You know, it just occured to me that in my recent "Haterade" post, where I just vented about all the horrible people in the news who I felt really needed some venting about, I made a throw-away line that if Rand Paul was truly unhappy with his opponent over the "Aqua Buddha" ad, he might as well just hire thugs, since Joe Miller aparently did. I at the time was thinking that it was really peculiar that some paranoid guy running for Senator from Alaska could be so overtly high-handed and un-Democratic as to think himself so above answering questions that he'd have his own people there to "take out" trouble-makers.
It hadn't occured to me that things had gotten so cranky out there that Rand Paul supporters, like Tim Profitt, a former (as of really recently, you can imagine) campaign volunteer, would be thugs for free. And if you follow the link, you'll find the perfectly plausible reason why he put his own actual foot on a young woman's own actual head:
Because his back hurt, and he could not bend over. Because even he knows it would have looked better to smash a person's head to the ground with one's own hands. Feet are so impersonal. But, what are you gonna do? Getting old's a sonofagun.
And as for the candidate, his office spoke about this actually twice. Once, to pretend that this was a "crowd-control" issue, and then later once they realized one of their own volunteers was in on it. Because they really, really don't condone thuggery when it can be directly connected to the candidate. That just looks bad!
Is it any more peculiar when we have a candidate like Sharron Angle using decoys to dupe the press in her attempts to avoid them? Who does that, seriously? (Don't Gooogle "Saddam Hussein" and "decoys" or "Kim Jong Il" and "decoys" or you will just depress yourself silly. )
But fine. There are some "Tea Party" candidates that don't really care for freedom of the press, or freedom of speech, and resort to paranoia and sometimes violence....
And of course, they don't actually even understand "freedom of religion"--like Ken Buck, the CO GOP Senate hopeful that I last mentioned as having the odd notion that being gay was like being an alcoholic, who is revealed to, Christine O'Donnell-like, not be aware of what is in the First Amendment.
"I disagree strongly with the concept of separation of church and state," said Buck at a forum for GOP Senate candidates last year. "It was not written into the Constitution. While we have a Constitution that is very strong in the sense that we are not gonna have a religion that's sanctioned by the government, it doesn't mean that we need to have a separation between government and religion. And so that, that concerns me a great deal."
I will boil this down even further for Buck than I did for O'Donnell:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
An "establishment" of religion doesn't mean that there can't be a government-religion. Oh, it means more than that. If it meant that, it would have said, "The Government will establish no religion." It doesn't. The government is specifically not to make a law regarding an establishment of religion.
The difference? I like to loosen up at an establishment of drinking. Other people unwind by going to an establishment that features fine dining. Others may choose an establishment of fine arts--such a museum, for their personal pleasure. Various religions have been "established" over time--Judaism, Christianity (in all its derivations), Islam, and the law (the state) is not to be involved with any one of them (the churches). See? Separation of church and state! No word tricks--the words just mean what they mean and then you read them.
This guy went to law school and the big word "establishment" threw him. (But then again, he apparently blew off a case where an alleged rapist confessed just because he felt like "slut-shaming" a victim, so he has some faults, with respect to his concepts of justice, for example. Or common sense, for another.
These Tea Party candidates? They do not understand the Constitution, they don't have common sense, they do bad things to further their ambition, and I think instead of just chuckling at their antics, I'm at the point where I am very much creeped out by too many people who carried signs indicating a fear of Fascism--that don't see the problem with this. The people who last year were screaming at townhall meetings for accountability from their elected officials--should be screaming bloody murder now about the gutless, guiltless unaccountable jackasses dodging the press now. Where did they go?
If they love the Constitution so much--why do they hate the 17th amendment, or value their odd construction of the Tenth Amendment over the actual powers given to Congress in Article One? And if they wanted better government, why are their candidates so awful? And if they wanted to take their country back from anyone--why would they want to hand it to dumbasses with lots of corporate funding who will doubtless do as bad or worse? Is there any logic at all to the stupid shit the media foisted on us as a "movement"?
Oh, people were angry--but this tea nonsense was colorful, but not the answer. It was the cry for help of confused people who were gathered together by cynical interested jerkwads with money. There are serious issues and actual hard work that has to be done by serious politicians who want to make constructive policy, not just block it to try and get a GOP POTUS elected.
Anyone who is a registered Democrat who wouldn't crawl across broken glass and swim through vinegar and then pedal their guts out on a bike with a Ginsu knife for a seat to get to the polls to preserve our republic from truly awful people who will make everything absolutely worse in the triathalon of my darkest imagining, is also not funny to me now. Enjoy the shut-down of our government. Enjoy watching Darrell Issa bang a gavel on C-SPAN in hearings on any perpetrated nontroversy that can be made up. Expect your gains to be reversed. Expect more secrecy, and more militancy.
It would give me a lot to snark about--but it wouldn't be funny, anymore.