Jello Biafra and Mojo Nixon - Love Me, I’m a Liberal

I cried when they shot John Lennon
Tears ran down my spine
And I cried when I saw “JFK”
As if I’d lost a father of mine
But Malcom-X and Ice-T had it coming
They got what they asked for this time

So love me, love me, love me,
I’m a liberal

I go to pro-choice rallies
Recycle my cans and jars
I’ll honk if you love the Dead
Hope those funny Grunge bands become stars
But don’t talk about revolution
That’s going a little bit to far

So love me, love me, love me,
I’m a liberal

I cheered when Clinton was chosen
My faith in the system reborn
I’ll do anything to save our schools
If my taxes ain’t too much more
And I love Blacks and Gays and Latinos
As long as they don’t move next door

So love me, love me, love me,
I’m a liberal

Rush Limbaugh and the L.A.P.D.
Should all hang their heads in shame
I can’t understand where they’re at
Arsenio should set them straight
But if neighborhood watch doesn’t know you
I hope the cops take your name

So love me, love me, love me,
I’m a liberal

Yeah, I read the New Republican
Rolling Stone and Mother Jones too
If I vote it’s a democrat
With a sensible economy view
But when it comes to terrorist Arabs
There is no one more red, white, and blue

So love me, love me, love me,
I’m a liberal

Once I was young and had an attitude
Stickers covered the car I drove in
Even went on some direct actions
When there weren’t rent-a-cops to be seen
Ah, but now I’ve grown older and wiser
And that’s why I’m turning you in

So love me, love me, love me,
I’m a liberal

(via brosephstalin-deactivated201212)

"I know not everyone here likes it when I talk this way, but the truth is that fear and intimidation are an important part of the American political process. The right understands this, but the left is inclined to bring tote-bags to gun fights. If Komen can be completely and utterly destroyed or humiliated here, the next right-wing group that wants to fuck with women’s health will think twice."

DougJarvus@BalloonJuice, discussing ways to boycott and/or encourage others to drop support for Komen.  

I don’t know that “utterly destroying” Komen is the optimal choice here, but the fact remains that Doug’s broader point is right.  The same thing happened during the Gore-Bush campaign.  The Gore campaign tried to keep it clean, and Gore got creamed in the media.  His predecessor, Clinton, understood this dynamic, and it’s part of the reason he was (and is) a successful politician that ended his Presidency still relatively popular; even despite impeachment proceedings and perjury accusations.  It’s also the reason why prior to Clinton, Democrats lost 5 out of 6 presidential elections.

There’s a strong case to be made that Obama’s 2008 campaign disproves the notion that fear and intimidation are necessary to affect political change.  But from a historical standpoint, Obama’s campaign was exceptional.  He was also running against a very unpopular GOP ex-incumbent, and McCain’s almost comically mismanaged presidential campaign, both of which may have helped his victory.  

As uncomfortable as it may be, there are situations in American politics where it doesn’t pay to be nice.  Recognizing those situations for what they are can mean the difference between protecting someone’s (or some group’s) rights and being made to suffer the absence thereof.  That doesn’t mean we need to run commercials accusing adversaries of denying kosher food to holocaust survivors.  But shaming a large institution and applying economic pressure on them to send a message is something right-leaning groups are very familiar with (see the American Muslim/Lowe’s controversy).

(via letterstomycountry)

On the West's Moral Panic Over 'Multiculturalism'


A good summary of the state of multiculturalism in western politics these days. Despite what some rightwing types would have you belief, multiculturalism is not and never has been hegemonic. It remains an unfulfilled ideal, a whipping boy, a seed of contention:

…“[O]thers” have to be distinguished in the popular mind from other “others.” So when black people attack other black people it is no longer crime but “black-on-black-crime;” if a young Muslim woman in killed over a romantic relationship it is not a murder but an “honor killing.” In a country like England that has been embroiled in virtually continuous terrorist conflict for the last forty years in Northern Ireland, the notion that there are “home-grown” Muslim bombers is supposed to represent not just a new demographic taking up armed struggle but an entirely new phenomenon. Even as the Catholic Church is embroiled in a global crisis over child sexual abuse and the Church of England is splintered in a row over gay priests, Islam and Muslims face particularly vehement demands to denounce homophobia.

The combined effect of these flawed distinctions and sweeping demonization is to unleash a series of moral panics. In 2009 in Switzerland, a national referendum banned the building of minarets in a country that has only four; in 2010, 70 per cent of voters in the state of Oklahoma support the banning of sharia law even though Muslims comprise less than 0.1 per cent of the population; in the Netherlands parliament seriously considered banning the burka–-a garment believed to be worn by fewer than fifty women in the entire country. Disproportionate in scale and distorted in nature, these actions cannot be understood as a viable response to their named targets but rather as emblems of a broader, deeper disruption in national, racial and religious identities. At a time of diminishing national sovereignty, particularly in Europe, such campaigns help the national imagination cohere around a fixed identity even as the ability of the nation-state to actually govern itself wanes. It is a curious and paradoxical fact that as national boundaries in Europe have started to fade, the electoral appeal of nationalism has increased….

But such assaults are by no means the preserve of the far right. Many who consider themselves on the left have given liberal cover to these assaults on religious and racial minorities, ostensibly acting in defense of democracy, Enlightenment values and equal rights—particularly relating to sexual orientation and gender. Their positioning rests on two major acts of sophistry. The first is an elision between Western values and liberal values that ignores the fact that liberal values are not fully entrenched in the West and that other regions of the world also have liberal traditions. Nowhere is this clearer than with gay rights, where whatever gains do exist are recent and highly contested. Thirty American states have constitutional amendments banning gay marriage, and only a handful of states have passed gay marriage through the popular legislative process. Not only is gay equality not a Western value, it’s not even a Californian value. The second is a desire to understand Western “values” in abstraction from Western practice. This surge in extolling Western virtues has coincided with an illegal war that has been underpinned by both authorized and unauthorized torture and a range of other atrocities and a spike in the electoral and political currency of racism and xenophobia.