without. The U.S. had nothing to do with it, and especially not Reagan, just in case you were about to start spewing out some fantasy.KB

"but not the Commies (who imprisoned and killed many more people)"

You shouldn't be supporting either. BUit what does many more have to do with anything? If Mao and Stalin killed millions, what does this have to do with your supporting someone who kills a few hundred less, or even ten? Nothing. I don't recall the U.S. supporting too many communist dictatorships anyway, I mean, besides China, and a few others. I DO recall them supporting MANY fascist dictatorships though. You know, the ones you're responsible for. Do you think one is better than the other?KB

"or the Islamofascists"

Well, then you know nothing about history. Almost every country the U.S. has supported in the Islamic world have been fascist, totalitarian, dictators. Where have you been? We supported Saddam for MANY years and during the time he was gassing the Kurds. We supported Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Israel(not Islamic, though in the region)Kuwait, and more. All of these are human rights abusers, and all receive military aid from the U.S. which is illegal under international law, AND even U.S. law.KB

"(who would like to eliminate the Jews just as much as the Nazis did)?"

Probably a few of the people who have had their relatives ran off of their land, or killed, by Israeli terrorism, and a few others. Does this give the Israelis to become the very fascists which persecuted them? I hardly think so.KB

4. "Given the amount of wasteful spending in my own city (Minneapolis, run by Democrats on the take from developers), I guess I don't see a lack of resources, much less a lack of resources because of military expenditures (which constitutes about 3% of GNP)."

Well, given that the percentage you use may look small, what does 3% actually mean in a rich country? It translates to spending more on the military than the next 20 highest military spending countries combined. So, straw argument, again.KB

"If you're looking for a fascist country on that score, try Eritrea (+27% of GNP, while people are actually starving)."

And this is just ONE of the characteristics, which it is. Anyway, so what does Eritrea have to do with how much you're spending, or whether or not they may be fascist? Nothing.KB

5. "So Condoleeza Rice is a man?"

Well, it's actually hard to determine. But, as on every point you've made so far, you've missed the point. I can also find someone who has smoked 3 packs of cigarettes a day for 70 years who doesn't have lung cancer. I can also find a few crackpot scientists who say they don't believe in global warming. So what? You DON'T think Rice was simply chosen without any race card being considerd do you? If you do, then you have exactly ZERO business speaking about politics at all.KB

"As to suppression of homosexuality, I guess that makes Cuba more fascist than the U.S."

So what? What does Cuba have to do with the U.S.? Nothing. Once again, you're doing nothing but worrying about the U.S. compared to others in order to justify your own countries reprehensible behavior. Anyway, I like how your picking and choosing carefully so as to leave out the primary points:
Sexism: It takes about 3 seconds of going to any rightwing blog to hear whiny white men talking about the good old days when "their" women just satyed at home and did what they were told, and blaming the voices of butch dykes for encouraging them out of their assigned roles.
Homosexuality: It takes about the same amount of time to hear the rightwing trying to blame homosexuality for problems all over the country. Perhaps YOU don't, but a LARGE portion of the right is made up of by religious folks who DO believe this.
Divorce: same
Family: same
Abortion: same

So, it appears to me that this characteristic is quite accurate as well as all the others so far. Besides, where do you think he has gotten these 14 characteristics? Do you think these are just his opinions? I know you folks from the right have a tendency to believe that opinion and fact are equal, and have difficulty recognizing the differences between the two, but they aren't. These characteristics were based on studying fascist MANY regimes and looking at what the similarities and characteristics were. It's called scholarship. You shouldn't depend on folks like Rush and Ann Coulter for your information, nor the corporate-controlled(another elementary and basic fact)media.KB

6. "Huh? Last I heard, The Nation was still publishing."

Well, then you obviously don't know anything about the media. "The Nation" is hardly representative of a rag with any form of influence. Even in the Soviet Union there were underground rags, which, I should inform you, were read by about 15-25% of the working classes and 70-80% of the educated classes. Do you think that dissident literature in the U.S. has these kinds of numbers? HA! That's funny. There doesn't need to be state controlled media in the U.S., it's done through private business and works pretty much the same, as Orwell even noted. Perhaps you should study a little bit about propaganda and how it works, especially U.S. propaganda, as this is YOUR country, NOT the ex-Soviet Union, so that you may get some sort of grasp as to how and why you even have the ideas you do. I know you guys like to think yourselves to be simply "independent-minded thinkers", whose ideas haven't been influenced by anything, but you're wrong, you have. Everyone has. Your job is to investigate just how, why, etc...not cheerlead for those doing the propagandizing. I thought you guys were against centrally-controlled institutions? Well, then start being critical of them. Especially now as the media is becoming more and more concentrated(another basic and uncontroversial fact). I can give you about 100 references where you can study about this if you wish. Of course you have to be willing to consider the possiblilty that U.S. propaganda even exists first, and this is the most difficult challenge, as most pseudo-patriots do not think it does. Same thing happened in the Soviet Union, though on a much smaller scale, as most folks there were quite well aware that what they received via the state-controlled media was propaganda, whereas most in the U.S. never even consider this happening.KB

7. "You mean like global warming scaremongering, right?"

Ahhh....just as I expected. Another flat-earther who is not only anti-scholarship, and anti-logic, but anti-science as well. No, actually I believe what he had in mind was the never ending external threat posed by whoever or whatever, as was also talked about by Orwell. The external threat to national security is one of the oldest political tactics in history. All leaders who have ever lived know this one. You have to make the country afraid of "the others" who want to destroy you. Once again, if you're not familiar with such a basic item as this then I refer you to a library. What's interesting though is the paranoia and fear of the folks in the U.S. It's WAY disproportionate to the actual threat, especially when compared to other countries. Threats have always been conjured up in order to make people rally around their leaders for "protection". Old.KB

8. "I guess I don't think saying "under God" in the pledge of allegiance (or overturning Roe vs. Wade, for that matter) amounts to theocracy or fascism."

Well, then you are a fascist. I'm sure that Hitler, Stalin, etc...didn't think of themselves as fascists either. Unfortunately, the very idea that you've just expressed is on par with they way they think. So, you probably wouldn't see anything wrong with it. This is the point. It's just another step on the way to the facism which he speaks of. This IS creeping fascism. And you don't recognize it just as the many folks around Germany didn't recognize it happening with Hitler and his rise to power. That's the whole point. Many, if not most, people were cheering on Hitler, waving their little flags in the usual display of patriotism, etc....and then when it became beyond apparent what folks like him do, which was apparent to the left from WAY early on, they stood around scratching their heads wondering what had happened and why they had fallen for it. Well, YOU are falling for it. Of course, those lefties who were critical of Hitler were just "anti-Germans", "radicals", "communists", or whatever the scare words of the day were. You know, the equivalent to the anti-American charges by the same type folks today.KB

"My parish priest is more than a little left, and in a real fascist state, he'd have been jailed and replaced with with someone more pro-Bush about 3 years ago."

Who said anything about the U.S. being a fascist state? What are you talking about? I've never said this, nor do I know anybody who has. More straw. He must fish for red herring as well. Farming and fishing are good things, just not on a site regarding politics. Anyway, your tendency to see criticism in black and white terms is another common characteristic of fascist thought. He's talking about characteristics which are common to fascist countries and which should be examined by your own in order to make sure these tendencies do not come to fruition, unless, of course, you WANT to have a fascist state, which IS possible. OJ get's pretty close to asking for such, and even wishes to spread it around the world, by force, of course. I mean, they can choose to change to the way HE thinks is good, or they can BE changed by us. This type of thinking is actually fascist imperialism.KB

9. "Money=power=money is not exactly a new idea."

Yes, who said anything about this being a new idea? Most of the 14 characteristics aren't new at all. They're quite old and quite common.KB

"In the US, the money and power are more fluid than in just about any other developed country."

Yes, so? What do our actions have to do with "any other developed country"? They can do whatever they want with their money. And when you say fluid are you talking about how things like the internet, computers, transistors, the airline industry, etc...wouldn't exist at all if it weren't for the evil state? You AREN'T saying that all of our "dynamic economy" works because of rugged individualism I hope. You know, the neo-con-artist idea that believes in applying Darwins survival of the fittest idea to economics? Probably the most depraved idea in the history of the world, not to mention naive, and not really wanted by many people even in the business community.KB

10. "Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government."

"Gee, I never knew it was the unions that exclusively beat back the Luftwaffe and the Panzer divisions."

Unions, in general, are ALWAYS targeted by the fascist leaders and business community who supports them. Nothing new. And, once again, why aren't you looking at simple basics about your own country's behavior in the past. Look at many of the countries the U.S. has propped up and supported. Look at how many of their first targets are labor leaders, scholars, clergy, etc...These folks are almost always capped by those who you support. Remember, these are the ones YOU are responsible for. And your priest is probably quite well aware that through the 80's the U.S. was essentially fighting a war against the church throughout Central and South America. Nothing new. You really should be aware that YOU helped pay for the hundreds of thousands killed with your support. Perhaps you wouldn't be quite as much of a cheerleader, you'd shut up, and you'd tell your leaders not to do such things. This is why the more criminal of the leaders, Reagan, for instance, must go underground to do their crimes/terrorism.KB

11. "Name one U.S. academic who has been censored or jailed."

As per everyone of your comments thus far, you missed the point.
Intellectuals: It's easy to see on just about any rightwing blog the disdain for intellectuals and "their moral superiority". God! I've heard this one a thousand times. The right usually distrusts scholars, and can easily be seen in their comments about "liberals controlliing the universities", etc...and all the usual paranoid blather with helps with the creeping fascism. And who is ALWAYS complaining about the arts? I'll give you a hint, it's NOT the left. And you're acting like simply because there is no state control that there isn't any control. This is beyond absurd. If the left were even close to being represented by the "free press" in the U.S., folks like Chomsky would be on every night. He gets FAR more listeners going from auditorium to auditorium than do any of the shallow talking heads on the tube every night. But do you actually think he reaches more people? Why do you think he's not on the "liberal media"(which doesn't exist) every night? He surely qualifies. And there are many others as well. Not censorship? You can find out about U.S. censorship, but you have to look. Even mainstream rags like The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, etc...will have things in their overseas aditions which aren't printed in their U.S. additions, for obvious reasons. Wonder why?KB

"Mumia doesn't count."

Never said he did, though if the media is going to allow people like the rapid-schizophrenic G. Gordon Liddy on the tube, or the war criminal Henry Kissinger, to discuss issues, Mumia easily qualifies.KB

12. "I wish the local police got the message that they had such power."

They know how much power they have. Don't worry. And his point is that the more it increases, the more fascistic it becomes. This is hardly surprising. And look at how the politicians of both the left and the right, but especially the right, are always using crime and ounishment as one of their big agendas. This is looked upon with disdain by countries with any civil culture at all. They look at the causes for the crime and try to reduce it that way. The intelligent way. The U.S. builds more and more prisons, and, as everyone knows, had one of the highest prison populations in the world and is still increasing. Wonder why? Well, we know that we're number one in that arena.KB

"My local liason officer said (in explaining why nothing could be done about the obvious drug dealer living across the street)"

As expected you'd pick one of the least significant crimes to deal with. Has the drug dealer killed anyone? If so, then arrest him. How about the obnoxious drug kingpin who lives in the gated suburbs, you know, where the drug dealer you're talking about gets his drugs from in the first place. Why can he get him? He's by far worse.KB

""If Osama himself were living there, there's nothing we could do about it.""

well, then I'm afraid this officer is out of touch with reality. He could easily do something. And if he thinks he can't then it may be because there are things called laws which prevent him from doing it. You don't like it, change the law. It's a free country, remember? You want to just give him free reign? THIS, is yet another sign of fascism.KB

13. "Sounds like the Minneapolis City Council."

This sounds like most every aspect of government. So, I have a question. Being that you probably don't have a high impression of politicians in general, I mean, who does, why is it so easy for you to jump when someone like Bush presents a one gram vile of baking soda in order to pursuade that you're in danger from a guy living in a hole half way around the world? YOU should be one of the MOST critical of anything any of these guys have to say. You don't see a contradiction in your position? You probably are ragging on "big government" all the time, right? Well, the when "big government" decides to do these things why do you feel that it's patriotic to throw your rationality and healthy skepticism out the window and start with the pro-war(the idea is profane)rallies? Please clarify.KB

14. "So Kennedy was a fascist in 1960?"

Well, he was doing very many bad things, yes. He was invading Vietnam. The U.S. invaded SOUTH Vietnam in 1961, so who decided that?KB

"And Chicago was run by fascists, too?"

Sometimes. It's not hard to determine. Just look at the above 14 characteristics and see if they fit. If it's pretty close, then, yes, they probably were showing characteristics of fascists. Do you think this guy is talking about thinking that the population is going to start wearing S.S. uniforms around the street saluting everyone? He's not. He's talking about characteristics. It looks this way in one country, and may look a little different in another. Why, do you believe the U.S. to be beyond slipping into a fascist state? We have the same genes as the Germans do. The fascist tendencies are what's to be examined and terminated before they develop too far. That's all. What's the big deal? You don't want these tendencies to develop either do you? Well, then start examining where they arise, and then do something about them. This has pretty much always been the position of the left. And when I say "the left" I don't mean Stalinist Russia, which was counter-revolutionary, as was so since 1917. They were fascists, too, and their power was warnied against by the great anarchist Bakunin years in advance. He is of the left I'm talking about. Not the slight variation between the democrats and republicans, of which there is little difference at all, both being nothing but two aspects of the one party system in the U.S., the Business Party.KB
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oj said:

"Isn't it quicker and more productive to just bang your head on your desk?"

Well, it appears that this is what you guys are already doing. I mean, look at Ted's statements above. He has no clue about what's going on in the real world, and basically, and unwittingly, just made apologetics for fascism. I'm sure you can help him, right? You may want to try and explain that there's a difference between saying that a country displays fascist characteristics and thinking they are, therefore, Nazis. This is obvious to those who don't have a fascist mindset in the first place. The thought is absurd to think otherwise. However, to those who DO have fascist tendencies, the above would appear and be interpreted as if he were saying that the U.S.=Nazi Germany. Only a fascist mind would interpret that way. Similar to those folks who think that criticism of some of U.S. foreign policy by it's very citizens somehow makes them anti-THEIR country. The entire notion is totalitarian and fascist. So, basocally, if you've had such ideas, you know, the anti-war protestors as being "anti-American", then you are either an outright fascist, or are getting pretty darn close. Well? Have you have these ideas, oj? Every call any U.S. citizen anti-American? Ever call Chomsky "anti-American"? "Anti-Semite"? ANyway, if I were you I'd stop hitting my head against the wall, it's not doing your thinking processes very well.KB
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Ted said:

"Perhaps, but I don't want to disturb the person in the cubicle next to mine."

Then don't.KB

"So, we all know many on the left consider Condoleeza Rice to be an "oreo" (i.e. black on the outside, white on the inside)."

Really? Well, that's hardly surprising. Doesn't really matter. All that matters are her ideas. If they're rightwing, then they're rightwing. I'm sure there are probably nine or ten other blacks who have decided to disregard their own histories in order to side with their captors. Or, perhaps, she just believes in the free market. There are many possibilities.KB

"Is there a similarly insulting term for women with which the left disagree (something "man with breasts" but more clever and catchy)."

Probably, but it's not important.KB

"I suppose they can't come up with one for fear of offending the transgendered community."

Well, if the transgender guy/girl can kick your butt, then I'd be careful. Anyway, see Ted? Here's a little of the homophobia and sexism described in the above characteristics.KB
=================================================
KB:

"A fine list, but it says nothing whatsoever about why YOU think that the U.S. is moving towards fascism."

That's ALL it says. It says nothing else. Everyone of the 14 characteristics are as apparent as apparent can be. All it takes is about one minute of looking around on any rightwing blog, such as this one, and seeing these ideas all over the place. Perhaps you can't see them because they are your ideas as well. You know, the old can't small your own crap idea. I'd say it's impossible NOT to see these tendencies if you have two eyes in your head, ears, or any of the other senses. It's no secret that the country has moved slightly to the right, though in terms of actual numbers it's probably far behind, over the past X number of years, and more and more extremist ideas are becoming more and more a part of the mainstream. That folks like Rush, Coulter, Hannity, etc...are on spewing forth their VERY fascistic ideas and it isn't eveb recognized as being fascistic is a VERY good sign. That middle of the roaders like Michael Moore are now considered by the right as an extremist leftist is another clear sign. He's barely out of the middle at all. He doesn't come close to being a "leftist", and yet, the rights thinking had moved so far to the right that they actually perceive him to be a Stalinist. If there one sign that the country is moving in a fascist direction THIS alone is a good one. If Moore was doing what he does now in the 1930's he would be just another guy on the block saying what most everyone esle thought. Now, he's perceived as a radical, which is beyond absurd, not to mention factually incorrect. Fortunately, most folks in the U.S. are this indoctrinated and there's enough of a streak of healthy skepticism to keep these rightwing nuts on a short leash. And if it goes too much further in this rightward, and downward, to be more accurate, direction, there will be a backlash, hopefully, before it reaches the scratching your head and wondering what went wrong stage, i.e., Germans after Hitler.KB

"Further, as Ted Welter points out so ably, each point is vague."

Ted points out nothing regarding any of the points. What the hell were you reading? The points are quite claer and are quite easy to see all over the place within the U.S. If you CAN'T see them everywhere I do say that you shuld be a little more cautious so that you don't end up being one of the head-scratchers. Ted does nothing, but to point out a few VERY slight exceptions. This is meaningless. This is like the smoker I mentioned. One can find excpetion in anything. That you're trying to perceive this in absolute terms in another sign of fascistic, or at least totalitarian, thinking which I mentioned before. These are characteristics. And they definitely DO exist in the U.S. And they should be paid attention to and fought against. It doesn't mean the entire system needs to be destroyed, another fascistic interpretation. It means that the bad parts need to be removed. If I have an infected ingrown toenail which is bothering me, and which, if not attended to will spread it's infection elsewhere, I don't commit suicide as the solution. I fix my toe. That's it. To ignore the tendencies is the dangerous thing. And you can't even begin to change them if you don't even recognize that they exist. Can't sto being an alcoholic if you don't even acknowledge that you have a drinking problem. It's exactly the same.KB

"Based on those points, one could argue that America is already a fascist state"

Oh, so you DO recognize that these characteristics exist? That's good. That's a first step. Now, all you need to do is to get rid of the things which make it so. See? It's not all that hard. Well, actually, it IS hard becau7se there are so many who don't see the characterisitics and trying to get them to, take this blog for instance, isn't very easy. They fight against it, just as the alcoholic fights against wanting to recognize his own drinking problem. And, like the alcoholic, they are often hostile to the folks wanting to help them recognize their drinking problems(believing that the therapist is trying to "get" them, or hurt them, somehow. This is the analogue to thinking that those wishing to help the U.S. are trying to hurt it, and are called "anti-American". There's little or no difference.)KB

"or that it's nowhere near - and each side would be correct."

No, it's not a 'do you see the glass half empty or half full' argument. This is a given. What you shuld be doing is looking at the empty part and trying to make it full. NOT simply focusing on the half full paert, boasting about it, thinking it makes you better than everyone else on the planet simply because you glass is bigger, making apologetics for why it's not full, etc...You job is to examine the empty and make it better. That's like the example I gave earlier of the guitar player. You focus on his weaknessness, point them out, and correct them. THIS makes him a better player. It doesn't make the teacher "anti-guitar player".KB

"It's all about interpretation, which is why I asked for your thoughts, not your shopping list."

There, you have my interpretation. I don't really see it as an interpretation as much as a simple recognition that these tendencies exist. I don't really think I'm interpreting when I say the world is round. I'm just stating an objective, easily berifiable fact. There's not much to interpret. The characteristics above are simply showing facts which are as easily observable as the world being round. The only thing to wonder about or interpret is why some folks can't see something so apparent. But then again many folks didn't believe the world was round for a long time either. Remember? Those who thought such things were heretics. Personally, I prefer the heretics. At least they're honest.KB

Posted by: kb at September 28, 2005 10:19 PM

kb:

God gave us not just the right but the moral obligation to intervene and help them. It's worked rather well.

Posted by: oj at September 28, 2005 10:43 PM
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