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It Hurts When Heroes Let You Down

Chris Hedges Relies On Corporate Propaganda To Attack “Regulatory Dark Matter”

It’s bad enough that I have to constantly battle clueless, misguided, and/or corrupt conservation groups for how they undermine protective environmental regulation and stenographic “journalists” who simply ignore regulation.

I find myself in a constant battle to educate on the fundamentals of regulation, which have been effectively abandoned by all the corporate Foundation Funded conservation and environmental groups.

But now even Socialist friends have drunk the Libertarian anti-regulatory corporate Kool-aid?

If I had heroes, Chris Hedges would be one, which is why it pained me so to read his most recent column, in which he wrote perhaps the worst sentence of his career:

The Democrats have been full partners in the dismantling of our democracy, refusing to banish dark and corporate money from the electoral process and governing, as Obama did, through presidential executive actions, agency “guidance,” notices and other regulatory dark matter that bypass Congress.

And he linked to a Competitive Enterprise Institute corporate propaganda piece to supported it!

In his uncharacteristically unhinged fervor to attack Democrats, Hedges wrote a disgustingly libertarian sentence worthy of a Glen Greenwald or Matt Taibbi.

This is stunning, because Hedges often praises his hero, Ralph Nader, who was a master of “regulatory dark matter”.

Hedges has also written critically many times about the infamous corporate strategy in the Powell Memo, which was corporate America’s attack on “regulatory dark matter”.

And Hedges must know that right now, Steve Bannon , Brietbart, the Koch networks, ALEC , The Federalist Society and every right wing corporate think tank are attacking the “administrative state” and its “regulatory dark matter”. 

The Supreme Court – led by Gorsuch and Kavanaugh – is about to dismantle the legal basis for “regulatory dark matter” by stripping EPA of power to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, the same way they just gutted OSHA’s attempt to mandate vaccines. 

The right is on the verge of dismantling the “administrative state”, a goal they have sought since the New Deal.

This attack goes back to FDR coup “Business Plot” and the Fascist Liberty League:

The most powerful of FDR’s conservative opponents eventually came together as the American Liberty League.  Prominent industrialists and financiers formed the Liberty League in August of 1934.  Democrats such as 1924 presidential nominee John W. Davis, 1928 presidential nominee Alfred Smith, and former party chairman John J. Raskob joined corporate leaders such as Alfred P. Sloan of General Motors, the DuPont family, and others to oppose the administration in advance of the year’s congressional elections.  At its height, the League claimed 125,000 members.

The Liberty League attacked the New Deal as a socialistic experiment.  The group railed against “regimentation” and supposed attacks upon individual liberties.

The amazing thing is that Hedges knows and has even written about this history.

It seems like US Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) is the only main stream political figure who understands what’s going on and is willing to speak out on it. (read his whole series on the Powell Memo & “The Scheme”)

Hedges recently interviewed political philosopher and author Wendy Brown – author of the superb book “In The Ruins Of Neoliberalism” – who briefed him on the history and destruction wrought by the sustained right wing ideological attack on core policy elements like “regulatory dark matter”, so he knows the intellectual implications.

What the hell was Hedges thinking? Chris, take that back!

I fired off this email to my friend Hedges:

Chris – That sentence grossly missed the mark – and with a link to a CEI Report?

Ralph Nader was a champion of “regulatory dark matter” – and it’s only right wing libertarian’s that seek the “dismantling off the administrative state” who used such red meat rhetoric to undermine regulation.

I too am a regulatory maniac, and proud of it – none of it “dark matter” but done openly via formal administrative process that has a hell of a lot more public involvement than legislation through Congress does.

I take this shit personally. It hurts when heroes fail.

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