I’ve been working on my totebagger cred by listening to Fresh Air podcasts, and a recent one on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s study of hate groups was pretty interesting:
Potok points to race as one of the reasons “anti-immigrant vigilante groups [have] soared by nearly 80 percent” in the past year. He also notes a “dramatic resurgence in the Patriot movement and its paramilitary wing” in the past year — jumping 244 percent in 2009. Potok says that these groups’ messages are increasingly moving into the mainstream.
“I think it’s very clear that you see ideas coming out of all kinds of sectors of the radical right, from the immigrant radical right, from the so-called Patriot groups, the militias and so on — and you see it spreading right across the landscape at some of these Tea Party events,” he says. “I think it’s worth saying that much of this is aided and abetted by ostensibly mainstream politicians and media members.”
A lot of the “patriot group” rhetoric is anti-semitic and neo-nazi. So, we have one group of Republican thinkers, the neo-cons, labeling anyone who doesn’t agree with Bibi Netanyahu “anti-semitic”, while another group, the teabaggers, is inspired by a militia movement that denies the Holocaust. Who says the Republican party isn’t a big tent?
(Photo by flickr user Pargon, used under CC license)
I love carefully hand-lettared protest signs.
Well, I will if you will…
This looks shopped.
I can tell from some of the pixels and from having seen quite a few shops in my time.
Morans are always good for the lulz.
I don’t think there would be such a thing as the anti-Semitic wing of the GOP if the neocons who took over the foreign policy portfolio in the party platform weren’t such cynical manipulators.
We all have the right to use incorrect spellings, incorrect words, and incorrect syntax! It’s in the Constitution!
The neo cons will let the tea baggers ride shotgun, but the tea baggers will never be given the keys the care. No “real” power sharing. So, a litlle anti semitism will not hurt anybody in the Party
Can I haz fuwer brownsherts plz?
I was about to agree with you, but I zoomed in and I’m not so sure it’s photoshopped. (It may be, but looking at it close, I don’t think the letters in the misspelled word are obviously copied from elsewhere.)
the splc also noted during the election that many hate groups were hoping for an obama win because it would increase their recruitment.
I think of that every time I see another tea party gathering.
I’m leery of playing the intellectual and making fun of poorly educated people who are scared… I’M scared. Forget about the USA. The Corporations have a global lock and I’m seeing working conditions and pay (here in US companies in Japan) being ratcheted down harder and harder pushing us back to being landless peasants. At least these people are active. It’s all those gutless middle class managers who have their budget sheet open on their monitors 9-5 that are allowing all of us to sink into working hell.
you have to love the rationale behind the evangelicals-neocons unconditional support of israeli-militarism…the notion that revelations expects the armageddon to start in land now known as israel, and since the bible is the literal word of god, the armageddon must start in israel. thus, because they want to punish the people around them, for thinking their evangelical beliefs are crazy, and all the left behind falderall too, they want the armageddon asap…
see, its a bridge of sorts, to the people who work the more traditional neo-nazi angle. they aren’t so different afterall, they just have different ways of going about it. they can sing kumbayas later, when the evil media and government aren’t sending people to infiltrate and make them look bad.
hmm… that seems like a bit of a stretch.
These people aren’t anti-semites. They’re anti-spellers or anti-spellites. Also too, they’re hooked on fonix.
The Grand Panjandrum
OT: This is great news for President McCain:
But you have to read the next part to truly enjoy the just how great this possible candidacy Senate candidacy could be. (Yes, I realize that she is probably doing this as a publicity stunt.)
Ha! And you thought the Italians had the corner on legislating porn stars. This is definitely a sign that our freedoms are slowly returning to us after the Obamapocalypse. Man, I love this country!
Brick Oven Bill
mistermix teaches us:
“So, we have one group of Republican thinkers, the neo-cons, labeling anyone who doesn’t agree with Bibi Netanyahu “anti-semitic”…”
The term ‘neo-con’ is progressive code for a Jew who left the Democratic Party.
You must use caution, or else Potok will admonish you.
Jebus BoB, the NeoCons left the Dems decades ago, and some of their leaders, like Rummy, Darth Cheney and Doug Feith were never even part of a Democratic party. Dude, history lessons, take some…
America, where spelling doesn’t count but people’s pets do.
@cleek: Which part do you disagree with – that the teabaggers are inspired in part by militia rhetoric, or that a lot of militias are Holocaust-denying neo-nazis?
@Brick Oven Bill:
Raise your hand if you were expecting the transcripts of the Tacoma Teabag Terrorist’s calls to include gratuitous usage of phrases like “Janet Teaches Us” and “Seven Liberal Arts and Sciences”.
Ann B. Nonymous
Brick Oven Willie thinks Jeane Kirkpatrick was Jewish? Aren’t there laws against drinking on the job?
Sort of off topic but I gotta say Fresh Air, This American Life and Radio Lab are the best NPR podcasts
the stretch is trying to connect the two.
there are all kinds of things the teabaggers can be criticized for. but i’ve never seen any neo-nazi symbolism or read of any of them using neo-nazi rhetoric in public (obvs, i don’t know what any of them do in private). ok, i’m sure there’s a picture or two somewhere of someone at a rally holding a sign … it’s certainly not a theme, or anything. no more than “Free Mumia” was the inspiration for every anti-Iraq-war march.
and i don’t know about “a lot”. certainly there are some, but “a lot” seems like the kind of quantifier you’d need some data to justify.
or not. your blog.
Recalls other events, many, many lifetimes ago, and of course not really worth remembering.
*The National Republican Heritage Groups / Nationalities Council, including Laszlo Pasztor, an ultra-right and pro-fascist activist who had earlier been a leader in a Hungarian pro-Nazi party in WWII era; Radi Slavoff, Heritage Groups Council’s Executive Director, member of a Bulgarian fascist group; Nicolas Nazarenko, former WWII officer in the German SS Cossack Division, etc here.
And not to mention the close links formed between the 1980s survivalist / ‘merc’ organizations and the U.S. and ultra-right Latin American terrorists, including anti-Cuban terrorists such as Alpha 66 etc. and the Reagan administration’s direct work in getting Argentinian Nazis (can’t really even call them ‘neo’) to train Guatemalan military genocidalists.
But, hey, Obama this one time sat near Bill Ayers, so, it’s really all just the same.
OT: Someone should produce a quiz show about the constitution for teabaggers. The host should quiz them about their knowledge of the constitution. I hate how these morons are appropriating the constitution when they know nothing about it.
My dad recently made an interesting observation about how similar the teabaggers are to Muslim fanatics. He said that they were both an ignorant, fanatical and very loud small minority obsessed with purity.
For the teabaggers it’s all about the founding fathers and the constitution (in reality wanting to solve 21st century challenges with 18 century solutions). For the muslim fundies it’s about reestablishing the Caliphate and living how the prophet lived (in the 13th century) and deeming everything else as an invention. Both are yearning for a time that only exists in their fanatical fantasies and both are re-writing history to fit their reality.
This diversity is what reassures me. They all voted Repub anyway, but they don’t just disagree, these groups hate and fear each other. They’re unorganizable. These days they seem to be unwilling to compromise with each other enough to accept a mere GOP asshole. PLEASE let that be true in November.
TAL is PRI, not NPR.
Radiolab seems to be indy.
Fresh Air is NPR, but produced in Philly away from DC people.
It’s a big “Come on in & have your resentments & fears catered to” tent, though, no longer an ideological tent.
Truly a special interest party, but as long as the single-issues don’t conflict w/ each other, & can be woven into a semi-coherent narrative, we’re going to be stuck w/ them for a while.
And Cleek, my understanding is that it’s a reference to Ron Paul’s crazy racist background and his followers morphing into the teabag movement? I don’t know how true that is.
@MikeJ: RadioLab is produced by WNYC. I always get confused between PRI and NPR.
I’m not sure there’s a contradiction here. If you really dislike the Jews, Bibi Netanyahu seems like the leader you’d want to support.
I for one have a very strong feeling that tea-baggery is going to backfire big time on Republicans in November.
@cleek: Yes, I thought so, too.
I think it is produced by WNYU.
Whoops, someone beat me, and the Google says it is WNYC.
The “nostalgia filter” in our brains discards past threatening memories to insure a more stable organism. How this might work for a past they never actually experienced must fall into the realm of fantasy. And fantasy is even better!
It’s the only explanation I can come up with for their burning desire to live in a B-roll MGM musical.
@Napoleon: By indy I meant “independent” as in not distributed by NPR or PRI.
Thanks for the laugh as I head off to wurk….
@chowkster: I hope so, I am not so sure though. We live in the era if instant gratification and short attention span. People are so unrealistic that they are expecting that the damage done in 8 years is fixed in a year.
“We can thank Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele for Daniels’s rightward turn. She was a registered Dem until the infamous Voyeur nightclub incident, she said.”
“While this decision has not been an easy one, recent events regarding Republican National Committee fundraising at Voyeur, an L.A.-based lesbian bondage-themed nightclub, finally tipped the scales,” she said in a statement. “For me, this spirit can be summed up in the RNC’s investment of donor funds at Voyeur. As someone who has worked extensively in both the club and film side of the adult entertainment industry, I know from experience that a mere $1,900 outlay at a club with the reputation of Voyeur is a clear indication of a frugal investment with a keen eye toward maximum return.”
She added: “As is the case with so many of my fellow Louisianans, I have been a registered Democrat throughout my life. But now I cannot help but recognize that over time my libertarian values regarding both money and sex and the legal use of one for the other [are] now best espoused by the Republican Party.”
-I’m surprised she didn’t say. “Michael Steele, you da man!”
Maybe he’ll star in her next production, “A Hard Day’s Night”.
The more I think about it, the more I think Jinx the motorcycle guy identified and summarized what’s going on in American society with pinpoint accuracy. It really does boil down to certain people no longer knowing, on a visceral level, who they’re better than, and flipping their shit over it. It’s primarily a class issue, in which race only plays a part (albeit a very important one). Up to now I’ve had those two factors flipped in importance in my mind; it appears that I’ve been mistaken.
Whether the shit-flipping is primarily class-driven or race-driven, though, the manifestation is the same — it’s why trying to argue with these people and explain to them and make them see the light is a fool’s errand. It’s not something they know, it’s something they feel. They flail around for specific issues to latch onto, but they’re all just excuses. That’s why, even when you pile on enough evidence to blow up their arguments ten times over, they still cling to them — because it’s not the issue itself, it’s the cover it provides.
@chowkster: NPR is wonderful — the news programmes at least, even if the actual news is ‘weasely.’
In fact, Diane Rehms just had Barry Potok on her show to talk about militia movements. He mentioned that he talked to Dave Frum at a CPAC convention and Frum said, “Glen Beck has achieved something: he’s taken paranoid conspiracies away from the anti-semites.”
There. On topic again.
As much as I enjoy the incoherence — not to mention mistermix’s obviously superior photoshopping skillz — I am, ultimately, grateful for it as well. It will be their undoing, because there is no there, there. Or, to quote Dr. King: “There is a checkpoint in the universe: evil cannot permanently organize itself.”
And don’t forget that in Israel, it’s not unheard of for one Jewish member of Knesset to call another Jewish member of Knesset a “Nazi.” So really, these tropes kind of lose their meanings when in the hands of extremists, not to mention their moorings.
(and @BR: I believe that 4tehluz was referring to the teabaggers’ contention that the racist and/or mis-spelled signs are the work of nefarious leftwing photoshoppers. Because they’re not racists, or stupid, you see!).
Let me stop you there. Tests to Federalism were immediate and violent. In one case, George Washington himself had to put down a rebellion about taxing Whiskey. So, let’s see, George Washington, revered figure, defended the right of the federal government to tax alcohol, and he did it at sword point. The eighteenth-century solution to a 21st-century challenge is a cavalry charge into a crowd of protesting teabaggers.
I can translate that sign:
“Some Mexican came up here and took my job because he worked 5 times harder than me for a third of my salary!”
And the ‘Patriot Group’ rhetoric can easily be summed up as such: “any Jew who wants to kill the EVIL Mooslims is good, the rest of the Jews can eat shit and die.”
They’re not anti-semitic, they’re anti-semantic.
And en dyre nead of a fukcing dickshunary.
Everything with the Republicans always comes back to race or ethnic hatred. The chickenhawks hate brown people generally. The neo-cons hate everybody who isn’t Jewish. The teabaggers hate everybody who isn’t white and protestant. The “fiscal conservatives” hate Blacks. And they all hate the gays and women.
Which is why I think we should take the constitutional approach to the teabaggers and do just that.
Good morning gang.
Loved the little speech by the lady [?] in Louisiana. Maybe we should contribute to her campaign. She is doing a wonderful job.
June-August, 2012, pogroms aided by local law enforcement begin in earnest in the southwest.
Apparently Palestinians aren’t human? I had no idea, what are they, the offspring of evil angels?
And why not? Wasn’t there some Repub politician ha-rumphing around the last election that there should be citizenship tests for voters?
@hidflect: IMO- a legitimate fear, but I don’t see any possibility of making common cause with these folks. By voting their irrational fears, they’ve unwittingly enabled the corporatist stranglehold.
Ditto that. I know the teabag protest signs can be ideologically incoherent, but they do seem to be rather fond of comparing Obama with Hitler in way that suggests it wasn’t intended as a compliment. Neo-nazis don’t insult people by comparing them with Hitler.
“Two-legged beasts” was Golda Meir’s assessment, quoted with approval by the pro-Israel hawks I know. . .
@BR: Not aware of all Internet traditions, I am guessing?
@ellaesther: If it’s the work of Photoshop, it well predates this post; I’ve seen pics of this sign since the early Teabagger days. I am willing to bet it’s either genuine in its ignorance, or a real-life spoof by one of the thousands of leftist double agents who have infiltrated the Teabagger groups so thoroughly.
At some level this isn’t rocket science. Globalization has ripped the guts out of the US middle class, at the same time as the New Deal social safety net has been dismantled bit by bit. A lot of folks are living in a world which is less rewarding and more uncertain for them and their families than it was as for their parents and they are understandably scared and angry about it. That is like a flood headed downhill. Race fear and hatred is one of the traditional channels in which populist anger and fear flows in the US. Flood meets riverbed. But if the circumstances were different then other traditional channels would be taking up some of this, e.g. misogyny if Hillary rather than Obama were POTUS, or religious bigotry if Romney were to be elected in 2012.
What worries me most is that we have a situation where the structural factors (globalization, destruction of the domestic social contract) driving populist fear and anger are supported by the political faction which is best positioned to exploit them for demogogic purposes. That is a recipe for disaster because it has a positive feedback loop built in. The French Revolution was very similiar – economic and social anxiety caused by the French middle and lower classes being pushed out of a late medieval economic and social system into the not so tender mercies of a capitalist system in the waning years of the ancien regime were what empowered the revolutionaries who then accelerated the demolition of the very systems whose dismantling was the root cause of discontent in the first place. Which is why the revolution spun out of control: the cycle of social and economic insecurity, popular fear & anger, and revolutionary destruction of the remaining sources of social security wound ever tighter.
We have a very similar situation today – the GOP is the leading advocate of dismantling the foundations of middle class prosperity in this country, which leads to greater populist anger, which further empowers the GOP, which allows them to get even more extreme in their policies, etc. If the Dems can’t break this cycle by enacting and popularizing reforms, we could be in some real trouble up ahead.
It seems a stretch to label the teabaggers anti-semitic because of some synergistic contact with a movement that has ties to neo-nazi white supremacists. That said, the teabaggers do seem prone to espousing memes that have their roots in anti-semitic rants from those neo-nazis, the War on Christmas for instance (http://www.commonplacebook.com/current_events/politics/bill_oreillys_f.shtm) and this whole urban elites thing, which has a lot to do with the culture war, of course, but also picks up on rhetorical cues to the whole conspiratorial commie/anarchist Jew thing of decades past.
I agree. However, I’m still optimistic that this won’t erupt on a wide or permanent scale because the teabaggers are still only a small percentage of the American electorate, and their numbers are holding steady. Something on the scale of the French Revolution, on the other hand, pitted relatively vast numbers of middle- and lower-class people against a relatively small number of aristocrats. As long as teabaggery continues to reflect the roughly 20% wacko minority that persists in this country, I can’t get too worried about it, even if the GOP chooses to ditch whatever sanity it has left and throw its lot in with them. I’m confident that the great swath of moderate/independent/apolitical voters in the middle are leery enough of goofy theatrics that they’ll continue to see the 20-percenters for what they are.
The really tricky thing about discussing race and class in the US is that our class perceptions are tied into race. White people are automatically assumed to be middle class unless they prove otherwise; black people are automatically assumed to be lower class even if they prove otherwise. (It’s similar but not as precise for Asian-Americans and Latinos.)
I saw an explanation online that said that it used to be that any random black person had to defer to any random white person, so even, say, a black college-educated dentist would have to defer to the most broke-ass white sharecropper he encountered in the street because, no matter how rich or how much education that dentist had, he was automatically of a lower class than that sharecropper.
Now we’re starting to grope towards an actual meritocracy and the people who could at least feel secure that they were automatically better than any random black person are realizing that they’re actually at the bottom of the heap. But do they blame the plutocrats who put them at the bottom and keep them there? Nope, they blame the people who used to be below them for not staying there.
For now, I am too. But that could change. It is worth remembering that a combination of things led to the terminal crisis of the French ancien regime, including a debt crisis, a foreign policy crisis (in the Netherlands), and bad weather leading to a food crisis. We already have the elements necessary to construct a debt crisis in the US today (albeit it hasn’t happened, at least not yet), our foreign policy appears to be in good hands but that could change quickly in ways that are not under our control, and who knows what Mother Nature has in store for us. So let us hope our luck holds.
This may be a subjective misperception on my part, but it seems to me that since Obama was elected there has been a noticeable increase in the number of middle to upper-middle class minorities, especially African Americans, showing up in TV ads (especially for Forture 500 companies and their products) portrayed as model customers. The demographics of the folks portrayed as wholesome, positive role models (and just as importantly as people who have plenty of discretionary income) in these TV ads seems to have shifted towards greater racial diversity. I wonder if that is having an effect on popular perceptions of the race/class balance?
Posted with no commentary. I honestly think, once you see it, there is no need.
@left turn in ABQ:
“This may be a subjective misperception on my part, but it seems to me that since Obama was elected there has been a noticeable increase in the number of middle to upper-middle class minorities, especially African Americans, showing up in TV ads (especially for Forture 500 companies and their products) portrayed as model customers.”
I don’t think it’s a misperception. And commercials like the Lowe’s spot that ran so often during the NCAA Tournament, showing a white salesperson cheerfully serving an African-American couple, must be profoundly disturbing to a certain segment of society.
Setting aside the “are” for “our”… why would anyone put a fucking hyphen there? That’s completely nonsensical.
@FlipYrWhig: It would make sense if the sign read: “Respect Are-Country / Speak Pirate”
It made me laugh because kids do that. If they misjudge the space, they use a “dash” to make it clear there’s division between the two words.
The tea baggers need one of those lettering stencil sets. Remember them?
This is Arecountry!
Somehow I don’t have the problem of knowing who I am better than.
I know I am better than everyone!
You can call me Zaphod.
I prefer mis-spelled cosines.
Not really, that was true perhaps ten or twenty years ago but now the biggest indicators of class are one’s dress and speech habits.
A white male dressed in a tee shirt, jeans, and a seed cap with a heavy southern/country accent is NOT going to be assumed to be middle class by anyone.
@ThatLeftTurnInABQ: Do you mean, for example, how there’s the white-people-about-to- have-sex ad for Cialis and a black-people-about-to-have-sex counterpart?
I also love the Old Spice Guy who sits backwards on a horse after telling women to compare their man to him. But I don’t know if that has much to do with your point.
Geez, mention one bo ner pill company and you go straight into moderation. ; )