Wednesday, November 21, 2007

A little local fascism

[A National Socialist Movement march in Nebraska in July. That's J.T. Ready on the right in the suit. Courtesy SPLC.

-- by Dave
"My libertarian friends are probably getting a little upset now but I think that's because they never appreciate the benefits of local fascism."

-- Ann Coulter

Ah, perhaps Coulter's friends in New York don't, but evidently, the Republicans in Maricopa County, Arizona, do, as Stephen Lemons of Phoenix New Times reports:
So look who's got a neo-Nazi in the woodpile: the Maricopa County Republican Party. This plumed penman first sniffed a whiff of National Socialism in local GOP ranks when The Bird was forwarded an e-mail signed by the Ernst Roehm of the East Valley, J.T. Ready, in which the turd-Reicher mentioned he's a Republican Precinct Committeeman.

... A call to campaign finance director Kristi Passarelli at Maricopa County Elections confirmed Ready was telling the truth about his PC-ship. Passarelli informed this pelican that Ready was elected in 2006 from precinct 529, also known as Mesa 67. There were two slots open for Republicans, but Ready was the only one on the ballot in that primary. He received 36 votes.

County Republican Party Chairman Lyle Tuttle was too busy playing golf to return The Bird's call. But Sean McCaffrey, executive director of the state GOP told the Taloned One the party was unaware of Ready's Republican position. He vowed Ready will be asked to step down. If Ready refuses, the party will field candidates for his PC-ship in '08, when Ready's term's up, to make sure Ready's not re-elected.

"People that campaign on hate and people that campaign on fear, well, that eliminates neo-Nazis and Democrats from the Republican Party," McCaffrey informed this egret.

Cute comparison, Sean. But local Dems aren't the ones with an Adolf Hitler-lover in-house.

Nor does McCaffrey's cheap shot explain why the Arizona GOP didn't try to stop Ready from becoming a precinct committeeman in '06. McCaffrey's excuse was that he'd just arrived in AZ this March, and that most of his staff is new and from out of state.

But state Republican Party Chairman Randy Pullen's no neophyte to local politics, being a two-time loser in the Phoenix mayoral race. Pullen can't be expected to know all the more than 3,000 Republican PCs, but Pullen and Ready run in the same immigrant-hating circles. They've spoken at the same Mexican-baiting rallies. And both have attended meetings of Rusty Childress' immigrant-bashing United for a Sovereign America.

Also, Ready's tight with state Representative Russell Pearce, who's bashed Mexicans ever since a Latino teen shot off his finger when he was a county sheriff's deputy. Pearce is a racist law machine, pumping out statute after statute targeting the brown segment of AZ's population. At a June anti-illegal demonstration at the state Capitol, Ready and Pearce worked the crowd arm-in-arm.

That's the same Russell Pearce, incidentally, who has opined that illegal immigrants have no rights:
They're illegal and they have no right to be marching down our streets. They have no constitutional rights. They don't have First-, Fourth-, Sixth amendment rights. They're here illegally and they chose to be here illegally.

And yes, that's the same Russell Pearce who distributed an anti-Semitic e-mail from a neo-Nazi to friends and supporters last year.

And yes, that's the same J.T. Ready whose neo-Nazi activities have been observed elsewhere.

Note also the embrace of Pearce by Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who according to the Phoenix New Times piece was "recently honored Pearce at a 'gala reception' and dinner to raise moolah for Pearce's committee exploring a primary challenge to Congressman Jeff Flake, a moderate Republican who's championed comprehensive immigration reform." Of course, this isn't the first time an Arizona sheriff turned a blind eye to the presence of radical racists.

As Lemons notes:
Arpaio's a Joe-come-lately to the bigot parade, but he's been making up for lost time, mending fences with former rival and second-in-command Pearce. Arpaio was even on Lou Dobbs' show recently, calling it "an honor" to be labeled KKK by certain detractors. "It means we're doing something," he informed the conservative CNN pundit.

Days later, Arpaio tried explaining away the Klan remark, but this worm-wrangler thinks Arpaio was right from jump. There's precious little shame in the game of certain Republicans these days. That's why virulent anti-Semites like J.T. Ready are able to infiltrate Republican ranks. And it's why racists like Russell Pearce are feted as heroes.

Well put.

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