If you drill down to the center of the mass of seething resentment, bigotry, obscurantism, and shaking, sweating delirium tremens that is modern conservatism, you will find a sleepless sadism: a constant desire on the part of small, weak, wretched people to inflict suffering on others, chiefly as a primitive demonstration of power over them. Doubt it? Check out the latest scraps flung atop the already Himalayan pile of evidence in just the past week or so.
First, we have the ghouls in attendance at the September 7 Republican Primary debate cheering Rick Perry’s prowess as an executioner:
Hooray for Death! What else you got, you hateful, ignorant fucknuggets?
That was on September 12. Again, there’s no containing the enthusiasm for needless death. In fairness, it should be noted that the man in the hypothetical did choose poorly in his dealings within (let us bow our heads) The Marketplace – so yeah, fuck him, he deserved it, except that no civilized person would say he did. It’s remarkable that none of the candidates spoke up to say something along the lines of, “Jesus H. Christ, what is wrong with you animals? You’re cheering for letting a human being die.” Perhaps next time they’ll just skip all the tedious gum-flapping and have a kitten-eating contest.
Then again, maybe the candidates’ silence was not so remarkable. To speak against their supporters’ savagery would have required moral courage and basic human decency, and they are, after all, Republicans – Republicans in the age of Obama – and if a more contemptible, bloody-minded mob of reactionaries has trooped across the American landscape since the Jim Crow era, it is unknown to me.