Tuesday 28 April 2009

GUEST COLUMNIST: The New Face of Republicanism

I am handing over the soap box, temporarily, to guest reporter Angel of Mercy:

Has it occurred to anyone else out there that the vast, immutable forces of fate and Karma are conspiring to make the radical right appear even more preposterously irrational than usual? It's scary.

Back when President Barack Obama was trying to get his stimulus package up to escape velocity, Republicans who had executed a 180ยบ turn from the profligacy of the Cheney/Bush years were loudly bemoaning irresponsible Democratic big government spending. Piyush "Bobby" Jindal, almost the only person of color in that entire misbegotten party, roundly denounced the $140 million slated for "volcano monitoring" back in January...and then Mt. Redoubt, located in Sarah-cuda Palin's Alaska [ http://www.adn.com/volcano/story/738389.html">] belched smoke, fire and molten lava about nine different times just one month later.

Maybe you also remember that GOP Senators Susan Collins and Arlen Specter, spurred on by a mocking Turdblossom Rove, stripped $900 million from that very same bill for "pandemic flu preparedness." And now we have our Southern neighbor, Mexico, under virtual lock-down quarantine [ http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1894063,00.html">] this past weekend from a terrifying outbreak of Swine Flu.

This is incredible to me.

We all knew they were playing politics with these objections and their howls of "porkulus," which isn't even a word! It's what they always do...but to have their insidious game exposed so dramatically and so quickly makes me think that God is maybe a trifle fed up with their frivolous and frequent invoking of Her name for their own selfish ends. I would purely love to believe that's true...

It doesn't just stop there, either. Earlier this month, the Department of Homeland Security released a report entitled "Right-wing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment" warning of the inherent dangers of closet Klansmen, neo-Nazi white supremacists and heavily armed militia groups capitalizing upon the recession and the election of the nation's first Black president to recruit members. This is the hardcore bigot base, never entirely sane at the best of times, kept at a full rolling boil by a steady stream of hysterical rhetoric from AM Hate Radio and Faux News spokesliars.

Of course, there was the expected foaming chorus of outraged denials and accusations of victimization and media bias from Republican pundits...but merely days earlier, Richard Poplawski, your basic lowdown rightwing mutant, had [ http://www.splcenter.org/blog/2009/04/05/alleged-cop-killer-linked-to-white-supremacist-beliefs/"] killed three policemen in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, believing that the new president was going to take his guns away.

Now, this is old news. A compelling argument can be made that a paranoid Looney Tune of this caliber didn't deserve to possess anything more lethal than a water pistol. But that isn't even really the point. Last July, Jim David Adkisson [ http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2008/Jul/28/church-shooting-police-find-manifesto-suspects-car/ ">] killed two and wounded six at a church in Knoxville, Tennessee, claiming that all liberals should be killed because they were ruining the country. At his home, police found copies of books by Michael Savage, Sean Hannity and Bill O'Reilly. A month later, Timothy Dale Johnson, another [ http://dneiwert.blogspot.com/2008/08/right-wing-violence-and-mental-illness.html ">] rightwing headcase with anger management issues, shot and killed Arkansas Democratic state party chairman Bill Gwatney.

Daniel Knight Hayden, 52, [ http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2009/04/twitterraid ">] was arrested by FBI agents on April 15 who identified him as the Twitter user "CitizenQuasar." In a series of tweets beginning April 11, "Quasar" vowed to start a war against the government on the steps of the Oklahoma City Capitol building, the site of that city’s version of the 'teabagging' protests. At least they got to him before anybody died...but no reasonable person should be the least bit surprised by this result of Rupert Murdoch's propaganda empire stirring the pot non-stop.

And dip me in dirty water if another Obama-hating cop-killer didn't just crawl out of the woodwork, this one [ http://www.nwfdailynews.com/news/cartwright_16963___article.html/elizabeth_deputies.html ">] killing two sheriff's deputies in Okaloosa County, Florida. Does anybody think now that Homeland Security was exaggerating in their report? And Obama's been in office not even quite 100 days yet...

There is no moderation on the right anymore. None. The GOP has driven its least radical elements away and left only an ugly nub and core of hate. Conservatism is now become a fright mask, as horrifying outwardly as it has always been intellectually, appealing to nought but the basest motivations of man--greed, frustration, unfocussed anger--and pitting each against the other.

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