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“The Beating Heart Of The Republican Party”: Right-Wing Extremism; Not Just For Radicals Anymore

On Sunday, it will be 20 years since the morning a bomb destroyed the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City and took 168 human lives. Nineteen of those lives belonged to children.

Maybe it takes you by surprise that it has been so long. Maybe you wonder where the time went. And maybe you remember…

…the ghastly pictures of that building, the front of it sheared away.

…the firefighter emerging from the rubble, tenderly cradling that dying baby.

…the bloody and lacerated people wandering dazedly from the wreckage.

…the breathless speculation that surely the culprits had to be Muslims.

And maybe you remember, too, that sense of vertiginous shock some people felt when we got our first look at the man who planted the bomb and discovered him to be, not a swarthy Muslim with a heavy beard and hard-to-pronounce name, but a clean-cut, apple pie-faced young white man named Timothy McVeigh. People could not have been more nonplussed if Richie Cunningham had shot up a shopping mall.

But the tragedy was to contain one last surprise. It came when we learned why McVeigh committed his atrocity. It seems he hated the government.

That revelation was our introduction to a world whose very existence most of us had never suspected. Meaning the so-called patriot movement, the armed, radical right-wing extremists who refuse to recognize the authority of the nation’s duly constituted and elected government. Maybe you remember the news reports of how they spent nights and weekends drilling in the woods, playing soldier in anticipation of the day ZOG — the Zionist Occupied Government — ceded the country to the United Nations and soldiers of the New World Order came rappelling down from black helicopters to seize everybody’s guns. Maybe you remember how crazy it all sounded.

But that was then. Twenty years ago, the idea of anti-government resistance seemed confined to a lunatic fringe operating in the shadows beyond the mainstream. Twenty years later, it is the mainstream, the beating heart of the Republican Party. And while certainly no responsible figure on the right advocates or condones what he did, it is just as certain that McVeigh’s violent antipathy toward Washington, his conviction that America’s government is America’s enemy, has bound itself to the very DNA of modern conservatism.

It lives in Grover Norquist’s pledge to shrink government down until “we can drown it in the bathtub,” in Chuck Norris’ musing about the need for “a second American revolution,” in Michele Bachmann’s fear that the census is an evil conspiracy. It lives in dozens of right-wing terror plots documented by the Southern Poverty Law Center since the 1995 bombing, including last year’s murder of two police officers and a Walmart shopper by two anti-government activists in Las Vegas. It lives in Cliven Bundy’s armed standoff with federal officials.

These days, it is an article of faith on the political right that “government” is a faceless, amorphous Other. But this government brought itself into being with three words — “We the people” — and they are neither incidental nor insignificant. Our government may be good, may be bad, may be something in between, but as long as we are a free society, the one thing it always is, is us. Meaning: a manifestation of our common will, a decision a majority of us made. We are allowed to be furious at it, but even in fury, we always have peaceful tools for its overthrow. So there is never a reason to do what McVeigh did.

We all know that, of course. But 20 years after the day they brought babies out of the rubble in pieces would be an excellent time to pause and remind ourselves, just the same.

 

By: Leonard Pitts., Columnist for The Miami Herald; The National Memo, April 15, 2015

April 16, 2015 Posted by | Anti-Government, Republicans, Right Wing | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Toxic Misfits: Donald Trump, Birthers And Other Hazardous Materials

It seems that there is no end in sight. You can’t turn to any television channel or listen to any radio station without hearing something that has to do with Donald Trump and his vile birther rants. One wonders when will it all end. Some have given Trump a pass in this regard. Many believe that he is simply doing it for the attention while others, for some odd reason, see his actions only as a joke.

It seems that this whole “birther” issue began with Jim Geraghty, a conservative blogger for National Review and National Review On-line. The spark for the birther campaign began by Geraghty suggesting that President Obama’s first and middle names were not the same as listed on his birth certificate. The embers were kindled by Jerome Corsi in an interview on Fox News where the idea that Obama’s birth certificate was fake. This quackery has been non-stop since.

This birther theory was elevated to a different level of insanity by Orly Taitz, who not only believes that Mr. Obama was not born in the United States, but also believes that Hawaii cannot be considered part of the United States “unless it can produce an authentic statehood certificate”. Taitz, mind you, emigrated from the Soviet Union to Israel and then to the United States and is a dual citizen of Israel and the U.S. In her view, “the islands of Hawaii appear to be colonies of Kenya”.  As such, “everyone born in Hawaii is legally not an American but a Kenyan”. Never mind that these assertions have no basis of fact. Joshua Wisch, Attorney General of Hawaii has repeatedly noted that the presidents certificate of live birth is on file in the archives of the Department of Health of Hawaii.

Then you have the likes of Andy Martin, Michael Savage, G. Gordon Liddy, Lars Larson, Bob Grant and…. oh yes, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Lou Dobbs, Chuck Norris, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Roy Blunt and David Vitter.

The latest participant in this land of make believe is none other than Donald Trump. Over the past several weeks, Trump seems to have gone out of his way to etch his place in history as the “birther of all birthers”. He has been given numerous opportunities by the media, often unchallenged, to espouse again and again what he surely knows to be flat out lies. Despite “prima facie” evidence, Trump has chosen to continue down a path that can be best described in every category as bigoted, racist and divisive.

I have been trying to figue out why this gang of “misfits” continue to propagate this charade on the American people. Surely they cannot believe that actions of this nature will endear them to the majority of the American people, or do they? It really makes you wonder if they are merely front persons for the real behind the scenes “power players” whose goal is to completely alienate and isolate certain segments of the population. This idea seems to have worked very well in the past with groups such as the teaparty and the christian right. Could it be that they are attempting to expand their grasps to include even more radical segments?

Power, radicalism, extremism, racism, bigotry, hate, fear…they all work, but at what cost to the rest of the country. There is a bigger picture here…one larger than Trump or Bachmann or Newt. The “power players” are all about the preservation of an aggressive, radical and dangerous conservative ideology…an ideology that is appealing more and more to the fringe and most noxious elements of our society…nothing more and nothing less.

Continued unfettered tolerance of these types of behavior is merely an assent of their vile actions and intents. That is just not acceptable. At some point, good people will have to take a stand and put a stop to the shananigans of these toxic misfits.

By: Raemd95, April 20, 2011

April 20, 2011 Posted by | Bigotry, Birthers, Class Warfare, Congress, Conservatives, Democracy, Democrats, Elections, Equal Rights, GOP, Government, Human Rights, Ideologues, Ideology, Journalists, Liberty, Media, Politics, President Obama, Public, Pundits, Racism, Religion, Republicans, Right Wing, States, Tea Party | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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