I've commentated about Li'l Paul, who I've dubbed the KY "It-Boy", in several fora, mostly lambasting him for his mind-numbing Propertarian clap-trap and general incoherent babbling, but it's looking more and more (at least for the moment) that he actually might represent a Problem for The Powers That Be.
He's supposed to be a part of the Establishment like his Daddy. Oh, his designated role within that Establishment is to be on the Farthest Right Propertarian Fringe and to get the Cracker Vote all riled up and to appeal to some of the younger elements in the Propertarian/Libertarian firmament.
But he's journeyed off the reservation on the matter of the Civil Rights Act and apparently other things, and though he's apparently been provided with study material and the appropriate talking points -- "Moi? Why I support the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in its entirety; I can't imagine why you would think otherwise. Ha ha ha ha ha." -- I've got this sense about him that he may try to break free of his handlers, somewhat like Half-Term Sarah did, and go for something else again. Something even more populist... shall we say.
The fear of Rightist populism is completely justified given its blood-soaked history in the 20th Century -- and I'm not just talking about the Nazis.
Rightist populism has a long history in this country, too, not least in the South.
And this nitwit comes along and starts pumping it up again, after several decades of deflation.
"We've come to take the Government back." Not take the country back, you notice. That was Dr. Dean's theme, and some observers would say that Dean and the Deaniacs got pretty much what they wanted -- or at least what they were working for, whether they knew it or not -- with the capture of all three branches of Government by Democrats.
What a disappointment that's been. But that's another topic. One day I'll have to go into some of my experiences working on the Dean campaign, and how some of the same enthusiasm and personnel were transferred to the Obama campaign, as were some of the delusions. But not just yet.
"Take the Government back..." There's a lot of code-talk in the KY It-Boy's campaign designed to appeal to the fine upstanding Southern white boys who have felt their Government was taken from them by all these uppity darkies and wimmen, especially the darkie in the White House, but including dames like Mrs. Pelosi and the Always Arch She-Demon, Hillary.
So they're gonna send Ron Paul's nitwit son to sit in the Senate to git 'er done. Don't laugh. It could happen.
Nitwit though he may be, and with a birdsnest of curls on top of his very swelled head (h/t some commenter at FDL), Rand Paul strikes me as quite possibly the charismatic Rightwing Populist leader Half-term Sarah has been pretending to be on her road show. It's more than obvious that Half-term Sarah is in it for the money -- which she is making hand over fist -- just like Glenn Beck, the other potential RW Populist leader -- until the KY It-Boy came along.
Despite the fact that the Big Republican Leadership is trying to train up Li'l Paul to behave on the stump, it looks like this babbling boy is bucking the grownups and forging his own path. Half-term Sarah was apparently purchasable for hard cash, but I'm not at all sure Rand Paul can be bought. And if he can't be, Katie Bar the Door. He's got an immense ego, and he's already let his primary victory swell his curly haired head up so much he can't even get it through ordinary doors anymore.
If he continues to try to rally the reactionary Crackers -- which he's doing with every teevee appearance -- it's possible the Government will have (another) BIG problem on its hands.
The Arizona Thing was kind of a harbinger, along with the huge amount of public approval Arizona's pissant reactionary behavior is garnering.
We're going down a path we've been down before, and it's one that doesn't end happy.
Here's Rachel asking some questions of America:
But I think she's being somewhat disingenuous. The little Cracker twerp has backflipped and backtracked all over the place for the last 24/36 hours over the "Civil Rights" Thing -- scare quotes intentional -- and in the process has managed to convince a portion of the Big Media that the Controversy is meaningless, a tempest in a teapot, he's just a Normal Guy who wants to be Free, come on, anyway.
And of course plenty of his partisans and flacks, who believe as he does on the larger question of the Sacredness of Property Rights (as opposed to Human Rights), are styling him as Perfectly Normal as well. The "Civil Rights" Thing being long settled. You see.
Rachel touches on it toward the end of her soliloquy, but it is in a very arch and abstract way, laying out "questions" issue-by-issue, just barely relating them to the whole, ie: the Libertarian World View.
But it is really more fundamental than that.
Is it the Right to and in Private Property more important to Americans in the 21st Century than Human Rights?
Should interest in Property trump every other interest at all in the law?
Should the acquisition, holding, and defense of Property be the central focus of American society, law and custom?
Does the Constitution protect and defend Property at the expense of all other rights and interests?
When the questions are asked this way, the inherent dangers of Pauliac Propertarianism to all other rights and interests takes on focus. Its fundamental anti-Constitutionalism, and the impossibility of Constitutional Self-Government under Pauliac Propertarian law is revealed.
So long as the focus remains on the "Civil Rights" Thing, the danger that Propertarianism represents to all mankind is masked. ("Of course I believe in Civil Rights! Heh.") Of course. And if those civil rights -- and the concept of Human Rights -- are trumped by Property Rights... oh well!
Furthermore: The process of "opening the discussion" of the Civil Rights Act and the Public Accommodations provisions reminds me a whole lot of the means by which the issue of torture was put in the Public Square when time was, and how, over the course of the "rational discussion" that ensued, and the careful weighing of the pros and cons, the ethical and moral "dilemmas", and all the practical considerations -- along with plenty of field practice -- it was determined that the public was actually split on the issue, and while the Obama White House promptly prohibited "torture" -- which wasn't going on anyway according to the Cheneys -- everyone expects it's still going on. And few care.
Transfer that same process to key civil rights issues, whether focused on accommodation or otherwise. We've already seen what's happened with the Arizona law requiring you to produce your papers. Americans by and large are all in favor. Well, if the civil rights and accommodation issues are "aired thoroughly" -- as they will be as long as people keep yapping about Rand Paul's outrageousness -- we'll find, surprisingly enough, that the Public is "split" on the issue.
And won't that enable justification for ignoring the laws?