If your reading of newspapers extends beyond Louisa's, The Central Virginian, you may appreciate revisiting a 2014 letter in the Fredericksburg Free Lance Star from A. Beecher Sutherland, a former member of the Orange County Republican Committee.
Where he states that “The Republican Party or, more specifically, the tea party Republicans, have just slit their throats in the 7th District of Virginia,” and when you “… mix enthusiasm with stupidity … you soon have … what Vladimir Lenin once referred to as “useful idiots.”
These tea party supporters certainly did their part in ridding our district of Eric Cantor, and initially I thought they did us a great service, but now I’m having second thoughts. Especially when you ask them why they worked so hard to get rid of him, they are unable to give any coherent answers.
Since most of these folks responded so enthusiastically to Cantors dog whistles for the past 6 elections, one has to ask; what changed their minds? Was it really because his messages were sounding less and less “real” as the years went by?
Or was it because they needed something which could keep all their fears and prejudices “fresh,” giving them a new relevancy? Like Brat attacking Cantor for not being "harsh" enough on illegal immigration.
The central problem in the 7th District and around the county is one of identity. And conservative identity is wrapped around being opposed to everything liberal, to the point of despising anything even associated with it. Since liberalism represents empiricism and reason, the incentives for conservatives to reject it multiply.
To be a “conservative” increasingly means taking a contemptuous view of reality. And so the proudly ignorant grow more belligerent, day after day, attitudes the astroturfed Tea Party and their useful minions are more than happy to exploit.
Along with Dave Brat, a product of the BB&T Moral Foundations of Capitalism Program funded by John Allison, head of the Koch funded Cato Institute. According to Allison, this is just one of 68 programs around the country “at most of the major universities in our operating area.” Boasting that “many [students] indicate the program is the first time they have heard capitalism defended from an ethical perspective.”
Brat isn’t just some random conservative economics professor; he's a bought-and-paid-for shill, part of a coordinated effort to steer the next generation of young people towards libertarian economics. But the connections between Brat and his supporters doesn’t stop there, he is one of many Manchurian candidates from the Koch-backed stable.
Over the past few months, right-wing radio hosts like Laura Ingraham and Mark Levin have pushed Brat non-stop on their radio shows. Politico recently reported on a fast growing and influential network of conservative radio talk show hosts who are driving the countries conservative movement.
“Filings with the Internal Revenue Service and Federal Election Commission, as well as interviews and reviews of radio shows, found that groups (such as the Koch Brothers sponsored group Americans for Prosperity) spent nearly $22 million to broker and pay for sponsorships with a handful of influential talkers… Since then, the sponsorship deals have grown more lucrative and tea party-oriented.”
Brat's one of many foot soldiers of the libertarian billionaire class and their army of talk radio hosts. A brave new world of dark money politics, a raving-loon industrial complex of radio shows financed by a vast lagoon of plutocratic payola. His sole purpose is to convey his master’s message to the people of the 7th District.
Some may recall how he ran against Cantor attacking “crony capitalism” and the incestuous relationship which exists between big money and politics. Like all good misrepresentations; it worked because it contains an inescapable grain of truth, that our political system represents the interests of the .1% like the Koch Brothers.
If this speech at a recent press conference where he spoke for a few minutes, and took no questions is any indication, nothing has changed except for who's running on the Republican ticket. Speaking of revolving doors ... I mean the usual suspects; shortly after winning the primary, he replaced his 23 year old campaign manager with Amanda Chase who coincidentally used to be Eric Cantor’s campaign manager, and is now a Virginia State Senator.
While his newly appointed communications director, Brian Gottstein used to be Ken Cuccinelli’s communications director when he was Virginia’s Attorney General. Nor was it any coincidence that the extreme wing blog, Breitbart.com was the only news organization which covered this "press conference."
Such extreme and controlling practices like this are why Mr. Sutherland decided to leave the party. Let’s hope more Republicans come to their senses and follow suite, lest they be exposed as willfully ignorant supporters of a paid shill.