Opinion Top of the Ticket

Right wingers careen into craziness to explain Obama's victory

President Obama’s reelection has caused right-wingers to become completely unhinged. They are purple-faced and apoplectic, convinced that an ignorant horde of government-dependent social leeches has destroyed traditional America and banished God from the country.

The craziest comments came from certifiably loony celebrities. Gun-crazy rocker Ted Nugent tweeted that “Pimps whores & welfare brats & their soulless supporters hav [sic] a president to destroy America,” and  former Saturday Night Live goofball Victoria Jackson let loose a series of tweets, saying in part, “Thanks a lot, Christians, for not showing up. You disgust me… In the Good vs. Evil battle, today Evil won.”

Egomaniacal rich guy Donald Trump simply called for a revolution.

PHOTOS: Top of the Ticket cartoons

Various tea party leaders, who thought they had already launched a pretty good revolution, could not fathom the election results. Cincinnati Tea Party President George Brunemann said, "The easy two-word answer for what happened Tuesday is: America died."

On Fox News, political has-been Sarah Palin, sporting a big Loretta Lynn hairdo, looked positively baffled, wondering why the American people would willingly abandon the Constitution. Bill O’Reilly had an answer for her: “People feel they are entitled to things.” And those “people,” O’Reilly made clear, are not "traditional" Americans or members of the “white establishment;” rather, they have skin that is brown.

Ann Coulter echoed the view of numerous conservative pundits: “If Mitt Romney cannot win in this economy, then the tipping point has been reached. We have more takers than makers and it’s over.”

All of this doomsday blather hearkens back to Romney’s infamous characterization of 47% of Americans as “victims” who only want to be coddled by government. As it was when Romney said it, this portrait of America is not only demonstrably false, it is a scurrilous slander with a racist tinge.

The most numerous voters dependent on government to keep them economically afloat are retirees who receive Social Security and Medicare benefits. This was the cohort that went most heavily for Romney. The people who put Obama over the top in the electoral vote, on the other hand, were autoworkers in Ohio; not exactly a dependent bunch.

They were also young people who do not grow faint at the thought of gays getting married or women using birth control. They were middle-class white Americans – as many as voted for Bill Clinton, by the way – who think it is unfair that all the economic benefits in this country flow to the richest 1%.

And, of course, they were blacks and Latinos who voted for Obama in overwhelming numbers. When Ted Nugent emotes about pimps, whores and welfare brats, we all know who he has in mind – and it isn’t the white establishment living off corporate welfare.

Right-wingers will not let go of their own misleading mythology. They have a constricted vision of who the “real Americans” are and who they are not. Until election night, they still believed that people like themselves constituted a majority in this country. Now that they are faced with the truth of their own diminishing numbers, they are rejiggering reality. Incapable of accepting that the millions of people who voted for Obama are overwhelmingly hardworking, family-loving, patriotic Americans, they have to imagine them as the “takers” that Ayn Rand warned them were coming.

This is a necessary self-deception. Otherwise, conservative crazies would have to face an inconvenient truth: On election day, a majority of real Americans rejected them.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
Related Content
  • Democrats had a better grasp of political reality in 2012
    Democrats had a better grasp of political reality in 2012

    As a candidate, Mitt Romney was his own worst enemy. He thought he could amass a majority saying things that would please the crowd in front of him and contradict himself with another crowd somewhere down the line without anyone taking notice. He thought he could offer vague platitudes about...

  • Obama's victory is a harsh lesson for Republicans
    Obama's victory is a harsh lesson for Republicans

    The people have spoken. President Obama has won a chance to move beyond the stunted progress of his first term and, perhaps, become a historic president. On the losing side, the Republican Party remains shut out of the White House and has blown a chance to take over the U.S. Senate, largely...

  • The problem of dual citizenship
    The problem of dual citizenship

    Before becoming a naturalized U.S. citizen, immigrants must take an oath that says, in part, "I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been...

  • America needs to study the enemy within
    America needs to study the enemy within

    When I was living in Chile in 1968, my Chilean friends often explained to me proudly that their country was different from other Latin American countries. Chile had a long democratic tradition. Its armed forces had rarely and only briefly meddled in the government, and not at all since 1932....

  • Why real change in Cuba won't come easy or fast
    Why real change in Cuba won't come easy or fast

    The historic agreement between Presidents Obama and Raul Castro has opened what Obama calls "a new chapter" in relations between the United States and Cuba, but we are still on the first page. The rest of the chapter remains to be written. What comes next?

  • What happens when your college crush won't commit?
    What happens when your college crush won't commit?

    "I knew you and I were a perfect match,” the young man begins, “ever since I laid eyes on you at my sister's graduation. And spending time together this past year, learning everything there is to know about you, has only made me more convinced that you're the one for me.

Comments
Loading