Information, observations, and analysis from the James River valley on the Northern Plains-----
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As a couple of blogs point out today, the abortion ban has galvanized the Democratic Party in South Dakota. That is probably so. But abortion is not the main issue at stake.
I know of no one, including women who have had abortions, who approves of abortion as a routine method of handling unwanted pregnancies. While the right-wingdingbats can sit at their keyboards, drool running down their chins, calling pro-choice people baby-killers, murderers, zygote-squelchers, and whatever else they dream up in their hateful frenzies, the huge majority of people are concerned about abortion and the social issues of which it is a part. That huge majority knows that the abortion ban does not address the problem. They prefer to let individuals and their physicians address the problems that result in the consideration of abortion as an option.
The abortion ban is the most salient symptom of how democracy can fail. It came out of a legislature that is run like a Pierre politburo. While people find it a preposterous piece of legislation, they also have come to recognize how the hearings held on the bill and its drafting were a sham exercise in democracy through which people with tyrannical ambitions tried to dupe the electorate while it imposed its perverse will on the people.
The abortion ban is merely one way a totalitarian faction is trying to subvert democracy and criminalize those people who hold political viewpoints different from theirs. The script is right out of Orwell's 1984.
While undergoing a brain-washing session, the protagonist is told by an indoctrinator:
"The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power. Not wealth or luxury or long life or happiness; only power, pure power... We know that no one every seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means; it is an end...The objection of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power."
Citizens who have informed themselves as to what the abortion ban will do, how it came about, and who is behind it realize that the humane claims behind it are a sham. If they were interested in saving lives, they would be addressing the grotesque and damaging inequities afflicting people in the state. They have found a way to impose power on people who might otherwise make individual decisions and try to live their lives on their own terms.
The propaganda coming out of the right-wingdingnut faction reflects another of their beliefs, often expressed on their blogs. In an afteword, Eric Fromm summarizes the underlying premise of the propaganda:
"'Reality exists in the human mind and nowhere else...whatever the Party holds to be truth is truth.' If this is so, then by controlling men's minds the Party controls truth...'the leaders of the Party do not even pretend that their system is intended to make man happier, because men being frail and
cowardly creatures, want to escape freedom and are unable to face the truth. The leaders are aware of the fact that they have only one aim, and that is power...And power means the capacity to inflict unlimited pain and suffering to another human being.' Power, then, for them creates reality, it creates truth."
If blogs serve any purpose in politics today, they allow people to examine the thought and expression of political factions. If you surf through some of the wingnut blogs, you will find Orwell's description of insidious totalitarian purpose expressed time and again.
Abortion is the cover issue. Look at other issues such as the secretizing of government, the closing of public records, the assaults against public broadcasting and public education--which might act as sources of information that the rightwingdings don't want you to hear. And look at the regressive and punitive tax system in South Dakota.
If there is a regeneration of political interest in South Dakota, it is because people realize the issue is their freedom and power for power's sake.