Posts Tagged 'Karl Rove'

Ramblings on Palin’s Real America and Us Versus Them

 In 2001, President George Bush, in regard to the so-called war on terror, said, “You’re either with us or you’re against us…,” laying the groundwork for a cultural divisiveness that has become larger than any sense of country that we all share as Americans. And what’s most frightening is that the “you’re either with us or against us” mind set has become the norm rather than the anomolous, embarrassing, temporary blot on our collective soul that it should be. Now, the McCain campaign is carrying the torch, perhaps all the way to the next White House.

 Bush’s words encouraged us to judge one another’s motives and allegiances, for, after all, if we didn’t agree with the commander in chief, then we were being unpatriotic. If we didn’t support the invasion of Iraq, a country that had nothing to do with September 11 or any other terrorism threat at the time, then we were unpatriotic. If we didn’t rush to thrust the youngest and bravest of us into the line of firearms and bombs and beheadings in that sovereign nation, then we were not supporting those youngest and bravest of us——those troops—-and we were being unpatriotic. If we didn’t support tax cuts for the wealthiest among us in a time of war so that the rest of us could, once again, have the financial proof that trickle-down economics does not work, then we were unpatriotic.

And so it has continued for the past 7 years, from illegal wiretapping and spying on you and me in our telephone conversations and e-mails to firing government officials who refused to randomly investigate only Democrats for voter fraud that wasn’t voter fraud to snubbing anyone whose first language was not English. Our government has continued to foster an “us versus them” perspective.

The McCain/Palin campaign is now continuing to encourage that divisive, incendiary, destructive train of thought. In one of her latest campaign speeches, Palin spoke of small-town America as the “real” America, once again trying to divide our country into those who are patriotic, that is, those who agree with the McCain/Palin vision for this country, and those who are not patriotic, that is, those whose vision for this country does not include privatizing Social Security, taxing us on our employer-offered health benefits, and providing Socialist welfare to corporate America.

When George Bush did it, I dismissed it as “well, it’s George Bush.” I, as well as so many other Americans, came to view whatever Mr. Bush said as the opposite of what was really going on in his mind and behind our backs——–and he never disappointed me. When he said that he was a uniter, it turned out that he was a divider. When he said that wiretapping was always done with a warrant, it turned out that he was spying on Joe six-pack without warrants. And when he pressed on with his “us versus them” idea, it was just another day at the office. Maybe he was using the old divide and conquer routine.

Is that what Senator McCain and Governor Palin are trying to do now, divide and conquer? That sort of tactic can be successful if executed properly, with a surgeon’s precision and an Olympian’s skill. George Bush, Karl Rove, and Dick Cheney have that skill and that precision. The proof is in the state our poltical discourse. They laid a solid foundation for the Republican candidate. But is that the kind of country we want?  Do we really want it to be you’re either with us or you’re against us? Isn’t anyone else tired of the “I’m right, and you’re wrong—and un-American” line? Do we want our leaders to encourage a distrust, a sort of neighbor-versus-neighbor kind of America? 

It sort of reminds me of the Civil War.