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Resisting Tyranny–Right Wing Extremist Style

April 23, 2014

In a prior post I posed a rhetorical question—with all of the bluster coming from the NRA and extremists gun owners about the need to have their little arsenals to combat government tyranny—what would the resistance actually look like if it ever had to leave the realm of empty chest thumping posturing and actually be put into practice?

Recently, the extremists provided a not so rhetorical answer. Enter Cliven Bundy, and his chief cheerleader, Sean Hannity.

Cliven is a dyspeptic angry white guy with a cowboy hat and some guns. That makes him a “good” guy by definition among right wing extremists. Also, he is a Nevada cattle rancher who denies the existence of the Federal government and appears to have no regard for property rights, other than his own. He does not mind having the benefits of being a citizen of a government that he denies exists. He will take the benefits–but the obligations that go with it? NO SIR!

Cliven owns a 160-acre ranch out in the brush land—a plot too small to support the grazing needs of his cattle. Like thousands of other ranchers in these same circumstances, he grazes his cattle on vast tracts of Federally owned land. Unlike most other ranchers in the West, Cliven refuses to obtain permits and pay the required fees for the commercial use of the public property.

In other words, Cliven is a either freeloader, welfare cheat or a thief. Take your pick. One thing he is not is a patriot.

But Cliven is more than a little savvy about public relations and media management—especially in the manipulation of right wing media like Fox. So with a little help from the ever-gullible Sean Hannity, this little land-use dispute (which has been going on for decades) erupted into a media firestorm, which brought the militia-type gun nuts streaming to the scene to protect this poor farmer from the tyranny of the Federal government.

What is interesting is not Cliven, who is, after all, just an inconsequential little man with a petty grudge against the Federal government. What is very interesting, however, is the response of the gun-nut militia loonies.

THIS is the issue that provokes them to rush to Nevada and take up arms against tyranny: to protect the God-given right for Cliven to appropriate land that he does not own for his own commercial gain.

Fortunately, the Bureau of Land Management deescalated the situation, knowing full well that a few hundred trespassing cows was not worth bloodshed. They, after all, have other means.

Not so the self-appointed “militias”. As I watched them “deploy” on the highway overpass with their (presumably) loaded weapons trained on sworn Peace Officers, it occurred to me that they had answered my rhetorical question from last summer. The Revolution will be televised.

And this is what it will look like.

We will have the gun nut manly men standing around a microphone “protecting” the right wing hero de jour, with their arms crossed, scowls, store bought camo pants, sunglasses, faux-military badges (Pretorian Guard! Scared yet?) looking all bad-ass. They will be signaling that yes, they are quite willing to shed blood over this or that petty grievance against the tyrants. Especially if the tyranny involves some land use regulations that keep free loaders from stealing from the rest of us.

Then there will be the snipers who will transform themselves from patriots to cop killers.

The tactics they would employ take a page from Saddam Hussain (putting civilians in high value bombing targets): Former Sherriff Richard Mack advocates putting the women between the tough bad-asses and the constabulary.

Why, one might ask? Because it would make great TV of course. Former Sheriff Mack proclaims::

We were actually strategizing to put all the women up at the front,” he said. “If they are going to start shooting, it’s going to be women that are going to be televised all across the world getting shot by these rogue federal officers.”

Hannity must beside himself anticipating the ratings bump.

Not to worry. Former Sheriff Mack is no coward. He promises that when the women are killed on TV, he would be right behind:

I would have been next. I would have been the next one to be killed. I’m not afraid to die here, I’m willing to die here. But the best ploy would have been to have had women in front…

A grateful nation sighs with relief.

But this would be just the opening act. I think we all know what the closing act will be, especially if one of these sacrificial women manages to kill a police officer. How long would these tough guys and their sacrificial women hold their concrete barricade on the overpass when the helicopters negate whatever protection they think they have shooting through the narrow slits in the concrete? My guess it will take less than two minutes before the tough guys with their AR-15s, scowls, store bought camo pants, sunglasses, faux-military badges take for the hills.

Maybe they will leave the women behind in a rear guard action so they might escape.

Of course, they could go out Symbionese Liberation Army style and all die in the great confrontation. But they don’t appear to have that kind of motivation. I could be wrong.

I will close with another rhetorical question: What would the country be like if these bad asses showed up to protect an inner city kid from out of control police?

The family of Oscar Grant knows government tyranny.


Update April 24, 2014

Now that Cliven Bundy has shared with us his views on “the Negro”, he has revealed himself to be not only a crank and a grifter, but a deeply ignorant racist as well. The conservative media, who had lionized him a week ago, are fleeing like the devil flees holy water.

Especially Hannity, who tried to exploit this delusional old fool for a ratings bump. All of this was predictable, interesting, but ultimately, not important.

The fascinating part of this turn of events, is the response of the “militia” loonies who remain on the scene, guarding this fraud from government tyranny. It looks like they are standing by their man, freedom lovers that they are. Now we know why these bad asses do not rush to the defense of young inner city people who suffer government tyranny every day in the form of abusive police power.

They will not admit it, but their actions speak far louder than their words. Race matters.






  1. lwk2431 permalink

    “Of course, they could go out Symbionese Liberation Army style and all die in the great confrontation.”

    It would probably more likely to go the Viet Cong route. They routinely killed any and all S. Vietnamese government officials and supporters, armed or not. They come into a village at night and kill the village chief, his wife, his children, and eat his dogs (that last is a joke). You would end up with anyone still working for or supporting the government having to live in armed compounds and an employee would have to take a squad of soldiers in order to go out in public without being killed.

    Of course the Viet Cong did not win that war, and when they did try to come out and fight us face to face we slaughtered them wholesale in the Tet Offensive in 1968 (which taught them a lesson – took them years to rebuild their infrastructure in the south).

    Understand I am _not_ advocating that, I am just pointing out the logic. The idea of militia guys in camos standing up and fighting the Army is not likely. Murdering anyone and everyone who works for or supports the government is. It tends to make it very hard to run a country.


  2. BLM did the right thing by deescalating. “Blowback” is a serious concern in light of the Waco disaster.

    Also why waste officers on something that could be solved with court order and an electronic levy on Bundy’s bank accounts?

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