Why We're Like Al-Qaeda
The right wing loves to compare us to Al-Qaeda.
They call us crazy, nutty fascists. Even though the fasicsts were, you know, right-wing.
They call us America haters. They call us traitors and enemies of America. Even though we follow the Constitution and the ideals of this country and they don't.
They love to say that Bin Laden repeats our talking points, or vice versa--even though his religious fundamentalist, homophobic, misogynist, xenophobic, and violent worldview closely resembles theirs. And then when Markos points that out, they call him an America hater.
But there IS one big way we're like Al-Qaeda--and it's not what they think.
And that reason is all at the same time why the Right has so fucked over America in the middle east AND why they are going to lose their ironfisted grip on this country in short order.
What they don't understand is the NATURE OF HOMEGROWN MOVEMENTS. They don't understand two fundamental principles:
A) You see, the right wing believes in intimidation and overwhelming force will quash homegrown movements.
They believe that there are finite numbers of terrorists in the Middle East--and that if they intimidate and/or kill enough of them with overwhelming firepower, they can establish peace and order that benefits America. Call it the Emperor Palpatine approach from Star Wars: build a Death Star, and kill enough people and blow up enough planets and you'll scare an entire galaxy into submission. Of course, they don't understand that, to paraphrase Princess leia, the tighter they grip onto their power, the more nations will slip right through their fingers. The more "terrorists" they kill the middle east, the more just pop up to take their place.
They don't understand what the Romans didn't understand about the Christian movement: the more martyrs you kill in unjust oppression, the more followers of the martyrs' movement you create.
And they don't understand it about the blogosphere either. They believe that they can take enough of us down, out enough of our identities, and bring enough embarrassing moments of our pasts to light that we will be intimidated and stand down. And they're idiots. It didn't work when they did it in the sixties; it didn't work when they did it to the progressives in the 10's and 20's, and it's not going to work now.
They can discredit and tar and feather as many of us as they choose: they're still going to lose, because the simple fact that they were scared enough to do it and make it public will attract myriad converts to our side.
B) They believe that if you topple the leaders, the movement will fall.
How many times do you have to see the right wing obsess over killing Al-Qaeda's supposed #2 or #3? How many times do you have to see the Right distribute decks of cards of the deposed Iraqi leadership--as if their capture would secure peace in the American occupation that followed?
And if they don't kill them, they say it's OK: they've marginalized them. Bin Laden is hiding in a hole in Pakistan somewhere, they say--and that very fact makes us safer, because he's marginalized.
And, of course, they think this because THEY DO OPERATE THAT WAY. They do get their talking points faxed from Karl Rove. They do rely on Bill O'Reilly and Matt Drudge to get the message out. If George Bush, Bill O'Reilly, Matt Drudge and Karl Rove suddenly disappeared from the earth, the right wing would scurry every which way like lost cockroaches, because they do have a top-down military-like structure. Because that's what it takes to rule a nation with principles based on lies and fear.
What they don't understand, of course, is that true homegrown movements are essentially leaderless. Of course, there are leaders of the moment; but bring one down, and another rises to take their place almost instantaneously. Further, homegrown movements do not truly NEED leaders to operate.
Al-Qaeda is now a global network of independently operating cells, many of whom do not answer to a central leader. The right wing has turned them into that--and we are consequently in more danger as a nation as result.
And the liberal blogosphere is also similar in this way.
They can try to bring down Markos and Jerome all they want. They can out Armando's identity and scare him into not blogging anymore. They can instigate death threats against 15-year-old filmmakers. But it doesn't matter.
As bonndad said:
We all have his back because we have each other's back.
It's gonna be a hell of a fight.
But if you do being him down- we'll still be here. In one form or the other, we are here - to stay. And we're growing stronger.
We'll still be here. Undeterred. Unbroken. And ready to show the world the truth, and document their lies and depradations for what they really are.
Because, you see, the right just doesn't get it.
Their Death Star tactics won't intimidate Al-Qaeda into submission because Al-Qaeda is the product of a frustrated set of peoples living under the economic oppression of their wealthy, religious fundamentalist dictators in the Middle East. And so long as that economic and religious dictatorship thrives, Al Qaeda will thrive. So long as the only response to Al Qaeda is military, Al Qaeda will grow.
And the same goes for the left blogosphere. We exist because of the economic oppression of the corporatist bastards who are trying to eliminate the middle-class, and use Christofascist rhetoric to drive voters to put them into office against their own economic interests.
We will continue exist so long as the Republican Party thrives and succeeds in its evil plans to turn this nation into a third-world renters' economy based on Biblical Law.
And any intimidation and force on their part will only serve to swell our ranks.
BECAUSE WE'RE A HOMEGROWN POPULIST MOVEMENT.
So, to paraphrase your Dear Leader, "Bring it on, fuckers." We're ready. We always will be.