On Acorn

Of course you’ve heard all the criticism recently of Acorn, the non-profit that everyone is all angry about because some undercover Republicans filmed some of its employees appearing to condone prostitution. Glenn Greenwald brilliantly describes the bigger picture here:

Apparently, the problem for middle-class and lower-middle-class Americans is not that their taxpayer dollars are going to prop up billionaires, oligarchs and their corrupt industries.  It’s that America’s impoverished — a group that is growing rapidly — is getting too much, has too much power and too little accountability. 

If one were to watch Fox News or listen to Rush Limbaugh — as millions do — one would believe that the burden of the ordinary American taxpayer, and the unfair plight of America’s rich, is that their money is being stolen by the poorest and most powerless sectors of the society. An organization whose constituencies are often-unregistered inner-city minorities, the homeless and the dispossesed is depicted as though it’s Goldman Sachs, Blackwater, and Haillburton combined, as though Washington officials are in thrall to those living in poverty rather than those who fund their campaigns. It’s not the nice men in the suits doing the stealing but the very people, often minorities or illegal immigrants, with no political or financial power who nonetheless somehow dominate the government and get everything for themselves. The poorer and weaker one is, the more one is demonized in right-wing mythology as all-powerful receipients of ill-gotten gains; conversely, the stronger and more powerful one is, the more one is depicted as an oppressed and put-upon victim (that same dynamic applies to foreign affairs as well).

I’ve talked recently to a couple off well-educated, professional people who have given up on politics altogether. This whole Acorn “scandal” is just the type of thing to make a person think that’s really the only sane thing to do…


2 thoughts on “On Acorn”

  1. Add me to the list of people who have given up on politics. The way Republicans have responded to being a minority party has caused me to basically lose faith in this nation. Sad but true.

  2. I don’t see the ACORN incident as victimizing the wealthy at all. I see it as a good idea gone wrong. As I understand it, ACORN was created to help the poor. But not to help the poor do things that are illegal. I don’t know where or how the ACORN worker in the videos got the idea that what she was dealing with was permissible.

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