Written by Daniel Greenfield
With the next four years at stake, the only topic of conversation is the Race Card. The left plays the Race Card and then accuses the right of playing the Race Card. There are dogwhistles in the air that only white middle-aged pundits can hear and arguments over whose diverse lineup truly represents the philosophy of the future and whose is just shameless tokenism.
The media madhouse insists that a half-black man who went from the Illinois State Senate to the White House in 5 years is proof that we are a racist country and that Southern Europeans whose ancestors moved to this continent are an oppressed racial minority. Arguing with this insanity is a sure way to get called a racist. Ignoring this insanity means being charged with privilege. Privilege being the ungodly power to ignore someone else's assertion that privilege through victimization should begin and end every single discussion on every topic, up to and including the moon landing.
The Democratic Party and its media affiliates have become a party of trolls who only know how to hijack every discussion with an obsessive insistence that every issue can be boiled down to race and that the difference between the two parties is that one of them is racist and the other has good taste in fonts.
It's hard to know what the Democratic Party stands for anymore. All we know is that it is against racism. Never before has an entire election been run around a single negative issue that has absolutely nothing to do with the actual challenges facing the country. Instead we have the national spectacle of members of minority groups being pitted against each other by two parties to prove which of them is less racist.
There is no precedent for a country facing two major crises, an economic depression and a war at the same time, holding an election that is somehow about race. If we're going to make the 2012 election about race, then we might as well also make it about childhood obesity, green energy and all the other idiocies of a failed administration that can't tie its shoes without a bailout.
For the last three years, the left has responded to every criticism of their candidate, their party and their incompetence by bleating about racism, as if having a black candidate and a large share of the black vote makes them honorary minorities. And as if their bleating had anything to do with real issues like the unsustainable national debt and an economy that still can't get back on its feet.
The left imagines that it is somehow better than the lunatics of the Westboro Baptist Church who randomly show up at funerals screaming about homosexuality. It's not. Not when its members show up randomly brandishing nooses or dressing up as body parts and screaming about racism or sexism. There's no hint of responsible leadership in tactics like that. It's the behavior of a debating club loser who has memorized only one winning point and will shout it no matter what the issue is.
Everyone wants to prove that their ideology, whether it's showing up in the country with 50 cents and becoming successful by building a business or showing up in the country with 50 cents and becoming successful by getting a Ford Foundation grant to community organize the hell out of a local group, is universal and can apply to everyone regardless of skin color, gender, religion or fashion sense. And once we've done that, it still falls to us to deal with problems that depend on math, not race.
The real issue at stake here is whether the working class will end up being squeezed out by the government class. It's an issue that affects the rich, poor and middle class alike, and the Republicans are coming dangerously close to articulating it in between applause breaks. The Democrats would like to avoid this line of conservation as much as possible, because once the debate is fully underway, Americans will start assessing their individual economic stakes in the fight, instead of assuming that their economic interest is joined at the hip to their racial identity, gender or choice of bed partners.
Race is a distraction, but it's more than that. A false argument is like a mask. You can put it on, but after a while you can't take it off. The more time that the left spends immersed in the grammar of racial grievance, the less able it is to speak any other language. The Democrats aren't just cynical, they are also becoming illiterate and unable to articulate ideas that don't revolve around a great split between races, genders or two groups, one oppressed and one oppressing.
The Democratic Party's poverty of ideas is self-inflicted. Snide progressives may sneer at Rand, but what exactly are they packing besides TED talks and trendy books that exist to make their owners feel smart for not reading them? Democrats rarely talk about guiding philosophies now because they don't exist. They have no grand plan to make the country better. Even Alinsky is nothing but a blueprint for consolidating power in a spurt of postmodern multicultural Machiavellianism.
Progressives can rage and sneer, roar grievances and pose as the oppressed, but what do they actually believe in except the evil of their opposite numbers on the right? The Republican Party is no towering wall of ideas, but the Democratic Party has forgotten everything but bigotry. If it has to speak without relying on its racism props, then it mumbles something about marching together to the future, throws in something about families, children, technology, clean energy, environmental challenges and soaks up the applause of its captive audience.
Ask Obama why he should be reelected and he tells you that it's to "finish what we started." Not "he". For once the great ego who uses "I" like the letter is about to be removed from the alphabet resorts to "we", because he is already passing the blame to someone else. What is it that we started? No one knows. There's something about health care reform, the auto industry and killing Bin Laden. Not to mention holding Wall Street accountable in between Wall Street fundraisers and of course, protecting our values, whatever those are.
With the passing of time it becomes difficult to figure out what, if anything, the latest Democrat actually stands for. From JFK onward, there was no longer a legacy, just a strange disastrous mix of incompatible policies and spiraling destruction. The incoherence has only grown worse with time. Bill Clinton was the deregulating draft dodging radical who would occasionally bomb things when the mood suited him. John Kerry was the anti-military military man volunteering for duty to keep our country safe from military solutions. Obama is here to lead us into some vague future with lower tides, drones strikes and racism for everyone.
Obama is running on a program of bank bailouts and bank accountability, an end to wars while winning all the wars, including those he started, and including those he lost. He's running to cut our dependency on foreign oil by killing domestic drilling and make us all better people by confusing the hell out of us. This rigamarole wouldn't have gotten past Stage One in the Democratic Party two generations ago. It's barely passing muster now, only because no one is paying attention, and to make sure no one pays attention, the usual suspects troll everyone by dealing out some race cards.
There is no area of his governance that could survive a detailed 5-minute discussion with anyone who isn't a halfwit. All that's left is trolling the Republicans to cover up the basic weaknesses in an agenda so incoherent that even few of his own supporters would sign on to it. And this isn't new, it's just more shameless than ever.
Progressives have become intellectual illiterates, they have memorized reams of political diagrams and are experts on the sufferings of obscure people in obscure places. They pride themselves on thinking that they know all the secret sufferings of the waitress who brings them their check, but this tawdry New Age empathy does not translate into an ability to help her or to help anyone else. They are forever priding themselves on their willingness to help people and using that pride to justify their own wealth and power. They are always on the verge of helping someone, but they never get done helping themselves.
Race atones for this sin and for all sins. It answers all objections, it fills in the giant gaps in their knowledge and competence. It is a disguise that they once put on, but can no longer take off. It has become their reason for being. It is the one subject that is so simple and elemental that they can thoroughly control it. Poverty is complicated. So are jobs and wars. Race however is simple. There are bad people and there are good people. The oppressed and the oppressors. And that paradigm, that one talking point that they store up and unleash at every occasion is the sum total of their contribution to every debate under the sun.
Their race card is as big as America now. It is America. There is no longer an America for them, just a collection of race cards that they shuffle and deal and shuffle again, playing solitaire with themselves until the economy goes down. In their America it is always 1963 in Birmingham. It will always be Birmingham, 1963, even for those who have never been to Birmingham and who did not even exist on this planet in 1963.
Birmingham, 1963, is a myth to them. A story that they want to be part of. It is their version of the Warrior's Tale. The one that isn't true, but that inspires the younger members of the tribe to be like the mythical warrior. It is the story that they tell us incessantly because they don't really know they are or we are anymore. All they know is that the story makes them better than us. They don't know where they are going or where they have been, only that they are marching forward to some bright future. And that the very act of marching forward means that they are progressive and makes them into the children of the future.
And the economy? Who cares about that...
From NY to Jerusalem, Daniel Greenfield Covers the Stories Behind the News