Jay Lake (jaylake) wrote,
Jay Lake

[politics] The Reagan archipelago

I've just lately been contemplating the echoes between this administration and Soviet Russia, especially Stalinist Russia. The Republican party under Bush has given us:

  • Fixed elections decided in secret, as in Bush v. Gore

  • Secret gulags where prisoners are sent without trial or appeal and detained indefinitely

  • Political oversight and "correction" of scientific research, pace Trofim Lysenko

  • Uniformed officers of the state ensuring that no one travels without papers and authorization, in the form of the TSA

  • Showpiece military projects which are meaningless except as propaganda, as in the ABM shield

  • A rubber stamp legislature without authority or courage to challenge the excesses of the leadership

  • Aggressive yet profoundly inept foreign military adventurism

  • Blatantly counterfactual economic orthodoxy

  • Loyalty pledges

  • Party loyalty universally trumping public interest

  • Purges (apparently non-lethal in our case)

The comparison is facile, to say the least. Yet for many conservatives, the great figure of recent history is Ronald Reagan, and his great victory was overturning the Cold War. Under the "leadership" of his successors, we have become what we once stood against.
Tags: politics

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