Losing On The Issues, Republicans Amp Up Their Racist Rhetoric

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American elections are torrid affairs that last far too long and often do not address pressing matters that could give voters a reason to stay engaged in the electoral process. The upcoming general election threatens to be an exercise in divisiveness from Republicans who yearn to take the country back, but not for the reason they would have most Americans believe. All of the Republican presidential hopefuls have, at some point or another, appealed to perceived racial purity that existed at the nation’s founding and are overtly resurrecting Aryan sensibilities of many Americans. In lieu of any real issues to challenge President Obama, Republicans are counting on winning over racially and economically insecure white voters who perceive the first African American president as an interloper who does not belong in the White House and to a larger extent, the United States.

The Republicans have not assailed the president overtly for his racial make-up, but they have engaged in associative race baiting by contending that all African Americans are lazy interlopers who are robbing white Americans of their rightful place of privilege as the real Americans. Their racial bigotry appeals to fear, anger, and insecurity of white Americans who are repulsed at the thought of four more years of a usurper sitting in the Oval Office, and use “white fear, white anxiety, and white rage to try and defeat Barack Obama.” The racists in the Republican ranks are despicable, but there is a reason they have to resort to portraying the president, by association, with unsavory African Americans; they have nothing else whatsoever to protest about the president’s policies.

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Willard Romney may have revealed the point that Republicans have nothing to criticize the President for except his race in a campaign commercial where a narrator says,  “Beating Obama is the most important issue.”  Is it so important because President Obama raised taxes several times? Or is it that he has been antagonistic to business? Perhaps it is because the President nationalized Wall Street and the banking industry, mining and manufacturing, the oil industry, or seized all private businesses. Did the President disband the military or ban and seize all private firearms? Does the Affordable Health Act institute socialized medicine and eliminate the healthcare insurance industry? Of course, the answer to all of those ridiculous questions is no, but they prove a point.

Republicans have no real issue to challenge President Obama on and instead they portray him, by association, as a lazy foreigner who is not one of us real, racially-superior white Americans. Romney’s sloganwe ought to keep America American” is a slogan straight out KKK nativist doctrine and is meant to cause resentment for African Americans; especially President Obama. That is the only reason why “beating Obama is the most important issue.”  But you might say; Romney is not a racist. Yes he is; he was 30 years-old before the Mormon cult lifted the “Blacks are cursed” doctrine according to a “Doctrine and Covenants” revelation in 1978.

Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum overtly accused African Americans of being lazy and stealing money from white, real Americans over the past month and Gingrich in particular ramped up the racially bigoted rhetoric during the South Carolina debate. It is not coincidence that Gingrich made such racially inflammatory remarks in a state that still flies the Confederate Flag as a matter of course. Gingrich did not have to mention President Obama because without any other issues to challenge, all any Republican candidate has to do is point at the African American sitting in the Oval Office. Republicans are laying the racial groundwork now because later in the campaign they can remind angry white voters that “those people” are not like us and “one of them” wants to stay in the White House; so, as Romney’s ad says, “beating Obama is the most important issue.” The Republican issue is not about beating Obama; it is about beating the African American.

The Republicans cannot assail the President on jobs because polls demonstrate that Americans know the GOP has obstructed all manner of job creation efforts and the stimulus that created millions of jobs and saved the American auto industry. Jobless claims reached a four-year low last week and there has been a slow, but steady rise in private sector hiring; no thanks to Republicans. They are also in trouble with voters who were promised that Republicans’ highest priority during the lead-up to the 2010 midterm elections was “jobs, jobs, jobs.” The Republicans spent the entire first session of the 112th Congress blocking job creation plans, assaulting women’s right to choose, cutting spending for programs that every American depends on, and nearly causing a credit default.

Barack Obama’s presidency is a black eye to Republicans who have sought to obstruct economic recovery at every turn, and his successes leave them little option but to attack him for being an African American. Oh, it is true that they are not overtly accusing him of being lazy and stealing white people’s money for himself, but they are accusing him of stealing white people’s money to give to “his people.” That is Santorum and Gingrich’s message and it is meant for the segment of the population that are white supremacists and unfortunately, there are many and they are predominately Republican voters.

This election is going to be about the economy and income inequality, and Republicans lose on all counts. So they have begun the race baiting now to demean the President by racial association later in the campaign. Racists will not consider any of President Obama’s accomplishments that helped every American because their hate deprives them of basic objectivity. Instead they will remember that all African Americans are lazy and not like us because Republicans will have hammered them mercilessly with racially-bigoted remarks and they will do anything to prevent “one of them” from residing in a place reserved for rich white males.

Fortunately, most Americans are not vile racists and they understand that President Obama’s policies saved the economy and kept America safe, and that Republicans did everything possible to lavish more riches on the wealthy and subvert economic recovery.  Republicans have no one but themselves to blame for their unenviable position that forces them to resort to race-baiting as an election strategy, and the American people will not forget when November rolls around.

Image: politicsplus.org

 

46 Replies to “Losing On The Issues, Republicans Amp Up Their Racist Rhetoric”

  1. Pretty good, but I disagree with the characterization “Most Americans are not vile racists”.

    I would say that more American whites are racist than not. They just have never been confronted with their racism. Their form is more covert and when confronted with the overt versions, sometimes they catch it and resist (because it IS wrong), but they also sometimes miss what the speaker or writer is actually saying.

    You will see that in how the news reports these issues, although it’s been shown that the America mainstream media is racist anyway.

  2. Rmuse: I have agreed with a great deal, probably most, of what has been posted on Politicusa, and I agree with almost all of what you write in this post. Unfortunately, you have shown yourself to be as susceptible as most of us to lowering yourself to the cheap shot.

    Romney is no more a racist than other WASPs. Yes, he was 30 when the LDS Church (Mormon) finally gave the priesthood to African-Americans in 1978; the Church as an institution deserves to be interrogated on that. That does not make him a racist personally any more than being white makes me a Republican. His economic and other proposed policies and his pandering are his problem, not his Church. You also called Mormonism a “cult” which it is not. By doing so, even though there are many who might agree with you, you fall into the same trap of choosing words that you know will be triggerpoints for the weak minded. Come on, stay above that and “stay on target, stay on target…..”

  3. As for the news media, I’m with Walkaway. They’re always pretending they don’t see it. That’s not to say they don’t show it, but they don’t comment. The Republican Party is treated like a rich and important dinner guest who comes to the table of a formal dinner with his penis hanging out. Of course, everybody notices, but the “nice” thing to do is pretend that everything is normal. Nonetheless, pictures are sometimes taken of the shameless fly, and it is up to places like this one to make sure they circulate.

  4. I don’t know what the statistics show as regards racism in the U.S. (besides which, polling folks wouldn’t produce honest answers anyway, giving truth to the saying “There are lies, damned lies, and statistics”).

    I do think that the vast majority believe racism to be wrong; if the opposite were true, President Obama would never have made it to the White House.

    I also think that far too much weight is given to the influence of the “reichwing” media, especially as, for example, Faux News reaches in the neighbourhood of 5 million — out of a population of 340 million. As for reichwing radio, who are the folks who actually listen to it? Retired folk, truck drivers, salespeople in their cars? People of influence? I think not.

    It’s absolutely true that the networks and the other cable folks do not confront the racism problem the way they should (or at least the way WE think they should). They’re also disgustingly negligent in refuting falsehoods and lies spouted by politicians. Some people blame this negligence on their corporate parentage. I don’t know; I think it’s more a symbol of the even faster-paced world they (and we) live in today, especially when these networks must allot a vast amount of time to sponsors and their messages. The only time you get a real, uninterrupted discussion is on PBS (which I am lucky enough to access).

    Frankly, I (and my fellow Canucks) felt the election of an AA was a sign that the U.S. had finally achieved a certain level of rationality, let alone maturity. For all those folks who aren’t there yet (and will probably never be), it’s just too damn bad for them — the rest of you are moving on and living in the real world. And the rest of the world salutes you!

    BTW, Reynardine, along with being a very smart and informed writer, you do have a knack for painting a vivid picture!

  5. Please do not fill Reynardines head with helium!

    It doesn’t really matter how much racism there is, but it does matter when racists are in public office and have a voice in a country.

  6. In other news, water is wet. The GOP has nothing left to run on
    In but their self-imposed inadequatecy and projections of said shortcomings on others. All the more reason to make sure that they NEVER get to chance to impose their mania on others.

    Newt wants to give Obama a bloody nose….
    Mitt wants to shove Obama’s policies down his throat…
    …. Let’s make sure that Barack Obama can hand these two clowns their asses in a basket in November!!!!

  7. No matter what President we get regardless race religion creed or color Americans will always complain and never be satisfied.

  8. Rush limbaugh did accuse the presient of stealing white people’s money the other day, saying the president felt entitled to it!

  9. Yes, the vast majority believe it to be wrong (at least public racism), but they are blind to their own racism. They may decry the treatment minorities have, but they see nothing wrong with denying housing to a minority (“want a better type of renter”), or automatically assume that black males are a potential threat, or assume that minority people will steal (“Shoplifters!”) or are on welfare.

    Sometimes their racism is even more subtle – like the regular comments I get from people who don’t know me (when they learn about my heritage): “You don’t look like an Indian!”. They’re expecting a stereotype. I have a friend who is Mexican-American. He doesn’t begin to fit the stereotype. He gets angry because of the stereotyping and the misidentification that people commit, and the discrimination that people of his heritage experience. (For instance, he refuses to buy anything or even stop when he has to drive through Alabama, in protest of their recently passed law. American citizens are being persecuted because of their heritage – and conservative jackasses want to strip them of that citizenship, even though they and their parents were born here! I support him in boycotting Alabama.)

  10. (Laugh!) Rush also said that the US needed to enact a “Poor tax”, with the tax decreasing as people became better off. His argument: “People will work harder to get into a better tax bracket!”

    If I didn’t know better, I’d say that he was trying to parody the racist bigotry that hounds our president.

    It’s pretty bad when you can’t tell the difference between parody and actual beliefs/goals, and with Rush… you can be certain that he believes or supports what he says.

  11. Of course, the institution of such a tax would insure that anyone who wasn’t already well-heeled would never get into a “better tax bracket”. It would not only make stratification permanent, but increase it exponentially, and that’s just what they want.

  12. Yeah. He was expounding on that back in the early 90s (when I was still stupidly conservative and listened to him) and now we’re seeing almost a de facto version of it.

    I think that when people like him speak, we need to examine it closely (especially when it is really out there) because that is where they’re going to try to take the country.

  13. Racism used to be used by the GOP and the main stream media by coded words. Recently in this GOP primary election campaign, the racism has been blatant! Many keep trying to say that it is not so. And the more that happens, the more blatant it gets. That’s what’s really happening. The country is regressing about 60 years with this campaign. It’s frightening! And the bigotry is just as awful. Our very civil rights and democracy is being challenged. Now people think it’s normal. This is not a normal environment that has been demonstrated and created by these GOP candidates and their supporters and billionaire benefactors.

  14. Mittens is “racist” via his economic up bringing and proposed policies.

    The Mormon church is traditionally an exclusive club of white people who formed isolated polygamous community with a militia and territorial ambitions. They’ve added a few “tweaks” to their social views, but for the most part, they still practice polygamous marriages (but hide it), socially shun neighbors who aren’t one of “them” plus teach their children to do the same (talk to anyone with a non-Mormon child in predominantly Mormon school district), do not date or mate out of the religion with out reprisal or excommunication and territorial ambitions are met by mass breeding practices.

    The actual operations of the church are run by corporate types, not theologians, and its teachings have become simple and bland to keep their members under control…ubiquitously nice, white and polite.

    The Book of Mormon teaches that economic prosperity depends on the spiritual condition of individuals as shown by their unity, caring, and voluntary sharing. Their own people as well as non-Mormon people are used to “enrich” personal economics; why do you think Mitts business practices are at the heart of controversy? In a nutshell, Romney “used” non-Mormons, destroyed their lives in order to “enrich” himself…therefore, he must be a tool of the Lord, as his inward or spiritual being is more superior than those he just axed…fired.

    Mormons explain their economic theory like this: “The Lord works from the inside out. The world works from the outside in. The world would take people out of the slums. Christ takes the slums out of people, and then they take themselves out of the slums. The world would mold men, who then change their environment. The world would shape human behavior, but Christ can change human nature.4”

    This “enrichment economic theory” is used to explain why different groups (race in particular) experience different economic results even when they have similar resources (oh no…their not bigots)—those at the top (Mormons) are more “spiritual” and therefore, are more “enriched” regardless of their so-called business practices…

    And, I suggest you actually read the 8 Criteria of Thought Control by Robert Jay Lifton before you defend Mormonism as a non-cult…it’s a cult, according and observed by standard, the universal criteria. You should read up on the subject before pontificating on something you know little about.

  15. It really is shocking what is being said today. Sarah Palin bashed the president, and is relentless in her attacks on the first lady, from something as stupid as trying to get kids to eat right? Laura Bush was never subjected to attacks anywhere near as terrible as Michelle has been. I personally always kinda liked Laura Bush. A whole lot better than George!!!!! I sure would not have hated her for trying to get kids to read???? The audacity of this woman trying to convince kids to read, you know that should be up to the parents?????????? How the color of the skin has changed the playing field. I would have never believed it if I had not seen it with my own eyes…

  16. This rhetoric reminds me of nothing so much as the “welfare queens” and the “Willie Hortons” of the Reagan and Bush41 campaigns. I appears to me to be one indicator of the America they want to take us back to.

  17. Sadly to say,that in the 44 years living here and living overseas with the militairy.I never could get a real talk to people about the subject RACE.They perhaps said something nice ,because of my interracial marriage,but never in the real history of the problems.Something like,Oh the blacks have it so much better now.(?)The subject is still not accepted by most,they just don’t want to talk about it,just like many Germans about their history do.School education is not there to teach much about it,sadly enough.

  18. Sorry, Rmuse, you were right on in your article about Romney, Republicans and racism and I thought that was what I told you in my comment. Most people are racist, they just don’t realize it. The fact that I offered just one small criticism of a slip into a rhetorical mudpit by pointing out that Mormonism is not a cult, regardless of what Singhx says, shouldn’t have been regarded as an attack of your entire ideology. Nor do I think that my comment deserves the response by ‘Singhx’ for “pontificating about something I know nothing about.”

    Does anyone really believe that all mormons are going to vote for Mitt Romney? Do you all believe that all Mormons are Republican, white, rich and racist? Does everyone really believe that Mormons are all secret polygamists? IMO people that think these things are no different than the crude, brainless audiences at the Republican debates. One form of bigotry vs. another.

    I don’t believe that Mitt Romney is a very good example of Mormonism. Romney was born with a silver spoon and has no idea of what ‘real people’ go through. The one and only good thing about Romney is that he loves and apparently has been faithful to the woman he married and to his family. Other than that, his policies, as far as I can see go contrary to what true Mormon doctrine is about. I’m not talking about what you find when you google ‘what’s mormonism all about.’ That’s when you can find anything written by anyone that is then read and believed by whomever. I’m talking about the core teachings of the LDS Church. SinghX’s description of the “ubiquitously nice, white and polite” is probably accurate of some as there are always people, regardless of the religion or nonreligion who are just born followers, afraid of questioning anything. True Mormon theology is built on asking questions and having open minds to search for and receive answers.

    A closed mind, one who doesn’t ask questions, and also one who can’t accept an answer or response different from what it expects or wants is dangerous whether it is Mormon or not.

  19. I have to ask this question. In watching the tactics of the Republicans in the past two or three years and what we are going to see leading up to the election, if the Republicans were to win does anyone think they intend on giving up that power? Knowing how absolutely dirty they are, knowing about all of voter suppression going on, are they ever get all our another vote for someone else could take over and punish them for their transgressions? Can they afford to lose this election given how they have been? Can they afford to lose the election knowing that speaker Boehner refuses to compromise and that the Democrats could turn around and do the very same thing to them? Will they give up the power or will they take somehow?

  20. What a really great and informative article. I keep reading articles, watching some of the debates and still I would not allow myself to say the word racist. Why, I kept asking myself do they hate the President so? It can’t be because he is a Black man? Now, every single thought I’ve had has been written. I am not crazy! The Republican party would like to take this country back a hundred years; or destroy it in trying. I find this truth to be both truly evil and frightening.

  21. Mitt Romney may not be overtly racist, but the church he belongs to has been. In addition, the fact that he and the other GOP candidates failed to speak against the overtly racist comments from Santorum and Gingrich indicates at least tacit agreement with them. The Republican demonstrations of racism are directed not only against President Obama in particular, but also against the changing demographics among Americans in general. They are afraid of change, and have been seething for years against so many changes that have already occurred. Therefore,they want to take this country backward, not back, to a mythical time when those of us who are not white, male, or wealthy (particularly conservative) “knew our places.”

  22. …”Do you all believe that all Mormons are Republican, white, rich and racist? Does everyone really believe that Mormons are all secret polygamists?…

    Karmen, I hate to “rag” on this but, I live in an area that borders a huge Mormon population (not Utah).

    All of us “not of the faith types” know…we know the houses that are occupied by polygamist families, we know when we aren’t wanted in a business (shunned) by a woman in a bun with no make-up, we know the Mormon barber takes his friends and family first and lets “the others” sit while they chat endlessly about “the family”, we know who’s children are invited to birthday parties and who’s aren’t and why, we know why so-in-so’s teenager is no longer allowed to be friends, associate, date or just hang out with the Mormon kids down the road…

    We know it’s futile to try to elect a non-Mormon for any political representation in the
    district…I and my neighbors “know” what closed minds and smug stares look like…yep, it’s pretty ugly knowing you’ll never know the answer why you’re not accepted for who you are amongst “neighbors”…maybe it’s because I yelled “Oye Vey!” in the grocery store one day checking the price of oranges…(my people like Fla’ra’da
    or-rang-jaz).

  23. Based on an encounter with a Mormon from Utah (maybe three years ago), they still believe their “Holy Book’s” bullsh*t about my people and are trying hard to come up with “Proof” for it (also tried to proselytize in class). It caused a flashback to the time I spent in Utah as a little kid – not fun.

    It was the one time I had to ask a colleague to take over the (online) class conversation before I lost it.

    As I remember, he failed the course because he didn’t follow the rules – he was supposed to pick a topic and examine it critically, rather than try to convince people about it.

  24. When I was a little kid, we lived in Utah (Brigham City). I remember it well (even though it’s been 50 years), including the attitudes we experienced – it was evident sometimes even to a 4-5 year old.

    I remember being invited on a bicycle trip to a nearby creek (a couple of miles or so) by a couple of “Nice” Mormon elders and a group of kids, ranging in age from about 6 or so up to teens. They had me ride on one of the bikes and when we were over halfway there, my foot slipped and got caught in the spokes. The elders took me off the bike, threw me on the side of the road, and told me “You’re nothing but a gentile brat anyway!”. My folks tell that I crawled nearly half a mile before a non-Mormon girl on horseback spotted me and gave me a ride the rest of the way home (I couldn’t walk because of the injury).

    I crawled all that way on the side of a busy Utah road, with nobody stopping to check on an injured little boy.

    I remember the looks on their faces when they said “Gentile Brat” and their laughter as they went on their way. I remember feeling weird because I couldn’t walk. I also remember how strange it was to be carried on the back of a horse in front of a strange young lady (it felt like a mile off the ground). I also remember being very upset because it was summer and I couldn’t go outside and play – I still couldn’t walk that well and my foot was all bandaged up.

    We also weren’t welcome in the stores, and when my dad’s car broke down, it was over half a day on a busy highway before a non-Mormon came along and helped him. It was a relief to move away from that area… we finally to a place where we had lots of kids that wanted to play with us.

    I’d forgotten about the roadside incident until a recent confrontation with a Mormon caused a flashback to the event… it was like re-living the whole thing.

  25. There’s a difference between prejudice and racism.

    People can be prejudiced about others of their own race, but it often applies to different races. You can also be prejudiced about situations or ideas rather than about actual people.

    Racism is when people are prejudiced about other people BECAUSE of their race and only their race. And racism seems to mean automatically prejudiced …. all the time & everytime.

    I think most people are prejudiced no matter where they come from. That’s just how the world is and maybe it’s healthy because it means your brain is analyzing and calculating your situation. Prejudice seems to be just a thought process. Prejudice can be overcome too. It’s usually only temporary. All it takes (for me anyway) is to be shown that ooops …. maybe I was wrong this time. Then the next time I usually find myself less prejudiced. (Like I said, it’s not always about people.)

    If you’re racist on the other hand … I think you’re stuck with it forever. And I think you’re either racist … or not racist. Not much gray area there. Unfortunately there are far too many racists in America.

  26. …”I think most people are prejudiced no matter where they come from….and maybe it’s healthy because it means your brain is analyzing and calculating your situation. Prejudice seems to be just a thought process. Prejudice can be overcome too. It’s usually only temporary…”

    I hate to get all “fact-tee” on you and be a kill-joy, but…

    You’re forgetting that little thing called the hippocampus. It is the part of the brain that is involved in memory forming, organizing, and storing. It is a part of limbic system that is particularly important in forming new memories and connecting emotions and senses, such as smell and sound, to memories. If it is “traumatized”, made to knee-jerk to certain trigger words, sounds, memories, it recalls faster than a nano-second…it takes actual effort and skill to over-come the unconscious programing or even have an awareness for a brain that has succumbed to aberrant or hateful words, emotions, behaviors…try and undo “prejudgment” from a child who’s been to “Jesus Camp”…it’s not just a “thought process”; it’s a deliberate multi-generational trauma process.

  27. The proper words used today for cults are “Coercive Religious Movement”. There are Bible-based “Coercive Religious Movements”, and ones based on other things. (Personally, I prefer Cult because it’s shorter and easier.)

    Not all religion is coercive. Some even encourage critical thinking and scientific investigation.

  28. By the way… two things to add to my above comment.

    (1) there is recent evidence that the church as a group hasn’t changed, except for the things that are too blatant (such as denying African Americans). See my post elsewhere in this thread regarding a confrontation in a class as one example out of many.

    (2) There are walkaways from the Mormon church, just as there are from the fundamentalist/dominionist churches. Their experiences mirror those of us who escaped the bible-based dominionist cults (and our experiences are also very similar to those who escaped Scientology).

    Finally, I would also add that I have met a few decent Mormons, who admitted publicly that they didn’t buy part of what that church taught. They went there because some of the other teachings were similar to what they believed.

  29. My parents finally admitted about 15 years ago that they went to church because its a social thing. They went to the same church for 50 years and my mom admitted it was to be with her friends much more than it was for the religion.

    In 1975 there was a survey, 70% of ministers that called themselves christian did not believe in the resurrection of a god

  30. Most Americans are not VILE racists. It’s a condition with which it’s hard not to be tainted…for any of us…because it permeates our atmosphere, but I’d say it’s something most have the decency to be embarassed about it. What the Dissocialists are doing is persuading their audience it’s nothing to be embarassed about. Like pedophiles, they are grooming their targets bit by bit for shamelessness to come.

  31. …”(2) There are walkaways from the Mormon church, just as there are from the fundamentalist/dominionist churches. Their experiences mirror those of us who escaped the bible-based dominionist cults (and our experiences are also very similar to those who escaped Scientology)…”

    You should know by now that all aberrant destructive cults use identical manipulation techniques; it matters not the religious or political base of operation, but the mind-set of the charismatic in charge from Ohsa to Jim Jones from Moon to Ashara…they all have the used the M.O.

    Len Oakes wrote a book called “Prophetic Charisma: The Psychology of Revolutionary Religious Personalities” where he outlines the lives of 20 well-known cult leaders. Should be required to reading before raising a child…it’s a eye-opener as to the things parents layer on a child’s personality…and if you’ve been in a cult, it will be an eye-opener as to how the leader used his/her upbringing to con you.

    Sleep tight, kiddies!

  32. Are we no longer using the academic term “aberrant destructive group” to to define a New Religious Movements (NRM) who fall under the category of at least five of Lifton’s 8 Criteria for Thought Reform?

    A NRM can be any group that branches off any mainstream/non-mainstream group and forms their own “church”…as in the Westburo Baptist Church. But they are considered “aberrant and destructive” whereas you could form a group amongst your religious community and be considered “benign” as a movement and not fall under any of the 8 criteria set by Lifton.

    The word cult was made to sound repugnant, “taboo”, pejorative by the master of all manipulation of cult origin, Rev Moon. He put a lot of money into media (in the late 70’s early 80’s) to spin the word away from his church and leadership. That’s why today, you will see those accused of holding cult power over church members scream that the word “cult” is “pejorative” and doesn’t apply to their church.
    It’s a stop thought technique to shut you up…so, use the word often and correctly. I’d like to see it come back “in style”.

  33. No good religion is good without something to hang over your head. Your going to hell, you will burn in the pits of hell, your 72 virgins will be old women etc

    Thats why I like Buddhism. You keep trying till your acceptable

  34. I remember that well, including the pejorative “Welfare Cadillac”. At the time I couldn’t understand why people bought those huge overweight gas guzzlers and thought it was a status thing.

    Then as I kept struggling with poverty, I learned – that the big gas guzzlers were much cheaper to buy once they started getting a lot of miles on them, compared to something that was less expensive to operate. People bought them (very used) because they didn’t have to go through months and months of doing without while trying to save up the money for something better.

    Simple economics of poverty… you can’t afford better (what you really need), so you make do with what you can afford, even though it costs more to operate.

    The implication was that people on welfare were buying new or low mileage fancy cars, when the reality was far different.

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