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More Czars than the U.S.S.R?
That was one of the signs present at the tea party in D.C. today held by the right wingers. If you don't get why its so funny then it might mean you're a conservative nut job. Frankly, what seems to be fueling some of the fury by the right is their total ignorance of history, government, politics and even current events. This is to be expected when you narrow your information sources down to a handful of talking heads pushing an emotion fueled agenda.
Even a basic reading of world history (.. and I'm not even a big history buff -- I just like documentaries) would have informed you that the Czar of Russia was kicked out by the Bolshevik revolution which lead to the formation of the U.S.S.R. But then again, most of my debates with right wingers has been woefully devoid of facts about either current or historical events from their side. Even looking back a few years to the Bush administration days might inform their opinions about how our country got into its current economic dilemma. You cannot undertake a costly overseas war and not expect it to come out of taxpayer pockets in the long run. But magically, they never see the Iraq war as being a huge financial burden to everyone in this country. Somehow a healthcare overhaul that will end up saving Americans money on their healthcare costs will send us careening into the great abyss but an utterly pointless war that has trapped us in Iraq as a seemingly perpetual peace keeping force doesn't ever cost us a dime?
Go figure. But idealistic integrity has never been a right wing strong point. Its part of why I never debate them anymore. If you can never agree on the very basic idea of what constitutes reality, what is the point? So, if the Czars ran the Soviet Union, polar ice caps are melting as a giant plot to perpetuate the hoax of climate change, the United States was founded as a Christian theocracy for European immigrants, dinosaurs really existed in Biblical times, gay people can all just magically decide not to be gay anymore, or many other delusional fantasies, does it really make sense to try to debate the finer points of public policy? I don't think so. There has to be a common framework of reality in order for two people to have a rational discussion.
This is why education is so important. Recently Obama wanted to speak to American schoolchildren in a televised message. The right wingers blew their top yet again and insisted that the President was trying to promote leftist policies. Of course, there is a good debate to be had about the role of the president in addressing schoolchildren but the real threat to the right wingers is that their kids might learn science, history or even critical thought and rational thinking. This would almost certainly lead them to turn away from right wing thought, notions of white and/or American and/or Christian exceptionalism, religious doctrines in general, and all manner of logical fallacies that somehow pass as right wing "arguments". Education in the arts, sciences and history, though not a guarantee, is a fairly effective way to turn anyone into a raving liberal.
There's plenty of room for debate about various issues. What should healthcare look like in this country? What are the reasons for climate change and what would be an effective way to eliminate them without turning the world upside down? What are rational solutions to real problems and how can avoid potential pitfalls that might lead to further problems or unintended consequences?
But for those marching on Washington D.C. this week the problem is one of information. They choose to inform themselves in ways that make them more ignorant. Garbage in, gargabe out. Without a good grasp of reality someone can always tell you what the problem is and who is to blame.
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