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The road to prison: paved with good intentions

By Michael J. Smith on Monday April 16, 2007 09:26 AM

J Alva Scruggs has been, he says, "snooping on the liberal blogs" and has some observations:


"At the mighty Correntewire, Chicago Dyke gets an interview with Helen Thomas(and learns, among other things, that Ms. Thomas does a little blog-reading, but not a lot): "Asked about the probability of a Constitutional crisis brought on by the reality of a new Democratic majority, Ms. Thomas isn't bubbling about the Democrats. They are "too chicken" to really "go to the mat on the issues" and too "concerned with the elections (of 2008)," nor are they willing to "stick their necks out" to do what is right. Worst of all, they "don't feel that strongly" about the immorality of the war and other conditions created by the administration. Keeping their positions is the true motivation for most Democrats, and little else.""


That careerism and moral blindness gives liberals one hell of a lever, should they ever choose to use it. They're obviously not stupid. I know it's occurred to them. I've read their discussions about how much more useful a dedicated minority representation would be. A majority of them know that a big, flabby, careerist majority is only as good as the most cretinous component claque. But they seem an awful lot like people whose homes have been robbed so often that they can think of little other than working out ways to delay the next robbery. The cheerleading and accolades they give each are nice enough for comfort in a sisyphean effort. They'd be far more useful to them in establishing a balking bloc that does a little thumping.

David Graeber, an anthropologist recently eighty-sixed from Yale for taking principles seriously, has written about people's good intentions and more altruistic inspirations being used as levers against them, for control. That seems intuitive to me and I think an element of it applies to the situation in which liberals are caught. The shameless ankle biting of the cruise missile liberals and the moralizing bludgeons of the junior varsity perception managers does the rest.

Comments (6)


great line about the "lib-prog" base

" they seem an awful lot like people whose homes have been robbed so often that they can think of little other than working out ways to delay the next robbery"

i agree
its not lesser evil
they advocate
its slower evil
retarded evil
learning disabled evil

competent at being incompetent at evil

an evil that don't come around so often
and is ham strung by mission adhd
and the epillepsy
triggered by the bad faith
value tumors
in their upper thinkery


Owen, you often mention the joys of job actions and extracting a better deal from miserable bastards. I'm a morbid fellow, but I can still recall a taste of that. It can be good sport, or much bigger with a not too onerous bit of organizational drudgery. It really wouldn't take more than a couple of hours a week, if a sufficient number of people saw some good in it. The only downside is the persistence of the status quo.


i hope to live to see
a great job site uprising
roll across our blessed land

no i won't be its moses
my time has past
the young lion
is now itchy brother

but i'll sure root toot toot

re: A Great Job Site Uprising

You and I both, pal, but...somehow, I have near-zero hope of that, as through the twenty-odd years I've actually worked at actual jobs and been involved in political activism, I can tell you that American workers are the most intimidated, easily-dominated, spineless, and all-around pussywhipped lot of workers I can think of on this entire planet. It's bad enough that geezing old outfits like the AFL-CIA...uh, CIO can't even wrap their heads around the fact that these days, we're all dealing with pretty much the same issues at our jobs, and that we're all "working class" today, but it's compounded by the fact that hardly a worker lives in this country who's got the balls to stand up and strike back and fight like a goddamn' Palestinian, like an Iraqi, like their backs are to the wall and they've got nothing left to lose.

The one thing I thought was worse than all the workers being screwed out of health insurance and seniority and wages and benefits by the likes of Enron and others, worse than all the retirees being screwed out of their pensions after working all their lives, was the fact that there was not one office/factory takeover, not one riot, not one executive assassinated, not a single one of the people responsible for this misery found themselves in even the slightest fear of being made to pay the way they need to be made to pay for what they've done.

This is why -- call it callous if you want -- I actually see a bit of good news in the prospect of war in Iran, the resumption of the draft, foreclosures skyrocketing. Perhaps pampered, fussed-over-by-politicians-and-pundits Middle America just hasn't suffered enough. Perhaps all this is more of what we need to get Mr. and Mrs. America pissed off and in the streets instead of sitting on the goddamn' sofa bitching about the American Idol voting and pretending everything's OK.

Basically, anything that makes it tougher for fat-assed, cushy-living-through-debt Middle America to pretend everything's OK is fine with me.


yo mike,

Pick up the gun and GO!


mike, i think jobster
on site
is a matter of at most
a few more turns
of the corporate screw

standing up
to the corporation that "employs u "
is really no big sweat
once you come to terms with
the worst case scenario

the worse the man can do
is fire u

hell i've been fired or laid off 6 times iirc

big fuckin deal
if your not planning on climbing
the corporate monkey bars ....

nothing one shitty job has over the next

they're all about the same

what we need is a big bunch of raw recruits
youngish or oldish people
maybe a million or so
with no career
no mortgage or credit card debt
no babies not even youngins
no scared life partner
no illegalities to hide

and cut em loose
on walmart planter's peanut
curcuit city and the like

run em thru those places
raising the message
we must organize around here
which 75% of employees believe already
according to the polls

tactics this time
will prolly not look
much like those of the industrial era

my guess they'll look
more like sncc tactics
then flint's sit down

(though back in the factory sector
why gm/delco recently
hasn't been hit with
a sit down wave
like 37 freaks me out )

basic point

the struggle is against the job axe
and its made of light rubber

so show no fear

if aenough do
then soon the rest will show no fear

as peter points out

we need organization too

we need
not just unco ordinated symbolic
job site martyrdoms
not just jobikazees
but extreme org ronin too

folks experienced in struggle
ready to help
"pissed off" job sites
" self organize"

re read
any decent chronicle
of the civil rights movement
or far better
india in the 20-40's

jobster liberation movement

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