The Crazies have been part of the national Discussion post nauseum. Everyone but the Crazies are sick of the Crazies. Everyone is sick of the debate, the circus.
Why don’t the Crazies get it? Because they have their own world. They have their own media, their own talking points, their own Facebook pages, and their own little re-enforcement. They can tell each other. All government is bad. Raising the debt limit is no big deal. We need to stand firm, shake ’em up and kick the sh** out of them.
When the debt limit issue subsides, the Crazies might be wounded (one can only hope), and the Republican party might be fractured, but this mentality will somehow remain.
If you say anything enough, and hear nothing else, it all becomes true, and you become like a cult; within which there are prophets, the rest of the world is not to be trusted. I do not make this analogy lightheartedly. After all, the Tea Party has a strong basis in conservative evangelical Christianity.
Religion is a trump card to anything. Since it deals literally with the supernatural, rationality is by definition at odds with it. Who can argue with somebody’s revelation? If I were a serious atheist, you can guess where this would lead. I am not, though, and it’s going a little different direction.
“Jesus, we just pray to you will lead all true Americans to vote for this candidate. We pray they all may believe in this public policy.” Religion allows one to head way off the deep end, and Lord knows, we’ve heard stories of how wacko some of these groups are. I say the Crazies (the Tea Party) are approaching this status. Some of them say, “Jesus is coming soon, so none of this matters.”
Most of us are not so out there, we carry some semblance of faith, and we feel like we have common sense. I missed the talk shows, went to church today. Mainstream churches have shrunk because they are not as entertaining, not as emotionally hyped and convicting. Can you tell I attend a mainstream church? The outrage media on the air, the internet, and in some places of worship can pull people in and hook them. There, they can say anything they want to the captivated audience, creating their own culture, their own revenue stream. All based on good intentions, at least at the surface.
Crazies adopt and corrupt a lot of mainstream terminology; they are the True Patriots, Excellence in Broadcasting, Fair and Balanced. They have their wordsmiths: Class Warfare, Birth certificate, Pro-Life, Family Values, Death Tax, Death Panels, etc.
Common Sense (the name for Tom Paine’s pamphlet, which he got from Benjamin Rush, replacing the working title of Plain Truth) has been claimed by revolutionaries, normal grandparents, and people who wear jackets on cold days since propoganda was invented. Language is a tool, full of subtleties and underhanded purposes. Just talk with a southerner who begins a comment with “Oh, bless her heart…”
Good ole boy networks, ginormous companies with lobbyists, payola, freewheeling “truth” tellers; who shall we trust? Well, never sell your soul, to anyone, Mr. Webster.
We can allow rationality to guide our decisions. We can take seriously the via media, which in this case translates well to the Mainstream Media. We should trust our crap detectors, and recognize the fringe. Turn off the Crazy talk shows, void of actual journalism. Let market forces reduce the right wing media to its three remaining diehard fans.
The Crazies have swelled, in a swing reaction to a democratic president, albeit one who is fairly moderate and shows a penchant for rationalism and political calculation. It would seem the public debate in general has moved to the right.
What is ahead, I believe, is the aftermath. The leaders of the Crazies will have their oddities and corruption exposed. The forecasted economic consequences (at least many of them) will come to pass. Perhaps we will see a swing to the left. Perhaps we will see a moderation.