Angry White Men-istan

I hesitate to write this post since we already had a visitation from one set of angry white sucessionists but it appears to be the latest in a series of things that really makes me ask :”How many crazy, angry white people can one country harbor?”   The last election has shown us a group of extremists that have moved from ‘taking back’ their country to basically leaving it.  How on earth do these people still exist given the results of the civil war over 150 years ago?  How long can you hold on to the idea that freedom means the freedom to be a tyrant to other people and to hate on them for not being like you?  Have they ever heard of the stereotype of bitter, angry losers?

As the dust settles in the wake of President Obama’s decisive reelection last Tuesday, the White House petition website has been flooded by a series of secession requests, with malcontents from New Jersey to North Dakota submitting petitions to allow their states to withdraw from the union.

Most of the petitions submitted thus far have come from solidly conservative states, including most of the Deep South and reliably separatist Texas. But a handful come from the heart of blue America – relatively progressive enclaves like Oregon and New York.

All told, petitions have been filed on behalf of 20 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas.

Many of the petitions invoke the Declaration of Independence’s dramatic assertion that “Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and institute new Government.”

The petitions have been submitted through the White House’s “We the People” website, which aims to give “all Americans a way to engage their government on the issues that matter to them.” The White House promises that “If a petition meets the signature threshold, it will be reviewed by the Administration and we will issue a response.” The threshold is 25,000 signatures in 30 days and, at the time of this article’s publication, none of the secession petitions have reached the threshold (the Texas petition has received over 22,000 and needs to hit 25,000 by Dec. 9; Louisiana, with just under 15,000 signatures, needs to hit the threshold by Dec. 7.)

For some of the states represented, the secession requests are nothing novel: South Carolina, the state whose 1860 secession sparked the civil war, is hardly an unlikely locus of conservative angst in response to Mr. Obama’s victory.

And in Texas, which still conceives of itself as a “republic,” not a mere “state,” politicians seem to make an almost annual show of flirting with secession, periodically dropping dark hints that Washington’s chicanery may force the Lone Star state to flee the Union.

What kills me is the number of states that seem to have a huge number of these creepy people are states  that basically couldn’t survive a day without help from the Federal Government.  They’d be Somalia over night.  Texas is about the only state that could actually survive on its own.  But, the weird thing about Texas is that it is likely to turn into a swing state within about 5 -10 years and should go blue beyond that because of its growing Hispanic demographics.  It appears that the last stand of white, land-grabbing men in Texas will not be the Alamo in the long run.

In the aftermath of President Barack Obama‘s re-election victory – fueled by massive turnout among Latinos, African-Americans and other minorities – Texas Democrats began to dream that the nation’s demographic tidal wave would eventually hit Texas.

San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro predicted that the reliably “red” Lone Star State is well on its way to “purple” swing state status.

The state’s rising Democratic superstar isn’t the only politician to speculate on the future political impact of the burgeoning Mexican-American, African-American and Asian-American population in Texas, which accounted for 88 percent of the state’s 4.3 million population increase from 2000 to 2010.

“It’s a math question,” Republican former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush told New York magazine this summer. “Four years from now, Texas is going to be a so-called blue state.”

Still, the angry white conservative temper tantrum throwers–visit any ratfucker site and just watch the infantile reactions to the Obama win–seem to be bubbling into something beyond just a political movement like the tea baggers.  I’m hoping the FBI turns its eye to this group and quits entrapping a hapless bunch of gangs that can’t shoot straight because most of these angry white people have lots of guns and know how to use them.  It seems strange that the loss of Shallow Mitt could drive so many folks over the edge to Crazyland.  More of them should follow Chauncey DeVegas’ advice and ‘chill out’.

We know that most conservatives get their news and information exclusively from Fox News and other types of right-wing media. I get the appeal of this habit: it feels really good to be told that your point of view is correct, and that most of the country agrees with you, even when it does not.

You are very trusting people by nature. As conservatives, you are also very deferential to authority. Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and the right-wing media have been saying that good white folks like you are being discriminated against by Barack Obama and his legions of black and brown people. There are supposedly groups of Black radicals who stand around outside polling places, looking all mean and angry, and a Black attorney general who hates white people. According to sites like the Drudge Report, there are roving gangs of Black people who live to waylay and beat up white people. Hispanic immigrants are sneaking into the country by the millions and taking your jobs.

A good many of you white people think things are so bad in the Age of Obama that you actually believe that  anti-white “racism” is a huge problem  facing the country. White men are supposedly the saddest and most oppressed of all groups , as  recent research  has revealed that many of them have lost all hope in the country’s future.

The right-wing media failed you. They lied and told you that Mitt Romney would win in a landslide. They cooked up stories about voter fraud and rigged polls that were biased against Republicans. The right-wing media machine betrayed you, its audience.

If I were a white conservative who listened to the right-wing media, I would be scared and upset too. I would feel confused. How could so many people lie to me? It just isn’t fair! It must be some type of conspiracy.

Yes, the actual conspiracy is from Fox News and the conservative entertainment complex that gives air time to Rush Limbaugh who gets very rich off of keeping a bunch of white men angry and in a bubble.  These folks are so confused that they actually think they could get a majority of people in their state to leave the US.  I can assure you that in every state that wants to leave the union, there is a majority in major economic centers that has no intention of letting that happen.  Here in the south, there are not only major urban centers, there’s also all folks like me that live below the I-10 who are culturally southern when it comes to fried chicken but not to the ideas of returning to the Confederacy.  Lots of us think the folks in the rural and northern areas of the state are total rubes. What are these anger trolls going to do when they eventually figure out they really, truly are in the minority?  Well, they should remember this.

“Whiteness” is an amazing invention  that has only been around a few centuries. In the United States, it has been something to die for, protect, and kill for. Historically, whiteness is a type of very lucrative property that is handed down through families, and has been protected by the law.

As the comedian  Louis CK smartly observed , being white in America is one hell of a great deal. If offered the choice, he would sign up every year because of all the unearned privileges and advantages that come with it. Whiteness is such a great deal because white folks do not have to actively do anything to benefit from it. However, white people are amazingly protective of this prize—and really careful about whom they let in the club.

For example, the Irish, Italians, Jews, Poles, and other “white ethnics” were once viewed as a type of European “other” at the turn of the 20th century. If history is a guide, racial groups that are now considered non-white will become the new “white” people in the years to come. Whiteness always finds a way to keep on winning and to grow its numbers.

My white conservative friends, these feel like scary times for you. As the country changes, the Republican party is going to have to do some soul searching. You will likely be asked to engage in some difficult conversations about the relationship between your political values and racism. As the Southern Poverty Law Center has documented, white folks are going to be under pressure to surrender to their worse and lesser natures by hate groups, dead enders like the Tea Party, and militia groups who will play on your anxieties about the demographic shifts we are seeing in the United States. If you are smart, patient, and pragmatic, there are voices out there—white conservatives in fact—who are trying to help your movement adapt to the 21st century. Do seek them out. You can get your own house in order, and not live in a state of irrational fear and sadness.

So much Republican party effort has been spent the weaving the modern definition with racism and xenophobia.  It’s interesting the James Earl Carter IV has unearthed Lee Atwater’s speech on the Southern Strategy which brought form to Angry White Men-istan. You should definitely listen to the full 42 minute tape.  Many Republicans have apologized for this but many more sent the strategy on steroids for four years.

It has become, for liberals and leftists enraged by the way Republicans never suffer the consequences for turning electoral politics into a cesspool, a kind of smoking gun. The late, legendarily brutal campaign consultant Lee Atwater explains how Republicans can win the vote of racists without sounding racist themselves:

You start out in 1954 by saying, “Nigger, nigger, nigger.” By 1968 you can’t say “nigger”—that hurts you, backfires. So you say stuff like, uh, forced busing, states’ rights, and all that stuff, and you’re getting so abstract. Now, you’re talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you’re talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is, blacks get hurt worse than whites.… “We want to cut this,” is much more abstract than even the busing thing, uh, and a hell of a lot more abstract than “Nigger, nigger.”

This entire strategy has led us to re-heating the civil war and re-igniting the arguments that led to leaving the Articles of Confederation in the dust for the Constitution.

Republicans bristled with indignation during the 2012 campaign any time someone suggested that there might be a racial undertone (or overtone, or just a tone) to attacks on President Obama. You know, that he was a Kenya–born socialist Muslim just passing himself off as an American. There was no racial intent there, no “dog whistle.”

But manipulating the racial fears, ethnic resentments and xenophobia of some American voters is in the warp and woof of the modern Republican Party. That bitter fact was vividly driven home yesterday by The Nation, which published a tape recording of a 41-minute, 1981 interview with Lee Atwater, the political operative who led the Republican Party’s “southern strategy” and formulated the politics of division and cultural warfare in the 1980s.

We’ve had these periods of xenophobia before, but usually it’s not so obviously included as a strategy of a major political party.  It’s good to remember the themes that actually were real at the founding of our country.  What was printed on our coins and was our motto were things like “we are one”, “unite or die”, e pluribus unum.

Just in case these so-called patriots forget, e pluribus unum means “out of many one”.

65 Comments on “Angry White Men-istan”

  1. RalphB says:

    This dude took it really seriously when Obama beat Rmoney. Is there no end to their nuttery?

    Miami Herald: Death of Key West man linked to Obama’s reelection

    A Key West man who told his partner that “if Barack gets re-elected, I’m not going to be around” was found dead on Nov. 8, with the words “F— Obama!” scrawled on his will and two empty prescription bottles nearby.

  2. roofingbird says:

    NIce Dak, I’ll just say however, that Oregon has always had it’s share of racists:

    Pockets persist such as in Medford, the town out of which WND operates.

    • dakinikat says:

      Yes. The militias tend to hang out in the mountain areas and the eastern parts of Oregon and Washington State are not like their west coast counterparts.

      • roofingbird says:

        Yep, it can be surprising both ways, like when the citizens of John Day got together and protested Paul Mullet’s attempt to to relocate an Aryan Nations home base there. Outcry was enough that people refused to sell to him and he went to OH.

      • NW Luna says:

        The E side of WA state, especially the far northeastern corner, and Idaho, have some real nutwings.

    • roofingbird says:

      I don’t like the way that article is worded. If Jerry Brown’s CA had really petitioned for succession it would be a big deal. I have no doubt there are wackos who could have initiated such a petition….

      I just looked online. Here is one that has garnered under 1300 signatures. Apparently it’s just wacko MEN who want to succeed.

    • roofingbird says:

      I guess that article actually makes a point about something I was pondering earlier. It’s so much work to understand and critique contorted thinking. One really has to get into that kind of mind to even defend against falsehood, because the lies are incrementally layered on top of each other.

  3. Pat Johnson says:

    I found myself taken to task for suggesting that much of the vitriol being expressed against Obama was due in large part to the color of his skin. This post backs me up.

    Since most of us agree that Obama acts like a DINO at times, the hatred coming from the Right has an underlying theme that allowed them to come “this close” to the “N” word without actually saying it out loud. Dog whistles were used over and over by surrogates and the nutjobs looking for their own 15 minutes of fame which created a whole new universe for inappropriateness the likes we have not seen since the civil rights protests of the 1960s.

    John McCain and the bitterness that still resides within this man is proof that his loss to Obama must have stung harder then anticipated when facing a black man of mixed heritage he continues to hold in contempt. Alongside him is Lindsay Graham from the great state of SC backing up charges of something sinister while praising Petraeus for “great service” to the country. Priorities anyone?

    While Obama maintains his commitment to the middle and working classes, the Right is still out there with knives sharpened to plunge into his back at every turn. “Create a conspiracy” if you have to just make sure your side escapes the same result. “My Pet Goat” is one example in that arena of injustice.

    Of course we all need to know the truth behind what happened in Benghazi but can’t we wait before we turn it into a political circus on the backs of the 4 fallen?

    Anyone remotely suggesting that “race” is not an issue needs to go back and read the comments over the past 4 years and come back with a report that some of us have it all wrong. My betting is that you can’t.

    Obama may not be all that he was touted to be in 2008 but he has been made to appear as the “shuck and jive” president that idiot Palin described in another one of her useless, senseless, attention getting tweets that rang that “bell” for those who see something in her that escapes the rest of us.

    Racial animosity? The last 4 years of positive action on behalf of the nation says it all.

    • dakinikat says:

      I couldn’t believe how obvious the racism, sexism, homophobia, and xenophobia was this election. It’s no wonder folks like Jindal are trying to tell them to go back to repackaging the hate into the Atwater dog whistles.

  4. RalphB says:

    Texas could probably survive on it’s own but it would be a miserable hardscrabble existence for the majority of the population. Though there would probably be a revolution in short order.

    As for going blue, if low turnout among the Hispanic population can be overcome, we may be a swing state in 2016 though one which will be difficult. By 2020, barring huge Republican changes, Texas will go blue. Once that happens, no Republican will have a chance at being elected President again.

    • ecocatwoman says:

      You really think “the revolution” will simply happen? They’ve convinced a high percentage of women to vote against their own self interests. They’ve done the same with poor whites. I don’t doubt that the next group with be those they once called aliens who will now become valuable immigrants continuing America’s “melting pot” history. Snake oil salesmen never die, they just move on to a new group of suckers.

      • RalphB says:

        If this state were to secede, we could make living in Sudan look good by comparison within a few years. In that case yes, people here would rise up against the state government.

        • ecocatwoman says:

          Sorry, I wasn’t clear. I meant the revolution of the state going from blood red to bright blue. Maybe I should have said transition instead of revolution. Forgive me, I’ve been a bit addlepated for days.

      • RalphB says:

        Oh cool. Sorry I misunderstood. Frankly, the biggest impediment to becoming a swing state is that historically Hispanic voter turnout has been very low. It will cost money and lots of organizing to change that but. once the demographics are in place, I think that will become available. If the state Dem party weren’t such a mess we would be doing better now but there is a new chairman who seems quite good and I expect it to be better.

      • janey says:

        Rush Limbaugh has been a brainwasher at least since 1992. He has brainwashed so many people that it is impossible for them to think of anything new. They expected that would get them the White House and when it didn’t they went clinically insane.

    • roofingbird says:

      I wonder. I imagine that the US would insist on control of the Gulf.

      • dakinikat says:

        The Gulf wouldn’t want to leave the US anyway. We’re a different breed than other folks in the gulf states too. Everything under the I-10 is more like everything other area in that region that the state they fell into.

    • dakinikat says:

      Possibly, the new United States would need to negotiate certain protectorates in the Confederacy — Austin, New Orleans, South Florida and the like — the way the British did in Hong Kong. Then there is the awkward matter of what the breakaway nation would do to its poor.

  5. dakinikat says:

    This guys on the Cycle right now.

    In 2012, the campaign might be a contest between these alternate universes of culture and cuisine: Whole Foods Markets and Cracker Barrel Old Country Stores.

    • dakinikat says:

      The 48% Whole Foods/Cracker Barrel divide is a fun stat, but gets at something more serious: voting now hinges on culture, not policy.

      Dave Wasserman Dave Wasserman ‏@Redistrict

  6. RalphB says:

    SteveM may have a point about this secession bit. If the ratfuckers can’t convince themselves the election was stolen first.


    When I read the latest Roy Edroso dispatch from Wingnuttia, I realize that secession talk on the right might be more than one-week phenomenon — I could easily imagine it being the central organizing idea of the loony right for the next four years, the way president Obama’s alleged socialist/Muslim foreignness was for the last four:
    Hispanics, blacks, gays, non-purity-ring-wearing single women — it’s the scariness of the electorate, I think, that’s generating the secession talk. It’s OK for the former flag-wavers to be disloyal to America by signing these petitions because America doesn’t exist anymore, at least not the real America.

    So I think we’ll hear secession talk at least up to the midterms — and if the Democratic Party actually figures out how to turn out this diverse base in 2014, the secession shrieks are only going to get louder.

    • dakinikat says:

      This is why I think the FBI should be alert because I actually think its an off shoot of the tea party, birtherism and all of that crap they’re saying about Obamacare and providing birth control coverage in health plans is a violation of religious freedom and all that conspiracy crap about Obama is coming for your guns that surrounded that stupid faux outrage that got Holder ‘impeached’. Believe me, they’ll try to impeach Obama for the Benghazi conspiracy theories too. These folks have lived in the FOX bubble for so long and are so convinced of their rightness that I don’t think this craziness is going any where … it’s all mildewing together in a cesspool that needs to be exposed to some rule of law.

      • RalphB says:

        I agree and all you have to do is look at the absolute looniness spouted by John McCain and Lindsey Graham to see what’s coming. They are gonna go nuts.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Unfortunately a lot of FBI agents are probably Rush listeners and Fox News watchers. Look at the guy who ended up getting Petraeus fired.

    • dakinikat says:

      Alicublog on Goldestein of Protein Wisdom

      … or maybe we should call it Protea “wisdom” because it contains about the same level of wisdom you would expect from a potted plant.

      Though he thinks the country no longer exists, Goldstein approves the movement to secede from the former United States via online petitions — “few believe anything will come of it, though I signed all that I could find” — and claims counter-petitioners who called the neo-Confederates “mentally deficient” and advocated “more education in our state to eradicate their disease” were not just making harmless jokes at the expense of same, but “wish to control us, take our liberties, and force us into a kind of ‘progressive,’ happy-faced indentured servitude… [they] offer as a solution to the disease of American exceptionalism more leftwing propaganda driven through a union-controlled, heavily leftwing education system.”

  7. RalphB says:

    There is a petition with 4,500 signatures which asks that the government “Peacefully grant the city of Austin Texas to withdraw from the state of Texas & remain part of the United States.”

    • dakinikat says:

      I can see New Orleans doing that too

      • RalphB says:

        Full text which now has 5210 signatures. Just as valid as any other.

        Austin Texas continues to suffer difficulties stemming from the lack of civil, religious, and political freedoms imposed upon the city by less liberally minded Texans. It is entirely feasible for Austin to operate as its own state, within the United States, in the event that Texas is successful in the current bid to secede. It is important for Austin to remain in the union as to do so would protect it’s citizens’ standard of living and re-secure their rights and liberties in accordance with the original ideas and beliefs of our founding fathers.

        We would also like to annex Dublin Texas, Lockhart Texas, & Shiner Texas.

      • HT says:

        Brilliant Ralph, and Dak I hope Nola does the same – and every other like minded part of every state for which these lunatics have started a petition. As a melanin challenged person of northern european heritage and believe me, I’m whiter than white bread complete with light blue eyes and freckles, unable to go out in the sun for very long. My son is even lighter than I with flaming red hair and my daughter is the same with blonde hair. We cannot for a moment understand those cretins. Our family consists of intra cultural members and that’s the way it should be to my way of thinking.

    • Allie says:

      This is what I don’t understand. Would it be legally possible for the state to secede as long as a majority wanted to? Shouldn’t the secessionists just have to leave and find somewhere else to live? Why should I be forced to give up my American citizenship? I live in Georgia, my work is here, my relatives live here…would I have to give up my Social Security and Medicare benefits I’ve been paying in to all my life?

      It’s just too looney for words.

  8. RalphB says:

    I’m beginning to really detest John McCain and his little dog Graham.

    Dave Weigel: John McCain’s Long War Against Susan Rice

    On those Sunday shows, she said that extremists used a protest as a cover for their planned attack, not that the attack happened off the cuff. The key figure in spreading this lie about Rice was … John McCain, who said that same Sunday that “most people don’t bring rocket-propelled grenades and heavy weapons to demonstrations.”

    McCain’s obvious contempt has been noticed by the press and dismissed by Democrats. After McCain’s presser, where he called for a select committee to investigate Benghazi, a reporter asked Sen. Harry Reid whether he could support such an investigation. “No,” snapped Reid.

  9. pdgrey says:

    I don’t think I and stand any more of this shit. McCain and little boy Graham, Ryan and “urban voters”. Now Mitt the Twit says “Obama, Romney argued, had been “very generous” to blacks, Hispanics and young voters” OMG their are no more dog whistles and thank you Dak for putting up the Lee Atwater shit. I listened to the entire interview last night, everybody should listen.

  10. RalphB says:

    Great video/story a real smile generator. She’s had her drivers license for 90 years. Beats the hell out of listening to that d-bag McCain.

    102-Year-Old Woman Still Drives Her 82-Year-Old Car

  11. RalphB says:

    Dana Milbank commits journalism again. This is a very good article.

    WAPO: The Confederacy of Takers

    President Obama’s opponents have unwittingly come up with a brilliant plan to avoid the “fiscal cliff.” They want to secede from the union.

    If Obama were serious about being a good steward of the nation’s finances, he’d let them.

  12. ecocatwoman says:

    Ralph this one’s for you. Found it on the Maddow Blog:
    * And Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) today nominated disgraced former House Speaker Newt Gingrich to replace current House Speaker John Boehner. No one seconded the nomination, and it’s unclear what in the world Gohmert was thinking.

    Ain’t it fun to live in a state where crazy people get elected?

  13. RalphB says:

    Shirtless FBI guy identified by NYT.

    Veteran F.B.I. Agent Helped Start Petraeus E-Mail Inquiry

    The agent, Frederick W. Humphries II, 47, took the initial complaint from Jill Kelley, the Tampa, Fla., hostess who was socially active in military circles there, about e-mails she found disturbing that accused her of inappropriately flirtatious behavior toward Mr. Petraeus.

  14. pdgrey says:

    While we are at this, i have wondered why their isn’t a word for men that cheat equivalent to mistress? This article made me think of it again.