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Reflections on Trans-Pacific Nut Cases

Spending five weeks on the North American continent recently, four of them in the USA, was a great way to experience first-hand views and opinions on a variety of different subjects that penetrate the pores of the media in the land of the free.

It’s a good thing because when one observes the lunacy, ineptness and sheer bastardry of the LNP government here, seeing similar lunacy with the Republicans on the other side of the globe helps one to feel less isolated in one’s search for social sanity.

American politics, I observed, has more nut cases than we have here. But in our current political environment, I could also see that we were gaining.

They have their tea party cranks, most of whom are fire brand evangelicals who would have us believe that Barack Obama is the Beast in Revelations.

They constantly quote various but highly dubious passages of bible scripture to prove their point. I use the, ‘prove their point’ reference derogatorily.

Fox News presents the hard right wing view in such distorted terms, it redefines the concept of balance. Facts account for little. Balance is something the other side must prove rather than simply express.

The most outrageous and incredibly stupid utterances coming from the nut cases get prime time exposure with Fox which, in a way, is good because it helps to segregate and quantify that part of the collective American idiocy.

maher Then there are moderates on cable and free to air television who try to preach a more responsible, dare I say it, socialist view. One of the more enlightened on the progressive side is Bill Maher on HBO, who not only makes the hard right look like modern day Nazis, he does it with piercingly funny humour.

Beyond that humour one sees how important Maher’s role is in trying to redress the absurdity of the Tea party’s manifesto. He, however, gets only limited free to air exposure. On the more serious side, Democrat Bernie Sanders tries to show how the nut cases distort the truth but it’s a tough gig in the land of the poorly informed.

We too, have our equivalent of the Tea party. That bunch of hard right wing idealists who believe so vehemently in the market as a force for everything. Some quote dubious bible passages to prove their point too.

Our nut cases believe those who are forced off the road to wealth creation and achievement, simply don’t deserve any consideration. Fortunately, they are subjects of derision. The U.S. equivalents have ardent followers. Thankfully, we are not as gullible as the average American.

While both countries are being educated to think the world is divided into two opposing ideologies, i.e. Western capitalism and Islamic fervour, it is a contrived smokescreen created by interests of the former to distract us from Capitalism’s real opposition; those who would threaten their financial domination, their so called ‘New World Order’.

By and large, Australians just don’t buy that sort of spin, but to hear specific vague and meaningless references such as ‘death cults’ from our Chief Executive Officer makes me wonder if our resistance is weakening.

Cruz No problem with resistance over there though…the Tea party, with its evangelical claptrap and its Reaganistic mantras has captured the mind of Middle America and gets prominent air time on Fox. This forces opposing cable and free to air media to give additional airtime to issues so trivial, they appear as major news items.

Free to air networks seem somewhat confused by what their viewers want to hear and what is real. The result is broader confusion for everyone where the truth is so distorted it is lost in the mire. Truth and fact have become what one believes rather than what one knows.

Economically, the last six years of quantitative easing has rescued America from serious decline. Every argument against a sovereign monopoly issuer using its own currency to inject massive amounts of cash into its economy in times of crisis should be consigned to the scrap heap.

It has worked to restore an economy that was in free fall. It has restored America back to growth, albeit tenuously and one still not out of trouble.

That improvement, despite much of the issuance being diverted to a now seriously over valued stock market, once more demonstrates the wisdom of Labor’s stimulus program here in the wake of the GFC, where the money went straight into individual bank accounts.

Yet if you ask the man or woman in the street here, who they think is the better economic manager, they will likely say the LNP. It defies all evidence to the contrary. The recent budget, conspicuous for its lack of stimulus beyond a puny effort to win votes with the small business community, is doomed to failure. It has no answer to unemployment.

The improvement in the US economy is being attributed to Obama correctly, despite a recalcitrant Congress continuing to berate its President as someone intent on destroying the ‘American Dream’; someone better described as Satan in disguise. The right wing media hate him with a vengeance. This can only mean he has done something good for the country and something not so good for the 1%.

paul The Republicans have already begun their campaign for the November 2016 presidential race starting in earnest well ahead of the usual time. Not to be caught napping, the Democrat hopefuls have jumped in as well. For the weary voter, it’s going to be a painfully boring 18 months.

Our 2016 political race would seem more exciting, if only to watch how our painfully dysfunctional government continues to drown in its own well recorded rhetoric and fiscal stupidity.

If ever Labor wakes from its slumber, shows true grit and challenges head-on the selfish, mean-spirited, economically inept direction the Abbott government is heading, they might win back the hordes of former true believers who have deserted them for moving too far to the right.

For me, escaping to Canada wasn’t the answer. I came back believing it was better on this side of the Pacific. We have fewer nut cases.

 

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  1. Denis Bright

    A great case for a stronger Australian identity and independence.

    Contact your local Labor federal representatives and senators to ask them to cool down Labor’s commitment to the US Military Alliance and commitments to the Trans Pacific Partnership at the forthcoming Federal Labor Conference in Melbourne.

    Even the Obama administration has its concerns about the military industrial lobbies at home and forthcoming breaches of Labor rights within the Trans Pacific Partnership.

    Hilary Clinton may be ahead in the polls now but her leadership will be strongly contested by the Republicans who are still gun-ho about the new American century.

    The original ANZUS Arrangements from 1951-52 were far less gun-ho about our commitments to the US Alliance.

    Now Australia and the US are locked into the bind of the Australia-US Ministerial Consultations (AUSMC) which have operated at ministerial and executive levels since the Hawke Era to take discussion of Alliance issues out of mainstream politics.

    It was Australia that broke ranks with New Zealand in welcoming nuclear ship visits from the US which had been restored under Malcolm Fraser after being restricted by John Gorton for safety reasons.

    Why are Australians gullible enough to believe that such naval vessels do not carry nuclear weapons?

  2. Florence nee Fedup

    At this time, we do not. When one reads comments in the likes of Australian, one wonders if are fast catching up.

    One con hope, by enough of us mouthing on the net, that it is a civil society we want, not a society that is expected to serviced a economy, will give Labor the chance to stand up for justice and fairness for all.

    I can never remember a time, when having children was a lifestyle decision, as now, where people do not want THEIR taxes spent.

    I want to return to the time when having a child was just a part of life. Gee, even the bible demands that one have children.

    Not long ago, that Costello promoted that it was the duty of women, to have one each for mum and dad, one for the country.

  3. RosemaryJ36

    It may have escaped Fergolo’s attention that white people were invaders of Australia and Terra Nullius no longer is accepted doctrine. Social justice is fast becoming an unattainable dream as white dominated governments move ever closer to fascism.

  4. Harquebus

    If we were allowed to truly speak our minds, I think we will find a quite few more closet nut cases around.

    The U.S. is an economic basket case and basically bankrupt. Massive amounts of QE along with record low interest rates over several years has failed.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-05-11/americas-vanishing-worker-curious-case-exposing-recovery-propaganda
    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-05-18/obama-just-called-rotting-decaying-hellhole-symbol-promise-nation

    10 Pictures That Show How America Is Becoming Just Like Nazi Germany


    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-05-11/almost-half-us-states-are-officially-broke
    Crumbling America1 Full Documentary
    h ttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pducRLyDmiY

  5. stephentardrew

    Even Harry Reid is coming out against Obama and the GOP nut cases in regard to the TPP and TPIP

    The Hidden ‘Betrayal’ In Obama’s Trade Agenda
    Posted: 05/20/2015 6:10 pm EDT

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/20/brown-steel-dumping-trade_n_7345616.html

    Harry Reid Calls Trade Push By Obama And GOP ‘Insanity’
    Posted: 05/20/2015 11:37 am EDT

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/20/harry-reid-trade-insanity_n_7343106.html

    Warren Pushes Back Against TPP Fast Track

    As Senate debates “fast track” for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, Senator Elizabeth Warren says the trade deals have failed workers. – May 20, 2015

    http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=13890

  6. corvusboreuscorvus boreus

    FERGOLO11,
    Australians= citizens of Australia, by birth or naturalisation. No need to be utopian, dreaming, or white to fit the definition.
    Simple enough?

  7. Jexpat

    Last I heard, Obama had no control or influence over the US Federal Reserve’s decisions.

    Moreover, those decisions would have been far less necessary, and the country (and the overwhelming majority of ordinary Americans) far better off economically, if he hadn’t blown the fiscal stimulus through preemptory concessions to right wing ideologues back in 2009.

    Among other things, his adminstration was warned, in no uncertain terms, about the stimulus’ failure to close the output gap through government spending (the difference between what the economy could be producing under “usual” circumstances -and what it would produce in the aftermath of the financial crisis & housing bubble collapse). And that it would be politically impossible to “fix” this down the track.

    Thier failue to apply adequate and appropriately targetted fiscal policy was in stark contrast to the more responsible and successful efforts of the Rudd government- and led to a massive transfer of wealth from the working poor and middle class, which was due in no small part to the availability of so much “cheap money” that was used by wealthy institutions and the rentier class for non-productive uses, at a time when American corporations were already sitting on billions in cash (which they largely used for dividend payments and stock buybacks). Thus, we saw an unduly and unnecessarily prolonged downturn, what many called “a jobless recovery.”

    As to American news, aside from the comedy prorams and a very few shows on MSNBC, their television, radio and so called “mainstream” papers are so skewed to the irrational right that average consumers of their media are often unable to distinguish between objective fact -and abject, demonstrable falsehood.

    A tendency that’s unfortunately been infecting us here- and shows no signs of relenting.

  8. diannaart

    Lived for a time in Arizona, way back in the 80’s during the era of Reagonomics- was ever so grateful that Australia wasn’t such a basket-case…. now it is…. we were warned… we could’ve taken a different path… but we didn’t.

  9. mars08

    We are cursed to share a common language (sort of) with our American cousins…

  10. John Kelly

    FERGOLO11 (@FERGOLO11) I have no idea what you are talking about.

  11. Pingback: Reflections on Trans-Pacific Nut Cases | THE VIEW FROM MY GARDEN

  12. Jexpat

    mars08:

    Americans are also cursed to share our common Murdoch.

  13. Roswell

    John, I will be removing his ridiculous comment. As a moderator I don’t tolerate those types of insults to our authors.

  14. John Kelly

    Roswell, it did not bother me but as it made no sense, it is probably the right move.

  15. babyjewels10

    I worry about where this is all heading. Will they win? In my 64 years, I’ve never seen Australians more divided, more angry and more fearful.

  16. donwreford

    If the nut cases grow exponentially in America it could become the disease from within that restrains and exhausts American military extravaganza’s of overseas military meddling adventures.

  17. Andreas Bimba

    A really good article John, and how sad that the US and to a lesser extent Australia, Canada and the UK have all headed down this appalling path. Does the average citizen want corporate totalitarianism, do they even know or care? Other countries in Europe and also Japan have followed the same path with crony conservative governments literally dismantling what is left of their independent mass media.

    I suppose the ultimate end point of neo-liberalism is one wealthy stinking toad controlling and owning almost everything but before that we will probably have multi polar toads in the worlds economic power centres such as China, North America, Europe, India, Japan, Russia and a few other fragments.

    Will Australia lead the fight back to sanity in 2016 or will it be the signal for the disenfranchised to plant their own permaculture garden and buy an automatic weapon????

  18. Wun Farlung

    One day the neo-cons will just go too far (TPP perhaps) and the majority of people will wake up.
    Unfortunately we will always have people with “aspirations” fooled into to thinking if they ride the far right magic carpet they too will become part of the mega wealthy 1% and there is no way you can get the idea of a fair society between them and a buck

  19. totaram

    Andreas Bimba: Buying an automatic weapon is already illegal in Australia and at the moment I am thankful for that. However, I get your point.

  20. mark delmege

    I found this the other day and it kinda made sense to me…. Any thoughts John?

    ‘Hillary is a foil; the Clinton dynasty a lie.
    The Bushes are the preferred family of the US. Hillary exists to present a scandle ridden talking point to cover the obviously rigged political process which will “elect” the third bush in as many decades. ‘ (sic)

  21. mark delmege

    Do you really think I care who will be the next US president and does it matter anyway? You can be certain some poor country (ies) will be smashed to justify arm sales military training empire or something. They all do it. Tell me I’m wrong.

  22. Andreas Bimba

    @Jexpat, Lindsay Graham is still a Republican even if the Tea Party mad bastards don’t like him.

    On Hillary, if Bill Clinton was such a neo-liberal free trade, money politics, plutocratic turd then it is a safe bet that so is Hillary.

    Either Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren have my vote but I’m not eligible and yes the US political system does matter, critically so now that corporate plutocracy is now so close to making the US an effective dictatorship with a facade of democracy, and the vitally important role the US plays in the world for good and bad.

    http://www.c-span.org/video/?325700-1/senator-bernie-sanders-ivt-news-conference

  23. Ross

    Having lived in America in 2011 on temporary 12 month work assignment, I can say, and this is only my opinion, America is one truly screwed up society.

    To be a temporary resident in a foreign country you see that society first hand and American society is a violent, militaristic, harsh uncaring society totally alien to an Australian outlook.

    Why some politicians want to move us in that direction defies belief.

    I suggest we deport said pollies to the good old US of A and we can get back to making our society a better place for all of us.

  24. Michael Taylor

    So all Australians are white. What shell do you live in?

  25. stephentardrew

    Agree completely Ross.

    Burn their passports on the way out.

  26. Harquebus

    The more one spends, the more one pollutes. Perhaps the mega rich hoarding all the cash is a good thing.

  27. John Kelly

    FERGOLO11 (@FERGOLO11), What an odd individual you are. I can’t work out what I said that has upset you so. I am going to mark you down as one of our nut cases until I can better understand your rhetoric.

  28. matthew oborne

    Some “white” australians are pinkish. I dont see you racists
    pushing pink supremacy. Are racists self loathing?

  29. John Hermann

    The nut cases and fruitcakes can only succeed to the extent that the average citizen has become dumbed down and takes them seriously.

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