Thursday, February 6, 2014

Progressives Have Only Three Weapons In Their Arsenal: Identity Politics, Intolerance And Lies

ACLU Defends Nazis' Right To Burn Down ACLU Headquarters...The Onion

  • Identity politics is nothing new. It's been used to shape political thought by identification through gender, race, class, ethnicity, ideology, sexual orientation, politics, disability and a host of other self-interests. And throughout the decades, progressives have learned how to use identity politics as a weapon to instill fear in voters. On the other hand, conservatives and those on the Right use identity politics to promote freedom, liberty, and less government intrusion. 
  • In many respects, progressives have been successful in using identity politics especially among those who are commonly referred to as "low information voters" or the "useful idiots."
  • The best examples of the use of identity politics in recent years has been the Obama administration and its political and media surrogates.  We were deluged by the Obama campaign's accusations and suggestions (as well as the media's) that Republicans only interest was to wage wars on women, on minorities, on the poor etc. In fact, earlier this week, Slo Joe Biden said there's a concerted war on labor. For a party and ideology that has been opposed to wars, they enjoy waging them against their opponents.

  • Identity politics alone is fine. One can argue it's what makes politics and culture function. In other words, we all identify with some movement, some institutions, and some issues. It's when identity politics becomes divisive and intolerant problems emerge. In addition, problems also emerge when when members of a specific group are believed to hold the same opinions as the specific identity group. Perhaps the best example are blacks. Identity grouping assumes that all blacks are liberal when we know that's absurd. Last year's Occupy Wall Street movement hammered the 1%---but only the 1% they thought were evil (after all, we found out later many in the OWS movement were actually in the 1% themselves).

  • The danger with identity politics is when it uses intolerance and lies in its political arsenal. Again, we've seen that play out in the last five years from the administration's lies about Obamacare to the intolerance of political speech. In fact, just this morning, news broke that Lois Lerner, the IRS official in the middle of the scandal that targeted conservative groups, worked on rules in secret with the Treasury Department during the height of that targeting campaign. The House Ways and Means Committee obtained emails to that effect (Fox News).
  • As the Right continues to point out the dangers of progressive identity politics, I'm left to ask whether their intolerance, exclusivity and bold faced lying will be effective in the long term. I don't think so. But then again, Pres. Obama was elected twice.
Postscript: Since this was posted, we've seen the lies as Gruber revealed with Obamacare.