Post-Pinochet Chile may not be such a bad place to live, I don't really know. You see things through such ideologue's eyes that I'm dubious about taking your word for it, daxton. I hope you weren't defending Pinochet because it kind-of-sort-of sounded as though you were. That would certainly confirm all the worst things I've heard about Tea Partiers.
The Democratic Party may have more than its share of corrupt and shady characters in its heirarchy, but I no longer consider the Demoratic Party liberal, if it ever was. It is a spineless and passive centrist party. It would be a right-wing party in many countries constituted as it currently is. A good example of this fact is that the vaunted healthcare reform Obama strong-armed through Congress was originally a Republican counter-proposal to the Clintons' proposed healthcare reform in the 90's. It really disgusted me how the Democratic Party's Kool-Aid drinking supporters blindly embraced it as if it were a truly progressive reform. What this reform amounts to is a poll tax to be paid to private industry. I don't think even Francisco Franco would have instituted such an utterly right-wing fiscal policy! But such masochism is par for the course for the Democratic Party's supporters, who self-deceivingly champion a thorougly corrupted and corporatist insitution as a champion of progress and alternative to the Republican Party's outrages.
@wineguy: The ultraconservative counterculture that spawned the Tea Party movement has its own alternative "history" and its own alternative "facts". The need to keep this bubble in which they live intact and the insecurity this need necessarily generates explains the arrogance and bombast daxton brings to this comment-thread.
Some casual Googling has informed me that there is a Daxton Brown who wrote an expose book about Harry Reid (a lot of liberals know HR is a sleaze, BTW; the insititutional two-party system has a way of spawning corrupt reprobates, such as Republican Tom DeLay of Texas). Seeing how the book is not yet terribly well-known, there is no real reason for the commentor in question to say he's that author when in fact he's not.
That's the thing with the Internet, wineguy. You never really know who or what somebody using a screen-name actually is. I'll admit that I'm not much of a much at all (I probably would smoke marijuana if I had access to it, but certainly not every day) because 1) As long as you all know me only as "venuspluto 67", it's no skin off my nose to admit that and 2) I'm not desperately needy for other people's approval in order to validate what I have to say (which might or might not stand on its own merit).
But the fact that daxton needs to claim that we should take him seriously when he says ignorant and uninformed things because he has more money in his bank account than I do, at the very least confirms what I said about him being a Randite. And the whole "Hitler was a liberal/ socialist" is a very shop-worn talk-radio trope (not to mention a pretty flagrant violation of Godwin's Law, which says that anyone in an Internet discussion who compares something they detest to Hitler or the Nazi Germany has automatically conceded the argument by virtue of sheer intellectual laziness).
Fully realizing that I'm opening the whole can of worms about how social science should classify Hitler's ideology, I think it's worth pointing out that the political spectrum should be seen as a circle in which very extreme left (Mao and Lenin) and very extreme right (Mussolini and Hitler) are two points that meet each other at the point of the circle that one might call "Deep Fanaticism That Should Be Avoided". I can only hope that such subtleties are not entirely lost upon daxton.
I've got real accomplishments, you've got diddly squat. Who are people going to listen to?
That you have a good and accomplished career and money in the bank doesn't make you sound any less ignorant when you call the USSR and Nazi Germany "liberal". I could stoop to that level and call Augusto Pinochet's regime in Chile "conservative", but I don't because I understand historical and political nuances. Augusto Pinochet was a reactionary and an authoritiarian fascist. Adolf Hitler was an extreme-racist nationalist, reactionary, and totalitarian fascist. Joseph Stalin, head of history's most horrible regime, was a radical leftist and totalitarian-communist, as was Mao Zedong, who was responsible for that god-awful Cultural Revolution which brutalized China so badly.
That you were a Maoist as a young man and a Tea Partier now tells me that you are predisposed to gravitate towards extremist mindsets, though there's no question that Maoism would be the worst of those two options (though you likely might have been and perhaps were disillusioned with that nonsense upon finding out just how bad Cultural Revolution China really was). So perhaps I should credit you for improving at least somewhat.
ETA: Interestingly enough, this website lets people rate their own comments. I would humbly suggest to the site's webmaster that this feature should be changed. Until then, everybody give your own comments five stars. :-D
As an amateur historian, I cannot site a country in the history of the world that has not followed liberal theory into a death spiral - starting with Rome, National Socialism (nazism), then look at the Soviet Union and China (which now have started to prosper by backing away from liberalism), etc.
Liberalism = Communist Russia and China, and Nazi Germany? Apparently "amateur historian" = brainwashed bonehead who gets his Movement Conservative version of "history" poured into his head by Reactionary Hate Radio and Faux News. That whole comment was exactly the incoherent mix of "screw everybody else but me" Randite ideology mixed with talk-radio political hate-mongering that we have all come to expect from the teabaggers. It's as if they live in their own shared pseudo-reality bubble.