In case you haven’t heard, there’s this rancher guy in Nevada named Cliven Bundy who’s refused to pay taxes for something like 20 years and is currently fighting with the federal government because he has also refused to keep his cattle from grazing on federally protected land — and, if that weren’t enough, he’s refused to pay any sort of grazing fees for his cattle essentially being fed for free for years. So when federal government authorities showed up to arrest Bundy (seriously, what is it with people with the last name “Bundy”?), he rounded up a bunch of his rootin’-tootin’ friends and they all threatened an Old West-style standoff. And for some f*cked up reason that eludes all logic and reason, this guy is being championed as a hero patriot in the mold of the Founding Fathers by right-wingers, led of course by the Fox News folk, particularly by Sean Hannity, because Obama is the next Hitler and all and Cliven Bundy is just a simple American who loves freedom and wants to be free, or something.
So, of course, this guy is, ugh, something of a flaming racist, because who couldn’t see that coming from 5000 miles away? (Answer: Sean Hannity.)
From the New York Times:
He said he would continue holding a daily news conference; on Saturday, it drew one reporter and one photographer, so Mr. Bundy used the time to officiate at what was in effect a town meeting with supporters, discussing, in a long, loping discourse, the prevalence of abortion, the abuses of welfare and his views on race.
“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” he said. Mr. Bundy recalled driving past a public-housing project in North Las Vegas, “and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids — and there is always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch — they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.
“And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?” he asked. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”
Well okay then!
On MSNBC this morning, Joe Scarborough, who’s been calling bullsh*t on this guy since the get-go and has blasted his fellow Republicans who’ve championed his cause, had some things to say about Bundy’s racist remarks.
“There’s nothing conservative about this man. This is where nihilism about the federal government gets you in trouble every time,” Scarborough noted. “This has happened before. It happened when conservatives raced blindly to put their arms around George Zimmerman, a man who gets in all these troubles. They basically pick their friends based on who their enemies are. In this case, a lot of people in conservative media have raced to this guy’s defense. They must be feeling very exposed this morning.”
It should be noted that 2016 GOP presidential hopeful Rand Paul has also been hailing this guy as some kind of hero. (UPDATE: Paul is now distancing himself from Bundy.) Take it away, Joe…