Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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April 2, 2010

THE LIMITS OF AN EXTREME IDEOLOGY, CONT'D.... Republicans in D.C. and Tennessee were "giddy" about recruiting Stephen Fincher to run against Rep. John Tanner (D-Tenn.) in the midterms. Fincher, a 37-year-old farmer, never went to college, but he's a blue-eyed charmer with a knack for raising lots of money.

He's also been the recipient of generous sums of money from the federal government.

But for one important detail, Stephen Fincher could be a perfect "tea party" candidate: a gospel-singing cotton farmer from this tiny hamlet in western Tennessee, seeking to right the listing ship of Washington with a commitment to lower taxes and smaller government.

The detail? Fincher accepts roughly $200,000 in farm subsidies each year.

While some right-wing activists see this as problematic, many Tea Party activists have pledged their support for Fincher's campaign. David Nance, the founder of the Gibson County Patriots, said, "I don't see the agricultural subsidy thing as an issue at all."

No, of course not. Why would it be problematic for a right-wing candidate who rails against government spending and welfare to receive $200,000 in checks from the federal government in the form of agriculture subsidies?

For the right-wing crowd, subsidies for 32 million Americans with no health insurance is outrageous, but subsidies for conservative farmers is not an issue "at all."

It seems as if stories like these are surprisingly common. Tom Grimes is active with Tea Party politics because he wants the government to spend less and get rid of public programs, but he loves Social Security, and when he lost his job, one of his first steps was contacting his congressman about available programs that might give him access to government health care

Diana Reimer, considered a "star" right-wing activist in her efforts against government programs, hates the Affordable Care Act, but she loves the socialized medicine that comes with Medicare.

Mike Vanderboegh considers himself a hard-line libertarian, but his main income is taxpayer-financed disability checks sent to him every month by the federal government.

And in Tennessee, Tea Party activists want leaders who'll take a stand against federal government spending, and are rallying behind a congressional candidate who gets $200,000 in checks from the federal government.

Steve Benen 10:15 AM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (40)

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Comments

Cognative dissonance much?

Posted by: Winkandanod on April 2, 2010 at 10:16 AM | PERMALINK

It's "I Got Mine, Sc##w You!" politics.

Which pretty much describes the election of Scott Brown.

Posted by: Lance on April 2, 2010 at 10:17 AM | PERMALINK

It is interesting to compare this casual acceptance with the fanatical skepticism and required purity of belief seen on sites like Red State. It would seem, as with starting wars and torturing prisoners, that it's ok by definition if they are doing it.

Posted by: Rathskeller on April 2, 2010 at 10:17 AM | PERMALINK

Makes perfect sense. Lots of bucks for good, upstanding, white folks, and nothing for, um, those others.

Posted by: Don K on April 2, 2010 at 10:21 AM | PERMALINK

"You cannot reason people out of beliefs they did not reason themselves into."

Posted by: chrenson on April 2, 2010 at 10:25 AM | PERMALINK

It's very simple. Fincher is white.

For the revamped KKK, it's only a problem when non-whites get anything from the government.

Posted by: doubtful on April 2, 2010 at 10:27 AM | PERMALINK

Of course these people are going to enjoy the benefits as long as they're the law. Why shouldn't they?

Social Security and Medicare are the rape of taxpayers, but as long as rape is inevitable, I'm going to lie back and enjoy it. You can't argue with this.

Posted by: Myke K on April 2, 2010 at 10:29 AM | PERMALINK

David Nance, the founder of the Gibson County Patriots, said, "I don't see the agricultural subsidy thing as an issue at all."

The party that feeds on stupid never goes hungry.

Posted by: oh my on April 2, 2010 at 10:30 AM | PERMALINK

I would love to see some divisive advertising calling this guy a welfare queen.

Posted by: skeptic on April 2, 2010 at 10:37 AM | PERMALINK

pre states tar continue amount movit

Posted by: paxtunmell on April 2, 2010 at 10:41 AM | PERMALINK

Take away the racists, and the Teabaggers fall apart.

Posted by: doubtful beat me to it on April 2, 2010 at 10:43 AM | PERMALINK

So basically our tax dollars are funding the Teabaggers.

Posted by: leo on April 2, 2010 at 10:43 AM | PERMALINK

"For the right-wing crowd, subsidies for 32 million Americans with no health insurance is outrageous, but subsidies for conservative farmers is not an issue "at all.""

But we have a black President, that makes all the difference.

Posted by: SaintZak on April 2, 2010 at 10:44 AM | PERMALINK

When have conservatives ever let a little hypocrisy slow them down?

Posted by: beekabeck on April 2, 2010 at 10:49 AM | PERMALINK

"For the right-wing crowd, subsidies for 32 million Americans with no health insurance is outrageous, but subsidies for conservative farmers is not an issue "at all."

Pitch perfect. Rinse and Repeat, just replace the word farmers as needed.

Posted by: danimal on April 2, 2010 at 10:52 AM | PERMALINK

Other commenters have it right: White ("Christian")makes right

Posted by: bikelib on April 2, 2010 at 10:58 AM | PERMALINK

Dude, farmers are noble*. Nobly accepting welfare.

*according to the crazy on my reader, the last two noble professions are stay at home mom and farmer.

Posted by: Personal Failure on April 2, 2010 at 10:59 AM | PERMALINK

It's starting to look like the whole Tea Party thing is just bunch of Welfare Queens who have nothing but time to rail against "Gubmint"

I hear West Viginiea in the leading recipient of Federal Largesse

Posted by: bcinaz on April 2, 2010 at 11:08 AM | PERMALINK

"The party that feeds on stupid never goes hungry."--oh my

Wow, that's one of the best descriptions of the appeal of modern right-wing Republicanism that I've ever seen.

Touche, oh my.

Posted by: JD on April 2, 2010 at 11:09 AM | PERMALINK

Many of the supporters of Senator Pat Roberts (R)KS, have been Kansas farmers doing the same for years. It's only those Wellofffare Queens in Wichita and KC who cause problems.

Posted by: berttheclock on April 2, 2010 at 11:11 AM | PERMALINK

Tanner is actually retiring after this term, although Fincher is running in his district.

Posted by: sacman701 on April 2, 2010 at 11:11 AM | PERMALINK

Just to echo what everyone else is saying: government welfare is only a problem if people don't deserve it, and you can tell who is deserving by the color of their skin.

Posted by: inkadu on April 2, 2010 at 11:23 AM | PERMALINK

So basically our tax dollars are funding the Teabaggers.

So we can start referring to them as the "Taxpayer-funded Teabaggers" in everyday speech. Oughta drive 'em nuts. Although I do like turning "Welfare Queens" around on them, too.

@ Lance: you got that right, pal.

Posted by: Cap'n Chucky on April 2, 2010 at 11:39 AM | PERMALINK

Make this the TEA party meltdown - insist they oppose all farm and other subsidies. Not that I'm for something that's questionable, but it would make it electorally difficult for these hypocritical hacks.

Posted by: neil b. on April 2, 2010 at 12:22 PM | PERMALINK

Just goes to show that Tea Partiers are as clueless as they appear to be...

Posted by: mfw13 on April 2, 2010 at 12:24 PM | PERMALINK

Red States recieve more in federal dollars than blue states (and have for decades). A disportionate number of 'Teabaggers' are retired recieving Social Security and Medicare or are unemployed and getting unemployment benefits and other assitance from the government.

They rail against programs for the 'poor' but the greatest number of poor are not in the cities but in the rural south and midwest (red state areas). The greatest number of people lacking access to basic healthcare are also in the rural south and midwest.

In other words the very people who rail against the programs, and vote in candidates that cut or eliminate them are the very people who benefit from and need them the most.

The ability of the Republican establishment to get these people to vote against their own self-interest has been one the greatest feats of political hoodwinking in history.

Posted by: thorin-1 on April 2, 2010 at 12:39 PM | PERMALINK

Our generous blue state tax dollars at work again, funding the red staters who vote against our interests. It's time for urban states and specifically California to demand fair representation in federal government.

Posted by: Kate on April 2, 2010 at 1:07 PM | PERMALINK

"The ability of the Republican establishment to get these people to vote against their own self-interest has been one the greatest feats of political hoodwinking in history."

I would argue that it is one of the OLDEST tricks in political history.

The famed Milgram experiments proved that 65% of us would shock an unknown human being to unconscienceness, just because we were told to, even if it repulsed us to do so, by a perceived "authority"

They are NOT conservatives, they are AUTHORITARIANS!! Compliant to their leaders wishes, yes even against their own self-interests.

The RWA follower is compelled do what his SDO leader says. It's in their DNA.

Posted by: Al B Tross on April 2, 2010 at 1:12 PM | PERMALINK

That's different!

Posted by: Standard Republican't Response on April 2, 2010 at 2:27 PM | PERMALINK

First question to any TeaBagger should be "what kind of government money do you take?"

Posted by: Sarah Barracuda on April 2, 2010 at 2:33 PM | PERMALINK

Elementary. If you're a white, right-wing republican, it's ok to get money from the government.

If you're anyone else, it's not.

Another edition of simple answers to simple questions.

Posted by: LL on April 2, 2010 at 2:47 PM | PERMALINK

Ha! Winkandanod - you actually used the word "cognitive" in reference to these people.

Instead of "hypocritical asshole", I mean.

Posted by: DH Walker on April 2, 2010 at 3:03 PM | PERMALINK

I may be a left coast rube (and thus don't know many southerners or midwesterners) but I don't think that the underlying element is racism. It is fear and anxiety of change, mainly economic change that does not benefit landholders. Due to our constitutional system of non representational governance (2 Senators from each state), rural property owners have had more power than their economic output. Every time there is an attempt to shift power - and its remedies and perks, like subsidies - to states with urban populations, those who hold the subsidies rebel. Figuratively and literally.

Posted by: Wally on April 2, 2010 at 3:18 PM | PERMALINK

"It is fear and anxiety of change, mainly economic change that does not benefit landholders..." Wally @ 3:18 PM.

That ship sailed a century ago. Over 50% of the population lived in towns/cities of greater than 5000 population well before 1900. By 1900 the city populations were the under-represented ones and they remained that way until the middle of the 20th century. The Civil Rights legislation of the 1960s corrected a lot of the imbalances, however. That "One man, one vote" thing.
The present bunch of extremists operating under the "Tea Party" banner are slipping further and further into blatant racism; perhaps hiding behind faux economic issues, but that is where they're heading. It appears that what so many are so pissed about is that they're no longer guaranteed to be better than someone else simply because they're white.
That's what they mean by "Taking America Back"...

Posted by: Doug on April 2, 2010 at 10:18 PM | PERMALINK

"It is fear and anxiety of change, mainly economic change... " Wally @ 3:18 PM

Yes, Wally. And that is the very basis of racism. These "others" are about to have equal access to what I always regarded as my birth right.


"...the rape of taxpayers, but as long as rape is inevitable, I'm going to lie back and enjoy it. You can't argue with this."
Posted by: Myke K on April 2, 2010 at 10:29 AM

It's hard to think of anything one could argue with more.

Posted by: Kimmel on April 3, 2010 at 2:40 AM | PERMALINK

Playing devil's advocate here. The system is rigged. If this guy doesn't take the subsidies, then his business WILL fail.

Posted by: Illinois Observer on April 3, 2010 at 5:22 PM | PERMALINK

Teabaggers- same MO as reaperbaggers.

Posted by: hoser3 on April 3, 2010 at 7:52 PM | PERMALINK

Illinois observer- and to play advocate one more move- And we all know what the baggers would say to a guy with a failed business- get off your butt, quit whining, sell the farm and crawl under a rock (as they yell derogatory comments at him).

Posted by: hoser3 on April 3, 2010 at 7:56 PM | PERMALINK

Hey David Nance- Where's my subsidy? After all, ain't no big thing bra.

Posted by: proctor_blair@yahoo.com on April 3, 2010 at 8:00 PM | PERMALINK

How are you going to make your "Robe" without cotton?

Posted by: hoser3 on April 3, 2010 at 8:04 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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