Friday, June 13, 2014

Is David Brat a target?

One of my little hobbies is when confronted with a political debate, I will sometimes respond the way a 19th-early 20th Century Progressive or Populist might.  I've read enough about the progressive political movements in the upper midwest to do a pretty authentic imitation of the real thing.  I don't use the old phrases but I DO use the old ideas.  I get the most positive responses from farmers and construction workers when I introduce, say, concepts from Veblen's Instinct of Workmanship into a discussion of labor relationships.  On the other hand, the professorial classes have so much invested in the conventional wisdom that hearing the arguments first put forward by the National Farmer's Alliance or the Greenback Party bewilders and frightens them.

So I am not at all surprised that the professional pundit class is all over the map trying to describe Dave Brat.  He is obviously no Sarah Palin—he writes books she cannot read.  He is a Protestant yet he is not a looney like the denizens of Westboro Baptist.  He is a Calvinist capitalist in a country that no longer even knows what that means.

Yet because he knocked off such a fat target, Brat will probably be targeted because otherwise, he could start a movement.  This is important.  Chris Hedges in his scathing critique of electoral politics claimed that the single biggest problem was there was no way to vote against the interests of Goldman Sachs. So Brat bases his campaign around his opposition to crony capitalism and knocks off Eric Cantor with roughly 1/40th of the budget—proving, I guess, that when people think there is actually a way to vote against GS, they will do it.

So there are already pundits who believe that Brat will be targeted because he might otherwise set a good example.  Paul Craig Roberts is such a man.  I repost his essay because it is a good example for what passes as serious thought in the wake of such a political earthquake.

Touching the Third Rail

Is Dave Brat a Marked Man?


Dave Brat, a professor of economics at Virginia’s Randolph-Macon College, is a marked man. Professor Brat defeated Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, a prime trophy of the Israel Lobby. I doubt that Eric Cantor ever lost an opportunity to place Israel’s interests above the interests of his constituents. Under US laws, Cantor should have been required to register as a foreign agent.

The Israel Lobby is one of the six powerful interest groups that rule the US. The Israel Lobby has a perfect record of destroying any member of the House or Senate who dared to cross “The Lobby.” A number of its victims have spoken out, describing how The Lobby’s power was used against them.

Professor Brat’s victory over Cantor is not only an affront to the Israel Lobby but also an assault on its power. The Lobby will not take this lying down. Professor Brat had better not think that the attractive sexy women who suddenly are interested in him are attracted by his new status as a US Representative and a topic of conversation. The irresistible women will be on a well paid mission to cause a scandal.

Professor Brat can expect to be attacked by “journalists” across the political spectrum with every sort of accusation and scandalous report. He risks a well paid former female student coming forward to complain that while counseling her on her grades, he leaned forward and put his hand on her thigh. Or worse.

This will be Professor Brat’s likely fate even though his election was not about Cantor being Israel’s Representative, a fact that the voters who elected Brat probably don’t even know. Professor Brat himself might not know it, hence this warning. Professor Brat accused Cantor of representing, not Israel, but “large corporations seeking insider deals, crony bailouts and a constant supply of low-wage workers.” This ensures that the transnational corporations and military/security complex will join the Israel Lobby in gunning for Brat.

And, in addition, Brat is unlikely to be warmly welcomed by the Republican Party as he defeated one of the party’s top leaders. This could start a trend, and Republicans could lose Mitch McConnell, the Minority Leader in the Senate. Also, many, if not most, House Republicans will have spent a number of years accommodating Cantor in exchange for favors that the Majority Leader can confer, and they are not happy that their investments in Cantor have been wiped out.

A likely explanation of Brat’s victory is that it was a protest vote, like the recent EU elections where the major parties in the major countries lost to relatively new and heavily demonized third parties, such as Farage’s Independent Party (1993) in the UK and Le Pen’s National Front Party (1972) in France. The establishment is already at work explaining that these electoral victories along with Brat’s are due to their anti-immigration status. Little doubt this is partly the case, especially in the UK and France, but the extraordinary gain in third party clout is due to the public’s disgust with the corrupt traditional parties who have ceased to represent the public on any issue.

Just as I think Brat is a marked man, so are Farage and Le Pen. (Yes, I know, Marine is a woman, but the term is “marked man.”) The Establishment thought that Farage and Le Pen could be disposed of with lies and demonization. Their unexpected victory in the EU elections has brought that supposition into question. If Farage and Le Pen cannot be assassinated by the media, the prospect of physical assassination arises. The Establishment has perfect cover. As both political leaders speak out against the heavy level of immigration that is transforming the national existence of the UK and France, the intelligence services that serve the state can easily come up with a “deranged Muslim.”

The main target of Farage and Le Pen is not immigrants. Their important target is the EU, which, more than immigration, is attacking national sovereignty, thus dissolving the peoples of historic European countries into a new and artificial entity called Europe.

Farage and Le Pen are also opposed to Washington’s control of European countries and their foreign policy through NATO and other organizations dominated by Washington. Washington is no more willing than the Israel Lobby to take assaults on its power lying down. Attacks on the EU and on NATO are regarded as attacks on US interests. My conclusion is that the lives of Farage and Le Pen are at risk.

And so is Vladimir Putin’s. Despite Washington’s demonization, Putin has risen to recognition as the most capable world leader. Unlike Obama, Putin walks freely among crowds. He doesn’t stand behind a bullet proof shield when he gives a speech. Russia is overrun with opposition groups well paid by Washington. Putin needs to recognize his danger before he is removed.

Like Israel, Washington has no tolerance for those who get in its way. Just ask Muammar Gaddafi, Saddam Hussein, Viktor Yanukovych, and Bashar al-Assad.

Yes, dear readers, I know, the list is longer. You don’t need to write in to tell me. more



    1. Thanks for this link. We are still in the mere-taxonomy stage of the reporting on Brat. Based on past track records, my guess is that Salon will never say anything nice about him. Brat confuses them even though he is trying to be very upfront about who he is. Based on what I have seen, I think he is a an historic throwback. But since he is a LONG way from casting his first vote in congress, most of this speculation is based on not a lot of evidence.