• Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Subscribe
  • RSS

Cliven Bundy on Race

cliv4Not only does the headline-making rancher have unique  views on the nature of both grazing fees and the federal government, he has some positively retro (to use a kind word) views on race.

From the NYT:

“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” he said. Mr. Bundy recalled driving past a public-housing project in North Las Vegas, “and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids — and there is always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch — they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.

“And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?” he asked. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”

Emphasis mine.

Several thoughts spring to mind, in order of significance:

1.  It is ironic that he is concerned about government subsidies for the poor since he expects the federal government to subsidize his cattle ranching.

2.  Now that many on Fox News have so openly embraced Bundy’s cause, how will they deal with this?

3.  This is another example of a prominent figure supported by some on the right who turns out to have racist views.  Many politicians and commentators now have to figure out how to extricate themselves from this situation.  This reminded me of a recent piece by Michael Tomasky at The Daily BeastYou’re in Denial if You Think Steve Israel Is Wrong About GOP Racism, the subtitle of which states “Not a month goes by without a GOP racial gaffe, racist vitriol fills conservative websites’ comment sections, and the party refuses to take on the issue.”  So I guess this one for this month.

And no, Bundy is not a Republican official, but he is a registered Republican who has become a cause célèbre in some Republican circles.  At a minimum, these statements will be associated in the minds of many with the Republican Party and will further solidify what Representative Israel (D-NY) said on TV recently:  “to a significant extent, the Republican base does have elements that are animated by racism.”   Bundy and his allies are, without a doubt, part of that base.  And this a problem that the Republican Party, writ large, refuses to address.

I have considered the man to be a crank unworthy of support from the beginning, and have marveled at the many who have rallied to his cause. It will be interesting to see how much of the rallying continues.

There is more to say on this topic, no doubt, but I will stop here for the moment.

A side note in parting, if Bundy rejects the authority of the federal government, why all the American flags?

Source:  NYT.

Related Posts:

About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is Professor and Chair of Political Science at Troy University. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. He is the author of Voting Amid Violence: Electoral Democracy in Colombia and is currently working on a comparative study of the US to 29 other democracies. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging at PoliBlog since 2003. Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. Tillman says:

    A side note in parting, if Bundy rejects the authority of the federal government, why all the American flags?

    ’cause the flag is a sacred symbol of Americanness! It’s sacred, it’s not some secular symbol of earthly authority!

    I recall seeing a map once that showed where black populations lived in the United States, and I am constantly surprised to see so many racists outside the South. Like, a Montanan who didn’t like blacks would have no basis (fictional or otherwise) for that belief because next to no black people live in Montana. I don’t recall Nevada having a sizeable black population either. This dude’s story about driving past a project is probably, if true, the only “interaction” with black people’s he’s ever had.

    I mean, I get how you can be racist to a race you’ve never even seen, but it just seems inauthentic. I prefer authentic racism. I’m weird like that.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 24 Thumb down 1

  2. Mikey says:

    @Tillman:

    ’cause the flag is a sacred symbol of Americanness! It’s sacred, it’s not some secular symbol of earthly authority!

    I think it’s more the opinion that “the flag represents the nation, not the government,” as if the former could exist without the latter.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  3. LaMont says:

    LOL. Mr. Bundy is a walking contrdiction! I don’t think I’ve ever seen so much irony in my life. But much of this is what I’ve come to expect out of the seemingly “typical” conservative these days.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  4. Rob in CT says:

    If a devious liberal had decided to script an event in order to illustrate the worst tendencies of (part of*) the contemporary American Right, I’m not sure it could have been much better than this.

    * Like I said, part of. I know that the Right has split over Bundy, and many of the more level-headed types (and even Glenn Beck!) have avoided actually backing him. This is good, because his entire case is bullshit from top to bottom, and he turns out to be a nasty character to boot.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 27 Thumb down 0

  5. Tillman says:

    @Mikey: You say that, but then you get people liking pictures like this without irony.

    Your statement is the reasonable one, sir, and I have no problem with it. Mine, sadly, is probably the realistic one.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  6. KM says:

    Wow, a court-certified total mooch complaining other people are mooches? The Stupid is strong with this one…

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 0

  7. Jim Henley says:

    I’m so old I remember when the standard racist trope was poor black women having babies to collect welfare checks, not aborting them.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 28 Thumb down 0

  8. JoshB says:

    As the saying goes, when you lie with dogs, don’t be surprised when you wake up with fleas.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  9. Ken says:

    I’m shocked, shocked to find that sovereign teabagger hero Cliven Bundy is just another old school racist.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 0

  10. mantis says:

    What I learned from the right this week:

    If you are a racist, seditious lawbreaker who refuses to pay your bills, you are right to take up arms against the government to avoid the consequences. If you’re a Republican.

    If you aren’t a Republican and you’re accused of a crime, not only do you not deserve your constitutional right to legal counsel, but any attorney who provides it is evil and unfit for public service.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 68 Thumb down 1

  11. stonetools says:

    Jeet Heer tweeted:

    Jeet Heer‏@HeerJeet·7h
    “How is it that we hear the loudest yelps for liberty among the drivers of negroes?” Samuel Johnson in 1775. Still a good question

    Anyone? Bueller?

    Think of the flop sweat streaming off Hannity and the Fox News higher ups this morning…

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 1

  12. Scott says:

    Everytime I see these idiots (yes, Tillman, I know they’re idiots) waving the flag pretending they are the patriots in these situations, I just see red. They are not patriots, they demonstrate a fundamental misunderstanding of what this country is about, and they need to be call out at every instance.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  13. Michael B says:

    @Tillman:

    For the love of things that truly are sacred, the American flag is not sacred. At all.

    At all.

    Unless what is meant by sacred is “honorable.” Which is fine, but not the same thing as sacred.

    The flag a symbol of a people, a nation, a country, and, yes, some of the ideals that animate those people.

    It ain’t sacred any more than the Union Jack is sacred.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  14. Michael B says:

    @Tillman:

    I’m thinking now I may have missed some irony in your first statement?

    If so, my bad.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  15. C. Clavin says:

    You can’t even make up how deep Fox News and Rand Paul and others have stepped in it by defending this guys “right” to steal from the rest of us.

    I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro

    Hilarious…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 1

  16. James Pearce says:

    ” Now that many on Fox News have so openly embraced Bundy’s cause, how will they deal with this?”

    Well, if Bundy didn’t have these views, which –let’s face it– fall under a certain ideological penumbra, the Fox News crowd wouldn’t have rallied to his cause.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 3

  17. Hal_10000 says:

    They abort their young children

    Well, which is it, Cliven? Do they abort their children? Or do they spawn a huge welfare brood? I’m so confused as to what racist crap I’m supposed to believe this week.

    I understand why some factions of the GOP have rallied to this guy. This federal government does own a huge amount of land out west and has a long history of conflicts with ranchers and other people trying to make a living. THAT is a genuine issue. But with every word this guy says, it becomes clear that they could not have picked a worse vessel for this issue than Cliven Bundy. Good grief.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 1

  18. Matt Bernius says:

    @StevenTaylor wrote:

    Bundy and his allies are, without a doubt, part of that base. And this a problem that the Republican Party, writ large, refuses to address.

    Actually, the party is addressing them in so much as individuals at all levels are spending lots of time explaining how these comments aren’t *really* racist. Which usually quickly segues into suggesting that people who reads them as racist are projecting their own inherent racism onto the comments.

    I expect that pretty soon we’re going to learn that to our shock, Mr. Bundy has *strong* views on Mexicans and Illegal Immigrants as well.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 0

  19. CB says:

    You guys are all a bunch of racist race baiters. Playing the race card this way is shameful.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 11 Thumb down 15

  20. C. Clavin says:

    Private grazing fees run around $15 per animal/month. The fee for grazing on public land is $1.35 per animal/month. That’s a 91% discount…and yet this guy still owes us over $1M.
    In what bizarro-world is that even defensible in any way?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 1

  21. michael reynolds says:

    Stop looking for intellectual consistency in people who are driven solely by emotions of rage, self-pity, fear and hate. In other words, Republicans. This is the Tea Party. Some are more socialized and manage to hide their nastiness, some are incapable of that much discipline.

    Remember back when Doug Mataconis was telling us how absurd the Occupy people were, and how genuine the Tea Party folks were?

    Well, the whole country is talking about economic inequality, thanks in large part to Occupy. And we’ve seen the true nature of the Tea Party. A nature that was instantly obvious, but which conservatives and libertarians are apparently still being surprised by.

    I said it when these aszholes first appeared. It was not hard to see. It was as OBVIOUS as writing in all-caps. Stop looking at people’s sanitized official statements and look at their motivation. You’ll understand a whole lot more. Watch motivation and character, and listen closely to the phrases and words they carefully avoid, not just to what they say, but what they don’t say. There’s nothing like white space to tell you what someone really thinks.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 42 Thumb down 2

  22. @Matt Bernius:

    I expect that pretty soon we’re going to learn that to our shock, Mr. Bundy has *strong* views on Mexicans and Illegal Immigrants as well.

    Of this, I have no doubt.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 0

  23. @CB:

    You guys are all a bunch of racist race baiters. Playing the race card this way is shameful.

    You are going to have to explain this statement.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  24. Rob in CT says:

    Remember, folks, refusing to pay your grazing fees != being a moocher. (technically, I’d go with thief, not moocher, but whatever)
    Receiving food stamps = being a moocher.

    Receiving farm subsidies – not a moocher. On the contrary! Heroic patriot is more likely.
    Getting disability payments (while White) – not mooching.
    Something those other people over there are getting = totally mooching.

    The blahs get sooper sekrit welfare (no doubt by nefarious means), but fine upstanding white folks get things they deserve. Because reasons.

    @Matt Bernius:

    Oh, I think we’ll be seeing more clear denials now (e.g., Rand Paul flatly rejected Mr. Bundy’s race commentary). It’s just too blatant. This isn’t dog whistling about “urban youths” or a “culture of poverty” or whatever. The guy flat out said the ‘ole “they were better off as slaves” thing. Right out loud. That’s far, far too blatant. Lee Atwater ‘splained this long ago.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 36 Thumb down 0

  25. CB says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    Extreme sarcasm! Basically what @Matt Bernius said, minus the intellect.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  26. Matt Bernius says:

    @CB:
    I figured as much — at least from what I could remember from your past writings.

    I’m not sure about the “intellect” part, but you pretty much voiced what we’ve heard on similar topics here and elsewhere from particularly animated folks on the right.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  27. beth says:

    @Rob in CT: Exactly, they’re not upset about what he said, they’re just upset that he didn’t use a dog whistle. When Paul Ryan talks about the culture of not working, especially in the inner cities, he knows exactly who his audience is. It’s people like Bundy sitting in his living room, watching him on tv and yelling “damn straight”.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 2

  28. Matt Bernius says:

    @Rob in CT:
    I dunno. Rep. Steve King says crap like that all the time and he’s always explained away.

    But we can always hope, right?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  29. Rob in CT says:

    @CB:

    Poe’s Law.

    I figured it was parody.

    I do wonder how long it will take for a Conservative pundit to trot out that argument, though. By quoting Mr. Bundy at length, the liberal reporter for the New York Times is the real racist.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  30. Ron Beasley says:

    I have some experience with this. My late mother, who died a year ago at 90, was a racist. She grew up in Idaho and eastern Washington and probably didn’t see more than a handful of blacks until she moved to the Portland area when she was 18. When Obama was elected in 2008 she was convinced the United States was finished. I think his reelection in 2012 contributed to her death.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  31. Rob in CT says:

    @Matt Bernius:

    We’ll see! #timetomakethepopcorn

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  32. stonetools says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    Think its irony, but not sure, frankly. These days you never know…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  33. Eric Florack says:

    Why all the American flags?
    Well, I would assume he doesn’t equate the country with its current government.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 22

  34. Rob in CT says:

    @Ron Beasley:

    Sorry about your mom, for both reasons.

    My grandfather had a similar reaction to Mr. Obama, likely due in part to his racism but also b/c he was already a winger and listened to a lot of hate radio, which feeds all the wrong tendencies. He wrote a really sad, pathetic manifesto talking about armed revolution in response to Obama’s election. Or maybe just printed one he found on the ‘net out, but I think he wrote it. I recognized his style. For reasons beyond his control, grandpa never made it past 8th grade, and it showed. Then again, that seems to be the default writing level for that sort of thing. Which brings us back to the self-refuting Mr. Bundy.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  35. Rob in CT says:

    @Eric Florack:

    Do go on.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1

  36. al-Ameda says:

    Speaking of deadbeats – Cliven Bundy has refused to pay his rent for going 2 decades now.

    He’s as much an American patriot as Eva Peron is.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  37. C. Clavin says:

    @Eric Florack:
    And how, specifically, is today’s Government different than yesterdays?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  38. @CB: Gotcha. I thought that might be the case, but then again, it is sometimes harder to tell than it ought to be :)

    I remembered previously comments as meaning that seriousness was unlikely, but I also thought it possible that another “CB” had emerged.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  39. Barry says:

    @Tillman: “I mean, I get how you can be racist to a race you’ve never even seen, but it just seems inauthentic. I prefer authentic racism. I’m weird like that. ”

    It’s funny, like people can ‘move’ around, like they were animals, not the plants that we know people to be :)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  40. @Eric Florack:

    Why all the American flags?
    Well, I would assume he doesn’t equate the country with its current government.

    Except that he hasn’t just rejected the current government, he has rejected the federal government in general.

    Further, he failed to pay his fees even when Republicans controlled the entire government. His positions are indefensible (but I am not at all surprised that you are defending him).

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 47 Thumb down 1

  41. al-Ameda says:

    @Eric Florack:

    Why all the American flags?
    Well, I would assume he doesn’t equate the country with its current government.

    Oh sure, the current Kenyan-marxist-oriented federal regime (make that, government) is what he objects to.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  42. Barry says:

    @Tillman: “@Mikey: You say that, but then you get people liking pictures like this without irony.”

    One of the things which is telling about that painting is that there is a ‘civil war soldier’ with his hands over his face, since this was the only US war which pitted ‘brother against brother’.

    He’s wearing blue.

    There is no equivalent wearing gray, even though the artistry demands it, let alone history.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  43. C. Clavin says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    His positions are indefensible

    Yup.
    Can’t wait to see how Fox tries, however.
    The back and for the between Hannity and Stewart is hilarious if you get a chance to watch it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2

  44. @Tillman:

    I mean, I get how you can be racist to a race you’ve never even seen, but it just seems inauthentic. I prefer authentic racism. I’m weird like that.

    I would argue that authentic racism tends to precede actual encounters with people of other races. Indeed, having set views of others without any real evidence seems to be the very essence of racism, yes?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  45. Matt Bernius says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    I am not at all surprised that you are defending him

    Why do I suspect that the response will be “I’m not defending him, I’m just asking questions. Why are you progressives so afraid of questions?”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  46. Tillman says:

    @Scott:

    Everytime I see these idiots (yes, Tillman, I know they’re idiots)

    Yeah, I’m such a nag.

    @Michael B: It happens. I agree with everything you said earlier.

    For some reason, I’m convinced that adding exclamation points immediately allows a statement to be interpreted as parody. That’s where CB went wrong in my humble estimation. Too somber!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  47. Matt Bernius says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    Indeed, having set views of others without any real evidence seems to be the very essence of racism, yes?

    What about having set views of others that remain unchanged even in the face of counter evidence?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  48. beth says:

    @Matt Bernius: No I suspect we’re going to hear a lot of quotes from Bill Cosby and Barack Obama encouraging blacks to achieve more in their lives and careers and somehow that will be exactly equal to what Bundy said.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  49. Tillman says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    I would argue that authentic racism tends to precede actual encounters with people of other races. Indeed, having set views of others without any real evidence seems to be the very essence of racism, yes?

    I think there’s still room for hokey generalizations from a few bad examples in the world of racism (with confirmation bias to gird the foundation). This breed of “authentic” racism is going extinct, and the world should mourn such earnest opponents to equality. Now all we have are inexperienced idiots.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  50. C. Clavin says:

    @C. Clavin:
    Crickets from Florack.
    Kinda sucks when you have to try to defend stupid defending stupid, eh?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  51. Neil Hudelson says:

    @Eric Florack:

    I didn’t know it was that easy. “I don’t like this government so it’s not America. Now I do! Yay! America! Boo! I don’t like this leader. Boooo America.”

    How’s that patriotism thing working out for you and your brood?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 26 Thumb down 0

  52. @Matt Bernius:

    What about having set views of others that remain unchanged even in the face of counter evidence?

    That, too.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  53. (It would be more accurate to state that what I described above is the essence of prejudice).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  54. @C. Clavin: That has never stopped him before,

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  55. @Neil Hudelson:

    How’s that patriotism thing working out for you and your brood?

    This gets to the essence of the situation: many of the people who have rallied to Bundy’s defense are the same ones that spout off the most about patriotism and rule of law. And yet..,

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  56. Matt Bernius says:

    @Neil Hudelson:

    How’s that patriotism thing working out for you and your brood?

    About as well as that not voting thing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  57. David in KC says:

    @Tillman: I’m thinking all caps would have helped. My snark detector must be working again, I read it as sarcasm the first time I read it. That doesn’t happen very often. I think I need to treat myself to something nice for lunch now.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  58. Tillman says:

    @Tillman: To put it differently, they’ve inherited the prejudices of their forebears. I am disappointed that they haven’t taken the time to develop prejudices of their own.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  59. CB says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: @Matt Bernius: @Rob in CT:

    As a C-list commenter at this fine blogging establishment, snark and feigned intelligence are pretty much all I’ve got.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  60. Matt Bernius says:

    @CB, you realize that, at the end of the day, that’s pretty much what all of us are working with too. ;P

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  61. Neil Hudelson says:

    @CB:

    Glad I’m not the only one who falls into this camp.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  62. gVOR08 says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: I was born and raised in North Dakota. I never saw a black person until they staffed the Air Force bases when I was about ten. The only people we had to discriminate against were Catholics and Indians, and nobody seemed to mind the Catholics all that much. As a result I grew up largely innocent of race as an issue. I’ve since realized my reaction was atypical. Most of my peers came out closer to Bundy. So I agree that racism does seem to precede contact, but it’s a phenomenon I don’t really understand.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  63. Mikey says:

    Here’s one way of “excusing” Bundy, from conservative Dana Loesch.

    …I hope no one is surprised that an old man rancher isn’t media trained to express himself perfectly. He seems to be decrying what big government has done to the black family — which big government has negatively affected not just the black family, but all families regardless of ethnicity — so perhaps he included that in his remarks against big government? I’m just trying to figure out how he even got to the point of discussing it and yes, it’s justified to have a healthy suspicion of the New York Times.

    He’s not racist, he’s just defending “the black family” but not doing it well because he isn’t “media trained” and by the way the NYT is full of crap.

    I expect to see more of this line of thinking from Bundy’s conservative fan base.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 0

  64. aFloridian says:

    One day a couple weeks ago I was driving to a meeting and NPR had Car Talk on, so I switched over to the local Dittohead station and Hannity was on interviewing Bundy by phone.

    What really stuck out to me was when he said that the Constitution was divinely inspired. I am a big Constitution fan – I think it’s one of the greatest governing documents ever written, but it has many flaws. One of the things that jumped out to me when he said it was divinely inspired was how he reconciled that view with the reality of the 3/5ths Compromise. Well, now I know.

    His views on the Constitution and Divine Providence quickly led me to another realization that has not been covered much in either the Right-Wing Breitbart version of events, nor the DailyKos version: Mr. Bundy is a devout Mormon. The LDS Church teaches, among other fantastical claims, that the Constitution is divinely inspired. This should really come as no surprise, as the LDS Church is a uniquely American religion. What other religion with over a million followers teaches that Jesus communed with the Native Americans, an American treasure hunter was also the divine revelator, and, yes, that the U.S. Constitution is more or less handed down by God – dehumanization of blacks and all?

    That’s not to somehow distract from Mr. Bundy’s own egregiously illegal and hypocritical actions, but I think there’s an important sub-story here about Mormon views on race, history, and self-sufficiency.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

  65. James in Silverdale, WA says:

    That dripping sound we hear is the flop sweat falling off the loudmouths at FOX news.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  66. Tillman says:

    @aFloridian:

    What other religion with over a million followers teaches that Jesus communed with the Native Americans, an American treasure hunter was also the divine revelator, and, yes, that the U.S. Constitution is more or less handed down by God – dehumanization of blacks and all?

    Wasn’t it Mormon doctrine for a while that black people were those who didn’t take a side in the heavenly war between Lucifer and the Mormon Jesus? (~2:35 in this video) Filthy neutrals are only 3/5ths a person since they can’t pick a side to begin with, after all.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  67. C. Clavin says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:
    I grew up in VT…there was one black family in town back in the mid 70’s. The father was a teacher, and his son was a classmate. I like to think that, although no one is perfect, I am not a racist.
    My younger brother attended high school, and a brief stint in college, in Florida where he was exposed to plenty of black and brown people. He is a terrible racist…to the point that I don’t bother talking to him any longer.
    I think exposure will assuage natural bias in the open-minded, and nothing ever will in the close-minded.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  68. C. Clavin says:

    From TPM:

    National Review correspondent Kevin Williamson, who recently compared Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy to Mahatma Gandhi, told TPM in an email on Thursday that he thought Bundy’s racially charged comments were “lamentable” but they were “separate” from Bundy’s standoff with the Bureau of Land Management.
    “Mr. Bundy’s racial rhetoric is lamentable and backward,” Williamson said in an email. “It is also separate from the fundamental question here, which is the federal government’s acting as an absentee landlord for nine-tenths of the state of Nevada.”
    “I very strongly suspect that most of the men who died at the Alamo held a great many views that I would find repugnant; we remember them for other reasons.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  69. aFloridian says:

    @Tillman:

    Interesting video. I have to acknowledge that it’s an anti-Mormon propaganda film, but the contents seem on par with what I know.
    At the risk of being flippant, tt sounds to me like the Mormon origin story is very similar to Superman’s.

    I think the Youtube comments section is right that this view on blacks has been replaced with the more open-minded view that blacks are descended from Cain (i.e. they bear the “mark of Cain” – the punishment he was branded with following his brother’s murder).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  70. stonetools says:

    The sad part about this is that even without his racist statements, there was already much to condemn in Bundy’s statements and actions. Yet the right wing rallied to him as a patriot and American hero.
    Now of course, Fox News and the the rest of the Right Wing BS Machine are so all in on defending him that they have to keep it up, even if they have to spout nonsense… but then, I guess they do so much of that anyway!
    I just hope that this is a turning point and that the audience for the RWBSM now realise how much of what they hear is wrong… but who am I kidding? There will be some other bright shiny object just around the bend, and if not, oh well… BENGHAZI!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  71. Mu says:

    One remark on racism and local prevalence of races. In 1933, all of Germany had 500,000 Jews, about the same rate as African-Americans in Montana (0.7% of the population). And most of those were assimilated, with no “visual” or lifestyle difference to a German.
    Sadly, you don’t need to see your enemy on a daily basis to just “know” they’re the enemy.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  72. dennis says:

    @CB:

    Damn, CB. If you’re a C-Lister, I cringe to think on what scale I fall …

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  73. anjin-san says:

    In the context of 21st century conservative politics, Bundy’s sin is not holding these views, which, after all, have fairly widespread support on the right.

    But he has screwed up. He let people outside the tribe know what he really thinks.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 2

  74. James Pearce says:

    @C. Clavin: Kevin Williamson sounds like he’s just invented a fake issue:

    “It is also separate from the fundamental question here, which is the federal government’s acting as an absentee landlord for nine-tenths of the state of Nevada.”

    That’s rich, considering four-fifths of Nevada is uninhabitable.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  75. anjin-san says:

    I don’t think anyone at Fox is freaking out over this, they have a canned response in place – “Liberals are playing the race card again, and we are calling them on it”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 1

  76. michael reynolds says:

    @anjin-san:

    He let people outside the tribe know what he really thinks.

    Precisely.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  77. grumpy realist says:

    Y’know, I almost prefer the Japanese attitude towards people with very dark skin: (“really weird gaijin”) rather than Bundy’s views.

    One of my fellow Rotary Exchange mates (tall, blond, and very blue-eyed) did get the little old lady who came up to him, peered at his eyes, and asked: “Can you really see out of those?”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  78. grumpy realist says:

    P.S. I also wonder if Clive Bundy has ever even MET someone with dark skin. He sounds like he’s regurgitating scraps of Limbaugh and other talk radio. No, scratch that. Even further back. A Morman production of Showboat from the 1940s? “Learning to pick cotton”? Who learns to pick cotton anymore? Isn’t it harvested with a thresher?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  79. C. Clavin says:

    @James Pearce:
    Who cares if they are absentee? They are giving away rights to the land at 9 cents on the dollar.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  80. Tillman says:

    @aFloridian:

    Interesting video. I have to acknowledge that it’s an anti-Mormon propaganda film, but the contents seem on par with what I know.

    I agree with every particular. The cartoon’s obvious (almost said cartoonishly) propaganda, but the problem is nothing in it contradicts anything else I’ve heard, even from Mormons I know.

    Their racial stance has changed since it was produced (or since when I’m guessing it was produced). Hell, the ban on black priests has been gone for three decades. I just found the theological explanation for black people in Mormonism interesting in light of what you posted. It is a uniquely American religion.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  81. RWB says:

    I pretty much thought Bundy was a freeloading anti-government crank. Then I read an article defending him that pointed out that all federal land management laws are written with a clause that the new law does not superseded existing established water or use rights. I thought that it was ironic that under the federal laws Bundy disavowed, he actually did have rights established by his family in the 1870’s. He was still a nut bag, but one with at least one true point. Maybe he got nuts due to govt abuse. Then I read a series of articles by KLAS news in Las Vegas about the provenance of Bundy’s land.

    Turns out he is just a freeloading nut bag after all

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 1

  82. James Pearce says:

    @RWB: From your link:

    “They are literally treating western United States citizens, ranchers, rural folks like this- are the modern day Indians. We’re being driven off of our lands. We’re being forced into reservations known as cities,” Justin Giles, an Oathkeeper from Alaska, said.

    Do these people really believe this stuff?

    Yes, they do.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  83. James Pearce says:

    @C. Clavin:

    Who cares if they are absentee? They are giving away rights to the land at 9 cents on the dollar.

    Just like they did the Indians……

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  84. Eric Florack says:

    @Mikey:
    You show a shocking lack of understanding our county and its founding values….

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness

    Endowed by their creator.
    Not by government.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 12

  85. Jim Henley says:

    @Eric Florack: You are hilarious. And it is generous of you to make yourself look ridiculous for our entertainment. I have often thought that jesters are the truest nobility.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 1

  86. CB says:

    @Eric Florack:

    A statement of natural human rights (written by slaveholders, mind you) codified into law by…wait for it…the government! Brilliant.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  87. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @mantis: AMEN!!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  88. Jim Henley says:

    Why do we think Bundy took Barry Soetero and Hitlery Clinton’s socialist fiat money to enact this transparent ploy to distract everyone from BENGHAZI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! anyway? Typical false flag patriot, man.

    WAKE UP, SHEEPLE!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  89. JoshB says:

    @Eric Florack:

    I’m not so certain you are in a position to criticize one’s ability to understand something.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  90. @Eric Florack:

    Dude, the line line of the Declaration after the list of rights is “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men”

    Jefferson (nor Locke, whom he was cribbing) did not argue that men are free and therefore do not need government. The whole point of Locke’s Second Treatise was about the need for government even though men are born into a state of perfect freedom. The ongoing attempts to divorce government from the conversation is ridiculous and underscores you don’t understand the documents from which you are quoting nor the foundations of the philosophies that under-gird them and that informed their authors.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 41 Thumb down 1

  91. Mikey says:

    @Eric Florack: As Steven has already pointed out, the defining purpose of a government is to secure those rights.

    A nation without a government is not a nation at all. Definitionally, it’s not. The Founding Fathers understood that, and in your effort to say I don’t understand, you show it is actually you who doesn’t understand.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  92. C. Clavin says:

    @Eric Florack:
    Um…you forgot something:

    …That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed…

    And what does that have to do with not paying your bills? Since when is being a deadbeat a Natural Right?
    Please explain.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  93. the Q says:

    I believe Michael Reynolds said it in another blog many moons ago, “While most republicans don’t tend to be racists, most racists tend to be Republican.”

    Bingo!

    (with apologies if I misstated this somewhat)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  94. mantis says:

    More from Bundy’s speech:

    “Where is our colored brother? Where is our Mexican brother? Where is our Chinese — where are they?” Bundy said. “They’re just as much American as we are, and they’re not with us. If they’re not with us, they’re going to be against us.”

    That’s right all you “coloreds” and Mexicans and Chinese. If you don’t support Bundy’s lawbreaking, you are the enemy of him and his militia buddies itching to shoot someone. It might be wise to avoid that area.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  95. Tillman says:

    @CB: @dennis: Ah, to be a C-lister again. To be able to say anything and not give a crap about the opinions of strangers over the Internet. Then you get that one comment with more than 50 upvotes, and suddenly you start feeling self-conscious on the Internet.

    I imagine that’s how it works; I think I’m still C-list. Do we really want popularity contests around here?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  96. CB says:

    @Tillman:

    Do we really want popularity contests around here?

    Wait, that’s not what the internet is for?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  97. anjin-san says:

    Florack also fails to note, or possibly understand at all, the significance of the use of “Creator” as opposed to the Christian God.

    But, no less than Salmon P Chase put “In God We Trust”, on our currency, so that must mean America IS a Christian country.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  98. michael reynolds says:

    @the Q:

    You got it right, but it disturbs me to think anyone remembers what I write. This could force me to be consistent.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  99. MarkedMan says:

    I have a question for those who call themselves Conservatives and I should preface it by saying this is a real question spurred by sincere curiosity.

    I think modern American Conservatism got its start in the late 1940’s and since that time, year by year, person by person, the acknowledged leaders of the movement have been the champions of racism, sexism and religious intolerance. At any given point – say, today – conservatives will nod to the fact that they no longer feel that some previous cause Conservatives championed (ex: Jim Crow) was just, but you can’t get past the fact that they are part of an unbroken chain that was on the wrong side of every major issue. So – why do people call themselves Conservatives? Why do they feel it is a source of pride?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  100. Mumbles says:

    So…the white guy who mooches off the government is upset at black people, because he thinks they mooch of the government. Well, that’s…not new at all, or surprising, really.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  101. DrDaveT says:

    @Eric Florack:

    Well, I would assume he doesn’t equate the country with its current government.

    You are aware that “its current government” has been in place since 1789, right? So which government does he pine for? The Articles of Confederation? The CSA? The Republic of Franklin?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

  102. M. Bouffant says:

    @MarkedMan:
    Reasonable conservatives (the ones who, eventually & essentially, will admit they’re probably always wrong & on the losing side) will tell you that standing athwart history yelling “Stop!” is important because change can be bad & there will be unintended consequences, let’s be prudent, yada. Which is far from an absurd position, but they’re going to extremes w/ it these days.

    Cynics might suggest that whatever conservatives say, their only real goal is conserving power in the hands it’s already in, & that the standing athwart history bit is the closest they can get to admitting their real goals w/o being run out of town on a rail.

    As far as crazed radicals who recognize no law enforcement authority higher than the county sheriff, deny the existence of the Federal government w/ one breath & then invoke the Constitution w/ the next (my head is still spinning from that) I’m waiting to see if the next edition of the DSM has anything informative.

    Although fear (of anything & everything) seems to motivate many of them. I’m no scientist or doctor, obviously more research is needed, but when someone starts acting a bit off, isn’t the first medical move to look for a possible physical cause rather than starting psychotherapy immediately?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1