Tuesday, August 21, 2012

It's a gift

Congressman and prospective U.S. Senator Todd Akin [R-Miss.] has given us a peep behind the curtain of respectable bourgeois political hypocrisy.  He has given the game - or perhaps only his election - away.

The Congressman's views on women's biology can be found here

On his 21 August radio program, Rush Limbaugh spent three frothing hours fulmination against the cack-handedness of his own team, their unerring ability to take a sure thing and transform it into purest "Macaca."

You don't want to run around and defend stupidity. What's in it for anybody to defend stupidity? "Well, Rush, didn't you do that?" No. I know what he was trying to say. I know what's in the guy's heart. But, I'm sorry, if he can't 'splain it, then get out! It's not that hard. It's not that hard to say, "It's not the baby's fault." That's all he's trying to say. Just say that instead of this rigmarole about the woman's body "shuts down"? For crying out loud! I just... Aaaugh! Where are some brains? Just get some brains! Let's have some people we can look up to!

In the end Limbaugh seemed to echo his once and future king Rick Santorum: pregnancies under any circumstance are a 'gift.'  [Not be be overly economic-determinist, but to the wealthy, with a limitless supply of prescription pep, aren't most of what Human Resources reps call "life events" easily tossed-off as gifts?] 

The mentality revealed in these statements gives us a snapshot of patriarchy's moral self-absorption and serenity.  As with Dr. Panglosss, all life's setbacks [rape, unemployment, war, eviction, foreclosure] merely underscore how good 'we' have it.  "We" being those who can afford it.

For the rest of us, making the best of it, accepting as a gift capitalism's devastations, turns out differently. 

Akin's view of how women should approach their position in class society [the gift] is an opinion shared by ruling classes throughout history and around the world.  And not just about women.  Today gender oppression is a component part of capital's protective armature, pragmatically incorporated along with other ages-old inheritances of racism and obscurantism to divide and conquer working people and their oppressed allies.  Thus is the reign of capital prolonged, with deadly consequences.

That the oppressed should accept as gift [uncomplaining] ramifications of the lawful workings of capitalism is bipartisan.  There is no alternative perspective from Republicans or Democrats.  After thirty-five years of neo-liberal austerity and union-busting, this fact is clear for all to see.  Who can see.  The fact that it is not clear is a product of the trillion-dollar ideology industry; and in the electoral arena, the idea that the Democratic Party can play an ameliorative role [FDR, LBJ], "lifting all boats."

The material basis for powerful illusions in the stability, fairness, and legitimacy of capital's dictatorship vanished decades ago.  What remains, braking class solidarity and a generalized labor upsurge, are social atomization and cop/prison terror.  Disguising these brutal defensive bulwarks of the state are powerful values reinforced by every official and private institution and apparatus.

These values reduce a world-historical situation for billions into an individual predicament.  Women, doubly oppressed, are told that the most violent and destructive facts of their oppression are but inputs for life's lemonade. 

In the teeth of this, the real gift is the speed of outrage over Akin's comments, and the militancy expressed. 


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