Shots Fired At Fort Dumter

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Memo to the Wingnut Revolutionaries: CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR AUSPICIOUS BEGINNINGS.

I really thought I'd have a couple more days before I had to write about this, but it turns out some Cheeto-dusted basement asses can move faster than I thought. Ladies and gentlemen, I'm happy to announce that not only has the Wingnut Revolution officially begun, it's at least as pathetic as I predicted, if not more. Rejoice, for the golden age of mocking is nigh.

Now, I know what you're thinking, because I read the same blogs and watch the same news shows. We should be terribly, terribly concerned at this outbreak of violence and threats. We should condemn it in the strongest terms, and stare sternly at the Republicans until they're forced to admit over and over again how bad it is, and maybe even stop encouraging it for a while.

But the fact of the matter is, while I do feel bad for the people and families who feel scared and threatened by phone calls, bricks, and slashed propane lines, let's keep a sense of perspective here, because even these incidents, as troubling as they are, are prima facie evidence of the overall sadness quotient of the Wingnut Revolution.

I mean, let's look at the bricks through windows. The most comprehensive list I can find shows four, but I've also heard five, so let's give them the benefit of the doubt. Five bricks through five windows of Congressional offices - all Democrats, all health-care supporters, at least two wrapped with anti-Obama or anti-Democrat messages. And that's pretty bad. I mean, not five minutes in Baghdad bad, but pretty bad. But what prompted this spate of brick throwing?

What do you think prompted it? A call to action on a wingnut blog. Specifically, the "Sipsey Street Irregulars". No, seriously. The "Sipsey Street Irregulars". Guys, just come out of the closet already. Then you can go to a gay club with a proper name. Anyway, the most irregular Sipsey of them all, Mike Vanderboegh, planted the flag of revolution atop his digital sadness pile thusly. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"We can break their windows. Break them NOW. And if we do a proper job, if we break the windows of hundreds, thousands, of Democrat party headquarters across this country, we might just wake up enough of them to make defending ourselves at the muzzle of a rifle unnecessary."

You see what I'm getting at, right? He called for HUNDREDS and THOUSANDS of windows to be broken, and got... four. Maybe five. Viva... I mean, um, long live the revolution! The fate of the nation hangs in the balance, because, you know, we eliminated pre-existing conditions and let college kids stay on their parents' policies longer, and all they could manage was one meager handful of fucking bricks? That's fucking hilarious. If I were congressional Democrats, I'd just make sure to have a glazier on speed dial and a shop-vac handy.

And the propane tank. Again, it sounds pretty bad on the face of it - the attack targeted Virginia Democrat Tom Periello, and a propane line between a gas tank and a house was allegedly slashed. This, by the way, is the kind of thing you do if you get all your understanding about fuel tanks and explosives from 80s action movies and not from good liberal science programming by Mythbusters, but still, the intent was clear.

But again, we can temper our dismay with some chuckles at the Keystone Kops antics of the perpetrators. Because surprise, surprise, this act of violence was prompted by... a post on a right-wing blog. In this case, the blog of Mike Troxel, leader of the redundantly-named Lynchburg Tea Party. He posted an address, and the following message.

"Just in case any of his friends and neighbors want to drop by and say hi and express their thanks regarding his vote for health care. I personally believe it’s so important for representatives to remain fully grounded and to remember exactly what it is their constituents are saying and how they are telling them to vote. Nothing quite does that like a good face-to-face chat. It has a much more personal touch to it."

Or, you know, it would have a more personal touch to it, if Troxel hadn't posted the address of Periello's brother instead. It was the house where the brother lives, with his wife and four young children, that had its gas line slashed. Compounding the error, Troxel refused to correct his fuckup unless Periello's office provided the correct address to him, although he has since deleted the post and his hosting's been blown to shit by all the attention anyway.

I've got to say, I expected rank incompetence of epic proportions from the Wingnut Revolution, but they have surpassed my wildest dreams. Targeting incorrect houses with underwhelming shows of force! That'll teach 'em to take away our God-given right to, um, medical bankruptcy! The only way it could get any better is if, faced with the actual, pathetic evidence of how sucky their revolution is and how people would view it, they backed down immediately, and caved faster than World Speed Spelunking* Champion Cavey McCaverston. What's this? One of Troxel's bloggy compatriots, Danville Tea Party Leader** Nigel Coleman, who posted the incorrect address to his Facebook page, then called it "collateral damage" when he was informed of the error? On line one?

"I obviously condemn these actions. I would hope that people aren’t thinking about doing anything crazy. We just wanted people to get close to the congressman and have their voices heard. Violence is not going to answer anything. I’m a little shocked and amazed. Of course, we don’t know this is a related event." - Coleman, interviewed by ThinkProgress.

Nigel Coleman, you are a huge fucking pussy, a disgrace to the Wingnut Revolution, and a source of never-ending delight for yours truly. Your desperate, whimpering backpedaling into utterly implausible deniability shows your movement's true colors. You're almost all talk, almost no action, and what little action you do manage is short, perfunctory, unsatisfying, and leaves you humiliated and apologetic afterwards. I'd make the sexual impotence metaphor more subtle, but you've made it impossible with your floppy, micro-bedicked excuse for an uprising.

*Which would of course be colloquially known as speedlunking, if it existed.

**Apparently in Virginia, each town's Tea Party plays rock-paper-scissors to decide which of its two members gets to be the leader.