Conservative Texas radio host Michael Berry, who bravely took up for Ted Nugent earlier this week, took up for Gary Stein on Wednesday. Stein ignored repeated warnings from his chain of command to turn his Facebook profile into an anti-Obama tea party website.
In Berry’s world, this is further evidence of creeping Obama fascism. In the Marine Corps, it’s further evidence that sedition is still not acceptable in the ranks even when the president is a Democrat. Stein’s “other than honorable” discharge is richly deserved: he hated the President more than he loved his country. That puts him in the same category as Terry Lakin, the pathetic birther colonel discharged for refusing a lawful deployment order.
In fact, Stein, who suddenly has a new radio show, has embraced the United States Justice Foundation, a right wing agit-prop shop known for birther lawsuits. The AP did not include this information when they reported on his discharge, referring to USJF executive director Gary Kreep only as Stein’s attorney. The aptly-named Kreep is in fact one of the most widely-recognized birther “activists” in the nation.
It is bad enough that Michael Berry promotes this sort of drivel as a freedom movement. To really appreciate the depth of his design, however, one must look at some of his ensuing posts. Later that same day, Berry posted a three minute video of Congresswoman Yvette Clarke with the headline, “Yvette Clark: The Tea Party Is Racist, Crazy, And Ugly.”
That’s a thin-skinned take on the video, in which Clarke, an African American, refers to the infamous 2010 protest outside of Congress during passage of the Affordable Care Act:
They came up in the hundreds of thousands. So we couldn’t walk outside of our office without tripping over tea party members. And these were individuals that had no problem with racial epithets, they had no problem with cursing and spitting and everything else. They came to intimidate members out of passing the Affordable Care Act…They really just showed the ugliest sides of America that you can imagine.
All of which is true, of course, except for “hundreds of thousands;” it was only a few thousand. Tea partiers deny there is any racism in their movement, but the omnipresence of racist imagery and language and idiotic birther nonsense within tea party activism belies their denials.
This kind of overreaction from Berry is typical of right wing sophistry: outrage at the alleged insult negates the criticism, and prevents any fair-minded assessment of the Congresswoman’s larger point about the necessity of Democratic activism. Digby calls this “intellectual violence.” When in power, Republicans can defend Bush-era horrors; when in the minority, they project the image of jackbooted government thugs on Democrats.
It is only “big government tyranny” when they’re not in charge of it.
Yesterday, Berry linked to this story about Tamaria Epps, an African American woman arrested in Florida for disorderly conduct after allegedly shouting “F**k you nigger. You can’t tell me what to do. Obama owns this motherfu**er!” This choice of obscure local news is quite deliberate; the story Berry wants to tell is that violent black people are everywhere, and they all love Obama.
Later in the day, Berry posted a clip of Vice President Joe Biden’s remark at New York University Law School that President Obama “has a big stick.” Biden was of course invoking Theodore Roosevelt, and by name; but Mr. Berry accompanied the video with two clips from the film Blazing Saddles.
Of all the penis-based jokes available on YouTube, why would Berry choose ones that invoke interracial sex and phallic racial stereotypes? Perhaps the story he wants to tell is that Obama and his negro army are not just dangerous, but hypersexualized? It wouldn’t be the first time this particular disgusting meme had currency in the wingnutosphere.
Finally, Berry wrapped up his Thursday blogotubing with a link to The Daily Howler Caller‘s story about Judicial Watch’s cost estimates for the First Lady’s 2010 trip to Spain. Judicial Watch, you’ll remember, was famous for its conservative legal attacks on the Clinton White House.
This may seem like just another conservative hypocrisy — no one complained when Laura Bush went to Paris for the Spring, or the Bush family spent gobs of taxpayer dough in Africa, or flew home to Crawford in Air Force One several times a year — but in fact this meme enjoys a special place in right wing cosmology.
Not only are the Obamas installing tyranny, you see, but they’re all about taxpayer largesse for themselves and their evil negro army: food stamps, welfare, slavery reparations — wink wink, nudge nudge! — are all part of the redistribution scheme. Which is where racism gets sublimated into class war, because these are “moochers” and “parasites” on the “producers.”
In short, Mike Berry’s blog is no different from previous incarnations of the right wing paranoid reactionary clown show examined in this blog. What makes it frightening is that every major metropolitan area in the United States has at least one Mike Berry, usually more, pushing this garbage. Berry is just another Glenn Beck channeling fringe ideas into the mainstream. Too bad he’s not the only one.