Tuesday, 10 January 2012

penny dreadful

Der Spiegel has an insightful, rather thrifty and sparing with words to let the satire and paradox appreciate, piece on the Prolefeed and rabble-rousing spectacle that is framing not only the Republican’s campaign for the US presidential party nominee but political deportment in general. European values have become a soft-target, a punching bag and it is not just the Republican candidates that are shrill about being less European than their competition: policy-makers and editorializers squarely blame Europe for threatening the world economy, blocking quick and unilateral action against rogue states (thereby enabling the terrorists) and debasing faith and religion with an Ersatz secularism that Europe is only too happy, apparently, to export. Any one in American politics, it seems, interested in keeping his or her job is quick to distance themselves from international partners, and a similar tenor is coming also from just across the English Channel. This revived McCarthyism is nothing new and the pith and moment of campaigning can certainly excite feelings of xenophobia and patriotism that turns in on itself. Once, however, the mudslinging and bashing is over and strained diplomacy resumes and deals are kept out of the public view, there is little hope that opinions and image can be rehabilitated (for the victims of Euro-bashing or any other scapegoat) or the ironies, deflections and the side-shows cleared away. One boon and bane (Fluch und Segen) is that constituents usually do forget this heated levying of accusations and find it novel when the whole spectacle is drug out again.