Assassination Fears

From the always-perspicacious Ernie, rescued from the depths of my bulletin board. For what it’s worth, I put my hopes, such as they are, in the fact that Unabombers, Timothy McVeighs, and Anders Breiviks are as rare as they are. Thank goodness most ideologues don’t put their ideas into practice (though I suppose there’s less to be thankful about when that same circumspection spares a Hitler, a Stalin, a Pol Pot, an Idi Amin, or a Mao):

August 20, 2011 9:44 am

Arthur: Not sure how you feel about this but. IMHO, if Obama is re-elected, I think he faces the greatest possibility of a violent attack against him from a right-wing fanatic. My reasoning is this:

It is now clear that the Republican strategy from Day One of Obama’s Presidency has been to prevent him from achieving anything.

The “respectable” wing of the GOP presents themselves as merely arguing against Obama “policies” they disagree with.

But the fanatic and conspiratorial wings of the GOP use every opportunity to convey personal contempt toward Obama as a person.

They use everything from:
(1) associating him with “terrorists” (i.e. Bill Ayers),
(2) to questioning his religious beliefs (“he’s a Muslim”),
(3) to denying his U.S. citizenship (birthers),
(4) to explicit appeals to racism (“he hates whites”; or “one must consider his Kenyan background”),
(4) to questioning his loyalty or patriotism (he’s not one of “us” and he always “apologizes for America” or he doesn’t believe in American exceptionalism,) etc.
(5) to declaring he subscribes to alien concepts (“he’s a socialist” or “marxist”)


(a) Everyone knows that no American President in history (other than FDR) has ever won re-election when unemployment has been as high as it is now

(b) All current polling suggests that the “right track/wrong track” question produces large majorities who think we are on the “wrong track”

(c) When Obama took office, the “Misery Index” (unemployment rate added to the inflation rate) was 7.83; it currently is 12.76 and trending consistently upward


1. The GOP has every reason to believe that Obama will be (as Michele Bachmann constantly says) a “one-term President”.

2. The Tea Party’s influence within the GOP makes it extremely unlikely that any GOP incumbent in Congress or any GOP candidate in 2012 will attempt to find common ground with Obama because doing so will undermine their objective of presenting him as a failed President.

3. SO — If Obama is re-elected, I think some fanatic is going to conclude that a “second amendment remedy” is entirely appropriate and necessary.

3 thoughts on “Assassination Fears

  1. That is a tough one. But the “normative values don’t matter” capitalists and Teas are really tearing at each other w/in GOP. I have a sense that there isn’t solidarity so much as image, like a school of fish rather than a meteor. If a fanatic fails, i.e. SService does it’s job, it would be a great PR opportunity. GOP would rather have nothing happen than a purple-faced freak paraded over CNN and a movie/book come out. The Teas…they are a wild card.

  2. I had a small epiphany the other day when I read about how the US Chamber of Commerce sent a letter to Congress asking them to kindly not allow the US to default. They spent millions to get the Tea Partiers elected and they adamantly oppose any revenue increases that aren’t surtaxes on food stamps or something that only poor people would have to bear. But what they really want is for Democrats to pass a substantial tax increase that will 1) Stabilize the economy over the long term; and 2) Give them something new to campaign against.

    The cognitive dissonance is strategic: it’s like Brer Rabbit, pleading “Please don’t throw me in that there briar patch.” The only way they can have their cake and eat it too is if they fail. The irony is that the Democrats are letting them win, and we’re all losers because of it.

  3. Intriguing. Passing an increase in taxes raises the cost of labor, raising prices and unemployment while slowing consumption. Food stamps are transfer payments. In essence, because farming is subsidized there is a constant surplus of food. That surplus is then doled out to the poor instead of rotting. The $ doesn’t actually exist except that government is using tax dollars to pay for a price floor to farmers. To remove stamps and increase revenue they could simply remove the price floor on crops. This would stop subsidized farming, eliminate stamps, and increase the cost of food. The higher prices would increase % revenue from those with sales taxes…and the fat police would be happy. Conservatives win with liberal social hygienists. I guess we could see what happens at the polls then…
    Personally I don’t think they want a stable economy. When we have one we focus on sex scandals and throwing up at diplomatic dinners. I think #2 is the real goal. Lol. I think congress should do nothing. They could spend time editing older laws. No bailouts, buyouts or cuts. Let firms, labor and market prices figure themselves out by aggregate over the population.

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