Politics As Such
John Tester took on Conrad Burns in an hour long debate this morning and handled him quite well. Conrad said, and I quote "goodness gracious sakes alive" on five separate occasions. He is less coherant than George Bush and he has beady eyes and a bad haircut. He's got nothing but folksy -republican-speak-cliches and he's done. Tester has to pander to the tighter border, traditional marriage, anti-flag burning "moderates"of Montana but the Spectacle imposes certain demands.
Im thinking of the relation between American political exceptionalism and Christian exceptionalism, how the amalgamation of the two has led us into what I believe to be a deep, existential, imperial crisis. David Rieff, in his Nation review of Elizabeth Borgwardt's A New Deal For The World and Michael Mandelbaums The Case For Goliath states this simple truth:"What liberal idealists and neoconservatives share is a view that the United States has a mission to reshape the world in it's image." This same theme is echoed by the religious right in their claims that God holds America in some special favor. The proof? Look at all the cool shit we got, look at all the power we got, He must love us best.
Here's a little thought experiment. Say black Africans had colonized North America, or anybody for that matter, Chinese or Peruvians. They instead of white Europeans had stumbled on a continent incredibly rich in natural resources, surrounded by water, and inhabited by a few natives poorly armed and unable to defend their territory. How much wealth might they have been able to extract in a short period of time,(especially if they had imported slaves to do the back breaking labor) how much power would they have ended up with after Europe decimated itself with catastrophic War? Would God have shed his Grace on them? Or is it just Christians so blessedly empowered?
So what doth I protest, some thinks a bit to much? Is it the idea of one set having a "mission" to change the rest? (after all, Im a revolutionary socialist with my own agenda) or is it the "image" with which I find disfavor ? Sure I want to change the world but reject the idea of vangaurdism in all it's forms, missionary , imperial, and otherwise.