Saturday, February 20, 2010

Note to Debra Medina: he's not the victim

Would-be Texas Governor Debra Medina continues to trot out her Tea Party infused alternate universe. The latest glimpse of her [cynicism/ignorance/crazy] came when she finally commented on last week's airplane attack on an Austin IRS office.

The Dallas Morning News quotes her as saying the decision of a man fighting the IRS to crash his airplane into a building in Austin reflects "the hopelessness many in our society feel." Perhaps remembering the uproar that resulted from her fuzzy answer about the 9/11 bombers, she gave a half-assed assurance that she was not actually sympathizing, adding weakly, "I grieve for him. I'm very sympathetic for his family, for the families of those innocent victims in that building."

I call bullshit.

Coming from an avowed Tea Party candidate this strikes me as more than a little pandering to your base: anti-government soreheads and miscellaneous sociopaths.

Joe Stack, the pilot, had a history of anti-tax zealotry which managed to get him cross-ways with the IRS on numerous occasions. As a former(self-employed) small businessman, it's not that hard to get your taxes right. Any trouble Stack received at the hands of the IRS was of his own making. Wishful thinking will not get you out of your obligation to pay taxes.

Not content to kill himself, Stack chose to take out his bitter invective on the innocents who worked in the IRS building, resulting in multiple serious injuries and one confirmed fatality. This was the moral equivalent of a suicide bomber in a mid-eastern marketplace. How the self-described patriots praising Stack online justify this is beyond me. It's telling most of those posts are anonymous.

It's also hard to feel sorry for someone who burns down their family's home hours before killing themselves, leaving their survivors homeless. The man is no more victim than a spouse abuser would be.

Debra Medina isn't the only Tea Party affiliated politician who has seized on the ugly populism that this incident has spawned. Newly elected Massachusetts Republican Senator Scott Brown had this to say:

    I can just sense, not only in my election, but since being here in Washington, people are frustrated. They want transparency, they want their elected officials to be accountable and open and talk about the things that are affecting their daily lives. So I'm not sure there's a connection, I certainly hope not. But we need to things better.
Not exactly a condemnation.

These opportunistic politicians who thing they can ride this ugly wave of civic fundamentalism are advised to read Sinclair Lewis's cautionary tale "It Can't Happen Here."


Dax said...

Yes it sucks, nobody likes it but at least Debra and Scott tell the truth. People always ask why... But some don't want to hear the truth i guess. It is what it is.

Dan Brekke said...

"Some people don't want to hear the truth"? And which/whose truth would that be? That some people are so filled with rage at the world and their place in it that they'll lash out at almost any target? And that others will try to exploit that rage for their own cynical ends?

Gar said...

1) Unfortunately Debra still comes off as the best candidate. She may be insane (in fact she comes off that way even in her "gun control" freakishness), but I'd rather have insane than crooked.
2) In my opinion, the only time violence is the answer is in defense (against physical violence). The media shouldn't have even said the guy's name or motives. It just makes his act seem "successful" to too many nuts.

News flash: Some nut crashed his plane into the IRS building in Austin injuring and killing innocent bystanders.

That's all the information we need.

Dr Ralph said...

Insane or crooked...tough choice there.

I'd have to say I'd prefer crooked. At least their behavior would be a little more predictable.

Gar said...

The problem I have with crooked is it implies intelligence. It takes a crooked person that knows how to shave fractions off pennies of interest to steal millions. An insane person would never be able to pull it off.