In a column published today at World Net Daily (and also probably elsewhere), Patrick J. Buchanan, former top Republican adviser, Presidential contender, and author of colorful right-wing pamphlets, comes clean in a fashion that must have felt like the relinquishment of a great burden. Just like conservative internet forum Free Republic when they decided to "break the n----r barrier,"* Buchanan has crossed a line from which it is hard to return:
The Census Bureau has now fixed at 2041 the year when whites become a minority in a country where the Founding Fathers had restricted citizenship to "free white persons" of "good moral character."
If Patrick J. sounds a little nostalgic for the days when a small group of aristocrats literally owned other humans as property while philosophizing in very lofty terms about freedom and liberty, that's because he literally is.
Patrick J.'s opening gambit is subtle, and requires a little bit of unpacking, so let's get to it.
Note the dog whistle in this statement. First, there is the capitalization of Founding Fathers. The right's fetish for the Founders and their notable ideological blind spots regarding the same are both discussed in great detail here - suffice to say that it's no accident that Mr. Buchanan invokes a racially restricted electorate in the same breath as those Great Men. If you think I'm reading too much into this, please allow me to direct you to this collection of Buchanan's greatest hits. Go ahead and have a look, I'll wait.
Moving along: if Buchanan had not established his white-pride bona fides by the early 90s, the bulk of today's column would have removed all doubt.
Buchanan has three predictions as to what will happen when his long-suffering people, the poor, persecuted Caucasians of America, are no longer in the majority; first, that it will hurt Republicans, second, that minorities will then cause a major national economic crisis because they are worthless moochers, and third, that because Hispanics and Blacks are stupid, the decline of white America will lead to a stupider country.
That third summary - especially the "Hispanics and Blacks are stupid" part - might strike some as unfair to Pat Buchanan. Here's exactly how he phrased it:
Third, the decline in academic test scores here at home and in international competition is likely to continue, as more and more of the children taking those tests will be African-American and Hispanic. For though we have spent trillions over four decades, we have failed to close the racial gap in education. White and Asian children continue to outscore black and Hispanic children.
Holy crow that's some strong stuff. Buchanan's logic in support of this thesis reads like 'The Bell Curve' as seen through a Reader's Digest darkly and then summarized on of one Scholastic Corporation's elementary school blogs.
I'm always a little bit blown away by Buchanan. He's unapologetic for his racism and his paleoconservative beliefs. He's definitely a lateral thinker, which I appreciate even when I vehemently disagree with where those thoughts might travel. There's obviously something charming about him that doesn't translate to his column or TV appearances - at least, that's the only explanation I can think of for Rachel Maddow's apparent fondness for him.
Still, it's discouraging to me that he has risen to such prominence in the media. It seems like somebody gets the axe from ESPN or Monday Night Football or what have you for saying something dumb and racist every other week, but Buchanan just keeps chugging along, impervious to criticism because he doesn't care if the whole world knows that he thinks. For some reason, I find this quality irritating as hell in an arrogant bully like Rush Limbaugh (which is too bad, because that's exactly why a professional troll like Rush gets up in the morning), but not in Patrick J.
* - "Breaking the [racial epithet] barrier" is a reference to a fateful day in the history of Free Republic shortly after Obama's election when, out of impotent fury at Obama, the moderators allowed a longstanding ban on the use of the word "nigger" to lapse. This led to a flood of racist crap that has continued to this day, as far as I know.