Monday, 26 September 2011

It's time to stand together- UPDATE: Fear in Wasilla

When I was young I lived under a right-wing military dictatorship back in Brazil. We lived in fear, but there were many left-wing groups attempting to restore democratic elections. It took over twenty years to achieve it.

Part of the problem were the deep divisions and rivalry among the various different factions within a movement with the same goals. Each group saw themselves as the owners of the truth. The right-wing presented a united front, there were no divisions or disagreements in their ranks and they were stronger.

The example is a bit extreme, as the dictators had all the resources of the military to silence any dissenters of whatever faction. But it does illustrate how divisions weaken a movement.

Historically, right-wingers have been more united than the left. Their interests were clear and their goals quite simple. The left wingers were a more complex bunch, hell-bent on nuance.

In the US, even though all the right-wing candidates (and one maybe/maybe not candidate) sing from the same hymn book, talking about the constitution, traditional values and small government, they are now divided by a new phenomenon: The cult of celebrity. People who support the undeclared one could be described as hysterical fans who can see no flaws in their muse. They attack everybody, on the left and on the right, whenever there's whiff of a threat to their queen. That puts the real the candidates in a bad light. They don't have such dedicated fan clubs.

It seems to be a great opportunity for the left to present a more united front for a change. These days it doesn't seem to be a case of right vs left anymore. It's right vs wrong, and the left is the new right. It is right to hope for a more equitable society, it is right to put the interests of the people before the interests of the corporations, it is right to protect the environment and to strive for world peace.

But the dreaded liberals are still plagued by divisions. The divisions take many forms and are not necessarily ideological. Let's make the most of the weaknesses of the right and stand united while that fan club tears everybody apart. Let's forget the distractions, the egos and all the irrelevant bickering and focus on the goal.

People who once saw themselves as conservatives have battled with their convictions and changed sides, they watched their party betray their interests and embraced different values. Others are still undecided, but growing frustrated with the present crop of candidates. Let's help them find a new path and let's all walk the same path together. Let's ignore the detours that lead to dead ends.

Regaining the focus and staying on course will take us to the final destination. It's worth trying to get there in one piece rather than wounded by friendly fire...



Joe McGinniss wasn't the only person to feel uncomfortable in Wasilla. From UK's Daily Telegraph:

It may be home sweet home to Sarah Palin and her family but Wasilla, Alaska, is not a city for which Nick Broomfield feels any affection. Or one that he ever wants to visit again. “The place makes Twin Peaks look like a walk in the park,” he says firmly.

“There was a genuine fear in the community about saying anything against Sarah Palin because people were worried about the power of the Palins and worried about losing their jobs,” he says. “In some cases, the children were friends with the Palin kids and didn’t want their parents to talk. She is such a polarising character that, even within a family, the husband or the wife liked her and the other one didn’t. She inspired such strong opinions that people were either passionately for her or against her.”

It seems Sarah Palin's own personal power, the actions by her supporters and the MSM's reluctance to stand their ground and face her lies all conspire to keep this woman in a safe niche, protected and insulated against real criticism.

(H/T to MW)