This is probably my last word on the KFO/JC dispute, and a clarification of some of the issues that came up during ergo's helpful questioning of my stance yesterday.
1. Many differences between powerful forces are mere spectacle, meant to differentiate what are generally similar and either complimentary products or substitutes. LBJ and Wilson as "peacemakers," for example. Bush campaigning against other Republicans as "compassionate."
2. There are nevertheless distinctions to be made within camps and between them. I can and will compare and contrast religious, martial, and financial camps within the Republican Party. Is some of this played up, as mentioned in Point One? Yes. Does this make it unreal? Not necessarily.
3. The "we're/they're not holding Office X" line is a canard and plays into the spectacular nature of democracy in general. The change-overs in 1980, 1992, 2000, and 2008 were all opportunities to ditch baggage, not just for the elected but especially for the departed! It's like a karmic rinse, and our cultural amnesia helps this.
4. Criticism of one side is not always playing into the hands of the other side, and this stems, at least in part, from the game of the duopoly. The narrative goes that things are zero-sum, that what is bad for one is good for the other. Tar the other guy with the brush just stuck to me and I succeed. Right? Fucking wrong. An example:
Republicans have used Clinton's support of the Iraq War to justify their own handling of it. "I don't know why you're bitching; you were all in support of it in 2003." Likewise, a Republican partisan could mention Clinton's deregulation of the banks in order to deflect criticism of Bush's tax-cuts and war spending. (They don't, of course, because that would fly in the face of both their narrative "libewals hate business" and the liberals narrative "we protect the little guy.")
That a partisan can take a hostile truth about an enemy and use it to their advantage does not make it any less a truth.
I have repeatedly cited Clinton's deregulation as a contributor to the "Bush" recession. That may appear to play into the Republican effort. I could be accused of serving Republican goals. But you'd be wrong and I'd tell you so. I can bash whoever the fuck I want, whenever the fuck I want to, and I'll be fucking right.
5. Criticism of one faction should stand alongside a comprehensive understanding of how other contemporaries act. Saying things like "Obama owns the economy" or "Bush started us down a path of" blah blah blah horrible horrible is obviously simplifying and being a fucking hack.
That said, might I say something with complete respect?
Karl? If you ask me, it seems like your Point One, probably unwittingly, grants Mr. Crow's point. If there is anti-imperialism in Buchanan's statements, and these were present in the nascent Tea Party, that's laudable. But is it unfair to mention that that anti-imperialism either existed alongside or sprang from nativism, from Buchanan's profound distrust of nonwhites coming to this country and shifting its culture, as his Irish bug ancestors themselves did?
And likewise, is there not a bit of hypocrisy in the laissez-faire chanting lashed to nativist opposition to illegal immigration and immigration of poor laborers who, ahem, drive wages down in keeping with laissez-faire economic self-interest on the part of the people who have funded the paleocons and the right-libertarians at the Cato Institute, tracing a line perhaps all the way back to the radical anti-populism and conspiracism of the John Birch Society and other Christianist nativists of the right-wing?
And is this inconsistent with an attempt to reveal the "humanitarians" and "internationalists" of liberal circles to likewise be frauds, imperialists, and puppets of the ruling class?