Though it's only May, and Kurt Bills' chance of getting elected to the United States' Senate is about as likely of those enjoyed by Francisco Franco (in other news, he's still dead), the smartest guys on the Internet have decided that comparing Ron Paul, Bills' ally and perpetual Presidential candidate from Texas; Bills, a one termer from Rosemount; and, Keith Downey, an aspiring state senator in the burbs, to the worst genocidal monsters of the twentieth century was felicitous rhetoric.
Did someone convene a focus group in France Avenue in which this trope emerged as winning language for DFL candidates?
On Facebook and other social media, Bluestem found male acquaintances passing around John Hugh Gilmore's What I Saw At The Hemp & Raw Milk Revolution with all the satisfaction of 1970s-era boys who had just discovered Hustler magazine. Oh, the fine pleasures within that prose.
But then, Gilmore is not a recently acquired shared pleasure of liberal men--last summer when he was facing charges stemming from berating Muslim women on the streets in downtown Minneapolis, several members of the same boys' club privately urged both Bluestem and Phoenix Woman of FireDogLake not to write about the escapade by their dear friend from twitter. Never mind the women, complete strangers he scolded on the street for their religion and manner of dress. Gilmore was acquitted, but video footage of his performance on the street reveals behavior no progressive ought defend.
But so strong are these bonds (and so distant the prize in November), that even this passage in Gilmore's post about last weekend's convention was held out in particular by one progressive as noteworthy prose:
David Duke admirer Ron Paul addressed the convention in the afternoon on Friday. MC walked out. It wasn't very brave, just honest. It wasn't like hiding Anne Frank although if Duke and Paul had their way, MC's carriage house would be full up. Paul called for legalizing hemp and raw milk to much applause. How so called party leadership could remain on the dais while he spoke is a mystery. When they look in the mirror they must not see anything.
If Ron Paul "had his way," there'd be second Holocaust? Really? Overwrought much, John?
Does Gilmore enjoy a waiver from Godwin's Rule of Nazi Analogies?
But it's not so much Gilmore's intoxicating prose that is troubling, as its embrace by progressives. What's up with this? Those who are given to lecturing others (like Bluestem) about framing, messaging, and winning words like this sort of thing?
But the monstrous framing of the sorry state of the Republican Party of Minnesota isn't confined to the blogger who lost party office because of an influx of Ron Paul supporters in his district.
One of the lead authors for LeftMN, the shining new box into which the Cucking Stool has been placed, cranked up his ire against Keith Downey and newly-endorsed Kurt Bills. In Keith the Smartest Guy in the Room I, a post that contrasts Republican state senate candidate Keith Downey with DFLer Melisa Franzen, one of the smartest urban white guys on the blogosphere (LeftMN's admirers tell us so) works up a head of steam, concluding:
Downey is the kind of guy who would have been right up front with the all the British evangelicals arguing against sending food to Ireland during the famine, and also arguing against the repeal of the Corn Laws, because the potato blight was God’s way of teaching the Irish to become self-sufficient . Better to let a million people die, says Kurt, than abandon moral principle!
Or kill and starve five million, as the Khmer Rouge did in Cambodia in its longing to return to the year zero.
We’ll be better off in the long run.
We’ll explore the depth of the craziness of the economic and monetary fantasy world of Keith Downy and his fellow traveler Kurt Bills in future posts.
Yes, boys and girls, Keith Downey and Kurt Bills are the sort of people who will kill and starve five million people, just like Pol Pot. (We might be persuaded that they embrace as certain sort of mild post-modern souperism, on the other hand).
Surely, this is the sort of rhetoric that will help Melisa Franzen win a senate seat in Edina. Perhaps Bakk's Senate Caucus volunteers will adopt it for doorknocks. That will work.
No doubt Amy Klobuchar's campaign staff have grown tired of the bland safety they enjoy and will spend her banked millions on that one.
Bluestem's editor agrees to drop her objections to hyperbolic comparisons if it means she won't have to endure any more insufferable lectures about framing, message discipline, or George Lakoff from urban progressives white guys. Do we have a deal? We'll even let you compare Mary Franson to Josef Stalin.
Photo: Pol Pot and a pal, or Kurt Bills and Keith Downey. Whatever.