Red State: You’ll hear the banjoes

Somebody linked over to Red State.  What a creepy site.

First, it looks like those old ’50s school films about the creeping “Red Menace,” the way they paint every state Commie Red (no, I know they’re not conscious commies, but let’s call the color what it is).  It’s as if they have no knowledge of history over there, and they’ve never noticed.  It’s pretty clear that they have no desire nor need for white and blue, even to make “red, white and blue.”

Cover of record with "Dueling Banjoes"

If you have it on vinyl, you know what we mean.

Second, they brook no dissent at all.  Their terms of use (no open discussion) show the Red Staters get to decide whether you’re with the Red State Big Brother program — and if for any reason they decide you’re not toeing the party line, you’re vanquished.  No appeals.  “It’s not really an echo chamber, it’s unison singing.”

Third, there is the astonishing sucking sound where brains of skeptics should be.  Pick the stupid side of almost any issue, and it’s represented in spades there.  On the sciency front, for example, Red Staters have no use nor knowledge of Darwin, they think the warming temperatures of the climate are faked, probably by unholy, non-Red Stater weathermen, and they are convinced that the UN and others are using malaria for “population control” — so they favor massive amounts of DDT.

Remember Mr. Urquhart, the Delaware Tea Partier who, by the grace of God, lost the race for the state’s seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, and his claim that “separation of church and state” was Hitler’s idea?  Urquhart appears to drift in the mainstream at Red State.

Try it.  Pick an issue, do a search at Red State to see if they don’t favor the stupid side, and see whether any real facts can get in.  Even the news that shows their positions wrong, say their position against more stimulus, they’ll spin to say it’s the other guy’s fault.

God save us.  It’s a new Red to fear, the new Red Scare.

18 Responses to Red State: You’ll hear the banjoes

  1. Jim says:



  2. Ed Darrell says:

    Sheesh, Rob — how flattered I am to have your publicist seek out Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub as a site to spam, I suppose to support your movie roles?

    Does your publicist charge by the word, or by the view?


  3. Rob Rasner says:

    Hola! I am following your site for some time finally got more courage to go forward and provide you with an hi out via Atascocita Texas… I would like to tell you continue this good work Furthermore did you hear about Obamas budget problems?


  4. lpn nursing says:

    I love your writing! Keep it up :)


  5. Ed Darrell says:

    Which shows you have more sense than I. I had mistaken the guy for someone who was educable.


  6. Jim Stanley says:

    Kees says– “Come and join your host at my site wher he defends his “intelectual” ways of killing people.
    Your’e welcome.”

    I think this would be the appropriate place for a well-chosen, “KTHXBYE”.


  7. Ed Darrell says:

    Only my opinion, of course, Keeskennis, but you’re really not that good at picking the banjo, you know?

    If you want DDT information, you could click here and just start reading. More than you thought possible.

    Since when is fighting malaria an “intellectual way of killing people?”

    Maybe things will look better for you in the morning. Thanks for dropping by.


  8. keeskennis says:

    Nick K, Jim Stanley, toby, jre, thomas, SAYS:
    Most of them are indeed stupid.
    AGAINST their own best interests and the best interests of their neighbors.
    making “intellectual” and “intelligent” dirty words
    strongly consider a move to Thailan or Brazil.
    I have considered emigrating to Costa Rica or France.

    Not a word about DDT
    Come and join your host at my site wher he defends his “intelectual” ways of killing people.
    Your’e welcome.


  9. Nick K says:

    Sorry Jim, I have to disagree. Most of them are indeed stupid.

    For proof, I present this:


  10. Jim Stanley says:

    Evening, Nick.

    I have to agree, unfortunately. No word has taken on more vivid meaning for me than the term “rube” since the rise of the tea party. These are generally ordinary, nice, middle class folks who have actually gotten excited about organizing and voting AGAINST their own best interests and the best interests of their neighbors. And why? Probably many reasons. But surely much of it has to do with their relentless disdain for anything of an intellectual nature.

    Note that I do not mean to imply that conservative equals dumb. I do, however, intend to convey that there has been a sea change within the conservative movement. Gone are thinkers like Bill Buckley, Richard John Neuhaus and William Safire. I almost never agreed with them, but I could wrestle with them intellectually and respect the substance they brought to bear. Who, today, are the intellectual movers and shakers on the right side of the spectrum?

    Rush Limbaugh. Glenn Beck. Sarah Palin.


  11. Nick K says:

    It’s also because by definition people who are educated and are intellectual are harder to control and harder to con. The modern day Republican party lives and breathes on conning the people into voting for them.


  12. Jim Stanley says:

    Hi there, Toby!

    I completely agree. The problem is that the right has managed to succeed in making “intellectual” and “intelligent” dirty words. This is a particularly common phenomenon in religious right circles. Intellect and erudition are automatically deemed atheistic or even demonic. Not that I’ve a problem with Atheists in the least. But I’m unapologetic about my Christian faith…and about my embrace of the life of the mind. That such disciplines lead me to liberal or progressive conclusions is no surprise to other liberals or even to secularist conservatives, who tend to be less reactionary. But in the Evangelical-fundamentalist milieu…oh my!


  13. toby says:

    The lack of any intellectual heft on the Republican side is becoming obvious. Basically, they have lsot the universities and are kept on rescus by billionaire-funded “think tanks”, who steal other people’s reaearch and criticize it.


  14. jre says:

    Like many, I have felt a certain dissonance between “Red->Communist” and “Red->Republican.”
    Turns out the association goes all the way back to 1848, when the Illustrated London News reported that

    The ‘Red Republicans’ have justified their name. They have filled the streets of Paris with blood.

    … though I’m not sure our modern Red-Staters would appreciate the comparison.

    Mark Liberman has more over at Language Log.


  15. Nick K says:

    Well at some point I’m probably going to strongly consider a move to Thailan or Brazil.

    But the Whackicans and the Whackicons have nothing to do with that one.


  16. Jim Stanley says:


    I know the feeling. I’ve found Norway attractive. But I would probably prefer the warm of Costa Rica. Perhaps we could think great thoughts and consume umbrella drinks together, while our kids play in the ocean?

    Nah. This is our country. They want to change “We the People” to “I the rugged individual”. They want to change “a more perfect UNION” to “a more perfect corporate plutocracy”. They want to change “promote the general welfare” to ” F*** you! I got mine Jack. Now root, hog or die.”

    It’s our country, not theirs apparently. They can crow all they want about the Constitution and the Declaration of Independance. But as written, WE are the ones who are correctly interpreting it. We can’t let them have it. Fight, Thomas. Any non-violent way you know how.

    A reject speech by Bill Moyers about the rising plutocracy in this country ended with this. “It’s okay if it’s impossible. Do the right thing anyway.” We need you too much to let you go.


  17. Nick K says:

    Well I’m not sure its quite that bad. The demographics of the country are shifting out of the conservatives favor. Not like the Republicans have given minorities a reason to vote for them. And they’ve given the minority groups every reason to vote against them. When those minority groups are no longer the minority….


  18. thomas says:

    I have been a lifelong Liberal/Progressive. I was raised by a Liberal, Catholic mother and a Conservative Protestant father. I was taught by nuns and priests and lay persons using Liberal Roman Catholic ideals, including a strong sense of social justice and equality of all. I worked in my civilian career (I am a veteran who served honorably) as a Child Protective Investigator (CPI) and Supervisor (CPIS), and in Foster Care. I also was a Program Coordinator involving programs at a private, non-profit social services agency.

    I am aware of the degradation of the social contract in the United States since the Reagan years (I am watching a report on MSNBC about Texas legislators who are considering “leaving Medicaid” altogether – my god). It has been astonishing to me that Americans easily discarded the progressive gains that were made in the ’60’s under Presidents Kennedy and Johnson, as well as some of the Clinton agenda (universal health care was destroyed by Republicans who literally hated Hillary Clinton’s – it was never given a chance). The Bush years were disastrous in this regard.

    I have considered emigrating to Costa Rica or France. Both are Progressive countries where the social contract is basic. If I were younger I would have done this during the Bush years. The US is being hijacked by the Red Staters and the Corporatists aligned with the right wing christian whackos. They are a menace to society. They are winning and Progressivism is dying in the US. Sad, very sad.


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