The Invisible Socialist President

Clint Eastwood's speech was probably the most lucid, informative, healthy moment of the RNC.

The RNC had its ups and its downs. 

I think that no matter what political walk of life you’re from, if you saw Condoleezza Rice’s speech, you’d have said to yourself, “It’s a damn shame this woman isn’t a candidate.”  Agree with her or not, she commanded respect up there. She gave an important speech.  And, if you were watching the convention through eyes and ears like mine, you might have also noticed she was talking WAY over the heads of the people at the convention.  She was leading an intelligent discussion, making salient points, and the people in that room didn’t know what to make of most of it. 

But such is the price of responsible, adult politics.

Then, of course, there was the Paul Ryan speech, which was so full of blatant untruths it was practically fact-checked out of existence.  And I’m not just talking about your normal news organizations.  I mean it was rocked by Fox News’ website, which posted:  “…to anyone paying the slightest bit of attention to facts, Ryan’s speech was an apparent attempt to set the world record for the greatest number of blatant lies and misrepresentations slipped into a single political speech. “

I’d like to applaud Fox News for allowing that content to grace the untamed wilderness of their website, as that was certainly not the place I’d expect to locate such a commentary.  On the other hand, once I read that, I began to wonder if I should ask my doctor if Thorazine was right for me. 

Because the human mind can only handle so much irony in one moment.

Still, whether you consider conventions a parade of liars, or attack dogs, or simply empty, ra-ra rhetoric, the big story was Clint Eastwood’s speech.  I’ve never seen anything quite like that.  A lot of people will tell you it was bizarre, or batty, or just plain weird.  But I totally disagree.

I think Clint Eastwood’s speech was the most lucid thing at that convention.

No, really.

Clint Eastwood stood next to an empty chair, and pretended to have a humorous (?) conversation with an invisible Barack Obama. 

And you may have found that funny.  Or you may have found that odd.  Or maybe you found it demeaning to the office of the Presidency.  But I found it to be the absolutely perfect representation of the GOP at that time and place; and I don’t think it should have been surprising to you at all.

Because the Republicans have been campaigning against a Barack Obama they’ve created out of thin air for four years now.

They say he’s a Fascist.  They say he’s a Communist.  They say he’s a Socialist.  That he’s leading a government take over of health care.  That he’s raised taxes on the middle class during a recession.  That he’s going to put your grandma in front of a death panel.  

They say his early records are all “sealed.”  That he’s planning a Gestapo-like security force. That there will be a civil war if he’s re-elected.  That he “raided” Medicare.  That he “gutted” welfare of its work requirement.  That he told business owners they “didn’t build” their businesses.  

And they say he wasn’t even born in this country.

Put simply, they have been running against a fictional candidate made entirely out of BS and fear for the entirety of his presidency.  And these are not typical we said/he said policy lies, either.  These are bizarre, hyperbolic, fear-driven, questioning-the-man’s-identity-as-an-American and a decent human being type of lies.  All of them fact-checked by multiple sources, all of them blatantly untrue.

And what’s worse, the GOP electorate are eating it up.  They are now literally distrustful of multi-sourced facts, because they believe a second delusion that the media is part of some absolute, left-wing conspiracy to promote the Presidency; which leads me to a serious concern that we have bigger problems in this country besides our political divide.   Because it doesn’t matter what party you identify with; if you’re going to be so purposefully ignorant of fact and truth that you actually manifest your fear into a totally new creation, devoid of reality, that’s not politics anymore.

That is approaching the literal definition of insanity.  

And so, to me, Clint talking to the Invisible Barack Obama was the most truthful moment of the convention.  Clint Eastwood simply brought along a visual aide to match the fictional reputation many people in his party believe in.  He finally introduced us to this man that frightens Republicans so very, very much.

And there he was(n’t)...


Right there on the stage. 

Swearing at them.

In words only they can hear. 


So, I say, good for them.  At least the delusion is starting to congeal into something representing reality, even if it’s not quite tangible yet. 

That’s therapeutic.  That's progress. 

You can follow/yell at Patrick on twitter: @PatrickinPublic

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

James Thomas September 06, 2012 at 04:37 PM
"There clearly is no reasoning with very disturbed individuals." Such as Democrats? Sorry Ed, could...not...resist.
James Thomas September 06, 2012 at 04:40 PM
Gee, I though Democrats were supposed to support the arts and revere the artist.
Patrick Giusto September 07, 2012 at 10:59 AM
Roger, I obviously wrote that before the DNC started-- but I would argue that neither Castro (although he did get raked over the coals a little) nor Clinton (whose fact-checked statements were mostly found as true) made quite the spectacle of lying that Ryan made. But all of that's sort of irrelevant to the blog. I agree: politicians from all walks of life stretch the truth and spin it how they see it. You're right. That's not news. But if you pay attention to the theme of this piece, and the statement I made partially bold, my argument is that they are lying about his identity. They are labeling him conceptually as a monster: "He's a FASCIST UN-AMERICAN who will put your grandmother in front of a DEATH PANEL and there will be a CIVIL WAR if he is re-elected." That's an abnormal hyperbolic attack, politically speaking; and the GOP now has a mobilized grassroots arm of their party intent on spreading this message wide as a central argument against him. That is unique to this President. And, to your other point, we're obviously doing better than we were 4 years ago. If you don't agree with pursuing his vision, that's understandable. But I think you're going to have a tough political argument to make if you think the country was better off in 2008 than it is today.
Sammi McCloud September 10, 2012 at 02:24 AM
Vote out the incumbent! That's the only thing that will help ANYTHING. ALL of the incumbents... not just the president. ALL OF THEM!
Patrick Giusto September 10, 2012 at 10:11 AM
You DO realize how paradoxical, and borderline hypocritical, that statement is, right? Let me see if I understand you: You want to vote out all incumbents so you can change the government by bringing in fresh, Washington outsiders with new ideas... ...yet you also want to vote out the incumbent President after his first term-- a guy who ran on a campaign of being a Washington outsider who would change things with new ideas? Boy, the turnover in your government is pretty quick! I would imagine that, under your logic, everyone would get voted out after one term for being a disappointment. Everyone sucks for four to six years, and then they're gone. Progress!


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