Year 3, Month 2, Day 13: Get A Brain! Morans!

Aw, jeez. These idiots again? Check it out. The NYT:

Across the country, activists with ties to the Tea Party are railing against all sorts of local and state efforts to control sprawl and conserve energy. They brand government action for things like expanding public transportation routes and preserving open space as part of a United Nations-led conspiracy to deny property rights and herd citizens toward cities.

They are showing up at planning meetings to denounce bike lanes on public streets and smart meters on home appliances — efforts they equate to a big-government blueprint against individual rights.

“Down the road, this data will be used against you,” warned one speaker at a recent Roanoke County, Va., Board of Supervisors meeting who turned out with dozens of people opposed to the county’s paying $1,200 in dues to a nonprofit that consults on sustainability issues.

Oy. What can you do with this kind of dreck? Sent February 7:

In the minds of Tea-Partiers, everything is evidence of a conspiracy. If enough people are riding bicycles that municipal governments incorporate bike lanes in street planning, that’s not simple good sense — it’s a conspiracy. If research suggests that informing people about their energy consumption decreases waste, that’s a conspiracy, too. If the accumulated evidence supporting the existence (and threat) of global climate change outweighs that compiled by deniers by a twenty-thousand-to-one ratio, that’s just proof that the scientists are in on it.

Richard Hofstadter’s analysis of the “paranoid style” in American politics — “…heated exaggeration, suspiciousness, and conspiratorial fantasy” — has never seemed so accurate. Imagine the benefit to our country if these suspicious zealots could stop obsessing about a Socialist New World Order concealed in an innocuous UN memorandum about environmental responsibility, and instead turned their energy towards making a more cooperative, just, and sustainable society.

Warren Senders

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