Sean Hannity Learns A Valuable Lesson About Supporting Nutjobs Like Cliven Bundy

A white rancher hailed by right-wingers for grazing cows on government land while refusing to pay for it castigates “the Negro” for living off the government. If there’s a better encapsulation of the conservative mindset, we can’t think of it.
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A white rancher hailed by right-wingers for grazing cows on government land while refusing to pay for it castigates “the Negro” for living off the government. If there’s a better encapsulation of the conservative mindset, we can’t think of it.
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Yesterday I wrote that Sean Hannity was cultivating trouble by supporting Cliven Bundy, the deadbeat Nevada rancher who says he doesn’t recognize the federal government and who’s played host to an armed anti-government “militia.” That conspiracy goon Alex Jones had jumped to Bundy’s defense should’ve given Hannity pause, but he allowed his hatred of the Obama administration to rule the day.

This kerfuffle has been Hannity’s pet cause of late, with Fox News’ blowiest blowhard having the 67-year-old on his show to, I guess, spin the 1787 Constitutional Convention as a victory for the Anti-Federalists. But all that Bundy-pimping will be gone now after he made racist remarks while addressing a group of supporters on Saturday. And I don’t mean Salon’s idea of racist, I mean racist-racist:

“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? 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.”

A white rancher hailed by right-wingers for grazing cows on government land while refusing to pay for it castigates “the Negro” for living off the government. If there’s a better encapsulation of the conservative mindset, I can’t think of it.

So this is Hannity’s guy. Well, it was Hannity’s guy. No doubt Bundy won’t be invited back on Fox News anytime soon, even though a guy like him is what their audience craves.

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Some conservatives have already started to withdraw support from Bundy, but the truth is what he said is very much a part of Republican psychology, and this has manifested in the subtext of innumerable GOP political campaigns over the years with the aim of stoking enough white rage to achieve electoral victories. And white rage is exactly what Hannity taps into every night and it’s why he’s one of the most successful conservative talk show hosts on television and radio.