Tuesday, March 16, 2010

This week in political theatre

I realized this afternoon that this week is quickly turning into Political Theatre. Ah yes - the theatre. At the moment, anxieties and emotions are high among liberals and conservatives, and it's times such as this when the crazy shit tends to rise to the surface.

Today's crazies: Minnesota's own Michele Bachmann, and Iowa representative Steve King.

I've got to give Michele Bachmann credit. I personally am not convinced she believes everything that comes out of her mouth in public forums. Don't get me wrong - I still think she's batshit crazy (for Jesus), but I also think she has learned how to masterfully play the politics game like lotto. She knows that when she steps up to the mic and says something completely devoid of logic or reality (as she did today with multiple media outlets), the press will pick it up, expound upon it, and basically give her free press. Say what you will about her lack of moral character, but I'm starting to think that she may just be a brilliant political strategist/opportunist.

So what did Michele actually say today that was so nuts? I happened to be listening to Sean Hannity's radio show in the car this afternoon, and she was yapping on the air about how unconstitutional this Health Care Bill is, and if it passes, American citizens are not obligated to pay taxes toward it. Hmmm. That's right, America - just quit paying your taxes. Michele says it's OK. She also remains convinced that conservatives (more likely Tea Party folks) can still kill the bill, and she is asking Americans to please come to Washington on Saturday to make their presence known on the hill. Sure thing Mitch. We'll just drop everything we've got going on in our humdrum lives and book a flight to D.C., so we can join your little fake grassroots party (!?).

Our other crazy, Steve King of Iowa (pictured, below right), is asking Americans to "storm" D.C.. He is even going so far as suggesting that a revolution is warranted, and it's urgent. Comparing the U.S. to "Prague under communist rule," King told the Huffington Post, "It is the nationalization of our liberty and the federal government taking our liberty over. So there are a lot of similarities there." Riiiiight.

Here's what concerns me. The extreme left folks like Bachmann and (I assume) King are shouting about how Americans need to forcibly take their country back. This is not new -- rather, it has been brewing (a little Tea Party pun there) for months. It's no secret that Tea Party folks like their guns. They attend these rallies (often with their guns in tow), and get all riled up by these speeches about "Patriotism" and the "sanctity of the Constitution", and how we need to "KILL" big government. Who represents big government? President Obama. (Oh, and Jesus is in the mix somewhere, because we all know the bible says Jesus HATES health care reform. And Gays.).

The point that I want to make is that I really sensed while listening to Bachmann's crazed ramblings today that she was being very calculated in her choice of words: FIGHT. KILL. It doesn't seem accidental to me that she's using such stark, bold, violent words (remember last year when she asked Minnesotans to be "armed and dangerous" in preparations to fight Obama's energy plan?).

The danger, and I hope it's just me being over dramatic, is that conservative politicians are whipping these Tea Party hillbillies into a frenzy by suggesting things like revolution. When the frenzy froth hits the boiling point, the result is likely to be violence. Remember: these people carry guns, and at this point many of them are convinced that they must defend their freedoms by any means necessary. Viva la Revolution! In the aftermath of violence the politicians can simply feign shock and disbelief, saying "When we said that they should forcibly take down Washington, we didn't mean it literally!"

It's going to be an interesting week.

credits: Michele Bachmann photo from HuffingtonPost.com
Steve King photo from Associated Press.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You may like Michele Bachmann on Hannity:

Part 1 and Part 2