It’s insane that both U.S. mainstream political parties are attacking one another as being far-left extremists because by global standards they are both very much right-wing parties, says Caitlin Johnstone.
By Caitlin Johnstone
The Biden campaign has a new Spanish-language ad out claiming that President Trump is cut from the same cloth as leftist leaders Fidel Castro, Hugo Chavez, and Nicolas Maduro. This is not the first time the Biden campaign has done this, with the same comparison made to Spanish-speaking voters in Florida ads last month.
The hashtag #ComradeTrump is trending on Twitter as of this writing because a well-funded Super PAC run by never-Trump Republicans put out an appallingly stupid viral video featuring footage of Trump splashed with red hammer-and-sickle symbols interspersed with images of Soviet leaders while an English-captioned narrator gushes about Mother Russia’s support for “Comrade Trump” in Russian. As of this writing the video has over two million views on Twitter alone.
This tactic of negatively associating Trump with communism and socialism, combined with the consistent pattern of attacking the president for being insufficiently warlike, would only work if it was directed at the members of a reactionary, jingoistic right-wing political ideology. And it does work, because that’s exactly the ideology of the Democratic Party.
American soldiers’ lives are in danger and Trump has done nothing to stop it.
Add ‘America First’ to the laundry list of scams Trump has sold in his life. It’s clearly Trump first, Russia second, and America last. pic.twitter.com/sqiRyqtJBE
— The Lincoln Project (@ProjectLincoln) July 1, 2020
Trump, meanwhile, appears to have positioned his entire 2020 campaign around portraying his right-wing opponent as far left, spending the last month tweeting absurd statements like:
- “Not only will Sleepy Joe Biden DEFUND THE POLICE, but he will DEFUND OUR MILITARY! He has no choice, the Dems are controlled by the Radical Left.”
- “Sleepy Joe Biden will be (already is) pulled all the way Left.”
- “Sleepy Joe Biden refuses to leave his basement “sanctuary’ and tell his Radical Left BOSSES that they are heading in the wrong direction.”
You’ve also got cartoonist/MAGA thought leader Scott Adams promoting the increasingly common belief there’s going to be some kind of American Great Purge of Republicans by the radical left Democratic Party, claiming that “If Biden is elected, there’s a good chance you will be dead within the year. Republicans will be hunted.”
Yes Republicans, your very mainstream status quo ideology which challenges power in no meaningful way whatsoever is going to literally get you all murdered.
Not only will Sleepy Joe Biden DEFUND THE POLICE, but he will DEFUND OUR MILITARY! He has no choice, the Dems are controlled by the Radical Left.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 7, 2020
So one of the innumerable insane developments of 2020 is that both of America’s mainstream political parties are using different strategies to attack one another as being far-left extremists, which is absolutely bizarre since by global standards they are both very much right-wing parties. Neither party even has any interest in the basic social safety nets that are the norm in other developed nations, let alone wealth redistribution to end economic inequality, and are both as far as you can possibly get from having actual leftist goals like ending capitalism and worker ownership of the means of production.
Whenever I say that America has two right-wing parties I always get Republican victims of the incredible shrinking Overton window sputtering in confusion and outrage because they believe people like Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer are far far far far far left communists. This is of course a total propaganda construct.
Both parties work to advance the interests of oligarchs, war profiteers and imperialist government agencies in more or less exactly the same way; all they did was shift the spectrum of acceptable debate to issues which powerful capitalists do not care about like gay marriage and unisex public toilets. So now mainstream “conservatives” think leftism means having pink hair and mainstream “liberals” think Trump supporters are useful idiots of the Kremlin, but in terms of actually challenging actual power there’s not a bee’s dick of difference between them.
This dynamic of attacking one another from the right and accusing the other party of being far left of course continues to move the US political spectrum further and further right while killing the possibility of any leftward movement, and that is of course by design.
In a new ad @JoeBiden mixes footage of Black Lives Matter rallies, the COVID-19 outbreak, & scary images of Trump together to declare "Fidel, Chavez, Maduro, & Trump" are cut from the same cloth
Why then has Trump intensified attacks on Cuba & Venezuela during his presidency? pic.twitter.com/1hajo941Z6
— Anya Parampil (@anyaparampil) July 1, 2020
Noam Chomsky once said that “The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum,” and you really couldn’t ask for a clearer illustration of this than the American political uniparty. People are encouraged by establishment narrative managers to squabble about inconsequential nonsense on the periphery with fever pitch intensity, and to never even think about addressing dynamics which would actually inconvenience the powerful like ending militarism, government opacity, or plutocracy.
The Democratic and Republican parties can’t even rightly be called different ideologies; sure they behave a bit differently in the same way a boxer uses his left jab and right cross in different ways, but just like a boxer’s fists they are both used to advance the exact same agenda. In the case of the boxer it’s knocking his opponent senseless, and in the case of the uniparty it’s advancing the interests of oligarchy and imperialism.
That old saying that both parties are just two wings on the same bird is true, but it’s a weird mutant bird with two right wings.
Caitlin Johnstone is a rogue journalist, poet, and utopia prepper who publishes regularly at Medium. Her work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking her on Facebook, following her antics on Twitter, checking out her podcast on either Youtube, soundcloud, Apple podcasts or Spotify, following her on Steemit, throwing some money into her tip jar on Patreon or Paypal, purchasing some of her sweet merchandise, buying her books “Rogue Nation: Psychonautical Adventures With Caitlin Johnstone” and “Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers.”
This article was re-published with permission.
The views expressed are solely those of the author and may or may not reflect those of Consortium News.
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Nothing of this year’s elections is about voters, it’s about theft. From rigged voting machines to gerrymandered districts to butchered voting rolls to who does the counting, the duopoly has complete control of who will be elected. It’s been going on since the Bush HAVA and now is completely controlled by the Corportists of both parties. The only people in power who could and should have stopped it were the feeble liberals and the bought and paid for press. And neither one ever made a peep. The neoliberals in the DNC don’t want to rule: they can get their payoffs without the heat. So Perez the Ugly runs Joe the Joke and we all run off to these sites to exhort each other to hold our noses and vote. What we should be doing is tearing down the Bastille, ie, attacking the offices of the DNC. If you have no choice, don’t make a choice. Instead, destroy the institution that has put you in this position and kept you there for decades. Anything else is as Chomsky and Caitlyn say: whingin over a bee’s dick.
The commenters here give me actual hope. Most commenters on most sites gravitate towards one dictatorial party or the other. It’s very gratifying that most here see the deception for what it is. Purely for division and continuing the narrative of us vs them politics…the narrative that assures our continued enslavement to ideologies, no matter how ridiculous or false. That there is no discernible difference between them, including the so-called maverick DJT, proven by his actions to be no different than his ‘opponents’, should be apparent when viewed by their ‘accomplishments’. Their latest claim to fame is the orchestrated control and unrest they have unleashed on us. The danger for them is being too ‘over the top’ in their machinations, as the people might wise up. But going by our track record of the last 40+ years, it seems that Americans are victims of our own exceptional view of ourselves. The recent development of veterans of the GWB admin leaning towards Biden is enlightening, if not nauseating. Hopefully if the SHTF, we will see what is really coming down the pike. I’m not very optimistic in that regard, but I am hopeful.
Dear Marko, present day China is far, far, from Communist! Real commies do not invite businessnen to join their club!
Be nice to think that the official candidates are only acting stupid in order to get elected and that once in office they’ll act intelligently. But that’s too much to hope for…
Does your nation’s history give you reason to believe that to be true?
OK, I get it. But short of taking up arms – which is unlikely to produce a good outcome – what do you suggest I do in November? The hard reality is that average citizens like me will have before us a binary choice of who becomes the next President of USA, and which party will control the US Congress. The hard reality I will face on election day is that if don’t vote for either Biden or Trump, I may as well not vote. So what exactly are you proposing? Engage in more talk? Kill them all and let God sort it out? Because they’re not going to just go away. Continue to stew in a moral/ethical superiority complex? What EXACTLY do you propose???
I propose mass turnover of the political class until they get the message. Fire Trump now and then fire Biden four years from now. Fire every incumbent in Congress at every opportunity. Elect cab drivers , if necessary. You can pretty much forget about the two major party designations , since they’re virtually indistinguishable these days.
You obviously realize why about half of eligible Mercans do not bother to vote, since they know it has no influence on policy and the system plus its corruption bears no relation to democracy.
Obviously, you have to make your own decisions. Trump is certain to be re-elected regardless. The reason is that for millions, today’s Democrats are not the “lesser evil.” Neither are Republicans. We spent years pointing to that growing split in the former Dem voting base, middle class vs. poor. Party loyalists didn’t hear a word of it. We talked about how and why the reckless Russia-gate scheme only made Democrats too dangerous to vote for. There’s really not much left to say.
And wouldn’t the US love to have a leader like Fidel Castro – one who looked after the entire population – not just the rich. One who provided universal health care; free education for all; free meals for the smaller ones; reduced illiteracy to zero; sends medical teams all over the world when natural disasters strike. Wishful thinking.
I don’t know. What does Cuba do with their “surplus population” — those who can’t work (health, etc.) and those for whom no viable jobs are available?
I am waiting for the Trump video where the “Hamilton” lyrics sung by King George is overdubbed on a Trump speech singing “We’ll Be Back.”
The thought alone is hilarious.
Possibly we should be talking about globalism vs. nationalism, e.g. EU vs. Brexit, instead of right vs. left. Trump is attacked because he has a few nationalist goals and the elites need to short circuit them. The globalist elites are angry that their pick in the last election didn’t get in since they wanted open borders and more wars of their choosing. Trump may have forced their hand to the point where more and more people have seen behind the curtain, despite the kabuki theatre distraction. If so he has served an important if unintended purpose.
Indeed. DJT ( or one just as inept) was an inevitability. The course of the Ship of State was set after WWII: We won the big gunfight and we got all the money. Criminals rise in violent settings, then collapse into gang warfare even in nations. We may all be “ quarantined” until the fever breaks, for we are a sick nation.
When you get people to hate someone, passionately hate someone, the way American people have been encouraged to hate Trump, you can get them to believe anything. even those ridiculous video clips which I thought were really amusing. That hate then gets those that support him to see him without flaws, as they come to his defense, understandable. Hate makes people ignorant, gullible, and pliable.
Everyone needs to read the five universal laws of human stupidity – Ameribots fit the bill…
A bird with two right wings flies in ever diminishing circles until it finally disappears up its own arsehole. Your future, Amerika.
You nailed it.
Wherever Fidel and Hugo may be;Socialist or Communist Heaven,perhaps?? They must be laughing their asses off,i know Nicolas is.To compare this idiot in the White House to them is really pathetic;only the”gusanos”in Miami would buy that”crap”…LOL
We’re in an economic situation not unlike that of 1932 , and also similarly , we’re in an election year. What happened in that 1932 election , of course , was that FDR was elected , and then with the “help” of intense grassroots pressure from the working class he pushed through the New Deal , ultimately resulting in the three decades post-WWII during which the working class actually got a Fair Deal , the likes of which today’s young workers will only see in their dreams. It was good for everyone , up and down the income distribution , save for a fraction of a percent at the top who got properly taxed , which they didn’t like. It was the Golden Age of Capitalism , and not just in the US , but also in the war-ravaged countries of Western Europe , who had similar policies.
The oligarchs of both the left and the right never want to allow that to happen again. It’s their worst nightmare. That’s why the Dems paint Trump as a lefty Commie traitor and the Repubs paint Biden as a lefty Commie traitor. It’s a pre-election preemptive strike against leftist thought of any kind. Both sides want their audience to internalize the same message: No more FDRs , and no more successful leftist movements from below , ever again.
Oligarchs , unlike the masses , know their history and take lessons from it. Until the rest of us up our game , and stop drinking their Kool-Aid , they’ll crush us every time.
The big difference between then and now is there is no competing ideology. Communism has not been a threat since the fall of the Soviet Union.
Communist China today poses as great or a greater threat to the future of US hegemony as did the Soviet Union in the ’30s and ’40s , when the mass of progressive policies were enacted in the US. And nobody seriously believes we only enacted those progressive policies as a way to hold off some foreign threat anyway.
It does provide a convenient excuse for some as to why progressive change is impossible now , however. One of a long list of such excuses.
I am Australian and I can swear on the bible or any other document that Australians are mostly dumb.
You would appear to belong to the great majority if you think this applies only to Australians.
Well, sorry mate, there’s no mention of Australia here in this article. Unless you’re suggesting that the situation in Australia is similar.
To Josep: MP of a more progressive of the two major parties was expelled, roughly because he was saying polite stuff on China. Indubitably, ha saids stuff like that, But his fellows from the Sheep party let is slide, after all how can a sheep act without clear instructions?
But when police searched his home stating that his behavior raises suspicion, he was expelled very quickly.
I wonder how many Americans are aware that Putin is a member of the governing centre-right ‘United Russia’ party. His proposals for a new constitution haven’t gone down at all well with the official Russian Communist Workers Party. Their spokesperson Gennady Zyuganov has been outspokenly critical of the reforms.
‘’Regarding these reforms, the Russian Communist Workers Party (RKRP-CPSU) said, “We have long been accustomed to the fact that if the authorities propose to change something, then wait for the deception and worsening. Moreover, this planned deterioration is masked by a bunch of good wishes and promises. The same thing is happening now.”
Various regional committees of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (KPRF) have passed resolutions to vote against the constitutional reforms in the April referendum unless the proposals made by the KPRF are incorporated in the new constitution. They have requested the party’s Central Committee for the same. Earlier, chairman of the KPRF Gennady Zyuganov had demanded strong provisions in the new constitution for the protection of land rights, labor rights, an increase in the minimum wage, along with free research, higher education and health care.
The notion that Putin/Trump have got anything to do with the Russian Communists is frankly bizarre. It says much about the level of political sophistication in the US.
Russian politics are way different from those of the Anglosphere, particularly the US. Many Russian conservatives sound a lot like the Sandinistas, with emphasis on social welfare and Christianity like no few Latin American leftists.
Putin’s own terminology doesn’t change the fact that his policies are very close to social-democratic ones, while his effective nationalization of the oil and natural gas industry in the early 2000s is definitely not what a centre-right statesman would do. It is resolutely leftist though. And if you make a comparison with Venezuela, one may note that Russia has implemented more anti-capitalist measures than Chavez or Maduro, such as the seizure of the dominant media outlets form oligarchs.
As for the KPRF, it has to deal precisely with such left-leaning policies by the Russian President that do not allow it to capitalize on social discontent, unlike during the Yeltsin years. Hence its opposition stance.
Rhe CIA however, supports far right Alexie Navalny, the Juan Guaido of Russia.
A bird with two right wings or two left wings cannot fly.
“A bird with two right wings or two left wings cannot fly.”
But it *can* crash on the working American and the poor with a thud. And then keep them crushed under its weight.
Which is exactly what it was designed to do.
It might waddle around stupidly. Sound familiar?
The greatest contempt I have is not for the obvious morons of both wings of the US War Party who lead the US but the leaders of american colonies (Allies) who seem to be able to perform a weird schizophenic gymnastics where they behave as if the US and the Trump regime are two different entities. Thus sheep like they are following Washington into WW3 instead of seeking to defuse the rogue states stupidity by unequivocally rejecting it. Were probably unable to avoid WW3 and nuclear conflict in both Europe and Asia now.
Are you suggesting Australians are stupid????
No, Mr. Flanigan, he didn’t mention Australian people.
Spot on Caitlin.
However the criticisms of US jingoism are unconvincing because of the deep seated jingoism displayed in the author’s words.
According to one of my dictionaries the definition of jingoism is “extreme chauvinism or nationalism marked esp. by a belligerent foreign policy.” Please provide evidence which shows that Ms. Johnstone allegedly supports that claim as I saw, instead, that she was quite critical of the right wing attitudes of both the GOP and the Savage Mules.