No idea how things will shake out at the courthouse today, but the heatstroke danger is real!
— Oliya Scootercaster 🛴 (@ScooterCasterNY) June 13, 2023
As mentioned in the morning thread, here’s an excerpt from a Josh Marshall piece at TPM about how the J6 prosecutions may have broken a sense of impunity anti-government right-wingers acquired during the Bundy clan standoffs:
The militia-leading, federal subsidy-loving ranchers led a series of standoffs with federal authorities in which they were universally, comically handled with kid gloves. The Bundys first went national when they had their standoff at the family ranch in Nevada in 2014. Then in 2016 Ammon Bundy lead the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge headquarters in Harney County, Oregon. It went on for more than a month while Ammon and his clown posse wrecked the place, spouted off and generally engaged in your standard far-right militia performance art.
These are complicated situations. All law enforcement authorities should place a very high priority on ending crises without violence or the loss of life. But the upshot of the Bundy standoffs was to send a message that far-right extremists could defy federal law and law enforcement with impunity and essentially make a mockery of federal authority. I have little doubt that a significant backdrop to the events of Jan. 6 was the assumption that a similar set of rules would apply: that militia cosplay, LARPing and right-wing performance art generally get a pass. The fact that it didn’t on Jan. 6 is likely having an impact today.
That’s no protection against lone wolves. We’ve seen again and again in recent years that there is an almost endless supply of far-right domestic terrorists willing to commit acts of violence on behalf of Donald Trump or adjacent to his views. But most at least now realize that all the fun and games can lead to serious time in prison. And as the complaints about conditions in the D.C. jails make clear, they don’t have much taste for it.
Deterrence: it’s a thing!