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Last week, at an event commemorating the 15th anniversary of the bombing of the “Murrah Federal Building” in Oklahoma City, former President Clinton compared the violent extremist rhetoric coming out of the “Tea Party” movement to the violent extremist rhetoric we heard coming out of the “militia” movement of the early 1990’s. Naturally, Republicans were aghast that anyone might suggest the teanuts were anything other than “benign” concerned citizens who are simply worried about the future of this country.

A Google Image Search for “Tea Party” guns, “Tea Party” Hitler, “Tea Party” racist, or “Tea Party” violent provide MORE than enough examples…

Tea Party Guns Tea Party Hitler
Tea Party Racism Tea Party violence

…of why this tiny group of extremely vocal Right-wing extremists are the breeding grounds for the same militaristic anti-government hysteria we saw in the 1990’s.

Naturally, hate-radio buffoon Rush Limbaugh denounced President Clinton for comparing today’s teanut vitriol to the same violent rhetoric on the 1990’s that led up to the OKC bombing, claiming (get this) that if some teanut commits an act of violence on the OKC anniversary, it will be HIS fault… because… you know… Bill Clinton has amazing hypnotic powers to make good people do bad things. <???>

Whatever. These people are so deep in denial that, even when confronted with physical proof of the kind of people their venom attracts, they try and claim that these people are “Left Wing infiltrators” that are simply there to make them look bad. I think I mentioned a few weeks back how, after several exchanges on YouTube with a teanut claiming “no one was spat upon” as members of the House filed in to vote on the Health Care Reform Bill, I finally shut my opponent down by “conceding”, “You’re right. You’ve convinced me that no tea bagger could be capable of such incivility right around the third time you called me a ‘lying, mother-f’ing, son-of-a-b!+ch’.”

I remember the Right-wing vitriol towards Bill Clinton from the day he took office (literally). He was already deemed “a pot-smoking draft dodger” (back before being a “drug-abusing draft dodger” became IOKIYAR) whose election was “illegitimate” due to receiving less than 50% of the vote (thanks to third-party candidate Ross Perot). But it was the FBI siege on the Branch Davidian “compound”, resulting in the accidental death (mass suicide?) of some 80 cult members including 20 children less than one month into Clinton’s presidency, that really kicked the militia movement into overdrive (I’ll spare you a recap of those 51 agonizing days), ending on April 19, 1993.

It was two years later in 1995 when a militant Davidian-sympathizer (who shall remain nameless) used the Waco siege as an excuse to bomb the “Murrah Federal Building” in Oklahoma City… home to one of two FBI headquarters responsible for the Waco siege in 1993 (the other in Dallas). The stated goal of this neo-nut was to trigger an armed rebellion by the people against the Federal Government. Just how do you get from “bombing a government building and killing scores of people” to “rallying support for an armed rebellion against the government”? The gameplan was laid out in a popular bit of anti-government paranoia-porn entitled “The Turner Diaries”, popular with the militia movement, where the government SO overreacts to an attack that they institute Martial Law and begin the oppression of ordinary citizens. The citizens then revolt to overthrow the government. These neo-nuts believed it was already happening… just not fast enough. So they decided to help things along by murdering 168 people including 20 children in a daycare center (20 children for 20 children? Coincidence? I’ll let you decide if they were deliberate targets or not.)

Today, the Militia movement is once again on the rise… fueled by both racism over the first black President, the “anti-Democrat” venom left over from the Clinton days, and a flood of corporate cash pumped into Conservative media (Right-wing radio, newspapers, and Fox “news”) spending hundreds of millions of dollars to convince “useful idiots” to work against their own best interests. The militia movement is simply a hyper-paranoid organized faction of the same anti-government hysteria feeding the teanuts. The proof that what I say is absolutely 100% right is the fact that everything these teanuts are decrying now took place on a far grander scale under President Bush (the deficit spending, the anti-Constitutional law breaking, infringement of civil liberties, economic collapse… and where were they? Oh yeah, calling us “unpatriotic” for not “supporting the president in a time of war”.)

If you have any doubt that the seething hatred and raw anger these people had for the Clinton Administration in the 1990’s was really as bad as described, I need only point out that TO THIS DAY, the Right STILL goes apoplectic at the sheer mention of the name “Clinton” (be it Bill or Hillary). Hell, these people still despise FDR, who died 20-30 years before most of them were even born. You’d think SOMEONE might have pointed out to these people that despite all the “end of the world”, “end of freedom”, “end to the American Way of Life” hysteria we heard from them going back decades… the country is still here. The greatest loss of “freedom”, “exploding deficits” and “massive expansion of government” came at the hands of their hero’s Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush… the latter of whom they are likewise unhappy with now, but for none of the reasons I just described. No, when teanuts are confronted with hard evidence of the failure of their politics, so deep is their denial, their natural instinct is to proclaim that person a member of the opposition… “Bush”, they now claim, “was a Liberal” (because he spent like Reagan). The Klansman at the Tea Party rally was “a Left-wing plant”, and profanity-spewing flame-throwers become enraged when accused of doing anything as “uncivil” as spitting upon a black Congressman.

Is the hysteria today as bad as it was in the 1990’s? Worse. Far worse, because we didn’t have the Right-wing media juggernaut that we have today ready to spend billions of dollars (now with approval from the Supreme Court) rallying already hysterical partisans into mainlining hate for breakfast, lunch & dinner. Do we need to fear another tragedy on April 19th? I expect not. The date no longer carry the same significance today that it did back then (not to mention it is Hitler’s birthday, and the teanuts have been trying… futilely… to disassociate themselves from the Obama=Nazi=Hitler crowd). But need we fear another slew of wingnuts flying planes into Federal Buildings or opening fire on the White House? You betcha!

(UPDATE: Crooks & Liars has a video from this weekends’ “Chris Matthews Show”, where they note the dramatic rise in the number of militia & hate groups since Obama was elected.)
 


 

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