Sunday, October 11, 2009

5 Crazy Right-Wing Freak-Outs in Just One Glorious Week

By Brad Reed, AlterNet. Posted October 5, 2009.

A hilarious look at conservative thought in the Obama era.

In Special Coverage

Barbara Ehrenreich: The Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America
Emily Wilson

Corporate Accountability and WorkPlace:
We're Still Not Safe From the Back-Alley Dealings That Lead to Our Economic Meltdown
Lagan Sebert, Ben Protess

Los Angeles District Attorney Plans All-Out Assault on City's Pot Dispensaries
Stephen Webster

48 Year-Old Blogger Has Gone 9 Years Without Spending Money
Brian Merchant

Health and Wellness:
Why Was a Lightweight Montana Senator on the Finance Committee Tasked to Take on Health Care Reform?
Jim Hightower

Crackdown on American Apparel Workers Another Wasted Effort
Benjamin Johnson

Media and Technology:
Michael Moore Was Right: Progressives Don't Watch Enough TV
Vanessa Richmond

Movie Mix:
Barack Obama Must See Michael Moore's New Movie (and So Must You)!
Arianna Huffington

Marriage Equality in Califorina: Why We Can't Wait Until 2012

Reproductive Justice and Gender:
A Day in the Life of an Abortion Clinic Escort

Rights and Liberties:
As Justice Sotomayor Hits the High Court, A Defense of Empathy
Rick DeJesús-Rueff

Sex and Relationships:
Bare Naked ... Not So Young ... Ladies
Vanessa Richmond

Take Action:
G-20 Meetings: Nothing Much Happened in the Suites, and There Was Too Much Punch in the Streets
Laura Flanders

Governor Schwarzenegger Holds California Hostage to Peripheral Canal Water Bond
Dan Bacher

Why Obama Has No Business Trying War in the Nuclear-Armed Powder Keg of Pakistan
Fred Branfman

More stories by Brad Reed

For reasons that I don’t understand -- perhaps it’s subconscious karmic payback for murdering children in a past life -- I feel compelled to read a lot of right-wing blogs.

The wonderful thing about them is the window they offer into the pulsing id of the conservative movement -- up close and personal and without the filters of focus groups or dog whistles. For instance, do you think that Glenn Beck is insane? Oh puh-lease. Beck has precisely nothing on your typical Red State diarist or NewsMax columnist, each of whom is likely to support abolishing women’s suffrage or launching a military coup against Obama at any given time.

To give you an idea of the level of madness we’re looking at here, I’ve decided to share with you the five stupidest, craziest and most inflammatory things that right-wingers said over the span of a single week. When you read these things, keep in mind that these are the sorts of people Republican officials have to interact with on a regular basis. Indeed, the following five crazed tirades are almost enough to make you feel a little sorry for those staffers. Most of them came to Washington to act as soulless money funnels for corporate interests. Instead, they end up spending much of their time taking angry calls from some screamer who wants to privatize his local police force.

Number 5: John Derbyshire takes a bold stand against women’s suffrage

Last week, John Derbyshire, the National Review’s resident British crank, outlined a bold strategy to help Republicans return to power: by denying women the right to vote. The Derb explained that the trouble with women is that “they want someone to nurture, they want someone to help raise their kids, and if men aren’t inclined to do it… then they’d like the state to do it for them.” In other words, uterus-afflicted individuals should be barred from voting because they’re more likely to vote for people who disagree with John Derbyshire. Democracy in action!

Derb tried to show that he wasn’t completely out to lunch, however, by acknowledging that it’s highly unlikely that women will ever give up their right to vote. Of course, if women ever did find their right to vote repealed someday, Derb also said that he “wouldn’t lose a minute’s sleep” over it.

What is refreshing about Derbyshire is that he doesn’t try to hide his bigotry or to disguise it with code words – he just has it right out there. Derbyshire has been known to openly game-plan future race wars, to declare that blacks and Latinos are too stupid to educate and to write entire columns declaring his hatred for Chelsea Clinton back when she was just 20 years old. So in this respect, it’s not shocking that Derbyshire opposes women’s suffrage. What’s shocking is that it took him this long to say it.

Number 4: Erick Erickson threatens to dissolve his own town’s police department

Erick Erickson, the founder and managing editor of, has a second gig as a city councilor in his hometown of Macon, Georgia. And apparently, the police force in that town is upset by low pay and long hours and they want to form a union. Erickson’s response? He threatens to simply abolish the entire department!

Writing at the PeachPundit blog, Erickson said that he actually asked the city attorney about the possibility of dissolving the police department. The attorney replied that police unions in the state of Georgia cannot strike or collectively bargain, meaning that any union the police formed would be essentially worthless. This didn’t deter Erickson entirely, however, as he said he’d still rather “contract out to the sheriff’s office than see a union come in” because unions “breed inefficiency, corruption, and taint.”

Regardless of how this ultimately turns out, you have to seriously question the intelligence of a man who talks openly of canning his entire police department. It’s almost as if he’s begging to be pulled over and subjected to multiple anal cavity searches.

Number 3: John L. Perry urges a military coup against Obama

I knew that right-wingers would at some point start harboring fantasies of launching a military coup against Barack Obama, but even I confess that I didn’t expect them to come less than 10 months into his presidency.

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See more stories tagged with: right-wing, olympics, beck, perry, craziness, erickson, derbyshire, riehl

Brad Reed is a writer living in Boston. His work has previously appeared in the American Prospect Online, and he blogs frequently at Sadly, No!.

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