December 5th, 2022 News,October 2010,Racism,USA
With less than 3 weeks left before the upcoming Midterm elections, the US political scene resembles Wonderland as described by Lewis Carroll. One cannot help but to think of the Mad Tea Party scene from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Moreover, it seems as if politics have fallen down the rabbit hole which began Alice’s delirious trek into a world of madness.
There seems to be a common denominator to many Tea Party Republican candidates during this election campaign. That common denominator is sociopath and in some cases psychopathic behavior. In other words, they seem to inherit chronic anti-social pyschotic tendencies. From New York to Arizona Tea Party endorsed Republican candidates have been exposed as persons who have neither the sense nor value for human beings.
Carl Paladino, the Republican gubernatorial candidate for New York State, has campaigned on a platform of social destruction. He has bluntly promised to cut Medicaid, the government health insurance scheme for poor citizens unable to afford private health insurance, to the tune of twenty billion dollars during his first year as governor. He has also suggested that welfare recipients be placed in prison where they will “learn personal hygenie.” Earlier this week, as he addressed a Hasidic congregation, he lashed out against homosexuality. Contrasting himself against his Democrat opponent, Andrew Cuomo, Paladino boosted that he hadn’t attended the Gay Pride parade. “That’s not the example we should be showing our children.” He elaborated further saying that children shouldn’t be “brainwashed into thinking that homosexuality is an equally valid and successful option.” Paladino would have been the most distinguished foreign guest had he attended the anti-Gay Family March held this past weekend in Belgrade.
Jim Russell, another Tea Party candidate running for a congressional seat in the Empire State was discovered to have written an essay in 2001 for journal where he denounced racial integration with the concern that mixed raced schools and neighbourhoods encouraged interracial dating. “One wonders how a child’s sexual imprinting mechanism is affected by forcible racial integration and near continual exposure to media stimuli promoting interracial contact.” Note how both Paladino and Russell wish to instill sociopath tendencies in children in the name of protecting children!
Meanwhile, a Tea Party congressional candidate in Ohio has been outed as a closet Nazi. Rich Iott for years participated in re-enactments of Nazi military operations during the Second World War, where he dressed in a SS uniform. Rather than resigning from the election, Iott defended his actions and that of the Nazis. Iott claimed that the Nazi’s offered to protect Europe from Communism and therefore, the Nazis were defenders of European freedom. If that isn’t alarming enough, despite denunciations from the Republican National Committee, the Toledo and Lucas County Republican party have not denounced Iott nor have withdrawn their endorsements.
It appears that the East Coast Tea Party candidates are much more liberal than their comrades in arms on the West Coast. Sharron Angle, the Republican candidate for Nevada‘s Senate race, has a political background more deranged than Paladino, Russell and Lott combined. Angle not only wants to deny abortions to 13 year old raped by their fathers (family values at their very best!), but she also wants to abolish the Federal Department of Education. Moreover, she wants to bring back Prohibition of alcohol. Like Paladino, she’s not only an incorrigible homophobe, but at one time proscribed to the notion that Sodomy lead to the ruin of the country but also HIV could be spread through the water .Before entering politics as a Republican, Angle was a member of the Independent American Party during the 1990s. While a member, the party undertook a campaign to legalise discrimination against gay and lesbian people in employment and housing.
In Colorado, Tea Party politician Ken Buck believes that rape isn’t a crime, so long as the rapist is neither Black nor Latino. As a District Attorney in 2005, Buck refused to investigate or prosecute an alleged rapist despite repeated appeals from the victim. “A jury could very well conclude that this is a case of buyer’s remorse,” he told the Greeley Tribune in March 2006. He went on to publicly call the facts in the case “pitiful.” Earlier during the Primary campaign against his female Republican candidate, he boasted he was more qualified simply because he didn’t “wear high heels.” Like Angle, his views on abortion are psychopathic. “I am pro-life, and I’ll answer the next question. I don’t believe in the exceptions of rape or incest. I believe that the only exception, I guess, is life of the mother. And that is only if it’s truly life of the mother.”
Try as hard as their members and supporters to deny it, the Tea Party movement is nothing less than fascist. These are not just a few isolated examples. There are many more. However, many of the high profile Tea Party candidates are running in important races which will impact millions of citizens and residents of the country. The Tea Party movement is reactionary to the core. American voters should think not only twice but thrice before pulling the lever for the Tea Party candidates. In spite of the frustration and disappointment many Americans feel about President Obama and the congressional Democrats, voting for the Tea Party will place the United States on a direct path to disintegration.
December 5th, 2022 News,October 2010,USA
The extreme rhetoric and politics of many Tea Party candidates for the upcoming Midterm elections have alarmed many Democrats, liberals and moderates. They are not alone. The statements and disclosures of many Republican Tea Party candidates in recent weeks have also caused many GOP leaders to be extremely leery as well. High ranking Republicans, including former New York City mayor Rudy Guiliani and George W. Bush‘s speech writer David Frum, have repudiated and have denounced many Tea Party candidates running for their party. The RNC (Republican National Committee) has been forced to distance, and in some instances, withdraw support from congressional and gubernatorial candidates. Many of these Republicans fear that the Tea Party movement is damaging the Republican brand. While the party expects and hopes to win big in the upcoming elections, some are apprehensive about the long term prospects for the party, particularly the Presidential race in 2012. They fear that the Tea Party is to the extreme right of the electorate and will alienate moderates as well as independents alike.
Already in this election, two of the most prominent Tea Party candidates in the Northeast are almost certain to go down in flames. Carl Paladino, the Tea Party gubernatorial candidate for New York State, has all but been abandoned by that state’s GOP organisation. There are fears that Paladino will not only get crushed at the polls but that his crash will smash the entire Republican ticket in New York State, possibly sabotaging the party’s prospect of regaining control of the State Senate which had almost seemed certain at the beginning of the year. After Paladino’s remarkable homophobic outburst, former New York City mayor Rudy Guiliani denounced Paladino’s statements has “highly offensive”. Christine O’Donnell, Delaware’s Tea Party Senatorial candidate looks well on her way to get laughed out of the First State. Her stunning ignorance of the First Amendment of the US Constitution, which enshrines the principle of the separation of church and state, as well as her agenda to replace scientific Evolution with Creationist teaching in public schools has all but guaranteed that her opponent, Democrat Chris Coons, will wipe her out with a near 20 point landslide. The Tea Party is certain to get crashed on the shores off the Chesapeake Bay. Truthfully, the Tea Party didn’t have the proverbial snowball’s chance in Hell to succeed in the most liberal region of the country.
The most venomous denunciation of the Tea Party came from the most unexpected corner. David Frum, the speech writer of former President George W. Bush, has launched devastating broadsides into the Tea Party movement. In an extraordinary interview with the BBC, Frum castigated the GOP for even letting Tea Party candidates win the Primary elections. Frum is worried that the Tea Party will tarnish the Republican party as a bastion of bigotry, exclusion and intolerance. He has called out and derided the racism of the Tea Party movement and its candidates. Frum didn’t mince his words. “We are offering a politics of cultural protest at a time when Americans need a politics of economic leadership…. We have nothing to say to the unemployed, except that we will balance the budget very fast, even though we have no plan to balance the budget very fast.” Frum went on dismiss the economic platform of his party’s Pledge to America as nonsense. “None of these plans work,” he said with an air of annoyed vexation. Frum went further: “We are offering racially coded appeals that are going to define the Republican party for a generation of young voters as a party that attacked President Obama, not because he spent too much and regulated too much, but as some Kenyan interloper who was trying to impose an alien ideology on his own country.” Frum then launched a cruise missile attack and declared war on Sarah Palin, the Vice Presidential candidate in the the 2008 election and former Governor of Alaska, who has since become the self anointed leader of the Tea Party movement. He flatly declared that Palin “has irretrievably proven she’s not up to the job of being president of the United States.”
What is one to make of these developments? First of all it’s clear that much of the GOP establishment fears being taken over and ousted by the Tea Party movement. The second point is that many older Republican Party members find themselves as Dr. Frankenstein. Since the election of Richard Nixon in 1968, the Republican Party has never hesitated to employ race bating tatics against the Democrats. In 1980, Ronald Reagan’s presidential campaign took off after campaigning at a segregationist festival in Philadelphia, Mississippi. George H.W. Bush infamously won the 1988 Presidential campaign with the Willie Horton ad, by scaring white Americans into believing that if Michael Dukakis were elected, he would have emptied the prisons allowing Black men to rape and kill white women. His son went on to steal the 2000 election by preventing thousands of Blacks from voting and throwing out the ballots of those who actually managed to vote. Hence, Frum is not being completely honest with his criticisms. Paul Craig Roberts, the father of Reaganomics and Assistant Treasury Secretary under Reagan, has written a series of essays repenting for the economic and social policies that he and his party have implemented over the past of 30 years.
There are objective political factors with which the GOP establishment have come to terms with. Though the George W. Bush administration was the most right wing and reactionary administration in nearly a century, it was the first administration that reflected the contemporary demographics of the country. Bush appointed Colin Powell, the first Black Secretary of State. He also appointed Condoleezza Rice, the first Black and woman as National Security Advisor who was subsequently promoted to Secretary of State. Bush also appointed Alberto Gonzalez, the first Latino Attorney General. While many believed that these appointments were merely cynical and opportunistic, if not hypocritical window dressing, there were in fact, real political calculations behind them. The Republican Party suffers from a gender and racial gap vis-a-vis the Democrats. Women have been, generally speaking, alienated by the Republican party’s opposition to the Equal Rights Amendment and the right of reproductive choice. George W. Bush barely received 10% of the Black vote. On the evening of the 2002 Midterm elections, one prominent South Carolina Republican politician noted his party’s failure to win 10% of the Black vote in a state where they comprise 30% of the population. He warned that the GOP had to attract Black voters or else the party would vanish within 20 years. Moreover, the Latino vote, particularly in Florida and Texas, had boosted the fortunes of the party during the Bush years, only to abandon it in droves in 2008. The lost of that vote was, in large measure, due to the party’s scapegoating of and criminalization of Latinos as illegal immigrants and unwelcome in the country.
The Tea Party movement foreshadows ominous political developments for the Republican Party as well as for the country as a whole. The statements of Frum and other senior GOP figures signify the coming division and possible break up of the party. The Tea Party may propel the GOP to to victory this year but the battle lines are being drawn. What is certain, however, is that the United States is fast approaching political turbulence which will have unknown knock on effects for both the Democrats and Republicans.
December 5th, 2022 Global issues,News,October 2010,Serbia
This past weekend, Belgrade was the scene of protests and violence as Serbia held its first ever Gay Parade. On Saturday October 9th, up to 20,000 people held an anti-Gay protest demonstration. The protest while boisterous and rowdy was calm in comparison to what had occured the following day. On Sunday October 10th, the Gay Parade was took place with lots of violence. On that day, Belgrade resembled a war zone.
A wide swath of central Belgrade from Knez Mihajlova in downtown to Kalenic Market at the edge of the city centre was ruined. Shop windows were broken and goods from boutiques were looted. Half of the ruling Democratic Party Headquarters on Krunska street was burnt to the ground. Hooligans inflicted more than one million Euros in property damage. Property damage was the least of the trouble. According to local media reports more than 140 persons were injured including up to 80 police officers. Police made more than 250 arrests with another 300 persons wanted.
Unlike 2009, when the government was forced to cancel the parade with the reason that it could not gurantee the safety of parade participants and the general public as well, this year was a vast improvement as the police were performed their job properly fully protected the gay parade members. As Belgrade was invaded mostly by anti-gay rioters who swarmed into the city from remote villages and towns in Serbia spreading fear, hatred as they launched Molotov cocktails, the supporters of the gay parade had their party inside the confines of Belgrade’s Student Culture Centre. The party was scheduled to end at 3pm but ended 90 minutes earlier as thousands of violent homophobes waited for the party to end in order to kill. At the conclusion of the party police took the supporters by police vans and drove them safely out of harms way. The most remarkable thing on a day of remarkable events was that not one Gay participant nor their allies were injured.
However, one must draw the correct conclusions about what occured over the weekend in Belgrade. There are many questions regrading the government’s decision to allow the parade as well as questions as to who was actually behind the organisation of the Gay Parade in the first place. Why had the government reacted like this? After all, it had only a year ago they cancelled the parade yet this year they acted like someone who does care about gay rights. In all honesty, the government doesn’t give a damn about gays and lesbian opression but being under the pressure of the West and EU it was forced to act. Homophobia is very deep and if the government really cared about their rights they would make it happen in some other way. Serbia isn’t ready for this. Having a Gay Parade endangers the public. It is dangerous for racial minorities to go outside during the parade as the hooligans use the Gay parade as a pretext to attack and kill Gypsies and foreigners. Last year four foreigners were attacked on the streets of Belgrade in the week leading up to the parade date, including a French citizen who was killed. Moreover, it is dangerous for the general public to go out at all during the parade. For example 3 public buses were hijacked by the anti-gay protesters. This caused fear, anxiety and disruption to passengers and bus drivers alike.
Then there is the very troubling fact of the matter is that less than 1% of all gays and lesbians in this city and country actually participated or organised the parade. When speaking with gays and lesbians, not one of them knew who were the organisers of the parade. Given the fact that Belgrade’s gay and lesbian community is quite small, it’s revealing that none of them participated in the organisation or marched in the parade itself. Indeed, most of the gays and lesbians questioned were suspicious about the intent and all of them refused to attend. During the weekend most gays and lesbians didn’t venture outside as they feared for their safety. The result was that the Gay Parade actually increased repression against them rather than liberating them This parade was organised by Western NGOs and by foreign governments. For example, the Norwegian embassy was one the biggest financial contributors of the Gay Parade. This parade changed nothing for the day to day reality of gays and lesbians in this country. They continue to be persecuted. They remain forced in the closet. They will continue to suffer ostracisation from society and family. This had more to do with Geo-politics than with fundamental human rights. It is not far fetched to believe this was stage managed to further undermine Serbia’s image abroad. Serbia is tainted as a homophobic country when in reality Serbia isn’t any more or less homophobic than any other Eastern European country. Poland , Bosnia and Russia have the same levels of violence and discrimination against gays and lesbians as Serbia. That is not to mention the deep strains of homophobia which is found in the Caribbean, Latin America, Africa, the Middle East not to mention in many parts of the United States.
With that said, homophobia is a problem in Serbia. (No less than 90% of the reporters’ friends and associates are homophobic which trully reveals the depth of anti-homosexual sentiment in this country.) One protester was asked about his attitude and his personal issue with gays and lesbians answered: “They endanger the public morals.”
Serbia held it’s first Gay Parade but at a terrible cost. Gays and lesbians of this country must take their rights into their own hands. They need to organise without the help of foreign governments and NGOs. Gays, Lesbians and their allies from other countries must give their solidarity and help to organise Gay and Lesbian resistance. Having a parade is not going to enhance their human and political rights. New York’s Gay Pride was the result of resistance to police repression. Gays and Lesbians fought for the right to have Gay Pride after militant direct action. Militant struggle comes before parades of Pride. Nonetheless, the rights of gays and lesbians has a long way to go before they are accorded the minimum amount of toleration in Serbia.