Unless you are on vacation and have chosen to spend it monitoring blogs, you probably missed the hilarious story of a Mr. George Tierney from Greenville South Carolina. This dude apparently ran out of thorazine a few days ago and decided to spend a few hours saying nasty things to Sandra Fluke. When Ms. Fluke replied to the man to politely tell him that he was being a jerk the dude was promoted from semi-anonymous nutbag to internet douche-lebrity. When Tbogg posted screen-caps of Tierney’s impressive craziness on Firedoglake, Tiereny somehow reached an even higher level of crazy and started to threaten legal action.
While this sort of blog recapping is probably about as interesting to you as any other idiotic esoteric internet story, there is an aspect to this mini-epic that can be extrapolated to a larger analysis regarding conservative victimhood. Take the story of Frank Vandersloot. He is one of the richest people in Idaho, a big Mitt Romney fundraiser, and a fucking asshole of the highest degree- especially when it comes to gay rights. He is also lawsuit happy and a bit of a giant crybaby whenever someone dare point out his assholery to the wider world. Recently Rachel Maddow and Glenn Greenwald both had the fun experience of writing on this asshole and then having to deal with his lawyers and their ethically dubious SLAPP lawsuits.
It is a strange and wonderful thing that we live in a world of such terrible analytical ability where we describe a man who has devoted his career to making life hell for gay people as a “victim” of the people who expose his behavior to a wider world. Those who in the media write about these sorts of interactions are simply incapable of telling the difference between legitimate political advocacy and say outing a reporter as retribution for doing his job. Given the failures of professional journalists to distinguish the differences between these sorts of people, how are the mindless hordes who tweet in between masturbation sessions on Stormfront supposed to remember that they are in fact the assholes, not the victims?
False equivalency laden analysis is the hallmark of a dying movement without much to say, but it is effective in upholding the nasty elements of the status quo (which is the whole point of the the conservative movement). In their world taxing billionaires is somehow akin to Nazism, a white kid supposedly being the victim of an assault is evidence of a race war, and requiring a religiously based employer to adhere to federal law is somehow abridging religious freedom. This is the endgame for the conservative movement; do something that breaks the social contract, whine about the consequences, and thus avoid condemnation through false victimhood once some dumbass centrist starts complaining about “the national discourse”.
George Tierney did not begin this trend, nor will he be the last person to try it. Rather George is a special someone who deserves our attention because he personifies the conservative id better than anyone since Eric Robert Rudolph or Bryon Williams. In Mitt Romeney’s America, the bully is not the sociopath who starts the fight, but rather the person who calls out for help when he starts to lose.