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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The madwoman in the attic
Posted by Jill | 5:52 AM
I hate to rip off the title of both a book about Victorial literature AND the first episode of the great CRACKER mystery series, but nothing else seems appropriate when you're talking about Janet Barton, who is perhaps the reason Mike Huckabee decided against a presidential run.

Because Janet Barton, who used to head up Huck's Faith and Values Coalition, brings a new dimension of Teh Crazy to a right-wing that's already elevated batshittery to an art form. And if Huck ran, perhaps he'd have some 'splainin' to do about the people with whom HE associates.

Tim Murphy at Mother Jones explains:
Since the 2008 election, the two have largely gone their separate ways. For Huckabee, that meant a well-paid gig on Fox News as the host of his eponymous television show. Porter, meanwhile, found a new target in the current president—a topic she explored in the detail in the pages of WorldNetDaily.

"Brace yourself for what I am about to say next," Porter began one column, published shortly after the inauguration. She then detailed an email that had been forwarded to her raising questions about the president's status as an American citizen. But that was the least of it: If the email were correct, the president was a Soviet agent—and so were his parents. He had been conceived, in other words, with the sole purpose of destroying the nation from within.

As Porter explained, the letter had originally been composed by a software developer named Tom Fife. "All I know is that Tom Fife is a real guy—not some e-mail scam," she wrote. "I've talked to him." In the email, Fife recounted a dinner-party conversation he'd had with a Soviet scientist in Moscow in the early 1990s.

"Since I had dabbled in languages," Fife wrote, "I knew a smattering of Arabic. I made a comment: 'If I remember correctly, 'Barack' comes from the Arabic word for 'Blessing.' That seems to be an odd name for an American.' [The Soviet scientist] replied quickly, 'Yes. It is 'African,' she insisted, 'and he will be a blessing for world Communism. We will regain our strength and become the number one power in the world.'"

It's sad, really, to see how desperately some people on the right NEED the Communist boogeyman, and how unmoored they've been ever since the fall of the Berlin Wall. The Soviet Communist Threat™ gave them a convenient vessel into which to pour all their anxieties, and nothing else has really replaced it. Scary Swarthy Men™ filled in nicely for a while, but a few car bombs and numbskulls with powder in their underpants just don't pack the same punch as atheistic high-cheekboned guys in uniforms speaking an unfamiliar language imposing totalitarian rule at the point of an atomic bomb. That the Soviet Union was dismantled twenty years ago doesn't matter to people like Janet Barton. To them, it's lurking just under the surface like 17-year cicadas, lying in wait to jump out and say "Boo!" to frightened wingnuts. No, if anyone's going to impose totalitarian rule on this country, then by gum it's going to be a Christian!


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Blogger marieDee said...
You call her Janet Barton in your comments, but I think you're speaking of Janet Porter. Right?