This is about the Republican Party’s tenuous ties to reality. Trump’s victory speech last night in New York is really all that needs to be said about Trump. But the number 2 spot in the GOP is occupied by a guy, Ted Cruz, who is no closer in tapping into our shared reality, and it is as though his entire campaign is a celebration of that fact.
According to Ted’s dad, Rafael Cruz, a whole bunch of stuff that never happened means a bunch of stuff that is patently untrue is true and that in consequence, things will happen that have no chance of ever happening. It’s almost as though his campaign has created a parallel reality based on everything Fox News has said over the past decade.
You have to wonder if anyone in the know on the Right is holding up their hands in horror at what they have wrought.
Here’s the deal: Rafael Cruz got together with Larry Pratt of Gun Owners of America with the inevitable result that a whole buncha crazy took place that would be better as a plot of a really bad ‘B’ movie.
Rafael Cruz bases his whole spiel on two false premises: 1) that President Obama not only plans, but has repeatedly tried to “take our guns away,” and, 2) that there is a “tremendous religious persecution” taking place in America right now of Christians and Jews.
Here is how he works it out for the audience:
“And I’ll tell you what, look at history, every dictator that has taken away the guns from the population have then used those guns to kill the population by the millions. Stalin did it, Hitler did it, Mao did it, Pol Pot did it, Castro did it, they’ve all done it. And Obama has been trying for the last seven years to take our guns away!”
Needless to say, he can’t point to one example of President Obama trying to take anyone’s guns away. Or Clinton, or any other Democratic president. They’ve been saying it for decades and nobody has had their guns taken away.
2) Religious Persecution
“You know, Larry, if we look at America, there is tremendous religious persecution in America, more specifically, persecution against Christians and Jews in America. Well, we’ve got to realize that that is not the objective, that is only the means. You see, communism, socialism, Marxism — we can’t get caught up in semantics, it’s all the same — it requires for government to become your god. And in order for government to become your god, the must destroy the concept of God, and that’s what’s behind this attack on religion.”
Likewise, Cruz cannot identify examples of any actual religious persecution. We just have to trust him apparently that what is invisible is happening all around us despite nobody seeing a thing.
And okay, so let’s add another false premise: 3) the government wants to replace God. Apparently, although this is more material for a fantasy novel, it’s preferable in Cruz’s mind to let happen what has already happened din history, the government speaking for God – even though this is precisely opposite of everything Thomas Jefferson and James Madison and other Founding Fathers hoped to prevent.
You can’t read their writings without seeing it all over the place in black and white, though fake historian David Barton does a pretty good job supposedly owning copies of all these documents and somehow not seeing it. According to Barton, Thomas Jefferson would agree with everything he says.
What’s worse, Barton insists Jefferson would endorse Ted Cruz were he only alive to do so. Cruz has positioned himself as the champion of Christianity in this campaign. Jefferson of course, had this to say of Christianity in his Notes on the State of Virginia:
Millions of innocent men, women, and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined, imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity. What has been the effect of coercion? To make one half the world fools, and the other half hypocrites. To support roguery and error all over the earth (Query XVII).
Roguery and error are words that best describe Ted Cruz’s campaign, and Barton’s every word.
The Republican denial of reality is so strong that one could easily come to the conclusion that a prerequisite for the Republican Party in 2016 is a history of mental illness and a refusal to accept treatment for it.
Now it’s pretty obvious to any thinking person that there is no persecution of Christians and Jews in America and that nobody has at any point tried to take anyone’s guns away. Of course, if you’re thinking, you’re not participating in this bizarre alternate reality either.
Yet from there, having established his false premises, Cruz embarks on a fantasy journey that leads to only one possible conclusion. If both A and B are true, it can only mean a plan to impose communist dictatorship on America. Because we all know what a huge force the communist party is in American politics.
Er…um…Here a hand needs to be raised to point out that if there is anything that is more of a fringe in American politics than the communist party, I don’t know what it is. The party has been around since 1919, but there are at present about 2,000 of them and they have absolutely ZERO representation in any upper house in the country, and a corresponding number in any lower house in the country.
They haven’t even had a candidate for president since Gus Hall in 1984.
Yet The Washington Times made a big deal about the Communist Party USA supporting the Democratic Party last year, as though it mattered. What, anyone expects they will support the Republican Party?
Tortured logic, while it is certainly that, hardly accounts for all this madness.
When you run for president, you at least ought to be running on an actual platform that in some way relates to reality. But all we get from Republican candidates are plans to combat ills that exist only in some alternate America that exists only in the minds of conservatives.
“Fake remedies for fake problems” ought to be their motto. It would have the virtue of honesty, at least.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.