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Seduced and Abandoned

If you listen to their rhetoric as they swan around these days, Progressives are the party of Compassion. It is Progressives who are looking out for those who have the least, need the most , have been treated the worst. They are ruled by their great hearts, and not our great debt. Therefore, they insist that America keep spending, funding, and then, spending more.

They are The Lovers…they want to lavish their taxpayer-funded gifts on their…selected…victim-beloved-du-jour. They flex a little muscle. Make a few manly insults. Pass a few zillion page laws. We are all supposed to collectively swoon.

It’s Compassion that drives them, they say, killing us softly with their words and all that.

They are The Seducers…passionate hypnotic Dream-weavers…who soothe our egos and negate personal responsibility with a philosophy of Everybody-But-Me-Done-You-Wrong. Progressives tell us what we want to hear: the fault is never in OURSELVES but always…from afar. If you do not have material wealth or a glamor job or everything and anything you covet in your neighbor’s backyard…Big Racists did it to you, or Big Banks did it to you, or Big Business did it to you, or Big Oil did it to you. Every job that is lost, to hear Progressives tell it…is just a capricious, cavalier decision by some privileged individual to cause pain. Everything that you lack is because you were unlucky enough to be born in this odious America. Lives would be perfect if only Compassionate Progressives could put the boot on the neck of all the Un-compassionate People in this country…unworthy of Victim Status….and beat them into shape.

This is the point at which one has to understand the limits of Progressive Compassion. I only did so in the last ten years…observing anti-Bush rallies and anti-Bush rhetoric by commentators, comics, and unruly crowds. Later this same horrific energy was directed onto Sarah Palin and her family. No one around them, no avenue of attack was out-of-bounds.

This was quite a teaching moment for me.

These are the same people now who demand civility, respect and COMPASSION for Obama.

This Selective Compassion is how they justify their dual approach….of blatant cruelty vs. commiseration. This is how they can mock Sarah Palin’s Down Syndrome child, her pregnant daughter…and yet be emotionally devastated by disrespect to the Rutgers Women’s Basketball team. This is how they can wail and weep real tears over the Jena Six and ignore the Duke Lacrosse team. Crimes against those with Victim status get headline blaring persistent coverage. Crimes wherein the situation is reversed, no matter how horrific are quickly suppressed by their media allies. Apparently, if one has no Victim Status…there is a long, long, wait for Progressive Compassion. An elderly White Person in a poor Philadelphia area forced to have to pass a epithet-screaming local Racist to attempt to vote… a Racist with a baton who talks publicly about “killing Crackers”…is just a Progressive BLOW-off…a non-event.

To some of us, Compassion means putting yourselves in another’s shoes, and walking in them, seeing where they rub and where they pinch. It doesn’t matter if the wearer is White or Black. To some of us, skin hue does not cause exceptions in our compassion.

And, yes, Compassion is remembering the path those shoes have walked, but it is also, realistically and unemotionally, and without self-interest, helping to point out the most expedient and unifying path ahead for all of us. The win/win.

Unity used to be the goal.

So how Compassionate are Progressives?

Compassion is also the empathy of reasonable expectations. Compassion is not convincing your 5’3” son that he has a right to be an NBA basketball star…or insisting to your tone-deaf daughter that she has a right to be selected for Julliard. Or whispering to some of your selected targets of seduction…with low credit scores and no savings… that they have a right, in just that situation, to home ownership. Only OTHERS victimizing them stand in the way of what they want and deserve.

In that vein, Progressives like Barney Frank and the Congressional Black Caucus insisted banks run social programs and make available easy mortgages…nothing down…so people who had never had a home could buy one. Essentially, they were running a Governmental version of the TV Giveaway show “Extreme Makeover”: with taxpayer money.

One reviewer had this to say about “Extreme Makeover” and the frequent foreclosures arising out of its “compassion.”

“Which (the foreclosures) just sucks. And reminds me why I hate this disingenuous, reckless show so much. The conceit of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition—this dumb blurry product-placement-crazed fantasy that people can just get a house and, boom, like that, have all their problems solved— isn’t anywhere grounded in reality. If the sad story of the Woffords was the first of its kind to come out of the show, then it might just be a depressing little anomaly. But it’s not! Several other families have faced financial problems after receiving ABC’s dubious windfall. People on all sides of this show—the people who make it, the people who watch it, the people who agree to be on it—seem to be dumb or willfully ignorant to the fact that you really can’t just get a house because you are nice and wish really hard for it.

I mean, look at what happened in this country with the whole sub-prime housing mushroom cloud. “Want a house but can’t afford one? Here, buy one anyway!” It’s a really reckless version of the American Dream to assume that just by virtue of wanting it (and of being an Amurr’can), we can all get the property of our dreams.”

Good point.

“Rights” used to be partnered with responsibility. In times past, borrowers saved for years for the down payment for that home of their own, instilling a habit of saving in themselves. Borrowers had to show they could both afford the house and meet all the other bills they had outstanding. Compassionate Progressives threw those strict protocols right out the wide-open door to unsustainable debt.

Would you give your struggling student-son a huge Yacht and then walk off leaving him delirious but debt-anchored on the dock, unable to maintain or enjoy it?

Is it compassion to set up those struggling from paycheck to paycheck for another colossal failure?

When does the “right” to home ownership become a colossal burden to the very same benefactors of this largess?

The same Progressive Compassion that has driven many Americans into bankruptcy with its reckless “giving”…now seems intent on doing the same to our Federal Government.

Progressives want wonderful things for all…as long as they are exempt from any sacrifice or insulated from the solution themselves.

Progressive teacher’s Unions care desperately about their charges, particularly in minority school systems in poverty ravaged areas…or so they say. Yet time and again, that empathy for the children, the REAL children struggling before them, does not extend to taking pay cuts in salaries, benefits or pensions…when those cuts can be passed over to the kids….or coexisting with successful charter schools. Progressives have passed a COMPASSIONATE Healthcare Bill that none of them read and Nancy Pelosi feels we have to live through to understand. They have passed COMPASSIONATE regulations on business to supposedly protect the Little Guy. In doing so, they have so traumatized the private Job sector with uncertainty, that they have killed job creation.

Little Guys all over America are waiting for the call back or job offer that’s never going to come.They join the millions who will be out of work with the drilling embargo. Real families. Real lost paychecks. Real people who know that BP money is chump change and the Spending Orgy has left an exhausted America unresponsive to extending Unemployment benefits. .

Seduced and abandoned by Selective Progressive Compassion .

Meanwhile our Progressive government has spent millions on roadside signs…love-notes to remind us how sexy they are. They filled the pockets of every partisan voter they could buy and now pout that they can’t have signs and Unemployment extensions too.

Selective Compassion means never having to admit…YOU CAN ONLY SPEND IT ONCE.

America seems to be awakening to the duality of Progressive Compassion…the dirty, reckless flip side. We see it in their legislative style which when seduction fails goes immediately into crude and politically aggressive force. We’re learning, that to a Progressive, spending is the orgasm of Compassion. This is why, increasingly…Progressives have just ignored us when America has told them “STOP!” and “NO!” and “We’re not in the mood.”

Worse yet, in their arrogance, they’re convinced we asked for it.

2 Responses

  1. Just over ten years ago my son was among the forty candidates interviewed for the fifteen full-tuition scholarships offered by the university he most wanted to attend. When the faculty panel asked him what above all else he’d put on a plane about to fly to any one of the world’s poorest countries, he answered, “Teachers.” He won that scholarship.

    At the time, I thought the interviewers took his answer the way he intended them to—namely, as saying that money or food or medicine fall short of the opportunity to learn how to provide for oneself and one’s family. Today I’m not so sure. For all I know, some of those faculty types might have been flattered to think that he valued above all else whatever they happened to teach, even if it were firmly anchored in the gender, class, and ethnicity “studies” he thereafter sedulously avoided. (Good thing for him that he majored in math and science!)

    The stupefying progressivism you here decry will not give up the field before the schools are reformed root and branch. Is it any surprise that educationists almost immune to the honing that results from competition in the marketplace imbue their young charges with a preference for the passive over the active, and government largess over business enterprise? Only rarely do schools fail for pumping bilge into the heads of their students. By contrast, businesses that pump shoddy products and services into the marketplace fail in profusion.

    A surefire way of getting a handle on any organization or enterprise is to pursue this simple question: What price does it pay for being egregiously wrong?

  2. I would agree that in far too many instances (most notably the humanities), gender ,class, and ethnicity trump all else. One can open any secondary school history textbook and see what is being drummed far too often into the heads of American youth who also know that to question comes with a price. That the books, written by a committee of politically correct textbook consultants (with one or two obligatory historians on the masthead) serve in far too many instances as the sole source of the students’ knowledge of the subject makes matters even worse as there are far too many teachers who rely entirely on the book or publishers “supporting materials” for their course.

    And yet……and yet, there are those few teachers who take notice that there are students for whom there is an intellectual spark that is crying to be ignited and who (sometimes almost furtively) ignore the politically correct materials and delve deeply into the subject matter – not paying lip service to the role of women in the Renaissance but asking the questions – why were so few (men or women) involved in the activities of the state? What occupied the ordinary person’s daily activities? Why was putting food on the table, providing shelter, worrying about the condition of one’s eternal soul the primary focus? How much has changed over the years, if anything? What did the state (or republic, or monarchy) perceive as its role and why? What were the ramifications of those decisions? What prompted people or freed them to have begin to take an interest and role in the affairs of state? What social, economic, political ramifications ensued? When one opens such discussion (after first laying a good foundation of facts and figures – and reading primary documents) one finds students willing to engage in discussion – though discussion, for it to be fruitful, can and should not be hemmed in by the bonds of political correctness. That does not mean that there should not be civility, sensitivity, but one cannot, for instance talk about slavery and why it took hold and persisted for so many years without a discussion of the economic benefits, the accepted view of slavery (a spoil of war for many years) as a necessary function of the social order, and yes, the benefits that did accrue to some.

    The mission now that students must achieve high levels on a test as some benchmark that they are educated and thus the “teach to the test” that predominates educational practice has hastened what Benny refers to in his posting. Just learn this to spit it back – things learned in that manner do not lodge for long in the messy compartment of the brain.

    My youngest son and I have had many discussions this summer – he is the last to leave the summer nest – his college is about six hours away so he see him only occasionally during the year – (I believe his next college summer vacation – he is a rising junior – will be spent on an internship away from home). He is not the student that his older siblings were (and are) in terms of his grades. He told me that he could study really hard to “learn the material for the exam” and achieve high grades but that he would retain little of it. Instead, he reads, mulls over what he reads, goes back to those things that he doesn’t understand until he gets it – which he says often means that it is long after he is “required to spit it back” that he feels that he “owns ” what he has studied. We were discussing the difficulty of reading Nietzsche the other day which led to a discussion of other 19th century writers – I mentioned Kierkegaard as a particular bet noire from my college. He then proceeded to compare Nietzsche and Kierkegaard’s outlooks – I asked him when he had studied the latter – he said that questions that came to him from reading Nietzsche had led him to look at the writings of others and to try to figure out what had led each to the views that they espoused. In that moment, I realized an important point about education that so often is ignored – that when a student is challenged by material and is given the freedom to explore and feels free (to some extent) to not feel tethered to a grade, that is when learning does take place. However, when one is boxed in by political correctness, then there will be a limit (ever narrowing) to what one can learn and ultimately achieve.

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