You know, it’s really
hard to believe that some of the wingnuts actually believe much of the crap
they themselves spew, you know?
Take Dennis Miller.
No, seriously; take him. Please. There was a time when I found the man funny,
something happened after the 9/11 terrorist attacks that simply makes him
tiresome. He would tell you that he had some sort of epiphany, where he realized
just then that terrorists really wanted to kill us, that we should kill them
first, and that George Bush was exactly what we as a country needed; someone
who talked tough about terrorism, but did nothing about it.
Okay, given his
current right wing persona, he wouldn’t say that last part, in part because
it’s true, but also because it would kill his latest gig on Fox Noise, as Bill
O’Reilly’s yes-man. Have you noted that Miller often hesitates before agreeing
with Bill-O, probably because he’s trying really hard to hold down his lunch.
You see, George W.
Bush has done absolutely nothing to stop terrorism. In fact, the scant few
terrorists who have been killed in since 9/11 — which was six years ago, folks
— were generally killed by accident. And actually, if you think about it, the
only reason we "know" those few were "terrorists" is
because the Bushies told us, so even that information is tainted to some
degree. By and large, after six years, most of al Qaeda’s leadership is holed
up safe and sound in Pakistan, while our troops — those beautiful men and
women who volunteered to fight for their country — are deployed in Iraq,
thousands of miles away from most of al Qaeda, where they are bogged down in a
botched occupation of a country in the midst of a centuries-old civil war.
There were no terrorists in Iraq before we invaded, and the estimated number of
al Qaeda terrorists in Iraq now is relatively small. I would also note that we
apparently haven’t been able to locate them, because, except for a dozen or so
"number 2 al Qaeda" suspects, we haven’t gotten to very many of them.
In other words, Dennis
Miller’s entire premise for becoming a right winger is based on faulty logic.
Which would seem to be typical right wing behavior. The problem is, Dennis
Miller had always struck me as a fairly intelligent guy before 9/11, so his conversion
into hard-right tool, which just happened to coincide with a relative dip in his career fortunes
(his performance on Monday Night Football wasn’t exactly a boost for his
career, nor was his short-lived stint on CNBC, in what ranks as the worst show
of its kind that I’ve ever tried to watch twice), seems very much like a
disingenuous attempt to dip his hands into the lucrative pockets of the
If my cynical analysis
of Dennis Miller’s actual motives is correct, it’s not unprecedented, of
course. I know of one liberal radio host who did very well for years, only to
be dropped when his station was purchased by a right-leaning media
conglomerate, which summarily fired him. After a couple of stints at low power
stations, he eventually found himself out of work and unable to find a gig.
Unfortunately, he had a pretty pricey lifestyle to maintain, so he had to do
something, so he began to write articles proclaiming a conversion into a Ronald
Reagan "conservative" and started feeding red meat to the right. The
result was a very lucrative deal, where he made lots of money.
The thing is, it was
political theater. He hadn’t really gone
to the dark side; it was all a ruse to get a job, sell books and keep the money
flowing. In fact, if you listened closely to his program, you would find that
he wasn’t really advocating the wingnut position; he was taking his liberal
position, and making it SOUND like it was a wingnut position. And the wingnuts
lapped it up, and made him a very wealthy man.
There are other right
wing pundits whom I suspect are simply right wing charlatans, in it for the
money. Does anyone really believe that Ann Coulter is stupid enough to believe
most of the shit that comes from her mouth on a regular basis? I’m pretty sure
she is simply mining for those right wing dollars that some so
freely to anyone
who can bullshit the true believers into forking it over. Michael Weiner-Savage
and David Horowitz, same thing; the only ways an extreme left winger can
possibly become an extreme right winger is either through brain damage or
exploitation, and frankly, the crap that spews forth from these two is too
obviously delivered as red meat for the wingnuts to simply be bloviations from
the tops of their pointy little heads. I have always been convinced that the vile crank Michelle Malkin is full of crap, in part because she doesn’t seem to have an original thought in her head; she just mimics other right wing tools.
You see, the one thing
you can count on when it comes to extremists from either side of the aisle is a
significant degree of gullibility. On the left, we’re stuck with the Nader
voters, who dreamily follow everything the guy does, and who believe that he
means everything he says, despite the fact that even Nader knows that 5% of the
vote is a tall order. Someone who will only get 5-10% of the vote can promise
every single mother a million dollars cash upon taking office, and do so
without pause, because he knows he’ll never have to deliver. Nader voters are
gullible, and Kucinich loyalists are almost as gullible, when they believe that
"all they have to do is cut off the funding" for Iraq, without
considering the number of votes available to do such a thing.
But the degree of
gullibility on the left is small; you won’t get more than a handful to vote for
Ron Paul, just
because he has the right position on Iraq. The level of
gullibility on the right, however is nothing short of breathtaking. Seriously,
if Fox Noise or Rush Limbaugh told their followers it was raining dollar bills
in the Arizona desert, the convoy from the redneck south would be hundreds of
miles long, and the parking lot of every Motel 6 in Arizona would be full of
rusty old pick up trucks.
It’s not a lack of
intelligence, exactly; that’s too easy. A lot of relatively simple minded
people don’t fall for the right wing bullshit patrol.
No, the problem is,
the core right wing "base" is a lot more than
"unintelligent." they have no principles, no actual morals, no
ethics, and they have no patriotism to speak of. In short, they possess none of
the traits that mark a good and honest member of decent society. They’re not
empty vessels, of course; they have heads chock full of pre-conceived notions
based on willful ignorance, coupled with a deep-seated need to have those
pre-conceived notions validated in some way. That’s the worst aspect of the
right wing, really; they are absolutely sure they’re right, even when they’re
wrong, and they shut out anything that doesn’t exactly match those
pre-conceived ignorant notions. They are so desperate for validation, they’ll
believe anything someone says, if they use the right language and throw them
the right kind of red meat at decent intervals. That’s why so many evangelicals
are right wingers; their entire religious upbringing is about having their
heads filled with pseudo-Christian garbage that has no bearing on anything in
the Bible, and they violently oppose anything that doesn’t coincide with what
they were taught when they were young children.
The right winger, like
the evangelical Christian, thinks that his way is the only possible way to do
everything, and that every other way is simply wrong. They can only think in
terms of black/white, up/down or right/wrong; grey is not an option.
That is why we
liberals have to limit the level of argumentation with these bozos. When they
make a statement in a public forum, present an argument, for the benefit of
onlookers who might see the wingnut’s statement as "true," if
unchallenged, but when you respond, and they follow by gainsaying that argument
with a completely ridiculous statement (they will), or some asinine Fox Noise
talking point, just let it go. Present facts, and let the wingnut lay his
foundation of crap; when people check the facts, they will know who’s full of
crap. Just make sure it’s not you.
Gullible people make
for a very lucrative market for the money hungry. Like I said; they need
validation for their beliefs, and they will buy anything that makes them feel
like they’re not the only moron who thinks a certain way. There’s a reason
Limbaugh’s listeners call themselves "dittoheads," folks. While a few
of the die-hards who were around at the beginning of the show remember how the
term originated, the vast majority of his listeners call themselves that,
because they’re paranoid robots, who long dearly to belong to a group of people
who think like they do.
See, that’s why CNN
and MSNBC were stupid to attempt to go after Fox Noise’s audience by trying to
imitate Fox Noise. Fox has a large audience of the gullible true believers who
keep people like Dennis Miller, Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh going, and they
will never switch. They have found a propaganda
machine that tells them what
they need to hear, and they will stick with it, until such time as they start
to actually report the news for a good portion of the day. The same people will
always buy Ann Coulter’s books (although honestly, I think most of her books
are given away as premiums for membership to right wing hate sites, because I
can’t imagine these people setting foot inside of a Borders, with all of those
Harry Potter books lining the shelves), even when she calls 9/11 widows a bunch
of whores, and John Edwards every epithetic euphemism for "gay" that
she can think of. They will listen to Michael Savage, no matter how many
offensive and paranoid things he says. They will follow Bill O’Reilly off of a
cliff, no matter how many co-workers he sexually harasses, or how many falafels
he abuses. They will always listen to Rush Limbaugh, no matter how many
oxycontin he takes, how many wives he goes through, or how many times he comes
back from the Dominican Republic with boatloads of Viagra.
They’re not the only
ones who exploit these poor, gullible people for as much money and power as
they can get their hands on. Politicians have spent the better part of the last
40 years telling these people whatever they wanted to hear, taking their money,
and giving them pretty much nothing in return. Have you ever noticed that the
poorest states in the country just happen to be those in which right wing
politicians dominate? Notice, too, the frequency with which politicians who
rely on right wingers for power are caught with their hands in the cookie jar.
Want to know why? It’s because they know they can count on the votes of that gullible right wing to keep them in office, no matter how bad things get. Oh, gosh, that makes things so much easier, doesn’t it? When you have a block of voters who doesn’t give a damn what you do while you’re in office, as long as you say you love Jesus and will stop abortion while you’re running, then all you have to do is wink and smile, and tell other voters what they want to hear, as well.
Okay, so what do we have here? We have a large bloc of people who don’t care about anything, except hearing what they’ve convinced themselves they want to hear, and they’re influencing elections because they’re too stupid and gullible to know that they’ve been taken for a ride. Do they really think that any politician can eliminate all abortions by signing his name to a law? Do they really think a politician who relies on an issue such as abortion for election would EVER take such an issue off the table?
These people are to gullible to be believed, and the best approach is to clear the record for everyone else and move on. They’re brainwashed, and we’re not going to fix that anytime soon, I promise you. As liberals, let’s concentrate on appealing to the majority of voters, and stop arguing with the ignorant tools. Let the Dennis Millers and the Ann Coulters exploit them for all they’re worth. We can do better than allowing ourselves to be consumed by arguments with these clowns. Let them go back to the fringes where they belong… please…