Tag Archives: class

Warren fights for the working class while Walker calls us terrorists

CPAC shows how the GOP’s 2016 strategy of avoiding the MSM could backfire

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Md., Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Reuters and Associated Press photos

Koched-up Repugnican Tea Party Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker on Thursday, in his braying before the annual Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland (as pictured above), compared the thousands and thousands of Wisconsinites who converged on Wisconsin’s Capitol four years ago to oppose his decimation of the working class and the middle class to the terrorists who comprise ISIS

There is a receptive audience to Wisconsin Repugnican Tea Party Gov. Scott Walker’s recent indirect but sure comparison of members of the working class and middle class who want union protection from the likes of the Koched-up Walker’s billionaire sugar daddies to the terrorists who comprise ISIS.*

That audience, of course, would be the Repugnican Tea Party.

Anyone who would dare oppose the continued decimation of the American middle class and working class by our plutocratic overlords surely is an anti-American terrorist. The hallmark of the teatards, in fact, is that they do the plutocrats’ bidding for them by bashing the working class and middle class.

I saw this with my own eyes at a pro-working-class rally here in Sacramento that was in solidarity with Wisconsin four years ago, in late February 2011, when Wisconsin’s capital was afire with thousands and thousands of protesters trying to protect their livelihoods and families from Walker’s right-wing, pro-plutocratic, anti-populist assault on their labor rights.

The plutocrats, of course, weren’t there taunting those of us who were there at the rally at California’s state Capitol to support labor rights. No, it was the teatards — people (if you can call them that) who hardly are rich themselves (and who very unlikely ever will be) but who think that it is a great idea to help the millionaires and billionaires to destroy what’s left of labor rights and thus to destroy what’s left of the middle class and the working class. These “people” are, of course, in a word, traitors, just as are the plutocrats whom they insanely support against even their own best interests.

This is what Scott Walker represents: Aiding and abetting millionaires and billionaires in their class warfare against the rest of us (while actually claiming that this actually is to our benefit).

So it’s not a huge surprise that Walker recently told the fascistic traitors at the Wingnuts’ Ball (a.k.a. the Conservative Political Action Conference): “We need a leader who will stand up and say [that] we will take the fight to them [he was referring to the members of ISIS] and not wait until they take the fight to American soil. If I can take on 100,000 protesters, I can do the same in the rest of the world.”

Wow.

I get it: Walker was trying to make the bullshit claim that somehow his experience as the pro-plutocratic, anti-populist governor of Wisconsin has qualified him to be a leader on the world stage as president (and commander in chief) of the United States of America.

But in so doing, of course Walker compared members of the middle class and working class who have dared to stand up to him and his plutocratic puppeteers to terrorists. That’s probably how he views them personally. If not, at the very least, that’s how his main plutocratic puppeteers, the Koch brothers — whose millions are behind Walker’s political success (well, “survival” probably is a better term than “success”) in Wisconsin — want him to portray those of us who oppose treasonous plutocracy.

(And it’s funny — in a sick and fucking twisted way — that the teatards have attempted to appropriate the American Revolution, which was fought against the oppressive monarchy and aristocracy of Britain, yet the teatards fully support the oppressive plutocrats and aristocrats of the United States of America today. These hardly are revolutionaries. They actively aid and abet the enemy, the oppressors of the masses, which makes them not revolutionaries but traitors.)

It’s interesting that Walker would compare members of the American working class and middle class to the terrorists of ISIS, because I see Walker and his ilk and their plutocratic patrons as evil. They don’t behead people or burn them alive (yet), but the harm that they nonetheless cause to millions and millions of Americans (and millions and millions of others abroad) is incalculable, and, just like the terrorists of ISIS, they sociopathically feel no guilt or remorse over the grave harm that they cause others for their own benefit. And that, of course, is the very definition of evil.

I’ve written before (more than a year ago) that I’d love to see a Scott Walker-Elizabeth Warren matchup in 2016. (I’m not saying that it’s going to happen — I’m saying that I’d love to see it happen.)

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s words for the members of the middle class and the working class are diametrically opposed to Walker’s. Walker & Co. blame the victims; Elizabeth Warren actually stands up for the victims. For instance, I recommend that you watch this video of Warren’s recent opening statement for the Middle Class Prosperity Project (I’m glad that progressives have taken back the true meaning of the word “prosperity,” as opposed to the Koch brothers’ “Americans for Prosperity,” which more accurately should be named Billionaires for More Prosperity for Billionaires, and Repugnican Tea Party Pretty Boy Paul Ryan’s bullshit “Path to Prosperity,” which, of course, was only a blueprint to further destroy the middle class and the working class):

Wow. It’s a rare member of Congress — which for years and years and years now has been dominated by the corporation-loving duopoly of the Coke Party and the Pepsi Party — who speaks like this. Billary Clinton (who, if the Repugnican Party is the Coke Party, is Diet Coke) certainly never speaks like this (or, if she ever does, given her coziness with the weasels of Wall Street and other corporatocrats and plutocrats, her credibility on the issue is nil).

While Koch, Walker & Co. continue to blame our nation’s ills on the members of the working class and middle class who only want to staunch the flow of their — our — blood to the Olympic-sized private swimming pools of the plutocrats, Elizabeth Warren, by stark contrast, correctly identifies and emphasizes the fact that beginning in the 1980s, under the treasonously pro-plutocratic, anti-populist Repugnican President Ronald Reagan, the once-robust middle class and working class have been under continued, decimating assault by the treasonous plutocrats who scream “class warfare!” when the members of the middle class and the working class attempt to protect ourselves from the actual class warfare that the treasonous plutocrats started against us decades ago.

Elizabeth Warren fights for the middle class and the working class when no one else (save only a few others) in Washington, D.C., dare to actually do their fucking job, which is to fight for the greatest good for the greatest number of Americans; Scott Walker, meanwhile, compares the middle class and the working class who are fighting for their lives and their families’ lives to the terrorists who comprise ISIS.

This is a fight in which I’d love to participate. To Scott Walker and the treasonous teatards who support him, I can only say: Bring! It! On! Traitors! We are beyond ripe for another, actual American revolution!

*If you are wondering where I stand on ISIS, I oppose ISIS not for the religion that its members claim they adhere to, but I oppose their continued and multiple acts of terrorism, such as their slaughter of scores of those who don’t share their fascistic religious ideology and their destruction of valuable pieces of art, artifacts and architecture that they deem to be “idolatrous” or the like.

In short, the “Islamofascists” of ISIS are doing exactly what the “Christo”fascists here at home would do if they could. It’s not the exact religion (Islam, Christianity, Judaism, etc.) that is the problem, but the theofascism that is the problem. (And if you want to further reduce that to fascism in general, religious-based or not, that’s fine with me, but fascism tends to have at least some degree of religious backing. It certainly does here in the United States, big-time.)

I can’t deny that I’d like to see the smug, punk-ass “Jihadi John’s” theofascist head on a silver platter, but, again, evil in the form of theofascism certainly isn’t limited to Islam. (“Jihadi John” — seriously. What, did this virgin nerd [whose real name is Mohammed Emwazi] go from being on his computer in his underwear in the basement of his parents’ house to being a “bad-ass” terrorist overnight? And could you be a bigger fucking coward than to tie someone’s hands behind his back, rendering him defenseless, and then behead him, or put him beneath an iron cage, rendering him defenseless, and burn him alive? This isn’t bad-assery. This is fucking cowardice to the nth degree.)

And no, I don’t let the United States off of the hook, either. The treasonous, unelected Bush regime’s Vietraq War, which I vehemently opposed before it was launched in March 2003, has resulted in the wholly preventable and unnecessary deaths of thousands upon thousands of innocents in Iraq, and the U.S. military continues to slaughter innocents in the Middle East (via drone and other technologically advanced lethal methods, which one certainly could call cowardly) and continues to prop up the terrorist state of Israel, which treats Palestinians much like how the Nazi Germans treated the Jews, including slaughtering them by the masses.

(Despite the Israelis’ non-stop claims of being oppressed victims, the body counts always have been insanely lopsided, with far more Palestinians dying than Israelis; the United States of America’s blind support of Israel, with detractors of this deeply insane and deeply immoral foreign policy knee-jerkingly slanderously branded as “anti-Semitic,” is a huge factor behind this evil. [Yes, the Judeofascist Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu can kiss my fucking ass, as can all of the “Christo”fascist members of the U.S. Congress who believe that it’s perfectly OK to do a treasonous end-run around the democratically elected president of the United States of America by inviting the stinking piece of fascistic shit that is Netanyahu to speak in what is supposed to be the American people’s house, not Netanyahu’s for his campaign purposes.])

U.S. actions in the Middle East, such as the illegal, immoral, unprovoked and unjust Vietraq War (whose perpetrators should be put on trial for their war crimes and crimes against humanity and punished accordingly, Nuremberg style, as that would be the only fair and just thing to do) and the continued coddling and arming of Israel, provide ISIS and the like-minded with all of the recruitment material that they could ever need.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Greatness eludes ‘Elysium,’ but Blomkamp is getting better

Film review

This film image released by Columbia Pictures-Sony shows director Neill Blomkamp, left, and Matt Damon on the set of "Elysium." The film, opening nationwide on Aug. 9, is a rogue burst of originality _ a futuristic popcorn adventure loaded with contemporary themes of wealth discrepancy, immigration and health care. (AP Photo/Columbia Pictures, TriStar, Kimberly French)

Associated Press image

Writer and director Neill Blomkamp directs Matt Damon on a set of “Elysium,” Blomkamp’s second big entry into the sci-fi genre.

Like his “District 9,” writer and director Neill Blomkamp’s “Elysium” is a worthwhile and entertaining but imperfect sci-fi venture in which Blomkamp takes the opportunity to inject social justice.

“Elysium” hits much closer to home here in the United States than “District 9,” which is set in Blomkamp’s native South Africa, did, however.

“Elysium” takes on at least four large American sociopolitical issues: immigration, class-based access to health care, the environmental degradation of planet Earth, and the phenomenon of the gated community, which is a euphemism for what actually are becoming privately militarized compounds as the filthy rich get richer and the rest of us get poorer and the rich want to keep the shit that they’ve stolen from us safe from us.

Set in the year 2154, in “Elysium” Matt Damon plays Max, a member of the poor working class in a future Los Angeles whose residents speak both English and Spanish. Most of Max’s companions, including his best friend Julio (played by Diego Luna) and his love interest Frey (played by Alice Braga), are Latino.

Like poor Mexicans attempt to get into the United States (although not nearly with the same frequency since the U.S. economy crashed and burned, like everything else did, under the watch of George W. Bush), poor and desperate Earthlings attempt, via spacecraft, to get into Elysium, the name of the gargantuan wheel-like space station that orbits Earth in space like the moon, and that like the moon, is visible on Earth. (The full backstory of the construction of Elysium is not given in “Elysium”; like the moon, it’s just taken as a given, which is OK, since we don’t really need the backstory anyway, since we already have a very good sense of how Elysium came to be.)

Protecting Elysium from the poor and desperate Earthlings who wish to reach it — the “illegals” — is the space-station plutocrats’ defense secretary, the sometimes-French-speaking Delacourt (an icy Jodie Foster) and legions of humanoid robots that keep the “illegals” (who even on Earth are deemed “illegals,” because they are not allowed admittance to Elysium) in line, mostly on Earth but also on Elysium should any of the “illegals” actually make it to Elysium.

Max, whose job is in a factory that manufactures the robots that keep the “illegals” in line, is exposed to a lethal dose of radiation while on the job — there is no OSHA in Blomkamp’s dystopian Los Angeles — and is given five days to live, and he finds out that Frey’s daughter has terminal leukemia.

The elites on Elysium have the automatized technology to cure a human being of any malady (as long as he or she is still alive, anyway), and Max’s underground associate Spider (Wagner Moura), who is a futuristic coyote, has a plan that could take Elysium down, and so the film takes off from there.

True, as others have noted, “Elysium” does go off the rails a bit, as it goes from a social-consciousness movie into a typical Hollywood action flick, but then, it more or less saves itself at the end, when it returns to its social-consciousness beginning.

Matt Damon carries “Elysium” well. He is a reliable workhorse of an actor. And as his own sociopolitical views lean strongly leftward, my guess is that he infused his performance with the sense that with Blomkamp he is furthering good causes (because, methinks, he is).

I found Jodie Foster’s performance, however, to be remarkably stilted and lifeless. I mean, she was nominated four times for the Best Actress Oscar and won twice. Foster’s character is supposed to be icy, I get that, but Foster nonetheless seems to have phoned it in. Some of this might be Blomkamp’s fault, however; as we get no backstory on or real development of Foster’s character, perhaps the two-dimensional portrayal is about the best that she could do.

And while Blomkamp apparently likes Sharlto Copley enough to have put the star of “District 9” in “Elysium” as well, Copley’s villainous Kruger, a mercenary who is on Delacourt’s payroll, is, as others have noted, over the top. Indeed, this villain, when compared to the other characters in the film, even that of Delacourt but perhaps especially that of Max, seems to have been cut and pasted from another film entirely… (Ditto for Kruger’s immediate associates, who also seem like refugees from a “Mad Max” movie.)

And like “District 9” does, “Elysium” suffers from some inconsistencies and some explanations that don’t make sense, as though Blomkamp hadn’t really thought all of it out.

The ubiquitous humanoid robots that keep the “illegals” in line on Earth suddenly go mostly or even entirely missing when the action moves from Earth to Elysium, and while our protagonists and antagonists battle it out on Elysium, I found myself asking myself, “Where the hell are all of the robots? They’re all over Earth, but they’re missing in action on Elysium?”

Apparently a “reboot” of Elysium’s “core” (its central computer) somehow is going to remove President Patel (Faran Tahir) — whom the right-wing, merciless Delacourt despises because she considers him to be too soft and too merciful toward the “illegals” (whose spacecraft she just wants to blow from the sky as they try to reach Elysium, without exception) — and, presumably, put Delacourt in the deposed Patel’s place.

How, exactly, the mere rebooting of a central computer would achieve that change of guard, Blomkamp doesn’t explain. Nor does he explain how the mere reprogramming of Elysium’s “core” to recognize all Earthlings as citizens of Elysium would magically mandate that all Earthlings automatically are to receive the level of medical care that the denizens of Elysium get.

I mean, it’s not like reprogramming a computer, no matter how powerful it is, is the same as reprogramming human beings. (That said, the craniums of the denizens of Elysium apparently are linked with implanted, wireless circuitry that at the least allows them to communicate hands free [Google and/or Apple is/are working on this right now, right?], and there is a character [a CEO whose corporation Max works for, played by William Fichtner] who, much like how R2-D2 held the plans to the Death Star, holds the plans to “reboot” Elysium inside of the small computer that is implanted in his head, where he has downloaded the plans, but, presumably, the over-privileged denizens of Elysium cannot be reprogrammed into believing that they actually had elected someone else as their president or that the destitute denizens of Earth suddenly now are their sociopolitical equals.)

Also, if we are to buy the central premise of “Elysium” — which is that the rich and the powerful tiny minority (the 1 percent, if you will) have fled the increasingly overpopulated, diseased and polluted Earth for their own mega-gated community in the sky, and that they have done this in order to protect and to preserve the limited, apparently scarce reserves of life-enhancing things for themselves — then how can we buy “Elysium’s” ending, which apparently portrays the 1 percent’s hoarded resources, or at least their hoarded medical-care resources, as being enough to serve at least the entire area of Los Angeles, but apparently even the entire Earth?

This does not compute…

Still, despite “Elysium’s” flaws, it’s a more than watchable film, it’s an improvement over “District 9” (and so Blomkamp seems to have a promising career ahead of him), and it’s great, of course, to see a mainstream film take a socialist-y stance on current hot topics such as immigration, access to medical care, environmentalism, and, of course, the ugly phenomenon of the gated community, which is but a manifestation of the insanely great class division that we see in the United States of America today.

I don’t expect American wingnuts to love this film, and that’s a great thing.

My grade: B+  

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

An austerity plan for the RICH (or, Plan Robin Hood)

It’s interesting how it is just a given in the United States of America (and in other plutocracies) that in an economic downturn, it’s the poor and the vanishing middle class who will have to do with even less — certainly it won’t be the rich.

I say: Fuck. That. Shit.

We easily can turn the federal budget deficit into a record federal budget surplus.

How?

By confiscating the nation’s wealth that the rich stole in the first place.

I love the argument that a millionaire or billionaire “earned” it, “worked hard” for it.

Bullshit.

The only way to become a millionaire or billionaire is to sit atop the legalized pyramid scheme that is called “capitalism.”

No one does a million or billion dollars’ worth of work — especially if we define the value of work as the minimum wage.

Oh, the minimum wage is not the value of labor?

Then why is the minimum wage the supposed value of labor for millions and millions of working Americans but not for the rich? Why the fucking double standard?

The rich didn’t earn their wealth. They stole it. Their wealth came from vastly overcharging consumers for goods and services and from vastly underpaying employees for the value of their labor.

The rich aren’t hard workers. The rich are thieves.

And just as the stolen wealth of the common thief would be confiscated, so should the stolen wealth of millionaires and billionaires.

It wouldn’t be stealing from them — it would be taking back what they stole from us.

Under what I might call Plan Robin Hood, there would be an established limit on any one individual’s accumulated wealth, plain and simple. No one needs a billion fucking dollars.

Wealth above the established upper limit would be confiscated and returned to the national treasury. Any individual refusing to comply would be tried for treason, for threatening the welfare of the many by hoarding wealth, and, if found guilty, would be imprisoned — and his or her surplus wealth would be confiscated and returned to the national treasury.

Do I expect the rich to cooperate with such a radical redistribution of wealth?

No — so it would be done by force, if necessary. Anyone aiding and abetting the rich — yes, even police officers or members of the military (most of whom are just tools/thugs for the rich anyway*) — would be tried for treason, as their actions (protecting the excesses of the few) would be detrimental to the good of the many.

A bloodless revolution is preferable to a bloody one, but I prefer a bloody revolution that returns the wealth of the people to the people rather than the slow national death that the Repugnican Tea Party and its wingnutty allies have in store for us by ridiculously exclusively focusing now on extending the unelected Bush regime’s tax cuts for the rich above all else.

The rich have declared a class war upon the rest of us.

It’s war that they want; it’s war that they should get.

Yes, things are going to have to change if the United States of America is to survive, and yes, things are going to have to get a lot tougher for some Americans. But things should get a lot tougher for the most comfortable among us, not for the least comfortable among us.

It’s time to go after the root of our economic ills — the rich and their treasonous selfishness — and to destroy that root, once and for all.

We don’t have to just accept that those of us who already have the least have to sacrifice even more, while the traitors at the top get even more.

*These “heroes'” function is to preserve the socioeconomic status quo more than it is anything else. Some of them will be able to realize that, but others will not and will wish to remain loyal to their treasonous overlords. The latter thus will need to be dealt with accordingly. (Again, my preference is bloodlessness, but you have to crack some eggs to make an omelet.)

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized