Sunday, October 29, 2006

"Unnecessary genocide" in the American mid-terms.

So, a lot of evangelicals are no longer supporting the Iraq war. Guess why:

The Houston-based preacher said he believes that the Bush administration has delayed the second coming because U.S. foreign policy has blocked Christian missionaries from working in Iraq, Iran and Syria. . . "Somebody needs to say enough is enough," he said to worshippers who stood, waved and called out in support. . . Paul, who claimed to support conservative political leaders in the past, is launching "a crusade to save America from the wrath of God and Republicans abusing their power," according to his press materials. . . "God is mad at this country," Paul told the congregation. He described the war in Iraq as "unnecessary genocide."

So, necessary genocide is one that brings on rapture? It would seem so. The division of principle on the Christian right in America is whether Bush is doing enough to bring about the end of the world. You wouldn't want to have one of these arseholes round the house, would you? Everytime someone dropped a plate or spilt something, they'd be all: "Rapture! Awe shit..."

In other news, the Associated Press says that "middle class" voters are abandoning Bush, with their number one issues being Iraq and the economy, with the war being by far the number one issue. In American politics, "middle class" usually means working class but not queueing up at soup kitchens. But AP reports a new meaning: "those earning less than $75,000 a year and who have graduated high school or have some college education." So, if you graduated high school and earn $12,000 a year for throwing luggage or ripping the innards out of a dead chicken's arse, you're middle class. Such a vacuous definition is deliberately constructed to produce a middle class majority, since according to the US Census Bureau, approximately 70% of American households live on less than $75,000 a year (roughly £39,000), and 55% live on less than $50,000 a year (about £26,000), with the distribution heavily skewed toward the lower end. Interestingly, the US Census Bureau has a "reportable upper limit" of income, which means it pays no attention to the super rich, and in particular doesn't notice that massive amount of inherited wealth, which is the main way in which the ruling class reproduces itself. According to Parenti, the top 0.25% of the US population owns more wealth than the entire remainder of the population combined. That's why they call US income and wealth distribution the L-Curve.

The Economic Policy Institute's State of Working America 2004/5 report notes that disparities in wealth vastly outweigh disparities in income so that "In 2001, 20% of all income went to the top-earning 1% of households, which held 33.4% of all net worth. The 90% of households with the lowest incomes received 54.8% of all income but had only 28.5% of all net worth", while "Since 1983, the top 1% of wealth holders consistently owned more than 30% and the bottom 80% held less than 16% of all wealth from 1983 to 2001."