362 Comments
founding
Mar 8, 2023·edited Mar 8, 2023Liked by Robert Reich

Well, when you botched a pandemic, hypocritically told people a plague wasn't real while taking the vaccine behind the scenes, when you fled for your lives from the forever-alone Army you unleashed on the Capitol and now have to shamefully deny doing so to try to hold on to power, when you let billions disappear into fraud and stock buybacks with no oversight while trying to claim the other party is fiscally irresponsible, and when the new generation of voters is vehemently opposed to most of what you stand for, you don't really have a lot of options to win elections. Ramping up fear and attacks on the "other" is America's real favorite pastime, a time-tested strategy for getting people to show up at the school board meetings, town halls and voting booths.

Expand full comment
Mar 8, 2023Liked by Robert Reich

Robert, I hate to admit this but, I have Republican family members and friends that are so hateful and bigoted towards LGBTQ and Trans that I don’t even talk to them anymore. They are so filled with hate and venom against these people that I can’t stand to be around them or even speak to them. Of course they are all Republicans. Their hate filled agenda has polluted their minds. These used to be decent reasonably open minded people but, not anymore. Not since Trump. I guess maybe they always felt that way and it just took a monster like him to bring out the monster in them. Now there’s no going back. Black people are no longer black to them they are the N word. You can’t reason with them. You can’t rationalize with them. Hate is all they spew now. I have given up on them and closed the door. What else can you do? You can’t let that kind of toxicity into your life. The Republicans are hell bent on breaking up America.

Expand full comment

Encouraging group hatreds distracts from the failings or weakness of your own doctrines.If you can persuade the less fortunate parts of the electorate that their situation is part of a wider liberal conspiracy and not due to the inequalities spawned by free enterprise then you maintain your grip on power .

Expand full comment
Mar 8, 2023·edited Mar 8, 2023

The religious right has been strung-out on sex ever since the so-called "sexual revolution" of the '60s, the birth control pill, and Roe v Wade. Since it's all bound up with bigotry and hatred, I include both of those answers under the same rubric, and it's all joined at the hip with their whole "family values" agenda.

Expand full comment

Why? -- It's really about authoritian power at any cost. There is no altrustic or human-centered basis for the behavior.

The use of gender and sex has a long history in authoritian cultures. Already in 1950 with "The Authoritarian Personality" by Theodor Adorno, a German sociologist examing the abuses of the Third Reich, identified the use of gender roles as a common tool of authoritians. The Italian Il Duce was personally very abusive of gender roles. Perhaps the current Florida Il Duce is using a similar playbook.

Where does it lead? -- That depends on whether society can learn to identify and call out this behavior for its reasons and the downward spirial of authoritianism. Those messages have to be clear, consisistent, and constant.

Expand full comment

They're losing the religious right.

But there's a long tradition. When Samuel Johnson completed his Dictionary of the English Language, he is said to have been visited by a group of elderly religious women who congratulated him for omitting all indecent words. He in turn thanked them for looking them all up.

Expand full comment

Retrumplicans have no platform & no goals for our country except to spew hatred, racism, & misogyny! Their mistaken belief is that everyone wants to hear their crap & that everybody believes in the things they do, but they couldn’t be farther off the rails! Rethugs have no experience in problem solving, they only know how to create problems for somebody else to solve! What a bunch of useless overpaid bureaucrats. The country could function very well without their ignorant hostility toward the “other” & their constant ranting about some new fascist idea they have learned about. This so-called Party of freedom has become adept @ finding ways to remove more & more of our constitutional freedoms while invoking some theological belief that it’s for everyone’s benefit to do so. This party of Lincoln has totally lost its identity & critical thinking skills. They have no business governing an ant colony let alone the oldest & most respected Democracy in the modern World! What to do about them is the real question we need to have answered.

Expand full comment

One would have to go with "all of the above" with a dose of smelling salts and a dash of hot pepper. Have they ever talked to a gay person? Have they ever interacted with a transsexuals, or had a glimpse of the pain they have gone through emotionally to get where they are? Lacking empathy is a psychiatric diagnosis in an individual. How do you describe a lack of empathy in an entire political party? I suppose the irony lies is the fact that conservative evangelicals, who profess to be Christians, fail to understand the nature of "loving your neighbor as you love yourself" or "love your enemy, do good to those who hate you", as central tenants of the faith. I suppose the anti-woke doctrine they now espouse makes them unable to think creatively about anything, since you have to be awake and caring to love your neighbor and the environment where you live.

Expand full comment

How about all of the above?

Expand full comment

It seems to me they want chaos. However they can get it.

Expand full comment

I believe that people who are creating such laws are fearful for their own existence and fearful of losing power. For some people it may have something to do with religion, but I think the majority of law makers who propose or vote in such laws are doing all they can, including catering to extremism, in order to remain in power. They are gerrymandering districts so that Democrats can never win, and they are changing laws as they go along in order to extinguish the voices of anyone who thinks differently than they themselves. Those extremist Republicans are a minority and the only way that they can remain in power is to change laws in hopes of marginalizing and stamping out those whom they feel pose a threat to their existence. I see no difference between these extremist Republicans and other religious (or not) extremists in this world. It’s all about holding onto power.

Expand full comment

These people are so obsessed with sex, I wouldn’t trust them with anyone’s children.

Expand full comment

Patriarchy is the framework of the Republican Party, which relegates anyone who is not the dominant group ( power-holding white males) as inferior and dangerous. It is usually couched in the prevailing patriarchal religion. The history of Christianity has never been comfortable with sex. Aimee Wise

Expand full comment

The GOP seems "owned" by the Fundamentalist Nationalist Christians. Seems a bubble and lie that some word or phrase could "pop." But there 's the catch! Who's to say one belief or religion is true and all others wrong? In a theocracy, which I maintain the Fundamentalist Nationalist Christians seek to advance and install, they might designate and permit one flavor and only one flavor of religion. They would behave like Christian Taliban: authoritarian, intolerant, rigid and they might even deploy their own version of a religious police. Or, exactly what the founding fathers sought to prevent.

Expand full comment

This is about eugenics. The 'Pro-Life' movement is a really just a front. It's the Pro-Lie movement.

Expand full comment

Absolute fear powers the extreme republicans. Fear of not being a "white" majority , fear of losing power, fear of anyone not like them. All the reasons you've listed are why they are focusing on sex which always sells. They have nothing else.

Expand full comment