The Power of Language: Left v. Right?

Q: What is the difference between a Prepper and a Hippy?
A: A shotgun.

Q: What its the difference between a Hippy and a Prepper?
A: Hippies smoke dope, Preppers drink Kentucky bourbon.

Hippies. These are folks who want to be left alone. Maybe they live out in the woods with some fellow travelers striving to live simple lives based upon their values. They want to be self-reliant, left alone and free to explore their understanding life.

Kind of reminds me of a lot folks who live in rural areas anywhere in America. Put “Don’t Tread on Me” T-Shirt on, or an American flag in their front yard, and and suddenly they are “right wing zealots” or some equally undignified slander. Put a tie died shirt on, or a rainbow bumper sticker on their car and they are just some progressive doing their own thing. But don’t they really have the same goal — don’t tread on me? Leave me alone? Why is one “right wing” and the other “progressive?”

There is an unorganized understanding within the mainstream media and university communities to “frame” political speech into right-wing extremist (like the Preppers) and Progressives (which is a kindler gentler name). There is no such thing as a “left wing extremist” anymore — they are now the mainstream. Even the current President is a “progressive” — not someone on the fringe.

At the end of the day, this use of words is political manipulation.

Here is another example: There were a lot of angry young rioters burning down Seattle during the World Trade Organization meeting a few years back. Polite society frowned upon their behavior, but no one chastised them for their political views. Enter Donal Trump who wants to impose at 35% tariff on imports and he is scandalize for being unrealistic. Seems to me he should get a lot of votes from those folks in Seattle — both of them smell a skunk in the global free trade arena. Global Free Trade doesn’t help the little people — it helps the billionaires. Trump’s trade policy has more in common with the anti-WTO folks than any big business in the Republican party.

There are a lot of gun toting, Constitution quoting, patriotic white folk who will pay a little extra for “Made in the USA.” And there are a lot of self-congratulating “progressives” who talk about supporting a higher minimum wage in the US. Seems to me they are both interested in supporting Americans here at home (if I can say that without being called the “r” word).

Organic gardeners, anti genetically modified (GM) food activists, proponents of locally produced agriculture, and local market patrons see eye-to-eye with a revolutionary Christian, homeschooling mom growing “heritage” crops in Idaho. The overlap is bigger than their differences: sustainable agriculture, locally grown foods, independent of corporate America, and self-sufficient enough to resist being a cog in multi-national industrial agriculture.

The rioters in Ferguson hate the cops. The “right wing extremists” don’t trust government power. So — tell me again why one is on the left and the other is on the right? Or did the “left” just go away and there’s just “right wing extremists” remaining for the conventional powers to bash?

Let’s be real — the President himself had the backs of the rioters in Ferguson — no one was calling them extremist. But go to a pro-gun rally (with no violence) and that is the pure definition of an extremist in America today.

So at the end of the day language matters. Resistance to totalitarianism means understanding how words work in real life every day — to examine what they really men. Is anyone calling the anti-corporate anti-WTO rioters in Seattle “extremist?” Of course not.

There was a time in the 1990s when, in one week, the New York Times reversed its nomenclature of Russian leadership from “Right Wing” to “Left Wing” when nothing on the ground had changed. What changed is that the NYTimes couldn’t support a “right wing” leader even though he was doing things they liked because they had already determined that “right wing” was bad. The linguistic trope they impose supports “left wing” or progressive leaders, so it reversed the appellations. And no one said a word about it. This is how language is used for political control — the “left” must be made “progressive” and the “right” must be made “extremist.”

And we are there.

The enemies of classical liberalism (small government in defense rights such as those enshrined in the Bill of Rights) have co-opted the purveyors of language (the media and the educational system) and so dumbed down our educational system that men are no longer aware of the parameters of debate (the perfect goal of totalitarians). Teenagers don’t even read or write — they “tweet.” Slogans (anti-racist or racist or extremist or hate or homophobic) replace thought and logic and argument in a society with zero patience for reading and writing — our brains are addled by TV, movies, and the Internet. Thought takes work — work that comes in the form of writing and reading. Writing forces a rationality into the process. And words capture our mind.

The purpose of a “liberal” education is to have such a broad and general knowledge of the world that one won’t be trapped into someone else’s intellectual ghetto. But those days are gone — only the conventional view is permitted — anything outside that view is from “racist dead European males.”

So the Universities themselves are now the seedbeds of totalitarianism in the Western world — it begins with mind control — outlawing speech.

Think about it — there’s just a whole lot of discussions you won’t have in corporate America, the government or in universities without thinking about the risk you take of violating some EEO policy. That is thought control pure and simple and most aren’t even conscious it is going on. We are way over the edge of this.

If you don’t read you cannot write.
If you cannot write you cannot think deep logical rational thoughts.

If you cannot read nor write, you certainly should not be trusted with a vote if one’s view of society runs toward the rational, logical or open minded. Giving the functionally illiterate the vote empowers those best at manipulating language and buying votes from the public purse.

And so here we are.

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