Archive - Feb 2013

February 25th

The Other Shit-Stained Cruz

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The Republican Party is, in at least one significant way, a lot like the Mafia. They don't make you part of the inner circle until you've done something pretty fucking horrible. Texas Senator Ted Cruz has decided to make his GOP bones, which means now he's on my radar too. At this point, my radar is now one giant glowing green dot.

Cruz is new. He did some state-level stuff in Texas, then ran for Senate because fuck it, it's Texas, there aren't any requirements for the job down there. And then won, because fuck it, it's Texas.

Cruz made his move early, after about a month in office, during the Chuck Hagel hearings. You remember the Chuck Hagel hearings? Where the Republican Secretary of Defense nominee was accused, at a minimum, of being insufficiently loyal to Israel, and at a maximum, having loyalties to imaginary Muslim terrorist groups. And at the center of it all was Ted Cruz, doing a community theater Joe McCarthy impression. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"It is at a minimum relevant to know if that $200,000 that he deposited in his bank account came directly from Saudi Arabia, came directly from North Korea." - Ted Cruz, having no sense of decency sir at long last.

See, that's some bullshit right there. First of all, everyone knows North Korea doesn't have $200,000. And if they did, they'd buy some fucking food, not a Chuck Hagel speech.

And second, when did being cozy with SAUDI ARABIA become a disqualifying factor, especially for a Republican? I can only assume it was five fucking seconds after the Bush-Cheney administration ended.

Anyway, this particular brand of aggressive stupidity made people go looking back through Cruz' history, and lo and behold, the New Yorker turned this up from a couple of years back. Cruz was trying to explain to the fine people of Texas that Barack Obama was a Communist, which doesn't make any sense, because everyone outside the suburbs of Austin thought that five years ago, but whatever. The point is, this came out of his facehole.

"There were fewer declared Republicans in the faculty when we were there than Communists! There was one Republican. But there were twelve who would say they were Marxists who believed in the Communists overthrowing the United States government."

Keep in mind that Ted Cruz was at Harvard Law School from 1992 to 1995. Not the 60's, not the 70's, not even the fantasy Republican 60's. Ted Cruz's four years at Harvard Law School were LITERALLY the four years after the fall of the Soviet Union. Even assuming there were ANY communists on the faculty, I'm betting they spent '92-'95 fairly chastised and quiet and certainly not telling Ted Cruz they wanted to overthrow the US Government.

But hey, that's just the kind of Red-baiting, red-meat, anti-Obama rhetoric you're going to get from a Texas firebrand politician looking to move up in the world. Now that he's a member of America's most deliberative body, I'm sure he'll say he misspoke, or that he was making a metaphor, or set off a smoke bomb and dive into the bushes or something, right?

“Regardless, Senator Cruz’s substantive point was absolutely correct: in the mid-1990s, the Harvard Law School faculty included numerous self-described proponents of ‘critical legal studies’ — a school of thought explicitly derived from Marxism – and they far outnumbered Republicans.” - Cruz spokesperson Catherine Frazier.

Here's a hint. If you're dodging accusations of rampant post-modern McCarthyism, maybe it's not a good idea to take an intellectual pursuit several steps removed from Marxism and say that everyone who participated it was a fucking Commie out to overthrow the United States.

Or, maybe it is a good idea? I don't know. It's 2013, it's Texas, it's attention-grabbing, and it's fairly unlikely to lead to a national witch-hunt against suspected subversives, or at least any ore of a national witch-hunt against suspected subversives than we already have. And Cruz makes his Republican bones by doing it. This wouldn't be the first time I measure success differently than a Republican.