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Regimeology is a concept that needs much broader interest, as it is becoming an essential tool to understanding the current age. As the regime blacks out its windows and boards up the exits, the only way to understand what is happening inside the black box that is the ruling elite is to analyze the actions and media statements to then tease out some explanation for what we can observe. Like Kremlinology, it is the only tool we have to understand what is happening inside the system.
We have something new to analyze. The so-called progressive caucus sent a letter to the White House and the senior members of the inner party suggesting they were not onboard with the Ukraine war. They were careful to not break with official dogma on the war, but they were signaling to their supporters that they may at some point begin to question Ukraine policy. It was a very tepid bit of pushback, but they made the letter public so their fans could see it.
The reason they did this is the antiwar left is freaking out about the war and the fact that no one in the party they support is opposing it. The Bernie Sanders wing is supposed to be opposed to these wars and the machine behind them. Yet in this case they are silently nodding along with the warmongers. A group of antiwar people ambushed Sandy Cortez at an event where she was spouting neocon lines about the war and the resulting video was a huge embarrassment for her.
It was a nice little peak inside how the regime uses the far left to manipulate the various tribes that make up the Democratic coalition. They let these people speak against regime policy as a pressure release, but the unwritten rule is they can never threaten to block regime policy. It is the same theater the outer party uses to keep conservatives showing up to the polls. The guys at Trump rallies wearing tricorn hats are not the only chumps exploited by this system.
The interesting bit here is how quickly the hammer came down. The Biden White House and senior party members held an emergency meeting and then threatened the progressive caucus with death if they did not recant. We do not know the exact nature of the threats, but the speed with which the apostates recanted and their groveling tone suggest genuine fear. Whatever was said to them was serious enough to have them groveling in public within hours.
Just in case anyone missed the point, the regime then sent Bernie Sanders out to chastise the progressives for being wrong. Sanders has spent his life railing against the military industrial complex. He has opposed every military action, even those sponsored by his party. Now he sounds like Bill Kristol after a few too many drinks. Bernie is not just supporting the war; he is supporting the war dogma behind it. He felt he needed to get that out into the public domain.
The old internet meme about knowing who is in charge by thinking about who you are not allowed to criticize works here. If you want to know what it is important to the regime, think about what cannot be questioned. It is clear that they will tolerate no dissent on Ukraine policy, not even from the people they use to manipulate the left-wing activist class. In other words, they are willing to lose the support of their activist base in order to defend their Ukraine policy.
This is why the outer party has been silent on the war. There is no support for the Ukraine war policy, so the opposition party should be waving this around as part of the argument against their opponents. Most Americans would like to see a negotiated settlement to a problem they do not think is our problem. Despite the overwhelming support for a moderate position, everyone in the outer party is just as extreme as everyone in the inner party.
The question is why has the ruling class pushed all of their chips into the middle of the table on this issue? Objectively it is a bad bet. Ukraine is a backward and deeply corrupt country with no real chance of winning this war. The only reason it has gone this far is some version of why Bolshevism succeeded. The old line was that communism was the result of Jewish brains, Latvian swords and Russian stupidity. This war is the product of neocon paranoia, American arms and Russian stupidity.
That may be one clue as to why Washington is obsessed with this war. It is the last stand for the post-Cold War consensus and the neocon place within it. A settlement with the Russians on Ukraine would lead to a settlement on many other issues, like the wars against Syria and Iran. If you can make a deal with the Russians in one area, then there is no reason to not make a deal in other areas. In other words, the neocons need Russia as the eternal enemy in order to exist.
Another possible reason is the general paranoia of the aging leadership. Old people in power naturally get suspicious of the next generation. Look around Washington and across the board you see ossified geezers locked in place. Rather than the paranoia of one or two fossils it is a culture of paranoia among a gerontocracy. The Ukraine war just happens to be the issue through which they are exercising their intolerance of dissent, but it could be any issue.
Of course, there is always graft. Hundreds of billions are flowing into what is now a giant money laundering operation. This is the bust out of all bust outs and every serious player in Washington is getting a taste. The only place more dangerous than the area between a principled conservative and money is the area between a committed progressive and the same pile of money. As the saying goes, never mess with a man’s money or his women. Got that Jack?
Regardless, it suggests that the regime sees this war as one they cannot afford to lose, much in the same way Washington viewed Vietnam fifty years ago. Back then, that worthless backwater was the hill to die on for reasons no one could explain, but no one was allowed to question until it was too late. It is ironic that a generation that was born in the protests against the Vietnam war is closing the show by making the same errors policy makers made with regards to Vietnam policy.
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