Blog Credo

The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.

H.L. Mencken

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Bundy Ranch? I Thought It Was Bunny Ranch.

This is an interesting story:

Basically, some guy decides to violate the law because freedom.  The federal authorities have tried to round up some cattle that are illegally grazing on federal lands.  The idiot freedom loving American whose cattle are grazing there does not dispute that his cattle are grazing illegally.  In his phrase, he "fired the BLM" for making him pay the same fee that everyone else has to pay.

So when the BLM began to round up the cattle, the right wing, black helicopter fearing gun nuts showed up in force to protest, packing heat.  The BLM backed off because they didn't want some idiot to start shooting.

Now, one of the tropes that the NRA throws around is that we have enough gun laws on the books already, dontchaknow, and the Feds don't enforce them because they want to seize all the guns, so they let Sandy Hooks happen to seize the guns.

So, in case you have seen where I'm going, we can't have new laws against guns, because we already have laws against guns.  But then again, as long as we have guns, we can violate existing laws anyway.

Basically: guns.

In my Comp Gov course, we just studied Nigeria and Iran and we discussed the pervasive and corrosive effect of corruption on those countries.  I point out that - despite the presence of odious human beings like John Rowland - corruption is not nearly the issue in the US that it is elsewhere in the world.

But that is all predicated on respect for the rule of law.  Americans mostly obey laws because Americans mostly obey laws.  It's part of what makes America successful and prosperous and, yes, free.

But when some dipshit yahoo who's been out in the desert too long starts nullifying laws on his own, and then when the government attempts to enforce those laws they show up armed and dangerous... well, you can see how that's corrosive towards the respect for the rule of law.

You could compare this to the blatantly ideological and political rulings of the Free Market Five on the Supreme Court, who have stripped the nation of any restrictions on predatory wealth in campaign finance laws and you'd be on the right track.  Or you could talk about how "Stand Your Ground" has basically legalized manslaughter.

But whether it's Cliven Bundy, John Roberts or Rick Scott, it's pretty apparent that there is a faction of right wing America that seems to desire America to be turned into a Banana Republic, where money and firearms determine what is right and what is wrong.

God Bless America, Land of AR-15, Home of the SuperPAC.

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