More on the GOP

Other than its depth, there is nothing new about my contempt for the Republican Party, which has been increasing every year since 1969—my contempt, that is. My family was so staunchly Democrat—Roosevelt/Kennedy-style Democrats—that they didn’t dare tell my grandmother that Nixon had been elected. She was in the hospital dying and they were afraid that the news would kill her. Nixon was probably the only thing my father and I ever agreed on. It has reached the point now—reached it awhile ago actually—that no Republican can ever represent me for anything. This is not hyperbole. The Republicans want a victory that they must never have. I mean, a victory where their so-called “values,” which are, objectively speaking, vile, hold complete sway. This country is, in effect, in a civil war; it’s just that we haven’t started using guns.

I feel like a man without a country.

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14 Responses to “More on the GOP”

  1. margaret Says:

    BRAVO! Well said! Yes!

  2. Sylvia Cooley Says:

    I so agree.

  3. Karen Says:

    Like that bumper sticker: “Friends don’t let friends vote Republican!”

    We are in a class war and have been for all of this country’s history. Unfortunately, too many Americans have been duped into accepting that it is wrong to talk about class in this country; but we do have at least three economics classes — We The People (99%ers), and then Bush’s Have’s (.5%) and Have More’s (.5%). Obviously, the Republicans represent that latter two.

  4. linda Says:

    Yes, I have felt this way for a long time, especially since the republicans decided to sacrifice us on the altar of the wealthy. I would love to move to another country, but which one, they are, for the most part in just as much trouble as we are. And I love this country in spite of the crap going on.
    I have read that the democrats are trying to get the president to invoke the 14th amendment and then the republicans will try to impeach him. I don’t think they can legally. The republicans are themselves committing treason by not passing a workable solution as soon as possible. Don’t ask me which amendment that is right now either, I have been reading political stuff all morning and can’t get much of it straight in my head right now. I am so upset and angry with the tea-publicans that I could scream and that’s about all I can do. I keep posting and posting, signing petitions and writing letters and I wonder if any of the republicans are even listening to the people. The latest polls,(that they are ignoring) say they aren’t.
    Time to vote them out of office, If we are still able to vote that is, with all the election shenanigans going on. I am thinking that if there is an election next year that the republicans may be done for good. Unlike you, Mark I was raised republican. I became a liberal democrat after listening to the hate most of my life, from my parents. They, in particular my mother, hated everything that didn’t meet with her/their unconditional approval. I just couldn’t live that way. Where they were christian, I gave that up for Wicca and the Reade. My husband is Buddhist, we seem to manage.

  5. Shelley Says:

    Politicians of all manner are giving the world’s oldest profession a run for their money.

  6. Stephanie Harris Says:

    Hi Mark,
    Yup, some of your family members are still staunch Democrats – me for instance! I didn’t know the part about Nixon and Grandma Bittner, and that is a good story! I am very involved in my legislative district here in NW Washington State and I think the work we do makes a difference. I love that you are as staunch as I am. Love, Stephanie, your cousin

  7. Brad Says:

    I’d like to hear your views of where the Democrats are trying to lead us, considering we have increased our national debt 40% in the last two years…Over 14 trillion and counting…How on Earth are we ever going to pay for this without reducing what we spend, just like we have to do in our personal lives?

    • markbittner Says:

      You’re assuming I’m a big supporter of the Democrats. I’m not. I can barely tolerate them. But I can tolerate them—at times at least. I’m extremely disappointed in Obama, but that’s largely my fault, my naivete. Had he done what I hoped he’d do, he most likely would have been assassinated. The trouble is we live in the most materialistic country and the most materialistic age in the history of humanity, and, accordingly, there is no hope for us as we are currently set up. Ands it is the Republicans who are pushing us to go ever deeper into the love of money and all its attendent afflictions. But the age of extravagant wealth—even simple economic growth—is nearing its end, thank God—something I intend to write about in the near future.

  8. Christina "Keine Liebe" Says:

    It’s apparent to me that both sides are wrong, and neither (Rs nor Ds) are concerned with the best interests of the average American. How is it Austria can house their homeless, offer free college education, and provide full health care to their citizens and yet we fear an option for low cost health coverage for all? I’ve studied in Austria in 2005. They’ve got us beat when it comes to quality of life. People in the US claim to want change, but they’re too afraid to make change a reality.

  9. Dawn Says:

    I came on your website because I had watched the DVD aboujt the parrots and thought, this is a very special person and then bang…. You went political and that was enough for me. I do not apologize for being Republican. I do not apologize for working my whole life so that I wouldn’t be a burden on society. Not all republicans are rich, many of us are not but that is what dems attack the most. Why is it no one mentions the rich dems like the Kennedys, Gates, etc?
    So, here I am in my 60s after over 40 years of working as a cleaning woman and you want me to feel bad because others didn’t work and save and plan for their future.

    • markbittner Says:

      I can’t get to this immediately, Dawn. But I will in a few days. I’m traveling at the moment.

    • markbittner Says:

      Dawn, you say I “went political,” and yet I am not political. I’m not. I grew up in a Democratic household, but I’ve never embraced politics as the route to anything good. For a time my interests were artistic, and then they became spiritual. And they remain so. My contempt for the Republican Party is based upon their so-called values, which are completely materialistic—militantly so. They undermine the world that I want to see. The Republican Party says it stands for freedom, but it doesn’t. It stands for unbridled egotism. And that’s not freedom. In the name of freedom, they would exploit to extinction the natural world, and I cannot abide that. So the Republican Party forces me to deal with the world of politics whether I want to or not. I’m convinced that if they’re not stopped, they will destroy all that I hold dear.

      I said nothing in anything I wrote here that should make anyone feel that I want them to feel bad for working their whole lives. Where is that? Where? It has to be coming from you. I said nothing of the sort. And what makes you think I admire the Kennedys or Bill Gates or any of those people? You just assume that. There is no rich person on this earth that I admire. As soon as you become wealthy you lose touch with the struggle that other humans have to make. I’m not a Democrat, by the way. At the present time, there is no party that truly represents me. That’s why I said at the end of the piece that I feel like a man without a country.

      For what it’s worth, I spent 15 years as a house cleaner. Although the movie doesn’t make it very clear, that’s how I supported myself for most of the time that I was on the street. But I don’t like the attitude in this country that makes people feel that they have to have a job, any job, or they’re a worthless bum. One of our greatest problems as a nation is the lack of meaningful, purposeful work so “you won’t be a burden.” But none of us is as great a burden to the world as these corporations that the Republicans represent. I don’t quite understand why people like you have anything to do with the Republican party. It does not have your interests at heart. They don’t care about you at all.

      I’m sorry if this seems strident. But I really do believe that the GOP is dangerous. I see it clearly and I can’t apologize for what I see. But it ain’t political. It’s moral, it’s spiritual.

  10. Brad Says:

    Dawn is correct in that we are responsible for ourselves to work and find our way not to be dependent on others. That’s not to say there are not those who legitimately need the public’s help, but by creating endless government programs to address this issue we have encouraged a culture of dependency, not self-reliance. Excessive taxation of the people, regardless of income, is not an answer.

    Christina uses Austria as an example of a society that provides everything to it’s people. This level of government “cradle to grave” care comes at a steep price in reality. Austrian income taxes range from 21% to 50% for all citizens (nearly 50% of Americans pay no federal income tax), they also pay 18.2% of their income as social secrity tax. On top of all this, they pay a 20% VAT tax on every dollar they spend. This VAT tax is on top of whatever their local sales tax rate is. Austria has a median household income of about $40,000 per year, which is exactly $10,000 less than U.S. median income of $50,000, but if you do the math, their effective tax rate at this income level is much higher than ours. Austra has a lower unemployment rate the the U.S., but at their lowest tax rates, they pay roughly 40% of their income to the government, before VAT, sales, and local taxes. The same income level in the U.S. pays no federal income tax, only 7.65% Social security/medicare tax, sales, and whatever local taxes apply.

    I only went into all that to point out the very steep cost of increasing government programs and increasing dependency of the people on these programs. Most Americans are unaware of the actual price paid by the citizens of these European utopias for the government programs they are provided with. “Free” doesn’t always mean free.

    • markbittner Says:

      We need a world of self-reliance because these European utopias have steep costs…So in the name of self-reliance each of us must buy our own house. Renting is just throwing money down the toilet. Each family must have its own refrigerator, stove, and they must be repaired from time to time. A washer and a drier. Gotta have those. Sofas, beds, dining room tables, end tables, kitchenware. Each family must have their own sets of all this stuff—or each individual, depending on how well they’ve done in the marriage market. A house is such an expensive thing to own and maintain that we have to have insurance in case of fire or a hurricane, a flood or an earthquake. Better have some liability insurance, too. If someone injures themselves on your property, they are going to sue you. And why shouldn’t they? They could easily fall beneath the wheels of society and be ruined forever what with the costs of not working and the high cost of health care. And since we’re all self-reliant and don’t want to support public transportation, each family must have a car—probably two cars—and then you have to put in money for repairs, upkeep, and gas. Gas is getting more expensive. The United States ran through most of its own easily obtainable supply decades ago. So we have to buy it from people who don’t understand how important an American’s self-reliance is to him. So we have to pay for an expensive military to protect our independence from those people sitting on “our” oil. Okay. Health insurance, send the kids to college. What else? Cable TV, Internet. And a cell phone. What if you’re stuck in traffic and going to be late to work and can’t call in to explain? The guy you work for is into being self-reliant, too, and he’s much better off if he pays you as little as possible. He’s even better off if he can figure out a way not to need you at all.

      These are all steep costs. I can think of others, but I’m too tired to type anymore tonight. By the way, I am not a socialist—at least, not technically. But more on that soon.

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