Nevada victor Sharron Angle dips into right-wing extremist pool
Harry Reid must be ecstatic right now. It might have been easy enough to beat the always hilarious Sue “Can I trade three chickens for my root canal?” Lowden, but the outcome of the Republican primary in Nevada supplies Reid with an even crazier opponent: Tea Party sweetheart Sharron Angle.
Angle is somewhat of an unknown, but the glimpses I’ve seen of her ideologies are incoherent, at best.
“My greatest problem with marijuana is that it’s illegal, which gives Nevadans a false sense of security in this whole thing. If the DEA has the manpower and wanted to go after this, there is no place in Nevada state law that can protect people because federal law supersedes state law. I would tell you that I have the same feelings about legalizing marijuana, not medical marijuana, but just legalizing marijuana. I feel the same about legalizing alcohol. The effect on society is so great that I’m just not a real proponent of legalizing any drug or encouraging any drug abuse. I’m elected by the people to protect, and I think that law should protect.”
I will give anyone who can tell me what the fuck this means a shiny nickel. Here is the best I can translate: Alcohol, which is legal, should be treated like marijuana, which is illegal(?) I’ve heard lots of good arguments for decriminalizing marijuana, and some — at least coherent — arguments against decriminalizing it, but it takes a special breed of bad politician to advocate outlawing alcohol again.
At her worst, Angle has been known to dip into the right-wing extremist fringe.
Back in April, Angle told TPMDC she was a member of the Oath Keepers at a press gaggle in Washington. On Monday, we decided to call Angle’s campaign to confirm her relationship to the group. Angle’s husband, Ted, picked up the phone.
“We support what the organization stands for,” he told us. “Sharron does.”
The Oath Keepers are a right-wing extremist group composed of law enforcement officers, military personnel, and veterans, which disguises its frequently illegal behavior as the acts of “patriots” who say “Not on our watch!” to the changing of “their America” that “they want back.”
The group’s hallmark is paranoid conspiracy theories, included in their 10-item declaration. For example, they claim they will not “force citizens into detention camps.” Ya’ know, like the detention camps included in President Obama’s plans to turn Uhmuhricka (phonetically spelled for my teabagger readers) into a Socialist Muslim paradise.
…. Angle’s relationship with Oath Keepers hasn’t been on the media radar, but she made a little-noticed attempt to woo the group’s members at a speaking event last fall, Rhodes told TPMDC Monday.
Rhodes said the event with Angle was organized after she reached out to the Southern Nevada chapter of Oath Keepers. It was held in a clubhouse in Las Vegas. She spoke and “we asked her some pretty tough questions” — about Hurricane Katrina, gun laws, and the Iraq War, says Rhodes.
“She’s got a pretty good track record of being a pretty sincere Constitutionalist,” Rhodes tells TPMDC, adding that Oath Keepers does not endorse candidates.
The Oath Keepers have an extremely radical history, which can only be ignored by a media that has convinced itself that acts of terrorism can only be committed by brown foreigners.
For example, there’s Oath Keeper Matthew Fairfield, a suburban Cleveland man who has been sitting in jail since April as he awaits trial on 54 criminal counts related to his alleged storing of a live napalm bomb at his home in addition to keeping explosives at a friend’s home in Cleveland.
But Fairfield is just the tip of the crazy, crazy iceberg. Early last month, a Georgia Oath Keeper was arrested for allegedly plotting to take control of a Madisonville, Tenn. courthouse and place two dozen federal, state, and local officials under “citizen’s arrest.”
Then there’s Charles Dyer, another self-described Oath Keeper, who was arrested in January for the alleged rape and forcible sodomy of a 7-year-old child, and for possessing a grenade launcher that had been stolen from a California military base in 2006. (Dyer was acquitted on the federal weapons charge, but the sexual abuse charges are pending).
Meanwhile, it has been documented that some Oath Keepers are active duty soldiers.
Let’s engage in a little mental exercise, shall we? Let’s pretend that an extremist Muslim group is recruiting in America, and the police have arrested several members. One of its members stored a live napalm bomb in his home. Another plotted to take control of a courthouse, and “arrest” dozens of federal, state, and local officers. Yet another member rapes a child. Some members of this group have infiltrated law enforcement and the military. Then, Sharron Angle meets with this terrorist organization. Do you think the media’s reaction would be significantly different in this hypothetical situation?
So continues the two-tier media handling of terrorist acts. If a brown foreigny-looking fella fails to blow up a van in Times Square, or another can’t ignite his underwear, media players will tear out their hair and wail about foreign baddies for months, but they usually avoid the topic of domestic terrorism entirely.
That’s probably because they don’t even call domestic terrorism, terrorism. Newsweek may have been the media player that got busted for publicly airing this two-tiered approach, but this is really the media’s worst kept secret.
Only foreign people commit terrorism. Domestic acts of terrorism are something unique because Americans are unique. The brave patriots that commit these attacks are survivalists, or lone wolves. Something sexy. When a politician mingles with these rogues, she too is a maverick, or a Constitutionalist. She is to be applauded for her non-Beltway behavior.
And you’d better believe this standard only works for politicians supporting right-wing extremist groups. I don’t even know what the lefty version of the Oath Keepers is. I cringe when people call the Truther movement a “left-wing” thing, simply because no rational person wants to own a hot mess of a conspiratorial movement. But let’s just say, for the sake of argument, a Democrat showed up to a Truther meeting and expressed support for their cause. How would the media react?
If you used the words “crucify,” or “dismember,” you’re right, and as far as I know, no Truther has ever been arrested for storing napalm bombs.