Thursday, May 27, 2010

Civil Rights are Neither!

Everything old is new again?

The apparently unconquerable Civil Rights Act Question continues to rear its slippery head, this time in Nevada:
"'It’s a simple question, but it’s a ‘gotcha’ question,' [Nevada Republican candidate for Senator Sue] Lowden, a former state Republican Party chairwoman, said on the show “Face to Face.” 'Frankly, I wouldn't even know Rand Paul if I saw him on TV.'"
How the hell has this become a meme? The '64 Civil Rights Act is a thought experiment you throw at naive libertarians their freshman year of college, not a goddamn campaign issue. What's even more frustrating than the repeated asking is the complete inability of Republicans to address, brush off, and get back on message. Aren't y'all supposed to be career politicians?

Look, I'll do you a favor and tell you what to say: in an ideal world, such heavy-handed state involvement in civil society wouldn't be necessary, and given the social and economic inequalities we see between races even today it's clear that the Civil Rights Act was a less than perfect solution, but there are clear instances where imperfect state intervention is better than none. But the United States today isn't a country wanting for government intervention! In fact... [get the fuck back on message].

It's not like the Tea Party is looking for ultra-libertarian rigor and consistency, here, folks, unless there's a secret GOP Plan to finally repeal the Civil Rights Act that no one told me about (there aren't even any prominent Republicans with mustaches ornate enough to twirl evilly, so what would be the point?).

And seriously, Sue, what's with the bus hailing over Rand Paul? Touchy much?

Here's how I'd explain the fascination of the cryogenic pod people apparently running 2010 political season coverage: libertarianism, though older than the baby boomers it currently horrifies, has never gotten much attention on the national stage. Unlike Republicanism and Democratism, it's an ideological system, meaning that consistency is possible, and in consistency-friendly soil strange verdure blooms. The triple-headed dog called Bush Derangement Syndrome, the Campaign for Liberty, and the Tea Party Movement tore away enough old meat to make room for libertarian candidates, who, used to never having a snowball's chance in hell at being serious contenders for anything significant, never really learned how to talk the talk. And now we all get to relive the same old conversations libertarians have been having since way before there even was a Madonna for Gaga to imitate because apparently the Democrats can't find anything more substantive to attack the new wave GOP on?

Oh, and one more thing: isn't race like, still a huge issue, and stuff? Pray to the devil you know, I guess.

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