Americans, wake the fuck up.
Joe Miller, Republican candidate in Alaska, hired a paramilitary unit — actual active-duty military members moonlighting as security detail — to defend him from, of all things, reporters. A reporter was detained by this paramilitary. For asking questions.
This has nothing to do with how our civil liberties “could” disappear. They have disappeared. We did nothing about the Patriot Act except cheer it on. We did nothing about warrantless everything except reelect Bush. We did nothing about TSA security theater except look suspiciously at our seatmates. We did nothing about “Free Speech Zones” except frown at the people at conventions clambering for their voices to be heard. We did nothing about police abuses of power except suggest that anyone who was abused had something to hide or asked for it.
This is the world we’ve bought ourselves. The fact that most of us have yet to pay for it personally is beside the point.
What are these people afraid of, if not the cleansing daylight of public scrutiny?
As it turns out, they’re afraid of pretty well everything.
They need a big, swaggering military because we’re otherwise at the mercy of…those little countries on the other side of the world whose governments have massive contracts with ours. They need to keep immigrants out of the country, because otherwise, their job skills and way of life aren’t attractive enough to compete. They have to deny anthropogenic climate change, because otherwise, they have to find solutions that are beyond their ingenuity and willingness to sacrifice. They need guns, because otherwise, they’re at the mercy of all and sundry who happen along.
They need to keep gays and lesbians shamed and marginalized, because otherwise, what incentive would they have to refrain from all the gay sex they want to have (instead of just some of it). They have to keep power out of women’s hands, because otherwise, what woman would want them? They have to make abortion illegal, because otherwise, what woman would put up with raising their demon spawn without help? In the women’s case, because otherwise, how can they make up for having their own abortions? And oh, how many things must they do because otherwise, they stand no chance of being good enough to be accepted by their gods?
Most of all, for the broad swath of people who vote movement conservative, they need to side with the bullies, because otherwise, the bullies will turn their attention to them. It’s a somewhat effective strategy, and one the movement relies upon for support. It still isn’t good for anyone.
This bully-ism was especially in evidence at a Rand Paul event where a MoveOn.org protester tried to present Paul with a sign to make him look foolish. This tactic has been carried out by MoveOn protesters elsewhere, to other candidates, and the goal is to, as stated, make the politician look foolish. This particular 23-year-old woman, for daring to make Rand Paul look foolish, was manhandled, then curbstomped by a husky Paultard.
And that ain’t all. An Eric Cantor event saw a Democrat intending to ask him questions wrestled to the ground and arrested. After having “RSVP’d” to the event ahead of time.
Why is this happening, with every politician on the Republican side treating questions as dire threats? Why, when someone shows up with a gun at a political rally, is it an infringement of their rights to ask them to leave that gun at home, in violation of their second amendment rights, while simultaneously treating any exercise of the first amendment as an act of terrorism? What are you afraid of, if not being shown to be as foolish as you are, that you have to perpetrate violence on dissenters?
Remember this when your demoralized Democratic base leads to Tea party victories across your country by default, and ushers in this new era of tea-colored brownshirts. Or, you could do what you can right now, and get out the vote, so you have a chance to head this nastiness off at the pass.