Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Yeah, I Got Dreams, Too

poor, mlk, poverty, food stamps, hunger,
Last night, I read South Carolina Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer's feelings about poor people and was confused.


“My grandmother was not a highly educated woman, but she told me as a small child to quit feeding stray animals. You know why? Because they breed. You’re facilitating the problem if you give an animal or a person ample food supply. They will reproduce, especially ones that don’t think too much further than that. And so what you’ve got to do is you’ve got to curtail that type of behavior. They don’t know any better,” Bauer said. [...]


I wasn't confused about what Mr. Bauer was saying, I have read The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich* after all, but I was confused about why he thought it might be a good idea to say that in public. I mean, he said, in public, that feeding the hungry is bad. He implied that the solution to poverty is to kill the poor. Who hears that and is not appalled?

Well, thanks to google reader, now I know. I Have a Dream** by blackandgoldfan.

I have a dream that one day all citizens will earn the fruits of this great nation. With freedom comes great responsibility to respect one's uniqueness in this world. There are those in this society who feel entitled to the prosperity of another, and, as free human beings, we must not stand for the theft by government to give to the idle and irresponsible. The slaves of the system have defined "entitlement" for far too long. Liberty dies a slow death under these circumstances.


It's more subtle than Mr. Bauer's stray animal speech, but it's the same ideology. . . . those in this society who feel entitled to the prosperity of another doesn't refer to the military-industrial complex or politicians who receive, on my dime, a level of health care I'll never see. No, those are poor people. Those are children who receive free lunches at school (and don't eat much on weekends). Those are adults who work for minimum wage, which just doesn't cover food and shelter. Those are the disabled who must rely on government programs for health care, food and shelter. Those are leeches on the body politic, rats breeding out of control. Those are vermin who should be exterminated.

Just so we can be clear on the vermin people like bngfan and Bauer are perfectly okay with, in fiscal year 2002, the US spent $18.2 billion dollars in food stamp benefits. The US spent $10 billion a month on the war in Iraq. A month. That means that we were spending as much in 2 months on a war that had no reasonable basis as we were on feeding people for an entire year. That's okay. Feeding the hungry is not.

Just for the record, I don't feel entitled to anyone's prosperity. If you have money, good for you. If you have a nice house and a nice car and take nice vacations every year, good for you. However, I don't think your vacations are more important than starving children.




*I am not Godwining my own post. That is almost word for word Nazi rhetoric concerning Jews and other "undesirables".

**White people editing Martin Luther King, Jr.'s seminal speech to make points exactly opposite what Dr. King was fighting for make me very angry.

29 comments:

  1. His comments were stupid, but theft by government is unconstitutional and leads to more dependence and poverty, whether you like it or not. The Nazi party was the national socialist party and was all for social welfare once they cleansed the earth of the undesirables who would be a drain on the system. I have not read the book you mention, but if it neglected to point out that the Nazi's were socialists then it can't be worth reading because that's really basic history. To call him a Nazi is irrational and dumb. In other words, let me give charity rather have it stolen from me. That's what Conservativism is about, and we consistently give more than liberals do in study after study.
    In other words, quit your boo-hooing, and I'm off to serve at the soup kitchen.

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  2. "The Nazi's were socialists"

    Just curious. Are your history books from the McCarthy era?

    Maybe that's news for you but socialism isn't only about social welfare.

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  3. News flash, I know that the actual name of the Nazi Party was the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (translation, anyway), but they were not socialists. The Nazis could have named their party the National Pink Unicorns and Rainbows Party, and they still would have been facists.

    That drives me nuts.

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  4. Hmm, Anna, you need to stop bringing that pesky logic into things.
    Honestly, I heard this last night, and my skin practically crawled. That was such a terrible thing to say. I really had no other words for it.

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  5. Fascism is just the brother of socialism and communism. They're all trojan horses for totalitarians. There is nothing right-wing about naziism. Gurbels admitted that they are basically all the same. Anna, Fail, Leigh, look it up. It's really easy to Google.

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  6. Anonymous,
    Look what up? Logic? Are you kidding?
    We've all had this argument with people about Nazi's and Facism, and how Facism and Socialism are not the same thing. I realize that the differences may be too subtle for people who like to paint the world in black and white. But they are not the same.
    Sadly, nothing anyone says will change your mind.

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  7. To be fair, there was socialism in Hitler's Germany. Industries were nationalized and whatnot. Fascism requires a certain amount of socialism. What fascism does not require or play together well with is communism. The problem is that people seem to think that picking out minute similarities between fascism and socialism allows an entire argument to be declared moot.

    Which is why I would not be at all surprised to discover that this Anon is the same one who earlier thought that "America is a republic, not a democracy" was a winning argument. The proper response to such nitpicking is, "So friggin' what?"

    It's not like the world is painted in shades of just the deepest black or the whitest white. Anyone who claims that a certain population is nothing but vermin to be exterminated is displaying the exact same tendencies that lead to the Holocaust. And anyone who is on the same side as someone who thinks it's okay to just write off a percentage of the human race because they're not the right kind of person is disgusting.

    So, please, take your parsimonious parsing and shove it up your arse.

    Oh, and to be not fair:

    That's what Conservativism is about, and we consistently give more than liberals do in study after study.

    You want to offer some proof of that assertion or are you just repeating something you heard somewhere? And if you mention Arthur Brooks' self-described polemic from a couple years ago, we're going to have to start a discussion about how to lie with statistics.

    Oh, and then we're going to have to get in to a discussion on the efficacy of tithing vs. donating to charities that do charitable things with all the money. Because I'm guessing that a higher percentage of those conservative donations go in to collection plates than soup kitchens.

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  8. So you're attempting to take the moral higher ground by arguing for moral relativity? Brilliant (sarcasm).
    Check here http://www.catalogueforphilanthropy.org/ma/newsletter/2009_spring.html
    for the Generocity index study, not done by Brooks, though thanks for giving me one more study to add. Where are the studies about Liberal generocity showing that they are as generous as Conservatives?
    I did not say to Google logic, though that might benefit you. I said that you should learn about German Socialism and of course there are differences between Socialism, Communism, and Fascism, but they all have the same roots, and are basically just coke and pepsi competing for the place at the top once the revolution has taken over. Right-wingers are for separation of powers, freedom from tyranny (both economic and political), and of course that has nothing to do with Hitler, so C'mon already. That analogy is worn out and stupid. You can argue that this is a Rep. vs. Dem thing, but the Republicans are as corrupt as the Democrats. I think Bush was a Fascist, and I think Obama IS a Fascist. At the very least he's a Fabian Socialist, but who really cares when they're all too similar and are all enemies to the Constitution.

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  9. Anonymous, you're cute. Keep going. This is the most amusing thing I've read all day.
    I am amused that after reading in Geds' reply, "What fascism does not require or play together well with is communism," you then state that communism and facism have the same roots. That is ballsy.
    You seem a bit all over the place, maybe you'd like to come back to the subject of how stating that starving poor people is like the Nazi concept of and application of Eugenics. And that maybe doing what JESUS told us to do and care of the least amoung us is not a bad thing. Like war might be a bad thing.

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  10. Anon: Fascism is just the brother of socialism and communism. They're all trojan horses for totalitarians. There is nothing right-wing about naziism. Gurbels admitted that they are basically all the same.

    I just tried Googling "Gurbels." For some reason I got a video of men sticking small rodents up each other's butts. I'm not exactly sure what that's supposed to prove.

    Or were you going for a phonetic spelling of Goebbels? Y'know, Joseph Goebbels, who said this:

    “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

    You, dear Anon, are telling lies. And constantly repeating them. And making an enemy of the truth by constantly ignoring reality and honest debate in favor of piddling little semantic arguments.

    You are, therefore, a Nazi.

    Q.E. motherfucking D.

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  11. I wonder if he'll come back... Heh. Geds wins.

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  12. Oh, and also, once I fixed your broken link I found myself at an index page. I found nothing on that page that broke charitable donations down by the demographics of anything, whether race, gender, color, creed, or political affiliation.

    However, they did have an interesting little pie chart breaking down the difference between non-profits and philanthropic organizations. It considers churches a different category altogether from philanthropic organizations. So, again, there's that discussion to be had.

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  13. EH. Wrong. You missed the boat, Leigh. Thanks. I am cute, and I'm having fun too. I might be all over the place, but I'm answering to multiple comments with each of mine. PF is the one that brought the Nazis in. I was merely showing that her comparison between the idiot in question and Hitler is false, even though I don't like either of them. I never made that correllation except to debunk hers.

    Yes, I'm ballsy. Thanks. Your homework is to figure out what I am referring to when I talk about the common roots of the 3 isms, and if you say "Satan" you'll get an incomplete.

    Jesus said it is our job to take care of the poor and needy. What he did NOT say is that it's the government's job to take others' money in order to do that job for us so that we don't have to. Government-run welfare is lazy charity and the need for it only exists when the people themselves are not doing the job of taking care of their neighbors- being their brothers' keepers, if you will. A hand up is different from a dependency-creating hand-out. No one should starve in this country, but the people should step up instead of petitioning the government to do it for them. And yes, I practice what I preach and it feels awesome.

    Eugenics were very popular here in the US, and led to the abortion movement as a way to kill blacks. Margaret Sanger was wanted to kill blacks. She said that that was the real reason for abortion in the US herself. Look that up. She was a racist, not that all pro-abortion people are racists, but it is always good to know the real roots of your movement.

    Yes, war is a bad thing. So is murder and every atrocity against humankind, though self-defense is often necessary. The Constitution doesn't allow for offense, only denfense, that being one of the point where I diverge from most Conservatives.

    Any more questions? I have a lot of work to go do so I'll only stop by one more time.

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  14. Any more questions? I have a lot of work to go do so I'll only stop by one more time.

    Several. I'll start with this one: have you met my friend reality? I mean, seriously.

    Eugenics were very popular here in the US, and led to the abortion movement as a way to kill blacks. Margaret Sanger was wanted to kill blacks. She said that that was the real reason for abortion in the US herself.

    Uh huh. And the Puritans advocated the killing of women for witchcraft, which is the real reason for the United States of America. You are aware of the difference between "advocate for" and "put in to effect for the purposes of," right?

    Because believe me, I regularly advocate for the position that Kristen Bell should drop that Dax Shepard guy and fall madly in love with me. I don't see that happening any time soon, though. And I'm pretty sure that any attempts I would make to put it in to effect would result in restraining orders or jail time.

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  15. So you would be in jail, but it's OK for Margaret Sanger to be revered as a Feminist hero? She did get her plan into action, was in constant contact with the KKK while doing it, and her abortions are the best thing bigots could have ever imagined. It's disgusting. You don't have to believe me, but history is not open to interpretation. Read some of Jesse Jackson's early works.

    Goodbye.

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  16. I have a question, is there any reason why you keep ignoring Geds? Just wondering. Because he's kind of shooting you down left and right. Are you answering me because you think I'm the easier argument?
    As for this: "Yes, I'm ballsy. Thanks. Your homework is to figure out what I am referring to when I talk about the common roots of the 3 isms, and if you say "Satan" you'll get an incomplete."
    I don't know if you think I'm stupid or you're funny, but you missed your mark on both, my friend.
    And until you know who you're talking to, going on and on about welfare is for lazy poor folk (thanks for not actually using the term welfare queen, by the way), you may not want to go there. Never know who around you is getting food stamps these days. What with the economy and all.

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  17. I said that you should learn about German Socialism

    You seriously tell me to learn about German Socialism?

    I am a German Socialist.

    And while extreme right wing and extreme left wing have a tendency to look similar, Socialism is by far not left enough to look like Nazi-ideology.

    Maybe that's news for you but Stalin isn't one of our poster boys, nor is Erich Honecker.

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  18. Leigh: I have a question, is there any reason why you keep ignoring Geds?

    He just responded to me finally. In the dumbest possible way. I mean, really...

    Anon: So you would be in jail, but it's OK for Margaret Sanger to be revered as a Feminist hero? She did get her plan into action, was in constant contact with the KKK while doing it, and her abortions are the best thing bigots could have ever imagined. It's disgusting. You don't have to believe me, but history is not open to interpretation. Read some of Jesse Jackson's early works.

    Thomas Jefferson owned slaves, yet he is (rightly) considered a hero. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a bit of a cad and a womanizer, yet he is (rightly) considered a hero. Alfred Nobel, the creator of the Nobel Peace Prize, did so after the invention he thought would end war only made it more deadly. There is none perfect, not even one.

    Because, you see, for those of us in reality it's possible to realize that people say and do some things that are noble, true, and heroic. Those same people can do things that are dumb and horrible. And sometimes those with good intentions end up doing terrible things while those with terrible intentions bring about positive change.

    Life is funny like that.

    The point is, Margaret Sanger's views on why abortion should happen have fuck all to do with why abortion is and should be legal. It's not like Planned Parenthood offices require everyone who walks through the door to sit down and consider how great it would be if no more black babies were born. Although, hell, they might in your bizarre little world.

    I mean, you're the one who came in attempting to argue the point implicitly in favor of someone who called helpless people stray animals who should be left to die. Perhaps that's just because of that part of the Bible where Jesus separated the sheep from the goats based on political ideology and sent all those goat-like Democrats straight to hell. Or the parable of the rich man and Lazarus where the rich man stepped over Lazarus, the poor beggar at his door, while muttering, "Get a job, you worthless piece of shit," and was then rewarded with a free trip to heaven.

    Because that sure as shit seems to be a part of the Bible the asshole from South Carolina reads.

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  19. Anna Sethe wrote:
    I am a German Socialist.


    Most awesome response to anything I've read in a while. I imagine that in dramatic movie-trailer reverb.

    That made me happy.

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  20. Anonymous,
    All you have to do is take a look at Ged's other blogs to see what kind of person he is and how he spends his life. You shouldn't waste your time mucking around in a swamp with him, especially with his vile and disrepectful language.
    If you spend enough time on this blog, you'll probably come to see that it rarely highlights anything about true charity, love, goodness, etc. When, like today, it does touch on these topics, PF usually is putting her efforts toward bashing other people for not being as good or charitable as she believes they should be.

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  21. I think a frank discussion about the roots of Fascism would help this discussion, as Anony pointed out. Here is a link you all need to read if you dare to be challenged: http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/27/075.html

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  22. Oh noes! I've been ad hominemed by an anonymous person on teh internetz!

    And my arguments have rightfully been ignored because I dare use words like fuck and shit and hell and damn asshole and motherfucker. And I don't show the proper respect and deference to Baby Jeebus. Because all of that means there is nothing worthwhile in the substance of my arguments.

    Because everyone knows that substance doesn't matter if it's not delivered in proper evangelicalese. I mean, that's got to be the only reason Anon hasn't actually managed to engage many of my arguments and jess hasn't been able to engage me in any way, shape, or form.

    I mean, I suppose it's possible that "Jess" and "sophs" are just sock puppets, who are only here to attempt to make a power in numbers sort of statement and, therefore, can't come up with anything better than Anon did originally. But no one would ever do that. I mean, this is the internet, where everyone is civil except for us evil people who use the swear words.

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  23. sophs:

    No, no, no. You can't call for a frank discussion and then just drop a link (and/or tell the rest of us to do our homework). That's not just lazy, it's like half-a-breath from admitting that you don't actually have anything to contribute.

    You want to throw out a citation for something, that's fine. You want to share your opinion, dandy. You want us to engage with someone else's argument, you're wasting our time and yours.

    ::grumbles::

    As for Anonymous's original point - "To call him a Nazi is irrational and dumb" - I disagree. Pointing out that eliminationist rhetoric resembles, well, eliminationist rhetoric is neither irrational nor dumb. Bauer's argument was, basically, let'em all starve so they won't perpetuate the problem by breeding.

    Your counterargument, as far as I can read it, is that this is not what he meant. You seem to think that he meant, instead, "theft by government is unconstitutional and leads to more dependence and poverty... In other words, let me give charity rather have it stolen from me." So, basically, you're saying that his point was not that the poor should starve, but rather that any help given to the poor should come voluntarily from individuals, rather than from the government.

    This is, in fact, a brilliant idea. It would help the poor, encourage them to take responsibility for themselves, and shrink the role of government, all at the same time. There's only one small problem with it: it doesn't work. People - as an aggregate - don't give enough on their own. Receiving some sort of aid from the government is not the only thing that prevents poor people from just, y'know, going out and getting jobs and pulling themselves up by their boot straps.

    If you cut social programs, the poor do not magically acquire jobs; individuals do not suddenly feel inspired to offer greater amounts of charity; and the world does not magically fix itself. What happens, instead, is that people who are already miserable become even more miserable, and more of them starve, or grow up hungry, or start looking for alternative revenue (burglary, drugs...).

    So for most of us here, the distinction between "we should let them starve" and "we should cut social programs (which action will, inevitably, result in letting poor people starve)" looks like a distinction without a difference.

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  24. Actually, I think you haven't been addressed, GED, because you are rude and arrogant and it's pointless to argue with crazy. Good luck with your life. I hope you're not a personal failure or forever in hell too.

    Mock-Allowing someone to fend for himself is not akin to killing him, dumby.

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  25. Actually, I think you haven't been addressed, GED, because you are rude and arrogant and it's pointless to argue with crazy. Good luck with your life. I hope you're not a personal failure or forever in hell too.

    Well, since hell doesn't exist, I'm pretty sure I won't be there forever. And if you really want to get in to a success in life debate I'll be more than willing to take you on, seeing as how I'm not even thirty, college educated, nearly completely out of debt, and apparently a shitload smarter than you.

    Oh, and I'm infinitely more self-aware, since this:

    Allowing someone to fend for himself is not akin to killing him, dumby.

    isn't something that would be said by someone with even an ounce of self-awareness right after calling another person arrogant and rude.

    Oh, and, for the record, even if I am arrogant and rude, that doesn't mean I'm wrong. For that matter, it's a lot of fun to prove arrogantly rude people wrong, since it's great to watch them squirm, attempt to justify themselves, or just ignore the substance of arguments in favor of pointless non sequiturs. You know, kind of like you've been doing all day.

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  26. Anonymous said: "Allowing someone to fend for himself is not akin to killing him, dumby."

    Isn't it? Let's go back to stray animal metaphors for a minute, then. My sister-in-law owned, at one time, a half-dozen or so cats. All of them were indoor cats, born and raised. The last time she moved, she decided that keeping them in the house was too much trouble. She decided to make them all permanent outdoor cats. How many were left six months later? "I think one might still be living in the barn."

    Even if she was correct about the survivor - and I would not bet money on it - she put the other five in a situation that, quite predictably, killed them. Her response was, basically, "At least they had a fighting chance."

    Okay, sure. They had a fighting chance. But they died anyway, and probably not pleasantly. Given the results of the action, I think she would have been kinder - and more honest - if she'd put them down herself.

    'Cause turning them out sure looked awfully akin to killing them.

    Anonymous said: "Allowing someone to fend for himself is not akin to killing him, dumby."

    I don't think Jesus would agree with you. (Luke 16: 19-31) Of course, Jesus was a bit of a liberal, so you probably can't trust what he had to say.

    Anonymous said: "Allowing someone to fend for himself is not akin to killing him, dumby."

    And, finally, the accepted spelling is "dummy". "Moron", "idiot", "dunce", "ignoramus", and "imbecile" are all acceptable substitutes. Honestly, I don't usually mock other people's spelling and grammar - at least, not as long as I can understand what they're trying to say - but since you were in the process of calling me stupid when you misspelled the word you were using to do so, I don't think you've got much room to object... nitwit.

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  27. I guess I'm happily going to rot in hell forever because while I'd love to think that actually Lt. Gov. Bauer is a distant descendant of Jonathan Swift and is pulling a Swiftian fast one at the expense of a misguided, uncharitable and selfish public that surrounds him, I am all too cynical. I believe he just advocated for natural selection. In a highly inhumane fashion. I had no idea that the man was a Darwinist.

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  28. Marzie, any kind thoughts directed at bauer are probably misplaced. Just by coincidence,this afternoon a friend of ours who is a waitress here told us Bauer & his entourage came in at five minutes before closing, locked the doors, had dinner, and left two pens for a tip. She's a little pissed, but no one is surprised.

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  29. Um, Uzza, I really didn't think telling the man from South Carolina that he was advocating inhumane natural selection (which he totally is- the entire attitude of survival of the financially fit without society providing any safety net in terms of healthcare or public assistance is just that) was a kindness.

    Frankly, I'm surprised that he left pens. After all, they could use them to write a nice letter about what they think of him and publish it in The State. Right alongside the column featuring the Jon Stewart take on the situation, for instance. Yes indeedy, leaving pens was an act of courage on the part of Bauer. I'm astonished, actually. He is opening the lines of civil discourse.

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Comments are for you guys, not for me. Say what you will. Don't feel compelled to stay on topic, I enjoy it when comments enter Tangentville or veer off into Non Sequitur Town. Just keep it polite, okay?

I am attempting to use blogger's new comment spam feature. If you don't immediately see your comment, it is being held in spam, I will get it out next time I check the filter. Unless you are Dennis Markuze, in which case you're never seeing your comment.

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