Not-so-United States

Divisive radicals vs. the moronization of America; postcard from Florida
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE  |  November 24, 2010

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MORE LIKE SHITEHOUSE Weldon Whitehouse.
The BeloJo had a story on Sunday (part of its "PolitiFact" series) that gave a rating of absolutely true to Senator Weldon Shitehouse's contention that "current US law permits companies that close down American factories and offices and move those jobs overseas to take a tax deduction for the costs associated with moving the jobs to China or India or wherever." Wow! What a divisive radical that Senator Shitehouse is when he argues that perhaps the government shouldn't be helping in the offshoring of jobs. Who does he think he is, questioning the wisdom of wealthy and powerful corporations?

The upright and patriotic Tax Foundation (described as a "business-backed group that studies tax policy"), however, sees no reason to alter the law because, according to the organization, not that many corporations benefit and not that many people are laid off. So let's keep encouraging them to ship those jobs overseas, huh?

Another divisive radical in a three-piece suit, Richard Licht, was called just that ("a divisive radical") by Rhode Island Right to Life executive director, Barth E. Bracy, who expressed his displeasure with Governor-elect Chafee for appointing the former state senator and lieutenant governor as his incoming director of administration. That's because "Richit" is the current chairman of the board of NARAL Pro-Choice America, a Washington, DC-based pro-choice organization.

Last time we looked, abortion was still legal and the office of the director of administration was not running point on any reproductive rights legislation that might appear in the legislative pipeline. But, emboldened by some measurable right wing tilts in the recent mid-term elections, "family values" monkey-timers like the Right to Life organization and the people who are trying to convince you that same sex marriage equality is somehow a dangerous idea that will harm the quality of hetero marriage, are coming out of the woodwork.

Meanwhile, Tea Party heroes like Glenn Beck are touting the books of W. Cleon Skousen, the crazed John Birch Society abettor (his own theories were too outré for even the Birchers to adopt, so he never became an active member) to his millions of listeners. His historical revisionism has already convinced legions of people that Woodrow Wilson was working hand-in-glove with the Anti-Christ. And it's only a matter of time before Beck starts preaching that President Eisenhower was a commie agent and that the Senate chambers in DC should be renamed for Senator Joe McCarthy.

The moronization of America was, perhaps, best captured by New York Times columnist Frank Rich in a Sunday piece suggesting that Sarah Palin is gaining strength and that no one knows how to stop her. "It's anti-elitism that most defines angry populism in this moment, and, as David Frum, [a] Bush alumnus (and Palin critic) has pointed out, populist rage on the right is aimed at the educated, not the wealthy."

The owners of those "My kid kicked your honor student's ass" bumper stickers are on the move and in the precise direction of Rupert Murdoch's buttocks. Anyone who has been identified as a "divisive radical" by these folks should wear that label with pride.


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