Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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April 27, 2010

GREENHOUSE GETS SHRILL.... Linda Greenhouse, a Pulitzer Prize-winning Supreme Court correspondent for the New York Times, isn't known for writing provocative opinion pieces. But the new, odious immigration measure in Arizona appears to have genuinely outraged Greenhouse. Good for her.

...I'm not going back to Arizona as long as it remains a police state, which is what the appalling anti-immigrant bill that Gov. Jan Brewer signed into law last week has turned it into.

What would Arizona's revered libertarian icon, Barry Goldwater, say about a law that requires the police to demand proof of legal residency from any person with whom they have made "any lawful contact" and about whom they have "reasonable suspicion" that "the person is an alien who is unlawfully present in the United States?" Wasn't the system of internal passports one of the most distasteful features of life in the Soviet Union and apartheid-era South Africa?

Greenhouse's question about Goldwater's reaction to such madness also reminds me that there's another group of small-government-minded folks who claim to be concerned by authoritarian tactics. Reader B.H. emailed this poignant observation last night:

Just a question I haven't heard anybody ask: Shouldn't the tea party crowd be having a cow over this new immigration bill that Arizona just passed? Doesn't that sound like big government tyranny to them? Giving the police the power to demand "papers" from someone just on their own suspicion?

Any chatter from the tea party folk to this effect? I haven't seen any.

Nor have I. It's almost as if the right-wing crowd is only offended by government abuses when they're imaginary.

Steve Benen 9:25 AM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (43)

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Comments

No, the right-wing crowd is only offended by government abuses when they affect white people.

Posted by: rachelrachel on April 27, 2010 at 9:22 AM | PERMALINK

Too many big words? Perhaps if the police would grow Hitler mustaches the tea baggers would get the message.

Posted by: pokeybob on April 27, 2010 at 9:25 AM | PERMALINK

"Big Government" only applies to the Federal Government. Everything else is "States' Rights."

Posted by: martin on April 27, 2010 at 9:26 AM | PERMALINK

re the tea party crowd's silence: it's like anti-abortion foes saying nothing about capital punishment

Posted by: sjw on April 27, 2010 at 9:28 AM | PERMALINK

Ralph Ellison's literature seems so relevant today with what we are seeing in the Tea party and Arizona!

The invisible hand of racism lives strong in some, so strong, many haven't a clue of their zombie-like state of mind! -Kevo

Posted by: kevo on April 27, 2010 at 9:28 AM | PERMALINK
Just a question I haven't heard anybody ask: Shouldn't the tea party crowd be having a cow over this new immigration bill that Arizona just passed? Doesn't that sound like big government tyranny to them? Giving the police the power to demand "papers" from someone just on their own suspicion?
Jamelle Bouie (United States of Jamerica, a blog you should be reading if you aren't already) answered this a couple days ago: it isn't tyranny if it happens to them ('them' being any set of people easily defined as the other). Posted by: Tom Hilton on April 27, 2010 at 9:29 AM | PERMALINK

Anything that is restrictive to the darkies is A-OK with the teatards.

Posted by: terraformer on April 27, 2010 at 9:30 AM | PERMALINK

The tea baggers are fine with this law because it impacts brown people. I wouldn't be surprised if they would be OK with the state requiring sombrero patches to be sewed onto the clothing of all hispanics. These people are irony resistant.

Posted by: bdop4 on April 27, 2010 at 9:32 AM | PERMALINK

There was a time there would be howls about identification cards and unfunded mandates, but I'm looking forward to suing the Pima County Sheriff Department when they don't do enough to check into the illegal aliens at all the various schools. At $5000 per lawsuit, I'm going to get so rich I won't care about the civil rights damage. And there are a lot of schools, private schools, charter schools, and daycares in town, and I bet there aren't a lot of preschoolers with valid identification. I'll profit even more if my own kids get illegally detained.

I'm a bad person, but it's so easy to see the purpose of this legislation that it simply demands to be misused.

Posted by: jon on April 27, 2010 at 9:32 AM | PERMALINK

Living in Tucson...

A democratic city, with two democratic Congress members (Grijalva and Giffords)...

A city that put Napolitano over the top in both her elections to governor...

A city that has a sane republican major who actually led the local standing ovation for the stimulus money that completed the funding for our future downtown light rail...

A city that is pretty much united in its opposition to the Rosemont Mine proposal that the Phoenix whitey-righties are trying to blast onto YOUR public lands just south of here...

I feel bad that the overwhelming majority of teabaggers in the State, concentrated intensely in and around Phoenix, will fuck things up for everyone again. But such is the way of the world:

BOYCOTT THIS STATE!
(And do what you can to kill that mine.
The Santa Ritas are stunning example of the Sky Island biome.)

Posted by: koreyel on April 27, 2010 at 9:42 AM | PERMALINK

Goldwater? Please... Back in the day, Arizona was home to desert rats and libertarians. Now, (and I'm quoting the governor here) it's the Phoenix hell-hole.

Posted by: MattF on April 27, 2010 at 9:43 AM | PERMALINK

The tea party people are the brown shirts to the az state gestapo.

Posted by: SGeorge on April 27, 2010 at 9:49 AM | PERMALINK

Having had a run in with Greenhouse many, many years ago when she was just starting out at the not-so-venerable NYT, I'm delighted to see that she has finally developed a sense of outrage and injustice.

Given that the teabaggers believe the U.S. is a white Christian nation, and are in mortal fear of change, then anything punitive done to non-whites and non-Christians will be fine with them. So don't expect them to have an expansive view of the Constitution, or any ingrained sense of universal civil rights. The Constitution covers only white people. No one else. When your worldview is through a keyhole that is how you see it.

Posted by: rrk1 on April 27, 2010 at 9:51 AM | PERMALINK

rachelrachel wrote:
"No, the right-wing crowd is only offended by government abuses when they affect white people."

End of story.

Posted by: Davran on April 27, 2010 at 9:55 AM | PERMALINK

Well, good may come of this. Remember -- Arizona's excesses gave us Miranda.

Posted by: Churchyard on April 27, 2010 at 9:58 AM | PERMALINK

there is a very quick and easy cure for this ne Arizona law -- Major League Baseball players just have to have the spines their counterparts in the NFL did in saying they would not play on a team owned by Limbaugh. If all of the Hispanic and Carribean MLB players would simply refuse to attend spring training in Arizona, and teams all took spring training elsewhere, the high profile image damage and loss of sports and tourism revenue would bring AZ to its knees. NFL players rose up to stop Rush from owning a team, and it worked. C'mon, MLB players -- whatcha waiting for?

Posted by: zeitgeist on April 27, 2010 at 10:05 AM | PERMALINK

Yes, I expect a group, a majority of whom believe that the federal government cares more about blacks than whites, to be up in arms over this travesity.

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

it's so easy to see the purpose of this legislation that it simply demands to be misused.

You can jsut see what's coming the first time the President visits Arizona--some cop will arrest him for not having his birth certificate on his person.

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

They have white teflon coating that makes them immune under the bill. No one is going to challenge their right to be there, even though, in reality, many of them would have no way to prove their citizenship without fairly laborious undertakings.

I don't live in Arizona, but I live in a state where many in the legislature occasionally wax outraged at illegal immigrants -- but, like Arizona, they want to do everything and anything possible without actually punishing the entities that have the most power to change the situation, which are the employers who hire undocumented workers.

A few years ago a member of the state assembly introduced the bill that would absolve employers of responsibility for workers compensation benefits if the worker turned out to be illegally in the U.S. (or illegally working in the U.S.). This was to punish illegal workers. Think about the mindset of someone like that, the stupidity and perverse incentives and completely unjust externalities. Even if you don't care about immigrants, what about the hospital emergency rooms that have to provide uncompensated care because the employer, who was in the best position to avoid the "problem," is totally off the hook.

This is their mindest: to blame the dark skinned guy no matter that lots of others are incentivized to, and do in fact, benefit from their presence in the country, including the state as a whole (I would venture).

Posted by: Barbara on April 27, 2010 at 10:13 AM | PERMALINK

If you really want to know what the right wing thinks about this, read Jonah Lucianne's effluvium in today's LA Times.

He is always bad, but now he reflects very precisely the depth to which the conservative thought, such as it ever was, has fallen.

Posted by: gregor on April 27, 2010 at 10:21 AM | PERMALINK

the right-wing crowd is only offended by government abuses when they affect white people.

I think they are even more selective than that...

Posted by: qwerty on April 27, 2010 at 10:23 AM | PERMALINK

Perhaps the White House shouldn't poach a Democratic governor from a state when it means unhinged loons will take control.

Posted by: doubtful on April 27, 2010 at 10:25 AM | PERMALINK

Phoenix and its suburbs are the refuse of the losers who cannot make it in California and of the sissies from the mid-west and the east coast who are not men enough to tolerate the natural seasonal variations in temperature.

Posted by: gregor on April 27, 2010 at 10:28 AM | PERMALINK

"the right-wing crowd is only offended by government abuses when they affect white people.

I think they are even more selective than that..."

The right wing crows is only offended by government abuses that affect white people who are good Christians, attend the right churches, live in god-fearing heterosexual marriages. drive American cars and don't drink Pinot Grigio or eat organic arugula.

Posted by: Eeyore on April 27, 2010 at 10:38 AM | PERMALINK

Phoenix and its suburbs are the refuse of the losers who cannot make it in California and of the sissies from the mid-west and the east coast who are not men enough to tolerate the natural seasonal variations in temperature.

Posted by: gregor on April 27, 2010 at 10:38 AM | PERMALINK

Why does your headline say "Greenhouse Gets Shrill"? Is it shrill because people in general aren't supposed to get angry at the un-American B.S. that the right-wing promotes? Or is it shrill because a woman speaking forcefully is, by definition, shrill? I know you didn't mean either of those things, but I still don't get where that word came from. Am I nitpicking?

Posted by: kw on April 27, 2010 at 10:52 AM | PERMALINK

Russian citizens still have to carry internal passports, and there are actually two - a demestic passport and a separate international passport. I believe citizens get them without cost, but they are an obligation and are renewed twice after the initial issue, so as to capture your present appearance reasonably accurately. Young children are on their mother's passport until they're old enough to get their own first one.

Posted by: Mark on April 27, 2010 at 10:57 AM | PERMALINK

We can all put down the Neanderthals of Arizona, but, this is not any different from comments I once heard in a redneck bar in El Monte, CA, a few years back. I used to stop there because they served great food. Mostly white male rednecks sat at the bar. A discussion came up about an article in the LAT about a young African-American male salesman, who had been repeatedly stopped by the local police while walking in North San Diego County. He took his case up the chain to the Supremes in Sacremento. The rednecks saw no problem with his being stopped. "Law and Order", they cried. When, I inquired whether they would like the same treatment, it became the same old, "But, I have nothing to hide". Yeah, every city and burg in the land should have a VoPo with a shouldered AK-47 on every corner and a Stassi agent in every nook and cranny of your home.

Posted by: berttheclock on April 27, 2010 at 11:01 AM | PERMALINK

kw, I agree with you.

Steve, I think that "shrill" was an unfortunate choice of words, especially given that Greenhouse is a distinguished female reporter. A much better word would have been "indignant".

Posted by: JD on April 27, 2010 at 11:10 AM | PERMALINK

Actually, Steve, I noted the Tea Party silence about "big governmnet" that B.H. asked about back on April 21.

But it only matters if the government intrudes into the lives of rich white guys.

Posted by: Mustang Bobby on April 27, 2010 at 11:21 AM | PERMALINK

Guys, "shrill" is not being applied to Greenhouse because she is a woman. Google "krugman shrill". It is an honorable adjective, claimed by the rationally outraged left after it was applied to them by the crooks and cretins on the right (who were, in fact, trying to feminize the opposition).

See, for example: http://www.austinchronicle.com/gyrobase/Issue/story?oid=oid%3A559099

Posted by: dr2chase on April 27, 2010 at 11:30 AM | PERMALINK

See also: http://www.shrillblog.blogspot.com/

Posted by: dr2chase on April 27, 2010 at 11:32 AM | PERMALINK

The tea party is only concerned about two things, hating and testicle gumming, this should make it most obvious.

Posted by: Trollop on April 27, 2010 at 11:42 AM | PERMALINK

Hey buddy , wee don't need no steenkeen patches

Posted by: bdop4 on April 27, 2010 at 9:32 AM
The tea baggers are fine with this law because it impacts brown people. I wouldn't be surprised if they would be OK with the state requiring sombrero patches to be sewed onto the clothing of all hispanics. These people are irony resistant.

Posted by: doubtful
Perhaps the White House shouldn't poach a Democratic governor from a state when it means unhinged loons will take control.

Cuz it makes so much more sense to walk around in fear , praying , hoping , and a wishing that if we can just hold on long enough the rapture will settle every little ole thing .

If an ordinary well spoken person who articulates their way around the right wing with personal dignity , self respect unbent and undamaged , comes across an Arizonian cattle car law without breaking into mach shrill , the dosage of their meditative peace may be set to deep .
Shrill is more than a state of mind , it is the sound of every single vestige of self control being forced to act modestly while unspeakable wrongs are being called , The Law .

Posted by: Some brear raugh on April 27, 2010 at 11:55 AM | PERMALINK

Well, you have to appreciate the consistent inconsistency of Tea Partiers. They sat idly by while their guy, Bush, trampled all the hell over the Constitution, but rose obediently up when commanded by their generals to protest the unbearable weight of Obama's tax cuts and health reform as tyranny.

Hypocrisy and inconsistency are core characteristics of the Right.

Posted by: plooger on April 27, 2010 at 12:50 PM | PERMALINK

Like anyone of the Teabaggers gives a shit about Mexicans? They only worry about government intrusion ivolving white people. This is evidence that they are a racist group. They are nothing more than an angry mob of nuts that somehow, the media can't pay enough attention to.

Posted by: Patrick on April 27, 2010 at 12:56 PM | PERMALINK

I'm surprised no one has pointed out that France (and maybe other European countries?) also requires citizens to carry their "Carte D'Identite" everywhere they go. In Paris in 1990-91 I frequently saw police stationed at subway station exit turnstiles, waiting to catch illegal immigrants.

So maybe we should frighten the Tea Party types by saying they're becoming more like France!

Posted by: Francophile on April 27, 2010 at 1:07 PM | PERMALINK

There was a time there would be howls about identification cards and unfunded mandates, but I'm looking forward to suing the Pima County Sheriff Department when they don't do enough to check into the illegal aliens at all the various schools.

Maddow pointed out last night that the legislation guarantees state reimbursement of all legal fees for successful litigants, which is a nice direct line to the treasury for the Know-Nothing "legal foundation" that wrote the law and can expect to do a lot of the actual suing as this thing moves forward.

Posted by: drkrick on April 27, 2010 at 1:17 PM | PERMALINK

Greenhouse's proposed "I could be illegal" buttons recommended for anyone visiting Arizona --- can be found on CafePress.

Posted by: uthernal on April 27, 2010 at 1:31 PM | PERMALINK
Some brear raugh@11:55: If an ordinary well spoken person who articulates their way around the right wing with personal dignity , self respect unbent and undamaged , comes across an Arizonian cattle car law without breaking into mach shrill , the dosage of their meditative peace may be set to deep . Shrill is more than a state of mind , it is the sound of every single vestige of self control being forced to act modestly while unspeakable wrongs are being called , The Law .

FRP, aliases don't do you a bit of good. ;o)

Posted by: JTK on April 27, 2010 at 5:24 PM | PERMALINK

Correction of the correction. The right-wing crowd is only offended by imaginary government abuses that they imagine would affect white people.

Posted by: Another Steve on April 27, 2010 at 5:25 PM | PERMALINK

LOL. This is truly perverting thinking on the part of libs. It's a simple matter of jews breaking the law by entering the country and not being punished because of corruption in our government.

How stupid can anyone be who doesn't understand what the "illegal" in "illegal jews" means? How stupid. What does "illegal" mean? And don't try to get manipulative and fool yourself and others by using baby talk like "undocumented." This above all, to thine own self be true. Illegal.

Posted by: Adolf on April 28, 2010 at 5:42 AM | PERMALINK

Thanks for this it came in useful recently

Posted by: Quiet Air Conditioners on October 21, 2010 at 11:10 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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