Monday, February 23, 2015

Patriot Games

Glenn Reynolds may be pulling one of the better Poe’s Law fast ones here, but it sure looks like the guy is saying (in his always baffling weekly USA Today column, how he keeps that I’ll never know) that, rather than questioning President Obama’s patriotism, it may be time to do something about those unpatriotic liberal voters who put him into power twice.

Perhaps we need to pay closer attention to these questions where presidents are concerned, but perhaps we should go a step farther: In a country like ours, where voters reign supreme, it seems as if concern about the patriotism of rulers ought to also apply to voters.
Science fiction writer Robert Heinlein, in his famous novel Starship Troopers, envisioned a society where voters, too, had to demonstrate their patriotism before being allowed to vote. In his fictional society, the right to vote came only after some kind of dangerous public service — in the military, as a volunteer in dangerous medical experiments, or in other ways that demonstrated a willingness to sacrifice personally for the common good. The thought was that such voters would be more careful, and less selfish, in their voting. 
So when the five-day wonder of questioning Barack Obama’s patriotism is over, perhaps we should address another question: How patriotic is the electorate? And how long can we survive as a nation if the answer is “not very”? And we should proceed from there.

Actually bringing up Starship Troopers as an example of a voting society and implying in the next paragraph that maybe having voting and citizenship be earned somehow by “patriots” is so ridiculously and completely peg-the-needle fascist that I honestly believe Reynolds is pulling our leg here, but there’s not anything in the rest of the column that makes me think this is satire or parody.

I think he might actually be serious.

I mean isn’t this the next logical step for the party that’s trying to limit the number of people who are allowed to vote, those trying to depress the electorate to the point of apathy leaving only the true believers to cast ballots, who believes the Voting Rights Act is an outdated relic, and is actively blocking any attempt to try to update it for the 21st century? Why not open fascism where only the right people are allowed to vote? That would certainly prevent that whole “demography as destiny” problem the GOP is facing, yes?

I dunno, nothing really surprises me anymore about these guys.


Horace Boothroyd III said...

Reynolds might have inadvertently stumbled over something important: if voters had to actually demonstrate their love for America in some important way, rather than shooting their fool mouths off in the course of demonizing their opponents, there would be a whole lot fewer conservative pundits and voters.

There is a reason that Chickenhawk is a widespread term of abuse directed at the Republican warmongers. Remember Jonah "Doughy Pantload" Goldberg and his infamous exchange with Juan Cole? The one(s) where he condescending excused himself from going off to fight in the wars to which he sent other men to die, because he had bills to pay and a daughter who needed her daddy. That Chickenhawk showed the white feather indeed.

Horace Boothroyd III said...

Looks like Greenwald is keeping all the hookers and blow for himself, the selfish bastard. Can't say I'm surprised.

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