Relentless Projection Has Not Just Trump But Garden Variety MAGAs Accusing Normal People Of Doing What They Are Actually Doing
Dave Weigel is back— and last night he reported that “In both swing states and safe seats, GOP candidates say that liberals hate them personally and may turn rioters or a police state on people who disobey them.” Kind of bizarro-world, right? But MAGA World has always been bizarro world; it was always meant to be so… how else go a vile pile of sticking diarrhea with a hairpiece ever wind up in the Oval Office? He drew his moron followers right into cube shaped Htrae. “Us hate beauty! Us love ugliness! Is big crime to make anything perfect on Bizarro World!"
Earlier this week, we looked at the most insane far right lunatics running vanity races in Maryland. And the worst of the lot— who has since won his primary and is now the GOP candidate for Attorney General— is Michael Peroutka, a pro-secession Christian nationalist who believes public education is a communist plot, abortion and gay marriage violate God's law, and the concept of separation of church and state is a “great lie” and claims that American leaders must “take a biblical worldview and apply it to civil law and government.” Peroutka beat the Republican establishment candidate, Jim Shalleck, 125,609 (56.2%) to 97,940 (43.8%), taking all but 4 of Maryland’s 24 counties. I should also mention that another crackpot, Dan Cox, won the Republican gubernatorial nomination, again beating the Republican establishment candidate, Kelly Schultz, 143,256 (53.8%) to 111,882 (42.0%). Cox only lost 3 counties; like I said, he’s a whack job, but not as much so as Peroutka. Both are MAGA candidates. And so are most Maryland Republican primary voters. Poor Larry Hogan!
Weigel began his post by recounting a pre-primary dinner with Peroutka in Rockville imagining “how a foreign enemy might attack America. ‘We would expect them to make our borders porous,’ Peroutka told the crowd, which had come to hear the Republicans running for state attorney general. ‘We would expect them to make our cities unsafe places to live. We would expect them to try to ruin our economy.’ The country was ‘at war,’ he explained, ‘and the enemy has co-opted members and agencies and agents of our government.’” Peroutka and Cox, he wrote, both describe “a country that was not merely in trouble, but being destroyed by leaders who despise most Americans— effectively part of a civil war… Referring to the coronavirus and 2020 protests over police brutality, Cox told supporters at a rally last month, ‘We were told 14 days to bend the curve, and yet antifa was allowed to burn our police cars in the streets.’ He continued: ‘Do you really think, with what we’re seeing— with the riots that have happened— that we should not have something to defend our families with? This is why we have the Second Amendment.’”
The rhetoric is bracing, if not entirely new. Liberal commentators made liberal use of the word “fascism” to describe Trump’s presidency. The baseless theory that President Barack Obama was undermining American power as a foreign agent was popular with some Republicans, including Trump, who succeeded Obama in the White House.
Many Democrats saw the backlash to Obama as specific to his race, and saw Biden as unlikely to inspire mass opposition to Trump in the presidential election. But many Republicans also portray Biden as a malevolent figure— a vessel for a hateful leftist campaign to weaken America.
“It’s purposeful,” said former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, who is running in next month’s special election for the state’s sole House seat, in an interview with former Trump adviser Stephen Bannon. “It’s all about the fundamental transformation of America. You only fundamentally transform something for which you have disdain.”
That argument has been dramatized in ads that, for instance, show one armed candidate appearing to charge into the home of a political enemy, and another warning of “the mob” that threatens ordinary Americans. In many cases the candidates are brandishing firearms while threatening harm to liberals or other enemies.
In central Florida, U.S. Army veteran Cory Mills has run ads about his company selling tear gas that was used to quell riots in 2020. “You may have seen some of our work,” he says, introducing a montage of what are labeled “antifa,” “radical left” and “Black Lives Matter” protesters running from the gas.
In northwest Ohio, a campaign video for Republican congressional nominee J.R. Majewski shows him walking through a dilapidated factory, holding a semiautomatic weapon, warning that Democrats will “destroy our economy” with purposefully bad policies.
“Their agenda is bringing America to its knees, and I am willing to do whatever it takes,” says Majewski, who’s seeking a House seat in a district around Toledo that has been redrawn to make Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) beatable. “If I have to kick down doors, that’s just what patriots do.”
In Missouri, Republican Senate candidate Eric Greitens has issued two ads this summer in which he holds or fires weapons, vowing to go “RINO hunting”— for “Republicans in name only”— in one ad and targeting the “political establishment” in the second.
Dreading deep losses in November, some Democrats have spent money to help Republican candidates who talk this way under the theory that they will be easier to beat in November. The Democratic Governors Association spent more than $1.1 million on positive ads for Cox, as he was telling voters that they might one day have to battle antifa with their own weapons.
Candidates like Majewski, however, have won with no assistance from Democrats, aided instead by high turnout and grass-roots energy. The idea that the Biden administration’s policies are designed to fail— to raise gas prices, or increase the cost of food— is a popular campaign theme.
Pollsters have found that Americans are worried about the country sticking together; a YouGov poll released last month had a majority of both Democrats and Republicans agreeing that America would one day “cease to be a democracy.”
…The arrests of hundreds of rioters who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, has frequently been cited by Republican candidates as proof of a government war on its people.
In early July, at a town hall meeting in southwest Washington state, Republican congressional hopeful Joe Kent [a fascist] told his audience that the “phony riot” on Jan. 6 was being “weaponized against anybody who dissents against what the government is telling us,” from parents angry about public school education to people who had questioned the outcome of the 2020 election.
“These are the types of tactics that I would see in Third World countries when I was serving overseas,” Kent told the crowd gathered in a gazebo in Rochester, a town currently represented by Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA). “You’d see the Praetorian Guard or the intelligence services grab the opposition and throw them in the dungeons. I never thought I’d see that in America.”
Trump himself has frequently accused President Biden of trying to ruin the country and create conflict to maintain power.
“Joe Biden helped lead his party’s vile campaign against our police officers, and then he carried the rioters’ agenda straight into the White House,” Trump told supporters at a rally in Las Vegas last month, joined by Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo, the GOP nominee for governor. “The streets are flowing with the blood of innocent crime victims.”
…“Radical liberals are behaving like terrorists, calling for a summer of rage,” says a narrator in a new ad from Catholic Vote, a conservative group spending $3 million this month to target vulnerable Democratic members of the House. “An assassination attempt on a Supreme Court justice. Domestic terrorists calling it ‘open season.’ ”
Several have echoed Vance, the Hillbilly Elegy author, who has argued that the rise in fentanyl deaths looks like an “intentional” result of the Biden administration’s border policies— a way for an unpopular president to “punish the people who didn’t vote for him.”
The argument is not just that Democrats disagree with conservatives, but that they despise them and hurt them on purpose. This past week, after a man attacked Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) at a rally for his gubernatorial campaign, Biden and Vice President Harris condemned the violence, as did Gov. Kathy Hochul (D).
But local Republicans suggested that Democrats had effectively encouraged the attack, pointing to a Democratic news release about the rally “encouraging people to stalk” the candidate, according to one GOP county executive. Although the district attorney who let the attacker out of jail was a Zeldin supporter, the candidate and his party argued that Democratic bail overhauls, passed in 2019, had let the attacker off scot-free.
“If you love America, they hate you,” says Jim Pillen, the Republican nominee for governor of Nebraska, in one TV spot. “If you support the police, they call you racist.”
Which reminds me of another MAGA hero, polymorphous pervert and sex trafficker Matt Gaetz, from Florida’s lovely panhandle. Saturday, he spoke at Neo-Nazi Charlie Kirk’s Student Action Summit in Tampa, along with insurrectionist Senator Ted Cruz and Josh “the runner” Hawley, Laura Ingraham, James O’Keefe, Jack Posobiec and other assorted psychopaths from the fringes. Gaetz grabbed the headlines when he read a little standup routine someone wrote for him first about Hunter Biden and then about women protesting the abortion ban. “Why is it that the women with the least likelihood of getting pregnant are the ones most worried about having abortions? Nobody wants to impregnate you if you look like a thumb. These people are odious on the inside and out. They're like 5'2, 350 pounds and they're like 'give me my abortions or I'll get up and march and protest' and I'm thinking: 'March?’ You look like you got ankles weaker than the legal reasoning behind Roe vs Wade. A few of them need to get up and march. They need to get up and march for like an hour a day, swing those arms, get the blood pumping, maybe mix in a salad.”