Wednesday, October 12, 2011

More Lies from Minitru

1984 left a far reaching imprint on pop culture for a few reasons. As the years have passed, the references towards 1984 in popular politics have becoming more and more pronounced. In the novel, for those who don't remember, the government was broken up into various Ministries. They were tasked with various projects, but they were named the opposite of what they did: The Ministry of Love, called Miniluv, was responsible for torture and securing the state through brutal means. The Ministry of Peace, called Minipax, was responsible for making war. The Ministry of Truth, called Minitru, was responsible for lies and propaganda.

1984 is a popular dystopia novel. I've sat down and tried to read through it a few times but I've always gotten distracted by something else - it's on my summer reading list for the third year in a row now, and I hope this summer I'll finally be able to get through it. Of course, I already know how it ends, being as popular as it is.

But then, if I wanted to know how it begins, I don't have to look at the Interne, and that's not even mentioned in the book. But that's okay, because right now, if I was determined to see how it could begin, I could just look at the modern Republican Party.

Like I said in the introduction, Minitru was responsible for the propaganda. Our "hero" is an employee of Minitru. Minitru handles a lot of things, among them, rewriting history so that the Party was always correct. This is not as daunting a task as it seems; you just have to look at David Barton and the Right-wing true-believers to see how this happens. I'm not sure how many supporters of Big Brother were true-believers, but I do know that most supporters of Big Jesus are. And that's part of the problem.

In true Party fashion, I doubt Barton believes his own garbage. He's probably cynically aware of the power that he can wield over a selection of the population so desperate to have their existence and beliefs validated, despite everyone with any kind of cursory knowledge of the subject matter knowing they're wrong. We, in the United States, are not a Christian nation. God does not appear at all in the Constitution. "We hold these beliefs to be self-evident/That all men are created equal..." Is in the Declaration of Independence, a document of sentimental value worth little more than toilet paper legally. We are a nation of laws, not men or gods. Most of our framers were deists, or pantheists. Very few were atheists, but none of them were evangelical Christians. Democracy and Human Rights are rooted, very firmly, in Enlightenment tradition. Human Rights are not a feature in any Christian dogma before then; God outweighs the human, so your rights ultimately are trumped by God's laws. Everything about this nation flies in the face of the people who believe what Barton, Gingrich, Hannity, and the other liars on the Right spew on a regular basis.

That's why the True Believers are so desperate to be validated. And this Minitru revisionism doesn't stay in the past - no, it's constantly framing the present too, even if it has to ignore everything to the contrary and lie about it. For instance, David Barton believes that most Americans don't support gay and lesbian rights to serve openly, lamenting the repeal of DOMA. As Right-Wing watch goes on to report, this is beyond untrue - this is a flat fucking lie. Like almost everything that comes from the Right anymore. But people will still believe it. They'll still tell themselves, in the face of all evidence to the contrary,  because their belief is that strong in the untruth. It's so strong that you're willing to believe that the popular show Glee is home to a conspiracy to introduce our children to "sexual immorality." Truthfully, I don't watch Glee; but then, I rarely watch TV at all. And honestly, I'd rather our children be "sexually immoral" and enjoy life than be utterly amoral like the current political right and make life miserable for themselves and everyone else.

I just wanted to make this very clear, so there's no ambiguity: having faith that strong in a man like Barton and Barber, and in the words of men who claim to speak for God, is not just an insult, although I happily use it as one. That's also blasphemy. Of course, there's no way to twist that to their advantage, so it gets thrown out along with the rest of the stuff.

Of course, I haven't even touched on the Values Voters summit that they had just recently - I plan to in time. I have plenty of thoughts on this nightmare parade of stupidity, ignorance and bigotry. The lies spread, the faux-patriotism, etc.

And, time willing, that will be soon.

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