They grew up to hate "hippies" but they aren't old enough to remember what led us to become those dreaded hippies in the first place. That was left out of the media story. I am old enough to remember. I cut my political teeth during Vietnam when the govenment under Johnson, Nixon and to a lesser extent Kennedy was lying to it's people about a war, both how it was going and why it was going. The reasons for the lies is the same - the circumstances are different. I was drafted after I graduated from college in 1968, none of these "studly" young conservatives will be. They don't have to put their hides on the line but can just sit on the sidelines and shoot off their mouths.I noticed years ago that the rank-and-file “movement conservative” is younger than I am. Well, OK, most people are younger than I am. But surely you’ve noticed that a disproportionate number of True Believers are people who reached their late teens / early twenties during the Carter or Reagan years at the earliest. They came of age at the same time the right-wing media / think tank infrastructure began to dominate national political discourse, and all their adult lives their brains have been pickled in rightie propaganda.
Because they’re too young to remember When Things Were Different, they don’t recognize that the way mass media has handled politics for the past thirty or so years is abnormal. What passes for our national political discourse — as presented on radio, television, and much print media — is scripted in right-wing think tanks and media paid for by the likes of Joseph Coors, Richard Mellon Scaife, and more recently by Sun Myung Moon. What looks like “debate” is just puppet theater, presented to manipulate public opinion in favor of the Right.
In this puppet theater “liberals” (booo! hisss!) are the craven, cowardly, and possibly demented villains, and “conservatives” are the noble heroes who come to the rescue of the virtuous maid America. Any American under the age of 40 has had this narrative pounded into his head his entire life. Rare is the individual born after the Baby Boom who has any clue what “liberalism” really is. Ask, and they’ll tell you that liberals are people who “believe in” raising taxes and spending money on big entitlement programs, which of course is bad. (Read this to understand why it’s bad.)
Saturday, January 13, 2007
Still More on Rod Dreher - Maha edition
Via an update on Glenn Greenwald's post linked below, Barbara O'Brien has some observations that are right on the money.