The new GOP is heartily behind these fascist tactics employed by the Teabaggers, where they go to town hall meetings and informational forums hosted by their elected representatives, and under the guise of "free speech", they shout down any attempt at a reasonable exchange of ideas.
Of course, while indulging in their contemptible display of brutish hatred, they are effectively obstructing the rights of many other voters who showed up to learn what their representatives think and to attempt to express their opinions. Because in a fascist movement, only those who belong to that particular movement are heard. Everyone else is crushed.
GOP Party Chairman Chris Healy endorses and encourages this behavior. Over at My Left Nutmeg yesterday, tparty (which is an internet handle that has suddenly become fraught with irony) discusses Healy's response to a Hartford Courant blog article:
In a comment in response to a post today on the Courant's Capitol Watch blog, Connecticut Republican Party Chairman Chris Healy defended the right of crazed right-wing activists to attempt to shut down debate at town hall meetings with members of Congress across the state:With such counter-productive tactics being actively encouraged by the Republican Party, and repeatedly advocated by right-wing news organizations and talk radio, it's doubtful those citizens who want to actually engage in a constructive dialog with their representatives will even bother to show up. Nobody in their right mind wants to be subjected to a howling mob scene.When everyday citizens, most of them who have never been politically active, indicate that they are going to take to streets and shout "enough!" It is somehow un-Democratic. Well, it's un-Democratic because we don't agree with the Democratic Party model - larger government, out-of-control spending and demonizing those who disagree.Chairman Healy and the Connecticut Republican Party are apparently now officially sanctioning the organized and potentially violent right-wing disruptions of town hall meetings in the coming days by the use of widely distributed anti-democratic tactics such as "yelling," "disrupting," and avoiding "intelligent debate".
Give it a rest. Let the people be heard. If leaders can't stand in front of those who sent them there and defend their positions, too bad. Maybe they should go back to Washington and realize that we are paying attention.
This type of thing has happened before in Connecticut. Back in 2006, Sen. Joe Lieberman's campaign indulged in very similar activities. When Ned Lamont appeared at Ted's Diner in Meriden for a campaign stop, he was confronted by shouting Lieberman volunteers, led by lobbyist thug Richard Goodstein
It happened again, this time at a senior citizen housing project in Hartford. When Ned Lamont showed up to speak to the seniors, he was confronted by a huge mob of screeching Lieberman employees and paid hooligans, who were instructed to "yell", "disrupt", and put a stop to "intelligent debate". They succeeded not only in doing just that, but they terrorized many of the senior citizens living there, many of whom didn't know what was going on and locked themselves inside their rooms.
Fortunately, the GOP's tactics are starting to backfire on them. Public opinion, expressed in editorials and blogs, is turning against their terrorist methods. People aren't stupid. They recognize fascist tactics and they're starting to object. The Republicans have lost so much in the last few years that they're pulling out all the stops in a desperate last-ditch effort to claim any sort of victory.
The Democratic National Committee has released a sixty-second spot, which exposes quite clearly the thuggish tactics encouraged by the Rabid Right:
ConnecticutMan1's footage of a Hartford rally was featured on MSNBC last night (well done, Stephen!):
Clearly, the Republican Party has lost all semblance of logic and restraint, and they've adopted the tactics used by another group of misguided people in the 1920s and 30s. It all started with a so-called "populist" movement that encouraged thug tactics and repression of any dissent from their own hard line.
(don't worry, I'm not accusing them of being Nazis...not yet, anyway!)