(Tonight's guest blogger is Kevin K. from Catch.com)
From Matt Taibbi's "Bush Like Me" (Rolling Stone, 10/04):
The problem not only with fundamentalist Christians but with Republicans in general is not that they act on blind faith, without thinking. The problem is that they are incorrigible doubters with an insatiable appetite for Evidence. What they get off on is not Believing, but in having their beliefs tested. That's why their conversations and their media are so completely dominated by implacable bogeymen: marrying gays, liberals, the ACLU, Sean Penn, Europeans and so on. Their faith both in God and in their political convictions is too weak to survive without an unceasing string of real and imaginary confrontations with those people — and for those confrontations, they are constantly assembling evidence and facts to make their case.
But here's the twist. They are not looking for facts with which to defeat opponents. They are looking for facts that ensure them an ever-expanding roster of opponents. They can be correct facts, incorrect facts, irrelevant facts, it doesn't matter. The point is not to win the argument, the point is to make sure the argument never stops. Permanent war isn't a policy imposed from above; it's an emotional imperative that rises from the bottom. In a way, it actually helps if the fact is dubious or untrue (like the Swift-boat business), because that guarantees an argument. You're arguing the particulars, where you're right, while they're arguing the underlying generalities, where they are.
Once you grasp this fact, you're a long way to understanding what the Hannitys and Limbaughs figured out long ago: These people will swallow anything you feed them, so long as it leaves them with a demon to wrestle with in their dreams.
Now that I've been out of my blogging gig for a while, my anger wheel has been jolted far to the left and when I reread that extraordinarily perceptive passage by Taibbi, I actually felt kind of sorry for the subjects. They're scared is all. They're scared of a lot of things because they need to be scared of a lot of things. They lack purpose without things relentlessly scaring the shit out of them. And in order to distract the media from the fact that they're more juiced up on fear than love for their country, they constantly try to frame liberals—who in their minds still wear patchouli, listen to Jefferson Airplane and love the fuck out of Jane Fonda—of being the cowards because, um, we're "anti-war" (what fucked up times we live in where being "anti-war" is a "bad thing") and we aren't 100% freaked out that gay people, Mexicans, Arabs and the Dixie Chicks are roaming free in our streets.
You see, in reality, us "cowardly" liberals aren't afraid of much of anything. Disgusted, sure. We're plenty disgusted with a lot of things going on in America and the world today, and rightfully so, but our repulsion isn't fueled by fear. It's fueled by hope for better days in America, a concept so antithetical to the rightists' junked-out need for a constant influx of "bogeymen" (they've been trained well) that they aren't able to process the notion that we don't hate our country, we just take great, full-throated exception to how it's being run by them. Or, more to the point, run into the ground by them.
I didn't really follow the explosion of bedwetting blogs post-9/11 because I was too busy languishing in my pre-9/11 NYC liberal mindset, but apparently the blogosphere was flush with dorks in crouched-down, defensive positions who pecked away at something they called "warblogs." These, ahem, "warbloggers" (must … stop … tittering) thought they were at war and no amount of fear of Blogger's registration process and/or HTML interface was going to get in their way to fight the good fight. They were G.I. Jonesin' for some seriously manly cutting 'n' pasting as they bravely stormed the frontlines of HyperText Transfer Protocol. And some of them, primarily "9/11 Republicans" and alleged libertarians, were so addicted to the notion that "everything changed after 9/11" that they discarded large, important chunks of their belief systems because they figured the "everything changed" doctrine applied to their very beings as well. A few of them have circled back to reality and well-earned rounds of raspberries, but a substantial number still cling to what are becoming increasingly razor-thin threads of dignity, and generally when you take it that far, you never come back because, let's face it, it's really, really embarrassing to do so. The Roger L. Simons and Charles Johnsons of today are the ex-lefty David Horowitzes and Michael Savages of tomorrow, except, as Pantload Media has proved, we don't ever have to worry about Rog and Chucky being anywhere near as popular, successful or influential. Or handsome.
It's been funny watching nutter bloggers cheer on Iraqis for standing up to terrorists when it's quite evident that guys like John Hinderaker and Hugh Hewitt clearly wouldn't have the balls to do the same in a similar situation. If you put Hinderaker in a scenario where white supremacists had taken over his perfectly-named hometown of Apple Valley, Minnesota and were setting up IEDs around town and blowing up shit at random, a teary-eyed John would be the first one out of his house waving a white dress shirt and bellowing in desperation, "I'm on your team!" before collapsing on his well-manicured lawn in a puddle of urine. Hewitt, for cripes sake, has to be heavily sedated and diapered before he enters the Empire State Building, which he seems to believe is a bullet-strewn frontline in the war on terror (like Sadr City, but taller!), with its spine-tingling Skyride and elevators stuffed with fanny-packed tourists in ESPN Zone t-shirts. I mean, for all of the chest-thumping-and-puffery these proud patriots do you can't help but notice through their squeals of store-bought muscular bravado that a majority of them are pinched-up, picked-last-in-dodgeball mega-dweebs. We're talking central casting material for the remake of Revenge of the Nerds, except in this version they just read Drudge and Instapundit all day and curl into a ball every time they get within 20 yards of an Arab or one of the Satellite Sisters.
Many years after their hero Chief Clearing Brush valiantly soldiered on reading The Pet Goat after finding out that our country was under attack (has a president ever acted more courageously with a pop-up book in his lap?), the fear is still deeply palpable in the nuttersphere (note to Pamela at Atlas Shrieks: if you post pictures of nuclear explosions more than 73 times on your blog, it's a clear indication that you should start shopping around for a new shrink) and its occupants are tragically becoming increasingly unglued as Dear Leader's numbers slip and the much-bungled War in Error has finally morphed into a very sore spot for a way-large swath of Americans. The fear factor hasn't just been ratcheted up lately due to a fear of the United States' capture by illegal Mexican dishwashers or Iran's miraculous plug-and-play nuclear arsenal, but also because of the bedwetters maddening (and mostly unacknowledged) concern that a majority of their fellow countrymen aren't at all pleased with how the ruling party has been running things of late. Rather than learning valuable and long-coming lessons from their multitude of mistakes, they've decided to screw the fear in deeper and layer even more bat shit onto their crazy.
Witness these responses, found during a random blog search, to a post on Ace of Spades regarding Seymour Hersh's New Yorker article about U.S. plans to nuke Iran:
YES, YES, YES!! I hope this is true. Except, we need to go a lot further. It's not enough to just hit the nuclear sites, we need to take out Iran's missiles, terror bases, revolutionary guards units, etc. We need to hit Iran so hard they will not be able to use chemical or biological weapons against us. I hope we glassify those SOB's.
"YES, YES, YES!! I hope this is true." Huh? Shouldn't that kind of outburst be reserved for Christmas Eve when Daddy hints that Santa might be parachuting a pony into the backyard in the middle of the night? It's hardly a proper antecedent to a call to "glassify" Iran. And if you think that giddy lunacy is bad, check out this comment from an Ace of Spades regular:
We don't need no stinkin' nukes. Just bomb everything, and by everything, and by everything I mean EVRY-FUCKING-THING. Bomb thier nuke sites, military bases, power plants, gov't buildings, factories, hospitals, schools, Taco Bells, mosques, madrassas, graveyards, etc…Rubble don't make trouble.
This meathead's so hell-bent on genocide and destruction that not only does he want to blow up schools (which last time I checked tend to be full of children) and Iran's thriving Taco Bell franchises, but he also wants us to bomb dead people. Now that right there is a special kind of full-blown crazy you will never, ever see on lefty blogs. And what's nearly as shocking is that no righties, even some semi-reasonable ones, seem to flinch when they read increasingly homicidal shit like that from their pee-stained brethren. If someone on IndyMedia dares compare Bush to Hitler using a convenient JPG format, howls are heard all over the rightwing's "Hitlery"-drenched landscape, but insanely masturbatory fantasies about blowing innocent people to smithereens and nuking Mecca are now so commonplace in the nuttersphere that they've become part of its fabric. "THEY WANT TO KILL US ALL!" has been the frequent wide-eyed yelp of these terrified simpletons who prefer their pants tailored for that scaredy look, but now that the whole democracy-at-the-barrel-of-a-gun thing isn't going quite as planned in the Middle East thanks to rampant neoconjob buffoonery, some of them have come to the totally irrational conclusion that we should just lay waste to "EVRY-FUCKING-THING." They've tried valiantly to hide their pervasive anti-Arab bigotry behind large posters of Purple Fingers of Freedom, but now that those are getting dog-eared and trite, it's full steam ahead into Off the Rails Junction.
As much as the Arab/Muslim hatred is shocking and Tourette's-like (in a post about Fashion Week on Little Green Footballs, for instance, a regular blurted out, "The only good Muslim is a dead one"), it's their rabid fear and loathing of their fellow countrymen who don't agree with them about everything that really cuts to the chase in exposing their bigotry. Case in point: Marla Ruzicka, the founder of the Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict who was tragically killed last year at the age of 28 by a car bomb in Baghdad. She cared deeply about the people of Afghanistan and Iraq (read: hearts and minds) and by all accounts (you can read about her here, here and here) she was considered to be an angel by nearly everyone she encountered. In fact, according to Newsweek's Baghdad bureau chief, "Marla was alienated from much of the human rights community because she chose to work with the military instead of always against it." But that wasn't good enough for Johnson's "Lizardoid Minions" at LGF. Hell, no. She was a moonbat "anti-war activist" and got what she deserved. Feel the love as they quite literally cheer on an act of terrorism against a young American woman:
It's probably George Bush's fault for letting her wander around Iraq instead of putting her in a gulag.
Couldn't have happened to a nicer tool.
Oh, I know what's next. Her parents will sue the car manufacturer, or maybe the tire maker.
There's no better useful idiot than a dead useful idiot.
Nominate her for the Mincemeat/Pull-Yourself-Together Award
At least the moonbat parents aren't yet saying "they killed their best friend."
I can guess what color her eyes were! BLEW!
I'm having another drink to celebrate another moonbat meeting a well deserved demise.
She went from "peace" activist to piece activist.
Another moonbat bitch slapped by reality.
Maybe they were recruiting virgins. Somebody's gonna' be REAL disappointed.
Marla Ruzika, aka "Betty Blastoff", contender for the Rachael Cory Misplaced Loyalties Award, will not be coming for tea. She went to pieces over her cause, most of which will be returned, eventually.
I've been having a pretty stressful time over the past five or six days, and this news really picked me up. Thanks!
May she rest in pieces.
Now let's hear from Hewitt, who prominently features LGF on his blog roll:
The blogosphere on the left came into being just at the moment the Democratic Party was the angriest, after the Florida 2000 election. And it has captured that anger. And there were no grownups there to direct it to legitimate and constructive political activity. They are training a generation of young Democratic activists to be angry, vulgar, profane, and cruel.
Yeah, Hugh, we're the "angry, vulgar, profane, and cruel" ones. I'd ask you for a rebuttal but I wouldn't be able to hear you due to all of the noise from the deranged, subhuman fear junkies on your squad gleefully tap-dancing in the blood of innocents. Unfortunately, I don't foresee that cacophony ending any time soon.
Previous posts in the series:
Right Wing Racism: Steve Sailer by Armando
Educating Wolfie by Pam Spaulding
Let’s Go Real Far Right… by Matt Stoller
Tramsmitting Extremism by David Neiwert
The Fork in the Road — The Right and Race Online by Steve Gilliard
Late Night FDL: A Thin Candy-Coat of Legitimacy by TBogg
What Lies Beneath by Matt O.
Breaking The Code by Digby
Racist Crusaders Advocate Holy War: The Connection Between Racism, RedState, and the War on Terror by Red Dan
Principia Wingnuttia by Gavin M.
Matt O. has also been compiling racist quotes from right-wing websites over at The Great Society.