Thursday, October 06, 2011

GOP Values on Display

The invasion of the presidential candidates has begun. The media is crafting the narrative they prefer, and the debates are in full swing. Silly season is upon us, here in the first in the nation primary state. Since the primary contest is only on the Republican side, the values of today’s GOP are on full display.

Thus far, the majority of candidate town hall meetings have taken place in Rockingham County – the area of our state that gives lie to the GOP myth of “liberals from Massachusetts moving to NH.” Rockingham County is full of angry Republican imports from the state just south of us. Many of them move here to run for office, to ensure that NH continues to be a state that chooses not to fund infrastructure or education. Republicans really hate education. A good education decreases the likelihood that the recipient will vote GOP.

The televised debates have not only been good theater, they’ve been a remarkable illustration of GOP values. During the first full debate (with all of the media anointed candidates), Brian Wallace asked Governor Rick Perry about the execution conveyor belt in Texas. When he stated that Perry had presided over 234 executions during his time in office, the crowd cheered. Yay death! Williams asked Perry if he ever “struggled to sleep at night” over the possibility of executing an innocent person. Perry, of course, said no. Sociopaths don’t experience empathy.

In the second full debate (sponsored by the Tea Party Express), Congressman Ron Paul was asked a hypothetical question about whether a man with no health insurance should be allowed to die, and again, the crowd cheered the death of this uninsured man. Ron Paul, a doctor, mumbled something about letting the churches pay for the guy’s care – which essentially means letting the guy die. Paul should know. Kent Snyder persuaded Ron Paul to run for president in 2007, and became his campaign chairman. In 2008, the 49-year-old Snyder died of pneumonia. He had no health insurance. His mother was given the $400,000 bill. No church came forward to pick up the tab.

During the most recent debate, people who had been videotaped in advance asked some questions. Candidate Rick Santorum was presented with a question on the repeal of the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy. An openly gay Marine currently serving in Iraq asked the question. The audience booed the gay soldier. Chickenhawk Santorum never even acknowledged or thanked this Marine for his service. Not a one of the candidates mentioned the utter inappropriateness of the audience booing a soldier. The next day a few campaigns tried to repair their image by speaking up, but it was too late by then. This is today’s Republican Party, booing a gay soldier, even as he serves his country. Gone are the days of the yellow ribbons and blustering commentary about “supporting our troops.”

That incident has come home to roost in the form of NH State Representative Al Baldasaro, a supporter of candidate Rick Perry. Baldasaro was caught on video saying that he thought the booing of the gay soldier was great. In an interview with Scott Keyes, of Think Progress, Baldasaro said, “ I was so disgusted over that gay marine coming out, because when he came out of the closet. Bob won’t say it because they’re scared to get in trouble, but their brothers and sisters – brothers especially- that are there, they’ll start getting away from him. They’ll start ignoring him. He doesn’t realize it, but when the shit hits the fan, you want your brothers covering your back, not looking at your back.”

Al Baldasaro is a former Marine. In fact, he’s the kind of veteran that feels compelled to mention his service at least once every 15 minutes or so. This is today’s GOP. A former Marine cheering the booing of one of his own, while the man serves in Iraq. Baldasaro is one of NH’s most outspoken elected homophobes, having testified at a committee hearing last winter that the state of NH sells babies to gay couples. He was later forced to retract that lie. Baldasaro is the chairman of the House State-Federal & Veterans Affairs Committee. Yep. Veterans Affairs. Rep. Baldasaro should be forced to resign immediately, but of course, he won’t be. Today’s GOP is in agreement with Baldasaro’s disgusting comments about a gay man serving his country. Not a peep out of Jeb Bradley or Bill O’Brien. Barely a peep out of the complicit NH media. The only paper that has even mentioned it so far is the Nashua Telegraph.

If we add Baldasaro’s commentary to Ray Shakir’s national publicity garnered by referring to our president as “a jungle alien,” we can certainly see the sort of shamelessness that is a characteristic of today’s GOP. I would be remiss if I failed to remark upon the recent cease and desist letter that the state AG’s office sent to Maynard Thomson and the Carroll County Republican Party. It seems that under the stewardship of romance novelist Thomson, the Carroll County GOP failed to properly report, itemize, and provide receipts for their expenditures during the 2010 campaign. It seems that some expenditures went on Chairman Thomson’s own personal credit card. According to the AG’s letter (which I have a copy of), the report that was submitted just lumped everything together as one big expense, without itemizing. From the letter: “Your conscious decisions to fail to report the committee’s expenditures for political advertisements until after the General Election and to lump them together with the committee’s cable bill violates RSA 664:6.”

Remember the good old days when politicians at least attempted to present a public fa├žade that they weren’t crooks and charlatans? It’s enough to make one long for those halcyon days of Richard Nixon.

“Well, I screwed it up real good, didn't I?” Richard M. Nixon

published as an op-ed in the 10-7-11 edition of the Conway Daily Sun

© sbruce 2011


DissedBelief said...

I haven't seen this article in the Sun yet Susan, but "due to space" they probably won't publish the great photo that appears here. Regardless, the right wingnut letters that have appeared of late in the Sun will no doubt have all sorts of valueless comebacks to the truth. Their hypocrisy doesn't explain away how their "Christian values" express so much hate and intolerance. Since Perry's statements and photos of him toting and tooting a gun, my acquaintances no longer have defenses against my "Broerderbond apartheid regime" commentaries. The rock on Perry's hunting estate with the words
"N--gerland" certainly doesn't negate apartheid. The proof lies in their hateful words and deeds and the cheering and jeering of their disgusting supporters. This is where we have arrived. Loose Change, Hacking Democracy, American Blackout and a multitude of other indepth and outstanding documentaries are only touching one small sharp edge. What the rest of us have to start coming to grips with, is the fact that we are one nation, totally divided. We have entered the hate season, that reads very much like the period before the civil war. Perhaps, after tiring of waging wars everywhere else, we are going to have to focus on the fact that until we comes to terms with what is happening right here, Americans can't fix anyone else. Welcome to the broken nation.

Anonymous said...

As long as you keep the blinders on you won't be able to see the end of the world you've brought upon yourself.

Selective typing to fit your narrative of casting Ron Paul in a bad light only shows you as a partisan that will do anything to get your way no matter what the cost. And in this case, the cost is the bankruptcy of the nation.

Dr. Paul said "No." Firmly and he said it. Oh by the way, the hypothetical statement was the coma guy chose not to get health care.

Hey, news flash. Actions have consequences.

Your ghoulish use of Mr. Snyders death is sick. Let me ask you. How does a person with no health insurance rack up a $400k tab? By getting healthcare. Also, pneumonia is a virus and there is no cure. Finally, the pneumonia was a secondary infection of the real cause from that no one on earth would qualify for any type of health insurance.

You need to take a long hard look in the mirror. After that get out your check book and start writing them magic unicorn checks you think you own to pay for all the stuff you fantastically think is everyone’s right. Sans that, find your closest socialist commune and move there.


susanthe said...

Anonymous: It's amusing that someone deluded enough to be a Paulbearer is aiming ugly accusations at me.

Snyder would not have died if he'd had health insurance. There is no reason for a reasonably young, healthy, person to die of pneumonia unless they put off getting care, because they can't afford it, because they have no insurance. Clearly Ron Paul didn't offer insurance benefits to the people who worked on his campaign. That ain't ghoulish sparky, that's life in the real world. Mr. Snyder could not seem to pull himself up by his bootstraps and get well.

Of course the final response from all of you dolts is "find someplace else to live." More than anything, fascists hate the dissent that is enshrined in the Constitution that you all pretend to love so much.

Here's a thought: why don't all you gummint hating, bootstrap loving, sociopaths move to Somalia? No gummint interference there.

DissedBelief said...

The response posted here by Anonymous is most reminiscent of the apartheid regimes responses which were also, "move to a Socialist Commune. I suggest Greece to be another country for Paulbearers to consider moving to. Greeks hated to pay taxes so much there, the govt. was completely incapable of collecting taxes, and satisfying the demands of the population for good roads, services and everything else that comes from living in a country NOT like Somalia. I'd like to see all Paulbearers give up their SS, Medicare and all other reduced price services for their elderly since these are "socialist" "communal" services paid for by SOMEONE in the country. No blinders here and no mud slinging, bad language, ugly hateful spiteful and intolerant words. Just facts spoken gently the Christian way.