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Postmodernism's Take on "Flake" Journalism Where Obamanomics Went Wrong

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Is Head-Smashed-In the Solution to Smash-Mouth Politics?

by Christopher Chantrill
July 09, 2011 at 12:30 pm


LET’S give the president and his base the benefit of the doubt. President Obama honestly thought that his smash-mouth press conference on Wednesday June 29th and his obsession over the Obama-Reid-Pelosi corporate jet stimulus tax credit was nothing more than good presidential leadership. No doubt the gay marriage advocates think that there arm-twisting victory on gay marriage in the New York State Senate was nothing more than a principled effort to right an age-old injustice. Ditto the smash-mouth chappies on MSNBC.

Does the playground bully think he is a bully? Certainly not. He just thinks that the kids he bullies around are losers.

The reason for civility in politics and manners in individuals is not just that it’s the right thing to do. The bigger reason is that polite people and civil politicians avoid making unnecessary enemies. For politicians, enemies become a real problem when they add up to more than 49 percent of the vote.

Rage and protest are all very well when you are in opposition—as our Democratic friends ably demonstrated through the eight long years of the Bush administration. But rage and smash-mouth politics from the governing party is just plain thuggery. When you pack the National Labor Relations Board with your cronies (see Boeing) and the National Mediation Council with your pals (see Delta) to harass non-union corporations and employees and change the rules without benefit of Congress then ordinary people start to get angry and fearful. They know they don’t have much power, and the mainstream media doesn’t give a fig for them. What can they do?

That’s where Head-Smashed-In comes in. No, it’s not what you think. Head-Smashed-In is a provincial park near Fort McLeod, Alberta. It’s a buffalo jump where First Nation peoples for thousands of years stampeded the North American bison off a cliff. You may have the impression, from pictures like this, that native Americans hunted buffalo from horseback. So they did, after the Spaniards introduced domestic horses to North America in about 1500.

In the centuries before the spread of horses northwards across the Great Plains, First Nations peoples hunted buffalo on foot, and they developed the Buffalo Jump all across the plains as an effective way to harvest the meat and hides of the North American bison.

Here’s an idea. Why not use the same tactics if you are a subject people without the financial or cultural power to deploy your own smash-mouth politicians and activists.? Choose your moment and then stampede your opponents over a political cliff.

But how can our Democratic friends be persuaded to jump off a cliff like a herd of buffalo? Aren’t Democrats all supposed to be creative individualists doing their own thing? Ann Coulter in Demonic thinks not. She gently reminds us that our liberal friends have had a weakness for the madness of crowds and mob rule ever since their favorite foreigners, the French, made the Paris mob into a player in the French Revolution. Remember how the mob eventually bayed for the blood of thug dictator Maximilien Robespierre? “There goes the dirty maximum,” they jeered, when Max’s economic policy of price controls had failed to curb prices or deliver badly needed stimulus during the quantitative easing of the 1790s. Of course Democrats don’t call their thuggish activists “mobs.” They call them “peaceful protesters.”

Maybe there is no need for Republicans to stampede the Democrats next year. In December 2012, as we view the steaming heap of sacred cows that stampeded to red ruin off the Progressive Cliffs, it need not be the work of cunning neo-Rovian political operatives. The Democratic peaceful protesters may stampede themselves over the cliff. Look how many cliffs they have already jumped off since 2009.

First the Reid-Pelosi Congress stampeded off the Stimulus Jump, then Reid and Pelosi chased their herd over the ObamaCare Cliffs. Then the Wisconsin State Senate Democrats stampeded off to Illinois while their supporters milled around in an angry mob in the Madison state capitol. Now, to cap it all, President Obama is trying to frighten a skittish Congress all riled up about the debt ceiling and stampede it over the Tax Jump.

As they say: never interfere with the opposition when they are busily making a big mistake. If the Democrats want to stampede their whole party over a buffalo jump, who has the right to stop them? But somebody is going to get their head smashed in over this. Like the First Nations kid centuries ago at Head Smashed-In Buffalo Jump who thought he’d watch the bison jumping to red ruin from the safety of the cliff overhang.

Christopher Chantrill blogs at www.roadtothemiddleclass.com.

Buy his Road to the Middle Class.

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presented by Christopher Chantrill

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