Interfusion Press.net Blogs

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

"How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Became a Right Wing Fascist" by T.S. Minton (written 2003, but still very, very relevant - trust me.)

Editor's Note:
The following blog is taken from an e-mail I wrote (circa summer of 2003) to Mark Zepezauer, Tucson-based political writer (see The CIA's Greatest Hits and Take The Rich Off Welfare), laff-riot cartoonist, and former publisher of The Tucson Comic News (a compendium of political cartoons and a sorely missed community resource). Hopefully ole Zep, who has always been a vocally public kinda voice, won't mind me posting our exchange. If you are out there, Zep, please reply to my massive missive, as long ago you promised you would. -- T.S. Minton

T.S. Minton:

Dear Zep,

I know I tend to be verbose, so I will try to make this as succinct as possible. [Yeah right. -ed.]

The Counterpunch.org article over which I pick a few bones is "Why the Right Hates America (If They Love America So Much, Why Are They Working Overtime to Destroy It?)" .

Basically I agree with you as far the spotlight you throw on the religious fanaticism, environmental rapacity, and backlash-inviting military belligerence of the more zealous figures on the right. However, I find your subtextual assumption that the left is always so put upon and holy-two-shoes quite disingenous.

The sword cuts both ways, old chum: You object togetting the knee-jerk appellation of "America hater" from conservatives, while the pure-hearted peacelovers on the left are quick to hurl such epithets as "right wing fascist" and "warmonger" on anybody who to any degree supports aspects of Bush's War onTerrorism.

You refer to this homogeneous entity called "the left," and then announce your allegiance to it as a lover of the American environment, Constitution, and civil rights heroes, implying that there are not actually more scurvy elements of your movement who do in fact hate America and have engaged in Stalinist tactics against their enemies (i.e. the campus radicals who broke into The Daily Californian newspaper offices at U.C. Berkeley and stole copies containing David Horowitz's quite cogent arguments against reparations for slavery).

Sadly, the record shows a much more dishonorable shadow to your movement, a history of Machiavellian violence, seditious anarchism, shrill ideologizing and suppression of dissent, and stomach-turning apologism for both Communist atrocities and Muslim terrorism which belies much of the sweet talk rhetoric of "social justice" and "peace." This grotesque dark side of your movement also threatens to overshadow its unimpeachable accomplishments, for without the compassion and sacrifices of the left, we would have no weekend, no civil rights, no universal suffrage, and so forth -- as you have re-affirmed in your article.

If you come back and say that not ALL of your side is so bad, then I wonder why in your article you refer to "the left" in such a homogeneous fashion, as if it were an organized block of righteous fascist fighters instead of a disparate collection of the good, the bad, and the kooky. If you don't know what I'm talking about with the charges I've leveled of dishonor, violence, etc. then I'm worried, and urge you to spend a few hours of cognitive dissonance reading, say, the articles on Frontpagemag.com or Destructive Generation by Horowitz and Collier. Please engage such critiques, including my own, without the typical response of the ideological True Believer, i.e. "Yeah, well fuck that shit Jack, I'm not even going to address these charges because YOUR side is so screwed up. Bunch of fat cat war-mongers and Bible thumpin' fanatics, and you dare to criticize US who are fighting for social justice and peace???"

I hope you can be that rare kind of leftist who's willing to cop to the crimes and follies of your own side instead of just tout its accomplishments and bash the opposition -- I ask the same from the mad-dogs on the right (I am an equal opportunity debunker). Let's make it clear that in American politics, blame is not a zero-sum game -- there's plenty to go around.

Although I am a supporter, sometimes strong, sometimes tentative, of most of Bush's military reactions to September 11th, and my middle-ground position on many issues might mark me as a very right wing liberal or a very moderate conservative, I am far from blind to the many pomposities and errors on the right.

Much as I applaud David Horowitz for severing his ties with the violent frauds who ruined the ideals of the New Left (The Weathermen, Black Panthers, et al.), I'm dismayed that he stated in a recent blog that he wished Al Quaida had struck The New York Times building instead of the World Trade Center (isn't the idea of America supposed to be tolerating ideas we can't stand instead of wishing mass murder upon our ideological enemies?). And I despise the simplistic, Manichean worldview as well as the crude hyperboles found in the writings of Ann Coulter, for one.

And as a post-New Age mystic, I'll be damned if I'll let Christian Fundamentalists dictate to me either my inner spiritual life or a removal of the separation of church and state. The list goes on and on. Face it, Zep, both sides have much to be ashamed of.

So basically what happened was that since September 11th, I've become a "post-agnostic- perennialist/reluctant-conservative-by default." I say "post-agnostic" because by now I've come through the worst of the Nietzschean/Robert Anton Wilson-ish questioning of all my spiritual and political beliefs which I felt in the weeks and months following that awful day. As you may know, for years I was an intrepid practitioner and researcher into the nebulous realms of the occult/paranormal/UFOlogy/etc. vis-a-vis especially my involvement with Ted Loman's woefully defunct community access TV show Off The Record...

Up until Sept. 11th I felt I had many of the mysteries of the cosmos, conspiratorial politics, and the multidimensional nature of the soul pretty much wrapped up into a neat ontological construct...But there was something about the sheer visceral impact of watching those mighty towers crumble, the ghastly plumes of smoke and splaying glass as it crumbled, the hideous mangled mess of twisted steel, billowing smoke, and unimaginable human agony of that moment and its epochal aftermath that shattered all my certainties...as if the "higher reality" of the trans-dimensional realms (of the "perennial philososphy," i.e. the soul, the afterlife, out of body/meditational experiences, encounters with non-ordinary states of consciousness or non-human entities etc.) I doted on for so many years could offer any real consolation in the face of the very basal reality of mortality, dread, uncertainty etc. we all encountered after that horrible day.

And by now it's clear to me that, e.g. SOMETHING strange is going on with ETs and UFOs, i.e. some kind of inter-dimensional intelligence or thought forms are interpenetrating our lives here on earth and meddling with and monitoring us, but I'm tired of those "New Age Kooks" who insist on dogmatizing on what they THINK is "REALLY" going on from what limited sense data we have on the issue. And even if on some level or another these critters are real, what good have they done on a practical level? In this dangerous world we've created for ourselves, where are they when we need 'em?

And politically, I was deeply affected by post-Sept 11th, re-imprinted I suppose by the shock of that jarring day and its endlessly reverberating aftermath. Basically I felt on a very primal level that we had to do SOMETHING to defend ourselves from another attack, and that yeah our military/CIA/"New World Order" conspirators et al. have in many ways been a bunch of bastards, but damn it they're OUR bastards and we need 'em at this juncture to prevent our country from turning into one big Ground Zero. I'm sure you'll argue that these groups are in fact driving us toward a global Ground Zero, but I must ask those who proselytize for peace under all conditions: What has the left done to ensure a safer world after Sept 11th besides absolutely zero? (i.e. it was the "warmongers" who did the world the favor of decimating much of the Taliban, Al Quaida, and Saddam Hussein's regime -- the latter and to some extent the former admittedly still a chaotic mess.) [Written circa summer 2003. -ed.]

Under WHAT CONDITIONS would an American-initiated war be justified? If we were literally invaded would the followers of Howard Zinn still have what Norman Podhoretz truculently called a "sickly inhibition against the use of military force"? Isn't it possible that the mindless belief in "peace" under all circumstances can sometimes lead to more atrocities, i.e. what if Truman had not dropped the Bomb and millions more died in what would have been MacArthur's necessary invasion of Tokyo? Was JFK conspiracist Carl Oglesby really right when he said in his critique of conservatism that it is "better to endure anarchy than countenance tyranny" (The Yankee and Cowboy War)? I'm talking about the anarchy of another Sept 11th-scale attack, and I mean just a little tyranny of course, directed against our mortal enemies mostly (one would hope), with the minimal number of innocent eggs broken to make the omelet. You know, like just one little hit of crack, heh heh.

In general, I find that liberals and leftists with their idealistic/pie-in-the-sky worldviews have a hard time dealing with the brutal truths that on the basal level we're hominids and sometimes hominid leaders respond to force like babboons in the tree. Sometimes our leaders unfortunately but rightly have to kill thousands so that millions may live -- a brutal calculus indeed, but leftists hardly hold the moral high ground here. After all, they have supported in the pages of The Nation most every Communist dictator of the 20th century, with the vicarious blood of 500,000,000 victims of mass murder on their hands. (I realize that I levy charges of collective guilt here, but I offer exoneration for good leftists like yourself if you're willing to disassociate themselves from the troglodytes in your midst).

And so, let me quickly catalogue some of the outrages which have made me a "conservative by default," i.e. yes, I know many on the right are in fact a bunch of fat-cats, religious fanatics etc. and I would never subscribe to ALL their beliefs enough to claim I'm a member of "the right," but here's why I'm so disgusted with the left I'll never go back:

- As you believe that one can love America and not love its wars, the same logic applies on other issues , i.e. I believe in racial equality and despise to the depths of my soul the brutalities of racism, but I'm still disgusted by much of the black establishment: the race-baiting demagogue and Korean grocer killerAl Sharpton, antisemitic bile spewer and Lenin and Castro apologist Amiri Baraka, and the suppression of TV news coverage of brutal murders commited by blacks like by the Carr Brothers in Wichita, Kansas.

- I am not homophobic but I'm "turned off" by the strident gay establishment (remember, e.g. Dan Savage's article in Salon.com which Ms. Magazine found so "hilarious" in which Savage went undercover at The Christian Coalition -- certainly a group I'll always contend with -- and tried to spread the influenza virus at their headquarters by rubbing his infected fingers on their door knobs? "Victimhood" can drive people to such extremes).

- Sweet little peaceniks would never rationalize violence, right? Recently I went upstairs to the Social Science department at the University of Arizona, to see how bad these P.C. ideologues really are. A graduate student teacher had a poster on his wall that said "Class Warfare: Just Do It!" (to the tune of the Nike symbol, with a picture of rioters overturning and burning cars in the streets). As a so-called "right wing war-monger," it's reassuring to know that the other side has their own justification for war. Their's is for the greater good, of course. Their poster, "Not In Our Name," said so. I really shouldn't point out that their spokesman Clark Kissinger is a member if the Revolutionary Communist Party, because then I'll be labeled an "anti-communist" and get subject to all kinds of hyperbolic caricatures. I better not start an argument either, because no amount of evidence will convince a True Believer that Communism was in fact the most murderous force of the 20th century -- not even the exhaustive research contained in "The Black Book of Communism." Maybe we can change the subject to"The Black Book of Capitalism" and drop the subject, hey? A zero-sum game.

- Ever notice how it's not exactly de rigeur to walk into, say, Epic Cafe or Solar Culture [2 local Tucson hang-outs. -ed.] with a Nazi t-shirt on, but it's "trendy" and "hip" to sport a t-shirt of Castro's right hand man Che Guevara? Good ole icon Che, "the people's hero," lining up the big bad "bourgeoisie" and machine gunning them down, then throwing their bodies into pits to celebrate the Cuban Revolution. Fuck 'em though, they deserved it, they were "the oppressor class," right? And ole Fidel's basically a good guy, worthy of the sickening obsequiousness he's received from Steven Spielberg, Oliver Stone, The Indigo Girls and your distinguished Counterpunch colleague Saul Landau. He's a decent fellow, besides imprisoning a former Communist colleague in a cement box for approximately 20 years and turning his country into a totalitarian island prison.

- It's a sick world we live in when The National Review sometimes holds the moral high ground, like circa 1975 when they were the only publication willing to publish excerpts from Solzhenitzyn's "The Gulag Archipelago." Too bad the left lost its nerve for"moral indignation" and "social justice" when we DID pull out of Vietnam and millions were tortured, enslaved and murdered by the North Vietnamese -- and Tom Hayden and co. said nary a word in protest. Let's drop this subject, though, because Chomsky says it never happened, and he's holy writ.

- Andrea Dworkin and all the rest of these prattling mentally masturbatory semioticians convincing their starry-eyed little charges in the universities that the legacy of Western Civilization amounts to a bunch of "DWEMs" (Dead White European Males) and oppression. Remind me to bring a life-size cut-up, or better yet a blown-up balloon like those gorillas used for car sale promotions of Camille Paglia down to the offices of these "PCDB's" (Politically Correct Dyke Bitches). (Oh, I'm sorry, was I too offensive? I meant to say"MH-PCDB'S," for "Man Hating..."). Paglia -- now there's a real Dyke to Watch Out For, a true embodiment of the humanities and feminine self-empowerment and...oops, sorry I got cut off, somebody's flying into an apopleptic fit of ad hominem attacks against her and against me for mentioning the verboten name, let's pick that one up later...

- And I don't even have time to get into an explanation of how the left's preference for secular humanism in e.g. The Nation makes me laugh, with my years of direct contact with and intensive study of paranormal realms. The left does have a spiritual wing, though, called "The New Age" movement, whose preferred approach is to not dwell on the "negativity" of the next attack, to pray for "peace and love" and become as sitting ducks. Guardian angels and white light will protect us, of course, and the 4th dimensional shift is coming any day anyways.

So that wraps it up for now. Suffice to say that I've concluded that too strict an adherence to any ideology is to put on blinders. Funny how ideologues of on all sides of the political, cultural and religious Culture Wars we're embroiled in are rather "selective" in what they chose to get outraged about. When you subscribe to an ideology you have to bed with the devil. I challenge you to go into a leftist enclave, say a peace rally or Antigone's [a local feminist/lesbian bookstore], and start discussing these issues I've raised where the left is so very culpable. You'd find that your voice would get suppressed and shouted down, real quick.

Obviously you believe that the good your movement creates counterbalances these negative influences, or maybe you believe many of my accusations are baseless. Either way, I don't expect to change your mind -- but I hope I've made clear whyI've become so utterly disenchanted with the "progressive" movement. And don't think I'm some "pink" either like the Subgenius say. My parents were dope smokin', acid trippin' hippies in Berkeley circa 1968 and 1969. Thank God they were acid heads and not politicos though, because as much as I revere the watershed culture of the 60s (Dylan, The Grateful Dead, Hendrix, Lee & Kirby, Crumb, et al.), post-Sept 11th and post-Horowitz I'll never look at that era's politics the same way.

Ciao for now,
Steve

Mark Zepezauer:

Whew, dude, if that was succinct, I'm afraid to see what happens when you really cut loose!

Now, if you'd have sent me something like that a few years ago, I might have had the time to sit down and rebut you point by point, and get back to you with something three times as long. I don't have that time anymore. I'm a stay-at-home Dad, with another baby on the way. I'm freelancing my books and articles as well as making a buck doing technical illustration, and taking occasional temp jobs to make ends meet.

I'm in a deadline crunch right now, but I will give you a good answer eventually, because you deserve as much. I'll probably have to cut-and-paste from some of my other replies to righteous righties who objected to my article, and then add some more sweet talk rhetoric specific to your post. It ought to be fun, because you gave me a lot to chew on.

I'll just leave you with this: Everybody, but everybody, has got an ideology. The ones who claim they don't are just doing a better job of hiding it from themselves than the rest of us do.





Monday, December 12, 2005

Introduction to Interfusion Press.net Blogs.

Interfusion Press.net Blogs is the place to blog about the works of artist and writer T.S. (Thodal Soule "Steve") Minton, and the contents of his website www.interfusionpress.net. On this site he publishes his own acclaimed original art and writing (poetry, how-to guides to writing poetry and college term papers and essays, and "semi-channeled" spiritually-related material, and more) and he is also the editor of Interfusion Magazine Online ("IM Online"). IM Online features original art (visual art, photography, and comics), writing (original poetry and essays), portals to free internet music (free internet radio, free videos, and free streaming audio concerts), and portals to information and free streaming radio and community cable TV programs on paranormal mysteries (UFOs, crop circles, ancient mysteries, and so forth).