Wednesday, May 21, 2008

With Friends Like This...

This is a difficult post to make, because it involves an old friend and room mate of mine. We have taken starkly different paths in the last fifteen years. I’ve mentioned him before as this gun toting (though it is illegal to carry a gun in Wisconsin) born again, conservative ideologue. We’ve had lucid conversation in the past, but since this blog, he has apparently seen me for what I am, a Marxist. What I found out a few days ago was that Rush Limbaugh has been pushing the Marxist label heavily, and through that conservative filter, influenced my friend’s ability to have a rational conversation.

I have learned a lot about conservatives through my nameless friend here, and a former Republican radio host at WIBA-AM Vicki McKenna. Surprise, she’s still there, I’m not. What I’ve learned is that no matter how well you make your case, their minds are made up. Only on a rare occasion will you find a conservative change their pattern of thought? Through their own propaganda and myth making, a whole new world has been created. It’s a reality where liberals and Democrats are enemies of the state, and all problems stem from their implementation of the New Deal and war protests of the 60’s.

These are the unedited email responses to my blog postings and some protracted phone interactions. I’ll start with his reaction to a point I made about the NSA’s warrantless wiretaps.

“John, How can it be a scare tactic, maybe there right. Did you ever think about
that? I think you to dam syndical. We need to protect our country period. I
can't argue about this with you because I don 't believe you get it. After 911 I
said "how can this have happed" and then we learned about fire wall and that the
cia could' not' and didn't share information about terrorist. There were the 911
committee after committee to show the debacle that inside. I would rather error
on the side of being protected and give the phone company's immunity for helping
protect there country. Everyone asked why we didn't connected the dot's before
911. Now we have the ability to connected the dots and the dems won't lets us.
Moreover, lets be sure about this. If not when there is another attack on US
soil. You libs will be the first to point fingers at the same people that were
trying to fix the problem.”

“Instead of looking under your bed to see it
your phone is taped start looking at your absurd and ridiculous paranoia
conclusions that you might be being taped or being listing to. To be reaching
that this is Orwell's 1984 is just plane stupid. Don't forget John my boy, you
said your not good at gambling. This would be a hell of a thing to loose. Oh by
the way, I think the other thing you sent me way is propaganda. They simply just
don't get it. GET WHAT YOU SAY! That America has enemy's and they want to kill
us! Us is meaning you and your family. My jaw did drop by the way, that the dems
are so irresponsible on this, and to say that the constitution was saved when it
was never in jeopardy in the first place. Iam sending you links/ Maybe I should
book a flight to Denmark. “

“John yoiu used to have something to say and
I thought you did however you have gone off the deep end with your socialisum
(not spelled right) I mean your really really scaring me. I think your left of
carl max on most or some of your opintions.”

There is not a lot of room to negotiate with someone who holds you in complete contempt.

The hope is that soon, and similar to the 20 or 30 percent approval ratings of the Bush presidency, these small percentages represent a declining number of unwavering extremists. It’s a time to wake up, and a time to pool our best intentions.

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