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Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Tuesday, August 03, 2021

Paul Krugman - So let's talk about what the right means when it talks about "freedom" ... [W]hat they actually mean is closer to "defense of privilege" - specifically the right of certain people (generally white male Christians) to do whatever they want. Once you understand that the rhetoric of freedom is actually about privilege, things that look on the surface like gross inconsistency and hypocrisy start to make sense.

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Since the pandemic began, many conservatives have insisted that actions to limit the death toll - social distancing, wearing a mask and now getting vaccinated " should be matters of personal choice. Does that position make any sense?

Well, driving drunk is also a personal choice. But almost everyone understands that it's a personal choice that endangers others; 97 percent of the public considers driving while impaired by alcohol a serious problem. Why don't we have the same kind of unanimity on refusing to get vaccinated, a choice that helps perpetuate the pandemic and puts others at risk?

[I]f you go back to the roots of modern conservatism, you find people like Barry Goldwater defending the right of businesses to discriminate against Black Americans. In the name of freedom, of course. A lot, though not all, of the recent panic about "cancel culture" is about protecting the right of powerful men to mistreat women. And so on.

Why, for example, are conservatives so insistent on the right of businesses to make their own decisions, free from regulation - but quick to stop them from denying service to customers who refuse to wear masks or show proof of vaccination? Why is the autonomy of local school districts a fundamental principle - unless they want to require masks or teach America's racial history? It's all about whose privilege is being protected.

Argumentatively makes all the sense in the world, and explains quite a lot. It explains just how selfish many in our society can be towards anything that they feel is somehow a hindrance to living their own lives in the ways and manner they want to regardless of the impact of those decisions on other people negatively affected by them.

#1 | Posted by tonyroma at 2021-08-02 10:59 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 4

I just watched the local news and most of the sound bites were white people saying it should be a choice whether or not you wear a mask.

#2 | Posted by snoofy at 2021-08-02 11:46 PM | Reply

I can understand this as personal FREEDOM is that last thing that lefties {i.e. Control FREAKS} believe in.

#3 | Posted by MSgt at 2021-08-03 12:11 AM | Reply | Funny: 5

#3 Abortion much?

#4 | Posted by snoofy at 2021-08-03 12:14 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 4

[W]hat they actually mean is closer to "defense of privilege" - specifically the right of certain people (generally white male Christians) to do whatever they want.

Nailed it.

#5 | Posted by Doc_Sarvis at 2021-08-03 06:58 AM | Reply

I'm still in with George Carlin's idea for these "freedom" dolts who lack the emotional maturity required for living in a civil society. Yeah, you know what I'm talking about: SLUGFEST! (youtu.be).

#6 | Posted by Doc_Sarvis at 2021-08-03 07:50 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

I can understand this as personal FREEDOM is that last thing that lefties {i.e. Control FREAKS} believe in.

Yeah, because the base root of the word LIBERAL comes from LIBERTY which is FREEDOM itself.

You can't be more moronic than to argue that the political philosophy based on FREEDOM is in reality one about controlling the non-public actions of others.

A simple question: Just how much FREEDOM for the 616,000+ Americans (and counting) who have died from a wildly communicable disease - and the millions more now faced with lifelong health complications from having been infected - has been taken from them because others wouldn't take mitigation actions when venturing out into public that would have stopped the spreading of the disease?

And one more follow-up: Just how did our Founders think that the US Constitution would provide for "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" without exercising societal public safety practices making sure that one individual's freedoms would not unduly impinge upon someone else's?

#7 | Posted by tonyroma at 2021-08-03 08:04 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 5

Paywalled.

It's little more than selfishness. That's it. Any other claim is just overthinking it.

#8 | Posted by jpw at 2021-08-03 09:54 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

#3 | POSTED BY MSGT

Voter suppression.

Control of female bodies.

Suppressing LGBTQ rights.

Making certain that the truth is suppressed in history.

Forcing religious views.

Suppressing freedom to peacefully protest.

There are many more.. All part of the agenda of conservatives.

#9 | Posted by Whatsleft at 2021-08-03 10:03 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 4

Paul Krugman perfectly expresses that which many of us have known for decades but we didn't have an audience, he does. Not that I think his ideas will penetrate the thick skulls of conservatives, tax cuts bought their belief systems long ago. Without the huge tax cuts, which were and are an attempt to destroy the New Deal, none of their ideas would have any support at all because they are all bad ideas. If you are rich, in a rich country, but object to paying tax rates that will still allow you to be rich then you basically don't care about the rest of society. That is the basic flaw in the conservative argument, that tax cuts encourage freedumb and success for the economy of average Americans. That lie has been proven wrong over and over, since the days of President Hoover. It never works, never has worked, it is a totally failed philosophy exemplified by Nazi Germany. Pretending that supporting wealth for the few while ignoring the needs of the majority is a path to success is a failed ideology.

#10 | Posted by danni at 2021-08-03 10:04 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"Voter suppression.
Control of female bodies.
Suppressing LGBTQ rights.
Making certain that the truth is suppressed in history."

Equals: conservative ideology.

#11 | Posted by danni at 2021-08-03 10:05 AM | Reply

Remember when Mike Pence went to a NFL game, just to walk out before the game even started, when the players took a knee?

Players have the freedom to take a knee.

But you'll never hear a right-winger celebrate that freedom.

#12 | Posted by snoofy at 2021-08-03 10:18 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 8

I can understand this as personal FREEDOM is that last thing that lefties {i.e. Control FREAKS} believe in.

#3 | Posted by MSgt at 2021-08-03 12:11 AM | Reply | Flag:

Demanding freedom without acknowledging your responsibility to your neighbors is just being a selfish -----.

#13 | Posted by Nixon at 2021-08-03 10:18 AM | Reply

Remember when Mike Pence went to a NFL game, just to walk out before the game even started, when the players took a knee?

Players have the freedom to take a knee.

Cancervatards are gleefully celebrating the USWNT loss in Olympic soccer because according to them they "took a knee during the anthem". The problem is that it was not during the anthem which they stood for, and both teams took a knee in a moment of silence for racial justice after the anthem.

They are long on drama, but short on facts.

#14 | Posted by Nixon at 2021-08-03 10:21 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

"I can understand this as personal FREEDOM is that last thing that lefties {i.e. Control FREAKS} believe in."

Except for one important fact that right wing idiots can't understand; when they refuse to wear a mask they don't just affect themselves. They could very well be asymptomatically infected and not even know it but they don't think that is important for everyone else around them. Conservatism has one basic belief system, selfishness. They honestly don't care if their selfishness results in your death. Tell me that isn't true right wingers, lie all you want but it is absolutely the truth whether you like to recognize it or not.

#15 | Posted by danni at 2021-08-03 10:26 AM | Reply

Think about the American beginnings of selfishness...the ultimate selfishness, i.e. slavery. Understand that American conservatism began in that culture and that the conservatives who came after that evil institution was abolished have contrived to continue through other means such as Jim Crow. We think because we are in 2021 that those concepts are no longer the basis for their politics, that's because we lie to ourselves because it is more comfortable than recognizing the raw truth.

#16 | Posted by danni at 2021-08-03 10:30 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

I can understand this as personal FREEDOM is that last thing that lefties {i.e. Control FREAKS} believe in.

#3 | POSTED BY MSGT

Hey -------. Your side is currently shredding the Constitution and driving a stake into the heart of the country TO MAINTAIN CONTROL.

#17 | Posted by jpw at 2021-08-03 10:51 AM | Reply

It's a frickin pandemic.

In a health emergency some rights can be and are curtailed.

You do not have the freedom not the right to infect me or anyone else with a deadly virus.

We are under attack. From without and from within.

Time for you qtard babies to grow up.

It's not about you.

#18 | Posted by donnerboy at 2021-08-03 11:13 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

@#12 ... But you'll never hear a right-winger celebrate that freedom. ...

Conservatives often try to wrap themselves up in patriotic terms, e.g., fmr Pres Trump calling the insurrectionists "Patriots."

Using the patriotic word "freedom" to represent and substantiate their political views is just an extension of that wrapping.

The Conservatives seem to be unable to rationalize and substantiate their political views, so in this case they opt to hide behind a nebulous, and misused, label to cover up their insecurity with their views.

#19 | Posted by LampLighter at 2021-08-03 11:48 AM | Reply

Freedom, Rights whatever they choose to call it boils down to selfishness and/or control of others. And after reflecting on this - yes privilege is a great way to describe it.

I had a coworker debate me during the early months about his freedom to go where he wants in a car and to boat when the state announced restrictions. He couldn't understand those were both privileges and he was being selfish. You have to obtain a drivers license to be able to drive at all and the state sets the rules. Yes, the governor and legislature can ban you from driving 25 miles from home during a lockdown. They can also ban you from using the state's waterways in private craft. To me at the time it was just a cry of selfishness as typical of the R-wing.

Can they ban you from walking 100 miles to get where you are seeking to go to spread disease and they don't want you? No and if you still want to go get hoofing it. You could break out a bicycle too.

#20 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2021-08-03 03:18 PM | Reply

#19 | Posted by LampLighter

Exactly many words and things I used to think positively of, I now find revolting because they have been taken by those who are anything but what they proclaim themselves to be. Patriot, Freedom, etc.

#21 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2021-08-03 03:21 PM | Reply

In libertarian circles there is an oft used phrase.

"Your right to punch ends at the tip of my nose." Eg you are free to do anything you want as long as it doesn't harm others. It's why as a libertarian I have no issues with a mask mandate, pollution controls or anything where your actions harm others.

#22 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2021-08-03 03:49 PM | Reply

#22 | Posted by TaoWarrior

I think it is a phrase used by many of us.

I wouldn't consider myself libertarian but I trend that way. Last time I took a political test I was dead center left/right and tended slightly libertarian vs authoritarian. It pretty much fits - I believe there needs to be balance. I don't consider myself libertarian because as distasteful as they are to me I recognize rules, laws and regulation are necessary to stop and punish bad behavior by corporation and people.

Abuse is the main reason business regulation came about in this country. Businesses and owners complain it is too burdensome and at times it is or seems that way but then you learn the reason why it came to be and just how irresponsible those same businesses and thier owners are. How many can we name...

#23 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2021-08-03 04:24 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#23

I think a lot of people confuse libertarian with anarchist, including a lot of libertarians. Libertarian accepts the need for laws and government, grudgingly but still accepts it.

#24 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2021-08-03 05:00 PM | Reply

#10 | Posted by danni

Starve The Beast; a focused plan to run up massive deficits so they can dismantle social safety nets

#25 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2021-08-04 04:57 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

After reading the comments here, I'm thankful to be a Conservative.
The supposed scenarios you snowflakes come up with, are schizophrenic at best.

#26 | Posted by phesterOBoyle at 2021-08-05 09:14 AM | Reply

I miss the old lifts up a cheek PhesterOBoyle.
This sanctimonious personality lacks character. Or maybe he's schizophrenic.

#27 | Posted by snoofy at 2021-08-05 09:21 AM | Reply

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