Obama is a Nazi. Obama is a commie. Obama is a pirate. (Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum.) Obama is a socialist. Obama is the Joker from The Dark Night. (You know, Heath Ledger) Yadda-yadda-yadda.
Such was the refrain from the tea party-animals at the Arizona State Capitol this Saturday, which featured a panel of politicos, such as gubernatorial hopeful and State Treasurer Dean Martin, state Senator Russell Pearce, state Representative Carl Seel, state Senator Jack Harper, and state Senator John Huppenthal.
Actually, the politicians weren't going quite that far, but the anti-Obama rabble certainly was.
But before I wade into the river of wackiness, I should relate that as the crowd began to break up, I buttonholed Senator Pearce to ask him about the Phoenix Business Journal's latest report saying that he'd run for Sheriff of Maricopa County if Arpaio decided to run for governor against Jan Brewer in the 2010 Republican primary.PBJ's Mike Sunnucks has been pushing the notion pretty hard, and I have my reasons for believing it will not happen, as I laid out in a previous blog post.
Interestingly, Pearce agreed with me, and poo-poohed the prospect of Arpaio pursuing the GOP nomination next year.
"He's not going to run for governor," Pearce said, flatly, adding, "Joe Arpaio loves being the sheriff. He's gonna run [for sheriff] till I suspect he can't run anymore. As long as he wants to run, I'll support him."
I asked Pearce if was eyeing any other office. He said, no, that he planned to stay in the state Senate.
"I want a good governor," he explained, "but I don't want to be governor."
He said that he and Dean Martin were close, but that he was not saying who he would support at this time. I also asked Pearce, tongue in cheek, if he and his fellow Republicans were so anti-government, as they were saying during their panel discussion earlier, why didn't they give back their legislative salaries and do the job for gratis? After all, they are taking money from the government. Which is supposed to be bad, from a right-wing POV, right?
"I'm full time," he asserted, "unlike some who are part-time. I'm down here almost every day, or I'm engaged every day. I have no other job but defending the liberties of the people I represent."
Can someone cue Lee Greenwood yodeling God Bless the U.S.A.?
Nearby was state Representative Carl Seel, so I strolled over and asked Seel about his support for minuteman Chris Simcox against U.S. Senator John McCain in the 2010 GOP primary, despite Simcox's conviction on a federal gun charge in 2004.
"I find it interesting," said Seel, "that the federal government seemed to not be able to find an illegal alien crossing the border, but they seem to know where Chris is when he steps into a national park with his firearm."
Um, good dodge, Representative, but Simcox was guilty, I observed.
"You'd have to ask him about the details," Seel stated.
Seel confirmed that he's a member of MCDC, Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, Simcox's former group. (Simcox stepped down from MCDC leadership this year to challenge McCain.) When I mentioned that a lot of minutemen hate Simcox, and have defected from his MCDC due to alleged financial improprieties, Seel once more referred me to Simcox.
What about the fact that Carmen Mercer, the current CEO and president of MCDC, is reportedly under investigation by the state Attorney General's office for an alleged property tax scam? Seel said he knows noth-ink, noth-ink.
As for the rest of the tea party, it was quieter and smaller than the big April 15 shin-dig, though there were plenty of befuddled boobs who didn't know the difference between Nazis and commies, and wanted to equate Obama with both.
Take the guy (he wouldn't give me his name) with the sign, "Stop the Obama Thugs," which featured a swastika in the Obama "O."
When I challenged the dude on the swastika, he gave me a really interesting "history" lesson.
"The Nazis were basically the front men for the communists," he informed me, adding, "The two of them went hand in hand. All the Nazis were, were communists with guns."
Where are these people snorting this b.s.? Is this what Glenn Beck's teaching them? I informed the fella that the Nazis fought the communists, and ruthlessly eliminated them during Hitler's rise to power. Nazi Germany and Stalinist Russia did form a non-aggression pact which lasted from 1939 till Germany invaded Russia in 1941, though ultimately Stalin was the U.S.'s ally against the Axis powers. He should ask the dead of the battle of Stalingrad how well the Nazis and the Communists got on with each other.
Also, elements of free market capitalism survived under Hitler's regime. In Stalin's Russia, "capitalists" were considered counterrevolutionary and criminal. But capitalists who towed the Nazi line and didn't buck Hitler's regime became quite prosperous -- often at the expense of the Jews and others who were robbed before being shipped to concentration camps, and who were used as slave labor.
Christ, I know reading is hard for many of you tea bag nitwits, but there's always the History Channel, folks, if picking up an encyclopedia makes your brain hurt.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Phoenix New Times's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Phoenix's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
There were also plenty of libertarians, 9/11 nutters and even Christopher "AR-15" Broughton, who was armed, but only with a pistol this time around. We had a civil conversation as I explained to Chris, whose Obama-hatin' Pastor Steven Anderson adores the King James Version of the Bible, that King James was bisexual, according to many historians, and likely preferred dudes over dames. Highly ironic, considering the fact that Anderson believes gays should be put to death for "sodomy."
Hey, don't blame him, he's just following what the Bible says. You know, the -- ahem -- King James Version.
Anyway, Broughton asked his Guy Fawkes-mask-bearin', video-takin' buddy "Morpheus" to take a pic of us together. I relented and threw up a peace sign. You never know, maybe they're less likely to shoot me now.
Morpheus gets points for representing his "9/11 was an inside job" wackiness on his sleeve earlier when the Republican panel was taking questions from the audience. When he asked them something about former state Sen. Karen Johnson and her 9/11 troofer insanity, the crowd booed the hell out of him and heckled him incessantly. I know the feeling Morpheus. Reminded me of my treatment at the hands of his fellow troofers during the 2007 9/11 Troof convention in Chandler. Ah, those were the days...