The erosion of morality no longer a conservative preoccupation

The Left are the moral defenders today, beardy thinker Slavoj Zizek says on youtube, not the Right. I’d like to echo some of his thoughts here. His remarkable ideas have had me thinking for days. The Right talk of the erosion of rights and liberty. Yet – leaving rights related to social policy aside, which conservatives generally oppose – the Left are protecting the workers and the common people; the Right’s economic policy undermines worker rights.

Part of John Kerry’s policy platform running against George W. **** in the middle of the last decade was to return multinational corporation jobs to American territory, rather than farming them out. The same argument has been embraced more recently by US conservatives. A tax regime both punitive and incentivising could easily undermine outsourcing culture. It’s not something one would have expected to hear from a Democrat, but it was pro-industry as well as pro-worker in many respects. 

Increasing the wealth of the one percent is something that conservatives, in the main, support – and economic growth, when it happens, is clearly a mere epiphenomenon of this, as recent history shows. The Woolly Haired, Woolly Minded Man who’s hoodwinked his way into politics has taken on jobs in the past where he insisted on drawing a salary and expenses when the business was not there to justify it. Because he’s worth it. He is typical of the one percent in that regard.

Conservatives talk about the erosion of order; even famous philosophers and screenwriters (thinkers in the “Liberal Arts” community) have been bemoaning and highlighting the inability of institutions – in medicine, church and state – to exert control or at least to speak with authority today, for quite some time.

Zizek – who advocates the good manners which I avoid here – discusses the background to society; he wouldn’t want to live in a world where every day he’s arguing that “Rape is wrong.” It should be assumed in any decent society that rape is absolutely unacceptable. But the conservative element in the United States has led to public acceptance of torture – that people now have to wake up every day to declare “Torture is wrong.” By the same rationale, we wouldn’t want to live in Saudi, to tell people every day “You know, women are safer and better drivers than men, all across the planet. They should be allowed to drive.”

And yet again, Woolly Head implies a return to the waterboarding techniques of George **** Jr. It is now the norm to talk of such things, a testament to how eroded people’s rights have apparently become, living in the shadow of terror – that they feel the need to half-drown suspects – in order to re-adjust society to a point that they regard as acceptable.

Torture notwithstanding, the man with the woolly hair and the woolly mind makes some reasonable arguments. 

He says he would collaborate more with Russia. The US places Missile Defence Systems or its Shield (or whatever it is) on Russia’s border so that America can aim some of its payload towards Tehran? Obama told Medvedev he would abandon this project once he was re-elected, but this was before the invasion of Ukraine. 

Still: If Khruschev had brought his missiles to Cuba and told the US that he was actually aiming them at fascists in Latin America, would Kennedy have found that acceptable?

What about the US Navy policing China’s nearby waters, in order to protect the Japanese and the Filipinos, and to support Japan’s right to stategically important disputed islands? Some would argue that these disputed islands’ history of ownership is linked with Japan’s pre-WW2 imperial aggression. 

So isn’t it a little rich to defend the country’s right to such things? Couldn’t this lead to nuclear conflict? 

Japan had been opened up to trade in the 1850s by the US, while the British subsequently helped to train and build its navy.

There was – apparently – a famine in Korea in the 1880s, while the Japanese were attempting to remove that peninsula from the Qing dynasty’s sphere of influence. It led to rioting and the deaths of Japanese representatives at their Korean outpost, for which the Japanese demanded reparations. Relations with China didn’t improve – and the Japanese eventually beat them in a war which resulted in their taking of the islands in 1895.

Note how much of this was caused by the grubby hands of the white man keen to sell his Coke and guns, who – like Saddam a century later – ended up bombing the shit out of a former ally to end a war.

So Mr Woolly Head’s instinctive isolationism sounds as appealing as ****’s had, pre-9-11, which is – in fact – very appealing. Not because Hills wouldn’t start World War Three with her finger on the button. She’s very unlikely to, and will probably do more good internationally than harm, even if the drones continue to target terrorists and cause collateral damage. Because let the children die! But a woolly-brained moron as leader of the free world should be left to play in his own backyard.

**** told the world in a post 9-11 press conference that Bin Laden was Wanted Dead or Alive. His aides – smarter than the **** himself – scrambled to wrap up the talk before he made any further gaffes that would expose him as a dullardly mind-numbing psychopath in front of the international community. The reaction from the international community should have been one of derision. The reaction from the US media should have been far more critical. But – as Mr Zizek suggests – it is now not only acceptable to talk like that. It is expected. It is the norm. It is the norm for Mr Woolly Brains to hint that a member of the gun lobby could assassinate his political rival. The nastiness of the American Right – its horrific gloss of acceptability – is the reason why it was more politically astute for Obama to kill Osama than to arrest him, and then kill him.

**** similarly famously suggested to Tony Blair that the US could bomb the Al Jazeera TV network headquarters. He wanted to destroy a Muslim-run international news outlet which included David Frost among its big names, for reporting the facts of the War on Terror.

With a similar but far less ludicrous proposal, Mr Woolly Head wants to sue the pants off media outlets. Look at how vile the British tabloids have been, and frequently still are, post-Leveson. The US media is generally far more mannerly. But if First Amendment details were re-interpreted – and defamation and libel laws made far stricter – the media might actually have to do their jobs more thoroughly, and expose Mr Woolly Mind’s mendacity on pain of penury. He’s an incorrigible liar. He’s not a bad egg beyond his documented racism, petulance and misogyny – he just plays to the gallery. But Mr Woolly’s sense of entitlement to office could destroy the planet. So I’d love to see the media try to prove in a court of law that he is – like his Republican predecessor – a complete, genuine, total, epic ****.

Leave a Reply