Charles Pierce asks a rhetorical question:
Can we stop for a moment now and recall that this whole [IRS] business is about delays in certifying groups for their eligibility to participate in what almost every election-law expert in the country regards as one of the pre-eminent scams embedded in the insane way we run our elections in this country? But, please, says The Washington Post, climb right up here and drive the nails in yourself.
The case of Alabama's Common Sense Campaign illustrates the challenges. Riehm, the group's chairman, acknowledged that his organization has had favorite candidates, but it has not endorsed anyone directly.
The group felt strongly, for example, about Constitution Party candidate Bill Atkinson, who was defeated in a 2011 special election for a seat in the Alabama House of Representatives. Some of the group's members worked on Atkinson's campaign, Riehm said. "He was very conservative, and the right kind of guy we wanted," Riehm said. Riehm said the group's interaction with the IRS was filled with difficulties. Group officials said they first got the runaround and then were told that their file had been misplaced. "The lady I spoke with was very rude and said they would get in touch when they're ready," said Callie Goodrum, an administrator for the group. "Two or three months later I called again, and she said our file had been totally lost and we would have to refile."Why do I believe that the IRS lady might remember the conversation with Ms. Goodrum differently? Why do I believe Ms. Goodrum's end of the conversation might well have taken place loudly, and in fluent Glennbeckistani? Why do I hate America? Perhaps because she believes the president to be a "Communist dictator wannabe"? And Common Sense Campaign fave-rave Bill Atkinson turned out to have bigger problems as a political candidate than bureaucratic dumbassery, but the wingnuttery was strong in him anyway. And Pete Riehm obviously put the Common Sense Campaign together as a social-welfare organization completely deserving of tax-exempt status. And I am the Tsar of all the Russias...
No, Cholly. We cannot stop.
Not for a minute. Not for a second.
Because when the only tool you have is "Obummer McHitler is worse than ______!" -- when your life has no meaning unless the windmills you are tilting at are the Biggest, Windmilliest In History -- then every headline, every tragedy, every rumor, and every legitimate failure cannot be seen in its own context but must instead be the Second Coming of Alexander Butterfield...
...and anyone who might see things slightly otherwise must be Part of the Conspiracy.