The right wing including religious fanatics, pro gun fanatics, hard core racists, libertarians and hard core Trump supporters who protested state lock downs around the country last week are on to something. They understand that the capitalist gods require blood sacrifice. They are misguided of course, but they are right about one thing; change requires sacrifice. And they are willing to sacrifice themselves for what they believe!
Over the last few weeks there have been an assortment of medical quacks and political hacks who have also harped on this theme of sacrifice. Dr Oz suggested reopening schools and that a one to two percent loss of approximately a million and half school children would be acceptable. Las Vegas mayor Carolyn Goodman offered to open her city and use its workers as guinea pigs, implying that a certain number of lost workers would be acceptable. And Dr Phil, Fox news commentators, the Lt Governor of Texas and an Indiana legislator suggested that people should be willing to die for this economy.
At bottom they are right orthodox capitalism requires a sacrifice: your labor, your money, your well being and even your life.
And it is important to note that the capitalists require us and only us working class folks to sacrifice and even die. One couldn’t help but notice that unlike the right wing whacks, the medical quacks and political hacks speaking up for the survival of the system at the cost of our lives, did not volunteer to sacrifice their own.
The apparently confused protesters are not as confused as folks would have us believe. They are indeed acting irrationally in the face of a deadly disease, but their protest has a rationale, not only do they want to restore their livelihood, they want this system to survive, come hell, high water or deadly disease.
Many have chosen to risk death rather than face financial ruin. They view being unemployed and broke as a fate worst than death, so they are willing to risk their lives and unfortunately yours as well, to go back to work.
Ironically they made no demands on the power structure –their god– or the economy which they insist should be re-opened. The willing dupes that made absolutely no demands of their god: not a livable wage, sick time, paid time off, or health benefits. Strangely they cherish this system that has treated them so poorly: above all else.
The White Supremacist rationale has a kind of logic because they want the system to survive so that they can proudly brag that they live in a White nation. For them that is something for which they are willing to die. From their perspective it is worth risking their lives to stop a shutdown, even if it will kill the elderly, the young and the vulnerable. And if the coronavirus continues to ravage the nation, the racists will get a bonus because it will continue to kill Black people in disproportionate numbers.
In fact Black folks ought to be careful about continually trumpeting their vulnerability to COVID-19, brought about by their high incidence of obesity, high blood pressure, chronic kidney disease, heart disease and asthma, which incidentally is part of the price paid to live in racist America. Blacks susceptibility to the disease has already given their enemy ideas, as hateful and diabolical White supremacists have already been plotting ways to use the coronavirus as a biological weapon.
Not surprisingly these protests that show an alarming indifference to human life come from the ALL LIVES MATTER crowd and the supposed “pro-life” advocates. The protests to reopen society seems contradictory to their supposed love of life And despite most of the right wingers insistence on the rights of the unborn, they put little effort into the causes that aide children’s education, health or welfare. Because at bottom the pro life movement is not about protecting the unborn, but trying to tell other people what to think, how to live and what to do.
Contrary to their supposed world view they are willing to sacrifice the lives of the US’s youth. This ironically is consistent with the world view of the capitalists, they have no problem sacrificing children, because they are not worth much in their world view until they are old enough to work.
And as we well know there are not enough jobs to go around, employment even in the best of times is almost always near 10 percent. What I mean by employment is a job that is 30 hours and pays at least $12 an hour which is far short of a living wage. Despite the fight for $15 that is still not a living wage. In Minneapolis the capitalists that run Target Corporation are already looking to taken advantage of the surplus of unemployed workers: they were advertising jobs at $12.
Ultimately, the right wingers took to the streets to defend the “American Way” which is defined by racism, sexism, patriarchy, xenophobia, Islamophobia and the right to exploit working people and consumers. They were willing to sacrifice their lives so we can pay over priced tickets to see the next Avengers movie, the next sporting event, the next tractor pull, wrestling match, the next concert. They were putting their lives on the line to guarantee that the mortgage holders and landlords get their next payment.
They want you and me to die for Wall Street. This is what the right wingers screaming in the streets are really supporting.
Yet, the well paid mainstream media projected their protest far and wide giving it far more weight and coverage than it deserved most likely because it agrees with them. They won’t come out and say it because they know it is an unpopular position among those who think for themselves and know that advocating for reopening of society in the face of COVID-19 would be irresponsible. Why else would they give the miniscule protests such wide and lengthy coverage? People should never forget that mainstream media is big business, corporate and firmly a part of US capitalism.
Yes Anderson Cooper shook his head at the lunatic mayor of Las Vegas, but while he and his network may not support her extreme suggestion to blatantly sacrifice workers, they too have a love for this system. It is why the so-called liberal media –which is really moderate– has no suggestions, no real ideas, no organized plans for the country to survive COVID-19. Notice that they spend most of their time looking backward, writing about what “coulda” “woulda” “shoulda” happened and playing “gotcha” with the president, pointing out Trump’s errors and lies — who in their right mind doesn’t know by now that the president is an incompetent idiot–rather than trying to find a way forward.
On the other hand, the rest of us, the majority who work for a living and want something better ought to take a page from the whacked right wing and mobilize, organize and proselytize about what is best for ALL of us.
It is good that we applaud the efforts of the nurses and medical personnel on the front lines of this pandemic. It is good that we pay tribute to the grocery store workers, cashiers and warehouse personnel, Amazon workers, transit workers and mail carriers, delivery people and many who have literally given their lives for us and this economy. They are real heroes but they should not have been!
But it is not enough to celebrate them! We like the right wingers should decide what gives life meaning. We should make sure that those who have died so that we can live, did not die in vain. We should not run out in the streets risking others lives in the middle of this pandemic. But we should as soon as this pandemic clears up—unfortunately lots more of us will be sacrificed by the indifference of this system before it is over– we too should be willing to sacrifice our time, our energy, our resources and if need be our very well being, so that this never happens again.
We should start on May 1st the original workers day and stay home. And following that day and after this pandemic, we should take to the streets, the byways, the highways, every nook and cranny and gathering place in this country and demand everything that would make life worth living in this miserable place (you know what we need) and refuse to stop until our dead have been appeased and our demands are met.
justice then peace