Democratic Convention 2012

"The Government Is the Only Thing That We All Belong To"


From today's convention program videos:

And you silly rubes think the government belongs to us.

(Hat tip to Julian Sanchez)

NEXT: The No Agenda Election

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  1. “The Government Is the Only Thing We All Belong To”

    You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.


    2. yeah, what happens if I don’t want to belong? Can I leave without being harassed and taxed?

      1. No. You can’t.

        That whole “dissent is the highest form of patriotism” has changed to “You shall obey!”

        How dare you think you know better than our philosopher-kings.

  2. I guess the human race is not a thing we all belong to.

    1. Well, obviously, we libertarians are inhuman.

    2. Nor is civil society.

    3. Re: sticks,

      I guess the human race is not a thing we all belong to.

      Your guess is correct. You cannot belong to a concept. What worries me is that you’re not reaching a conclusion based on correct thinking and logic, you’re instead guessing at it. Such is the indictment on the Amerikan Pulbic Skool Sisteem.

      1. Stick up your ass, OldMex?

  3. I guess the upside of this is that if the Democrats really make a point of how great big government is? it might make the Republican take the other side–like for reals.

    I’ve made the argument around here a dozen times that the partisans on both sides strive to become the caricatures their opponents make them out to be, and if that’s true? And the democrats keep making the Republicans out to be a bunch of libertarians?

    Then maybe the Republicans actually will strive to become libertarian!

    That’s my idea of “hope and change”, right there.

    1. No money or power in libertarianism for politicians. That’s the flaw in any long-term change by the GOP. Though they could do it accidentally for an election in reacting to Democratic attack ads.

      1. Yeah, shifts like that takes time.

        But they happen!

        The gay rights people on one side and the culture warriors on the other? They both strive to become the caricatures their opponents make them out to be.

        Pro-Life vs. Pro-Choice? The extremists on both sides wouldn’t be what they are if it weren’t for them striving to become the caricatures their opponents make them out to be.

        …you can’t get the nomination for president in either party without getting blessed by one movement or the other.

        Maybe what we need is for the Democrats to become a militant pro-big government party to drive the Republican Party into the arms of libertarians. They’ve always used code words before–called themselves “Keynesian” or something. Now maybe they’re coming out of the closet!

        Can they call themselves Big Government Democrats–pretty please? …and tell people what they really think, too! Say it clearly. Make sure the dummies in the Republican Party can understand exactly what they’re saying–so Republicans can make sure to disagree with it absolutely.

        1. Incidentally…

          I wasn’t about to vote for Romney, but when the Democratic Party starts making itself the archenemy of Libertarianism?

          It’s time to start thinking about voting for whomever is running against their candidate for emperor.


          1. It’s not enough for someone to be another enemy our enemy who may also be out enemy. Romney must be at least somewhat pro-freedom which he is not.

            1. You’re prolly right.

              For now.

              On the other hand, he was a private equity guy. And I wish Romney could do to GM what Bain did to that steel company.

              There’s an opportunity for Mitt to make himself appealing to libertarians on the issue of capitalism. I’ll leave it at that for now.

          2. GJ is running against Obama.

      2. …. no little baby jesus, no blood of the patriot sacrificed for der fatherland, no family values, no rampant xenophbia about messicans takin yer jobz…. really, we have nothing (‘nassing, lebowski!!’)to offer at all.

      3. I’ve said it before. Libertarians have no free stuff stuff to offer the illictotate.

        Old what’s ‘is name, you know, that old froggy bastard, Alexis de Tocqueville, said it way back in olden times, or something.

        The absolute democracy we have now ensures that the parasites will suck the life out of anyone who chooses to be productive.

        Accept the fact that we have a new aristocracy today. You are not included.

    2. That could work. Even the Democrats used to pretend to be the opposite of commies during the Cold War.

      1. Damn straight, Drake.

      2. If the Democrats want to institutionalize libertarianism, then they should keep accusing the Republicans of being libertarians. And claiming that we all belong the the government.

        It’ll take a sustained attack, but over time? That’s the way to turn the Republicans into libertarians.

        1. Meh. I think rhetoric reacts, but actions stay the same. Maybe a few bones here and there from future Republicans. But a sustained effort to shrink the state? Keep dreaming.

          Remember, so-called Tea Party Republicans voted to reauthorize funding for the Ex-Im Bank, a spigot that should have been easy to turn off relative to the hemorrhaging behemoths called Medicare and SS.

  4. Collectivism, the bread and butter of the statist.

    1. I’m glad we said that, Episiarch.

      1. I are too, ProL. All of I are.

        1. In unity there is, um, union.

    2. You are not of the body.

      1. JW seeks tranquility. Peace for all. The universal good.

      2. Sure I am. See, here’s my Landru card. Better than cash!

      3. You speak in strange whispers.

        1. Sorry, took a blow to the throat during Festival. I fucking love, Landru, man. Love him.

          1. FESTIVAL! FESTIVAL!

          2. Oh, shit. Did I miss the Red Hour? I was hoping to cop some major feel on a certain other hottie of the body, if you know what I mean.

            1. Are you an Archon?

              1. He’s totally an Archon. Here, point this cardboard tube at him.

                1. No. No, you, you, you got it all wrong, see? I just come in from the valley. How about a game of Fizzbin?

                  1. Wrong planet, dude. Now they’re totally absorbing your ass.

                  2. (attempts Vulcan neck pinch with FoE, succeeds)

                2. (attempts mind meld with ProL, fails)

                  1. Um, that’s not where you’re supposed to put your hands when mind melding.

            2. I remember one time, in lawgiver school, when we were training with those cardboard tubes that come with gift-wrapping paper. . .what were we talking about again?

    3. We are the Borg Government. Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated.

      1. Fuck. Serious Man beat me to it. I guess that teaches me not to read all the comments before commenting!

  5. “The Government Is the Only Thing We All Belong To”

    There sure isn’t anything about the government that belongs to me.

    1. No, what they mean is that the government owns you.

      It was always leaning that way, but the Obamacare ruling at the Supreme Court pretty much made it official, it can tax you simply for existing.

      1. That’s what they think.

      2. Neither people nor their rights exist for the government’s benefit.

        Jesus, the whole purpose of the Bill of Rights is to inconvenience the government with people’s rights.

        If freedom doesn’t mean freedom from the government, then what does it mean?

        The Democrats don’t give a crap about anything except getting their man reelected. They’re morally bankrupt.

        1. If freedom doesn’t mean freedom from the government, then what does it mean?

          It means freedom’s not free.

          1. It means freedom’s not free.

            To my ear? That means you think freedom doesn’t really exist.

            You think I owe you something for my freedom?

            1. The only thing I owe you for my freedom?

              Is respect for your freedom.

              If you don’t respect my freedom?

              I don’t owe you shit.

              I’d love to say I invented that, but it’s actually been pretty standard going back from the Rodney King riots, to Martin Luther King, and all the way to John Locke.

            2. You don’t owe the price of freedom to anyone but reality. There are people who would take your freedom, and all the griping in the world won’t stop them.

          2. Freedom isn’t free
            It costs folks like you and me
            And if we don’t all chip in
            We’ll never pay that bill
            Freedom isn’t free
            No, there’s a hefty f—in’ fee.
            And if you don’t throw in your buck ‘o five
            Who will?

  6. “The Government Is the Only Thing We All Belong To”

    Here’s a better DNC video.

      1. “I like my species the way it is!”

        Worf was such a flaming nativist.

        1. Your economic distinctiveness will be added to our own.

          1. Small words from a small being, trying to attack what it doesn’t understand.

    1. I always wonder why left leaning Star Trek fans dislike the Borg. The Borg are the embodiment of leftwing ideology.

      Everyone has to be made equal. Some species are given incredible boosts (with enormous costs), while other species are basically held down. Everyone is forced to conform to single view of what is ‘perfect’ and what constitutes ‘order’. Desire, free will, strength, self-determination are all irrelevant as they get in the way of the Borg making you better.

      Someone else here at H and R said it was the lack of bureaucracy that causes left wing people to hate the Borg.

      I suppose the Borg could sweep through each solar system and give every species a choice-allow assimilation or be vaporized. It’s a still a choice, right?

      To add real bureaucracy, allow people to opt out of assimilation if they follow Borg regulations and file the appropriate forms in time. Forms could be lost in transit, outdated forms provided, Borg drones could fail to explain the opt-out procedure, etc. To be sure, mistakes will be made, but the regulations will be followed and that’s what matters.

      1. Also, people will be free to vote to change the regulations. Why, an election was held just last week and the decision was 50 trillion Borg voting unanimously against Bill Flaxovia of Ricor 6 against his motion that the opt out procedure allow 3 full hours to file the opt outforms instead of the existing 3 minutes. Another motion failed 50 trillion to 2 regarding allowing people to avoid assimilation if they can show they were never informed of their right not to be assimilated (ignorance of the regulation is not an excuse).

        Even better, make people pay a fee if they ever used or benefited from any technology developed to counter the Borg. For example, the crew of the USS Defiant would have to pay fees and go through extra hoops to avoid assimilation because the Defiant was originally built to counter the Borg, thus the Borg get some credit for that ship and its successes. (You have a small warship–you didn’t build that.)

      2. I always wondered why Picard misliked the Borg – he’s always bragging about how they don’t pursue money.

        1. The Borg were an enemy conceived of after the idea of making Space Jews the major bad guy on TNG didn’t pan out (seriously).

          1. You mean the Ferengi?

            1. Yup.

      3. “I suppose the Borg could sweep through each solar system and give every species a choice-allow assimilation or be vaporized. It’s a still a choice, right?”

        What do you think “Resistance is futile” means?

        1. I’m definitely feeling the futility.

        2. I view it as more along the lines of the police yelling “Stop resisting!!” when they’re beating you.

          The Borg always came in and said “You will be assimilated”. They left no choice. That message problem might be why the left doesn’t like them-too forceful up front.

          Now, if the Borg were to soften their tone and make it sound like people actually have a choice…

      4. I suppose the Borg could sweep through each solar system and give every species a choice-allow assimilation or be vaporized. It’s a still a choice, right?

        Those subject to the individual mandate may lawfully forgo health insurance assimilation and pay higher taxes face planetary destruction, or buy health insurance into assimilation and pay lower taxes forgo planetary destruction. The only thing they may not lawfully do is not buy health insurance assimilate and not pay the resulting tax be destroyed.

  7. People: of, by, and for the government.

  8. You’re taking it out of context. In the full video he’s talking about how we all use government infrastructure that makes it possible for us to exist.

    1. You put the “tard” in “mustard”.

    2. mustard, you’re the worst sockpuppet ever.

    3. You’re taking it out of context.

      Put the statement in context then!

      I dare you.

      Put “The Government Is the Only Thing That We All Belong To” in the context of infrastructure.

      1. [Infrastructure] is the Only Thing That We All Belong To?!



            1. I AM THE WALRUS

    4. we all use government infrastructure that makes it possible for us to exist

      Well, I wouldn’t have been conceived if not for the post office.

      1. I take that back — it was a UPS guy.

        1. So you were delivered at both conception and birth?

        2. I heard it was the plumber. Your fat and tubby like he is.

          1. I heard plumbers lay alot of pipe.

            1. You can imagine where it goes from there, Jeffery.

              1. He fixes the TV, not the pipes.

                Geez Tulpa.

    5. Ha. I wouldn’t doubt that’s the actual context they’re using.

    6. The head of the executive branch of the federal government is talking about infrastructure funded primarily at the local level as justification for more federal taxes. That’s the problem with you particular context.

      Either he’s a socialist in that he believes the government ‘did that’ or he’s a complete moron for thinking that local and county roads are built with federal taxes.

      He’s also implying that the business owners did not pay the taxes that go towards those roads, which is ludicrous. Local and state roads are funded primarily by fuel taxes, taxes on tires, car rentals, etc. and things like vehicle registration and license plate taxes. Federal funding, which covers interstates and US highways comes from federal taxes on fuel and tires. The people using those roads paid for them.

      Absent the federal government taxing and spending for those roads, the local/state governments could build them. Absent those governments building roads, private individuals and partnerships could build them.

      1. My comment is more in reference to the Obama “you didn’t build that” that is the inspiration for this latest version.

        It was funny when a clown like Fauxcahontas said it, it’s pathetic and aggravating when Obama says it, and it’s revealing when the DNC runs programs echoing it.

      2. He’s also implying that the business owners did not pay the taxes that go towards those roads, which is ludicrous. Local and state roads are funded primarily by fuel taxes, taxes on tires, car rentals, etc. and things like vehicle registration and license plate taxes.

        Not to mention that the government doesn’t really maintain a fleet of road building equipment. They take that money from people and businesses and give it to other people and businesses to build the roads.

        I say we cut out the middle man.

      3. he’s a complete moron for thinking that local and county roads [stealing my money to build my roads] are built with federal [stealing your money to build my roads] taxes.


  9. You are all belong to us.

    1. threadwinner. nicely done.

  10. They can’t be serious? They are doubling down on the “you didn’t built that”? good lord even some dems I know will admit that sometimes, in some cases, some things happen without the government doing it.

    1. Those Democrats will be absorbed.

    2. I don’t think you understand Democrats.

      When Elizabeth Warren first made that argument, they passed it around virally, saying “Wow, how amazing she put it!”

      Obama picked it up thinking that everyone would agree with it.

      1. Sadly, it was like what Akin said reflecting the beliefs of most social conservatives. Though many of them realize they shouldn’t say what they believe.

        1. BS, BS, BS. How many social conservatives do you know? I am not one, but most of them thought Akin’s comment was idiotic.

  11. It speaks volumes that the DNC is playing this off as a good thing — that, in spite of the natural diversity of humankind, government has forced every single one of us into one-size-fits-all arrangements that would by no means be universally chosen, if we were given that choice.

    I do look forward to their bleats of protest when it’s a Republican playing the unity card.

    1. The Dems are out to prove they are more thoroughly and consistently evil than the GOP and dammit they’re winning.

      1. For gosh sakes, defeat Obama and work to take over, or at least guide, the Republican Party. The Democrats are the party of the collective, can they make it more clear?

  12. We belong to the might, we belong to the establishment,
    We belong to the sound of the speeches we’ve both fallen under
    Whatever we deny or embrace for worse or for better
    We belong, we belong, we belong to government!”

  13. “The Government Is the Only Thing That We All Belong To”

    You’ll have to kill me first,


    Jeremiah Johnson

    1. Federal Wildlife Management signs ATF authorization to execute their warrant against J.Johnson, known poacher of endangered species on Federal land.

  14. So it’s like a big club?

    Does that mean I can quit?


    2. It’s like a big club that you’re forced into at birth and have to continue paying dues to even if you no longer attend meetings or participate.

      1. Well you do have the option of joining a different club.

        1. Get to choose between the ‘Ndrangheta, the Costa Nostra, or the Comorra!

        2. Yup, but you still pay dues to the old club, no matter what.

  15. So, according to my first year law school class, I’m just a fungible chattel. However, I acknowledge that the term “belong” may ambiguous and belong might be used in another. And for these liberal/Democrat/progressive who-ever-the-fuck-they-are, what they “really” mean is ….your just a fungible chattel.

  16. Nice to see the Dems returning to their roots: owning people.

    1. + 111111111111

  17. I love you guys, and I love the “A Pox on both your houses” shtick, but C’MON!!!! Can the Democrats be more pathetic than this?

    1. I’ll remind everyone of the pornography crusade the GOP has promised in their new platform. WTF.

      1. That plank didn’t even propose any coercive action against non-obscene porn.

        The Bush administration claimed obscenity was its #1 prosecutorial priority and got what, 2 convictions? I’m way more worried about the coercive shit the Dems want to do that actually will happen if we don’t stop them.

        1. Cause the Republicans aren’t interested in increasing spending, regulations, governmental power, civil liberties violations, drug convictions, wars, etc?

    2. “Can the Democrats be more pathetic than this?”

      Just watch the next few days. I suspect the answer is “oh, yes!”

      1. You beat me to it.

  18. So it’s like a big club?

    Does that mean I can quit?

    It’s like a big club, in that if you try to quit, they will smack you with a big club until you submit.

  19. ein Volk, ein Reich

    magical thinking

    so, what’s so different from the “mystical body of christ” ??

    1. At least the catholic church gives you a cracker and a glass of wine after making you kneel and swear loyalty once a week.

      Also, they put on a pretty good show with the organ, choir, incense. Government? … they’re the goddamn DMV. They can, should, and will be held in contempt and disgust.

  20. When in the opposition, Democrats maintain a rhetoric of reform and anti-institutionalism…. but the second they get any power, suddenly its THE DMV UBER ALLES, where we needs to celebrate every facet of the august institutions that bind us all within their labyrinth of regulations.

    What I find appalling is that partisans see no problem in this State-worship, despite the obvious, hideous reality that this thing we call “Government” is nothing more than a glorified collection of petty functionaries, bureaucrats and half-assed ‘utilities’/social services that generally underperform in every task given.

    “Government” is nothing more than a fucking “company” that we farm out a few shitty tasks to. Its not the goddamn Church of England, and its not someplace where a wise council of elders debates Deep Ideas on the Life Well Lived, or ideal notions of Civic Society… There is nothing ennobling or inspiring about legislators crafting yet another “bill” which simply rearranges deck chairs on how much money they’re gonna appropriate from X and Y to throw at constituent Z. They’re the largest, worst run corporation on the planet – and be it Energy, Education, Insurance, Agriculture, FDA, or even the holy ROADZ + BRIDGES… there’s nothing they do that isn’t done better without them. The only message government could send i’d believe at all is, “We’re sorry. We still suck. We’re trying not to.” Bureaucrats selling themselves as, “A Force For Good!” is simply insulting.

    1. epic rant = +1 internetz for you

  21. Well here’s some shit I didnt know:

    Pat Sajak: Unapologetic Conservative…..ture=g-u-u

    That needs to go in tomorrow’s AM links.


      1. Also surprising! She’s a member of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation of Chiapas. You’d never guess it from her graceful charm and stunning dress ensembles, but she spends her weekends in the mountains with Subcommander Marcos agitating for a People’s Revolution.

  22. We, as citizens, all belong to the same American “club,” don’t we? Isn’t that the sense in which this quote was uttered?

    1. JAM, it’s of a piece with:

      Everything for the State, nothing outside the State, nothing against the State.

  23. This shit is so fucking scary I just re-upped my Reason subscription for three years….I think you guys need a four year option just to cover the entirety of the next shitty administration, whichever one it ends up being.

  24. Given it was obvious they weren’t using belong in the sense of ownership, I have to wonder whether Shackford is illiterate or just deliberately misrepresenting them. Yet again this is the sort of Team Red/Team Blue BS that drives me nuts. There’s plenty of things the Democrats actually say to complain about without having to make up more things.

    1. I don’t know. Reminds me of Bush’s so-called gaffe about his administration never stopping thinking about how they could harm Americans. Could be more like:

      “Ask me a question.”
      “So, what do you do?”
      “I’m into, uh, well, murders and executions, mostly.”
      “Do you like it?”
      “Well, it depends. Why?”
      “Well, most guys I know who are in Mergers and Acquisitions really don’t like it.”

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