Friday, September 3, 2010


They're really crawling out of the wppdwork now, folks. Sharron Angle is the latest in this year's plague of conservative Tea Party/Republican Party crackpots who are hoping to win election to high office in November. Like Rand Paul in Kentucky, Michele Bachmann in Minnesota, and Governor Jan Brewer in Arizona, Angle takes illogical positions, makes controversial comments, and then finds herself backtracking away from those very statements. Let's take a closer look at Ms. Angle, who hopes to defeat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and become the next Senator from the state of Nevada, and examine some of those positions and pronouncements.

Like all of herlike-minded Tea Party activists, Angle is a firm believer in a very limited role for government, and often cites the Constitution to support her stances. But, like many of her ultra-conservative compatriots, she also misinterprets it badly. For example, she has made the claim that our participation in the United Nations is unconstitutional. In an interview with a local TV station, she said, " The United Nations resides on our soil and costs us money. We are – I don’t see any place in the Constitution — in those eight priorities — about the United Nations. So when we start talking about cutting programs, 5-percent per year, I think the United Nations fits into that category, yes." If she really knew the Constitution, she would know that Article II says that the president “shall have power, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, to make treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur.” That is why the United States may belong to treaty organizations like the UN. It was President Truman who submitted the treaty which created the UN, and the Senate ratified that treaty several years before Ms. Angle was even born. She believes we should pull out of the U.N. altogether, saying it is a center of liberal ideology and "the umpire on fraudulent science such as global warming." On that subject, she has said, "I don' into the whole man-caused global warming, man-caused climate change mantra of the left. I believe that there's not sound science to back that up." She has obviously never really studied the data or noticed that it has been presented by thousands of qualified scientists across the world, NOT merely "the left". Nice to know she, though, is such an expert on climate change, isn't it? In an interview a few months ago with a radio talk show host, she commented on her support for the Second Amendment, the one that so many conservatives misinterpret as meaning that everyone in the country should have free and unrestricted access to guns. She said, "You know, our Founding Fathers, they put that Second Amendment in there for a good reason and that was for the people to protect themselves against a tyrannical government." WRONG, SHARRON---IT WAS PUT IN THERE FOR THE STATE TO BE ABLE TO RAISE MILITIAS TO PROTECT ITS CITIZENRY AND ITSELF FROM OUTSIDE AGGRESSION. She blathered on, "...if this Congress keeps going the way it is, people are really looking toward those Second Amendment remedies and saying 'my goodness what can we do to turn this country around?' I'll tell you the first thing we need to do is take Harry Reid out." That Ms. Angle would even raise the specter of someone using a gun ("second amendment remedies") to "take out" a political opponent, be it Harry Reid or anybody, is irresponsible at best and criminal at worst, and shows how little she really understands about our culture and the Constitution.

Angle has come out in support of abolishing the Department of Education. She also advocates repealing the recently passed Health Care Reform bill and replacing it with the same old conservative GOP nonsense they were floating before its passage, about giving tax credits for people to buy their own private insurance and not requiring people to be covered. She opposes the medical usage of marijuana even in the face of growing support for it in the medical community. Obviously a strong social conservative, she opposes abortion in any form, even in cases of rape or incest. Her advice to a girl who is raped by her father and becomes pregnant? A simple "two wrongs don't make a right." Paradoxically, though, she is also a strong proponent of the dealth penalty. A firm believer in small, limited government when it comes to the marketplace, she hypocritically does not hold that same belief when it comes to individual freedoms. When asked in an interview with Liberty Watch magazine whether it was ok to legislate morality, she replied, "I don't think you can get away from that; people just make value judgments. We're not a neutral society. Politics, especially, are not neutral." Apparently only economics should be considered neutral, according to the twisted reasoning of Sharron Angle.

Ms. Angle has proposed a ban on all earmarks until the budget is balanced. A nice idea in her daydream world, but a highly detrimental and impractically rigid one in the real world, where the government is subject to encountering occasional emergencies and natural disasters like hurricanes and illness epidemics. Like many radical-right Republicans, Angle supports privatizing Social Security and Medicare, and is pushing for a reduction in or elimination of capital gains and inheritance taxes. She believes that the more well-to-do people should thus pay a much smaller (or no) tax on income they didn't work to get than people who worked very hard to get their income do. She has also come out against aid for the unemployed. She claims that unemployment compensation, whom all the unemployed have contributed into, has made workers spoiled" in their dependency on the government, and that people on unemployment are paid so well that it is a disincentive for them to find work.

Like Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, and other short-sighted priestesses of the far-right, Angle believes the answer to our rapidly-approaching energy shortage problem is to simply locate more oil and natural gas, as if our supply were infinite and nothing to worry about. She would repeal regulations which prohibit any type of offshore drilling, or drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. When President Obama secured agreement by BP to commit $20 billion to compensate victims of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Angle derisively called the arrangement a "slush fund". When she was criticized for her comment, however, she retracted that term and said that BP should pay for the consequences of the spill after all. In the Nevada State Legislature, she led efforts to reduce Nevada's high gas tax, and has opposed tax increases of any kind for any reason. Speaking of her time in that 42 seat Nevada Assembly, it is interesting to note that she was so far-right and so out-of-the-mainstream that on votes with wide bipartisan consensus, the results were often characterized as being "41-to-Angle."

With views like our membership in the United Nations being unconstitutional, voters taking "second amendment measures", people on unemployment being "spoiled", privatizing Social Security and Medicare, repealing the health care bill and returning to a system where insurance companies can cherry-pick those they will cover, legislating morality, and even opposing flouridation of water, this woman is nuttier than the fruitcake at right. She is a callous ideologue indifferent to the suffering of the poor and unemployed, and who has no understanding for workers and the middle class. Harry Reid may not be the ideal Senator or the strongest personality in that body, but he is much more attuned to what the majority of the country needs. Sharron Angle, with her rash comments and incompletely-reasoned positions on major issues, lacks Mr. Reid's insight and breadth of scope. For all of these reasons, Sharron Angle must NOT be elected Senator from Nevada!


mud_rake said...

Angle- I don’t see any place in the Constitution ...

Have you noticed that this line, with the fill-in-the-rest, is the standard lingo of the Tea Party crowd? Our local Tea Party candidate for the House was quoted just today with the same line.

They 'don't see any place in the Constitution.' As if the Constitution is a dead document like the 10 commandments.

I, in fact, don't see any place in the Constitution that it says that the government subsidizes energy companies or the Military Industrial complex, but it's been part of 'government' for decades.

Funny how the Tea Party picks and chooses stuff. Sad but funny [in a perverse way.]

Jack Jodell said...

You raise some very good points there on the selective constitutional vision of this conservative crowd. As for them not being able to see certain things in our Constitution, I think it's mainly because, with their half-baked interpretations, they have created their own constitution which only partially resembles our real world one...

TomCat said...

Great piece, Jack. Angle represents the Republican party as it is today. However, if we lost no other Senate seats in November, I'd love to see Angle win. Not only would that provide six years of material for articles, but also, we'd have a chance to get a real Democrat in as Majority Leader in the Senate.

Jack Jodell said...

I see where you're coming from, but the thought of even one of her types getting a six-year Senate term is horrifying to me!

Max's Dad said...

Oh Jack, What are we gonna do about these kooks? Angle is just plain dumb and is a real danger. It can be argued Harry Reid brought this on himself but who cares right now? 6 years of her is not acceptable. Keep hammering!

Marc McDonald said...

Earlier this year, Noam Chomsky said:

"If the polls are accurate, it is not the Republicans but the right-wing Republicans, the crazed Republicans, who will sweep the next election."

Chomsky also said:

"The mood of the country is frightening. The level of anger, frustration and hatred of institutions is not organized in a constructive way. It is going off into self-destructive fantasies."

"It is very similar to late Weimar Germany. The parallels are striking."

Jack Jodell said...

Max's Dad,
I can't evem stomach the idea of someone like Angle in the Senate for six WEEKS, let alone six years! We are really sinking to the lowest possible common denominator this time around!
Mr. Chomsky's observations are thoroughly petrifying. Things, as we know, did not work out so well for the Weimar Republic. That's why we progressives must shake off our frustration and lethargy and do everything we can in our power to prevent the far-right Republican Party from taking control of the House and Senate here! It is not too late, and we MUST get off our dead asses and campaign and VOTE!

TomCat said...

But doesn't the though of Harry Reid as Majority Leader sicken you too?

Jack Jodell said...

Yessiree, but I'd rather have the Dems replace him in that post than have the voters of Nevada vote him out!

mud_rake said...

Yessiree, but I'd rather have the Dems replace him in that post than have the voters of Nevada vote him out!


Ahab said...

In your opinion, what are Angle's realistic chances of winning the Senate race in Nevada? Progressives can see that she's ridiculous, but will that be enough to stop her?