Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The GOP & The Birthers

You'd really have to suspend disbelief to get involved in The Birther Conspiracy group. There are some things you'd have to ignore, like the entire Bush Administration - not to mention political animals like John McCain and Hillary Clinton with an entire boatload of money. Just to mention one item about BushCo, these people were willing to suspend Constitutional guarantees to go after threats, things like illegal wiretapping of Americans and Habeas Corpus so it is a bit of a stretch to imagine they didn't take a good look at Obama's birth. If you for a second think GWB thought he had a friend in Barack Obama you have very odd ideas.

Both Hillary Clinton and later John McPOW had a lot of money and a real desire to beat Obama. There was plenty of ammunition to stir their curiosity and they have some pretty powerful contacts. You've got a black guy short on DC credentials with a funny name, an awkward middle name, and an avowedly non-citizen father, who further lived in not only a foreign country but a Muslim one. The idea is that they simply didn't get it.

There is the little matter of a bunch of documentary evidence that exists, hospital records, birth announcements, birth certificate to get around that would be a bit difficult to just make up. But the nefarious 'them' could do it, you know - the them that have unfathomable resources. Why is open to question. Since we know this is just so much unadulterated hogwash the question is just what is up and what is the GOP going to do with it?

There isn't a much better way to ensure oblivion than for a political group to wander off into wack-land. There are quite a few people who don't like Obama's politics and some who just don't like him; which is to be expected. It is another thing to fly in the face of reason and evidence to insist that we have elected and ineligible President. This takes some real emotion driven thinking and the emotions are what concern me. I doubt the anger and fear displayed are nearly as much about documents as they are about why he must be inelegible. I won't speculate about motives that are not expressed and thus unknown to me, I will assert that they exist and that any politician that embraces this is going to get into real trouble. The more subtle problem for the GOP is that ignoring it will infuriate this portion of their base, an ordinarily safe base.

I've read people who are unhappy that the issue is getting any press coverage at all and I disagree. This plays two ways, if the GOP plays along with it at all the middle, which strongly dislikes any kind of looniness, will be offended and scared by it and if they ignore it a very noisy bunch will loose their collective minds (what's left of such minds). The over-amped GOP rhetoric is poised to bite their ... behinds. They've worked very hard on creating fear and division and disgust with their political opponents and it has worked - only not in the intended manner. They've managed to get a sizable number of people so worked up that they will enthusiastically embrace craziness and something that is generally regarded as being crazy. Their difficulty with this particular crazy is that it doesn't have Holy Books or interpretations of them that people will swallow however reluctantly for backing. It has no historical or thematic basis to sustain it in the general public. Most people don't believe that the World was created 6000 years ago but they're willing to give believers the benefit of doubt on crazy on the basis of religion. This is different.

Whatever the driving emotions, they are unstated and lose their reach to people's sympathies. The whole thing is sort of new, born in a space of months and as such misses the tolerance space. It is going to be regarded as simply nutty and the fierce urgency of its backers will scare people. People on the left like me who view this a simply a natural progression of the GOP trajectory over many years would never take one of their pols seriously. People who in the past have been willing to give the GOP a respectful hearing are going to take this badly.

These folks are not going to go away. They are really stirred up and every attempt to reason with them or show them evidence only drives them harder and farther out that limb. The thing has become almost religious, it is true...because it is true - a belief system. Something really big is at stake for these folks and it is expressed as concern for life of their nation in vehement terms. Their current home is the GOP and everybody knows it. The Obama administration's silence on it is exactly right. No evidence would suffice to defuse it and addressing it would give it credence - something politically best left to its home, the GOP which has ahold of the sharp end of a double edged sword.

I'm more than happy to title this unofficial post in a way to enhance its search friendliness and I expect unhappy hits. I'll be quite pleased to infuriate this bunch, I like them riled up and noisy. They really do need to get to their supposed Representatives of the (R) stripe in government who quite frankly think they're ridiculous. Really, Birthers, you might expect a lefty blogger to cast you as deluded twits but the news for you is the GOP Congress can't quit laughing at you except when worrying about you making them look foolish. Show me where and when they're standing up for you. (Celebrities don't count)


Micgar said...

Did you see that lady at the Castle QnA? geez-it was like her and most of the crowd really and truly drank some Kool Aid that made them totally batshit crazy!

Zak Johnson said...

What if the loons aren't just the base of the GOP? What if they represent a majority? Say, 30-40% of the population? I really have to wonder, given the pandering of established Republicans to the ignorant meanness that more and more seems to typify their party.