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Thursday, November 18, 2010

History Repeating Itself?

Given how front and center race has insidiously become in the politics of 2010 it may be important to look into past.  Kevin Phillips was Richard Nixon's political strategist and he made comments that should be pretty offensive to anyone, but ultimately Nixon won, albeit a short lived victory in the anals of history.

"From now on, the Republicans are never going to get more than 10 to 20 percent of the Negro vote and they don’t need any more than that… but Republicans would be shortsighted if they weakened enforcement of the Voting Rights Act. The more Negroes who register as Democrats in the South, the sooner the Negrophobe whites will quit the Democrats and become Republicans. That’s where the votes are. Without that prodding from the blacks, the whites will backslide into their old comfortable arrangement with the local Democrats."

With Bush's election after the Clinton era of extreme economic prosperity it would seem that there may have been something to this.  In spite of Clinton's indiscretions most minorities were easily able to discern the weak man from his political accomplishments and saw Bush as just another hot headed, obtuse, Republican that was probably a bigot and someone that had no real ideas to get excited about.  "The People"  chose fiction over fact and were later emboldened by a man that unabashedly attacked people that didn't look like him without any evidence that they had anything to do with the specific terrorism that affected America.  In otherwords the War declared on Iraq turned out to be international hate crime.  Many Whites really didn't care about the macro-view of the decisions that were made, the loss of life even as it became clear and undeniable that there never were "Weapons of Mass Destruction" in Iraq.   My guess is had it been Sweden or Finland (who had the same number of WMDs as Iraq) the American opinion of the attack would have been far different, but that's another story.    

 Fast forward to now and it's clear that the current president doesn't indiscriminately hate brown people, has pulled the economy out of the free fall of losing close to a million jobs a month and it is now gaining 150,000 + jobs a month, Health Care Insurance companies hate the President (They loved GW Bush for allowing them to dig deeper into the pockets of the public)  At least half of the voting public, vast majority being White, hate the current president.  They have voted for and elected more than one candidate that has taken campaign contributions from White Nationalist organizations, made multiple racist and/or sexist comments publicly and/or privately revealing their world view.  The political environment has become toxic because of this and certainly political campaigning over the last two years (from Limbaugh, Fox News, or actual candidates) has divided the country down race lines.