Sunday, July 24, 2011


As the son of parents who were instrumental in organizing the modern Republican Party (not to be confused with the present version) in Dallas and north Texas, I was raised in a straight party line GOP home and at nine years of age passed out I Like Ike buttons in 1952. I am the proud grandson of a respected, long standing member of the Republican National Committee from Rhode Island and was a card carrying Republican for most of my adult life. My Mother was a dedicated Precinct Chairperson in Dallas, Texas and Providence, Rhode Island and private appointment secretary to two Rhode Island Republican Governors (Chris Del Sesto and John Chaffee). Just to be fair, my great grandfather Nathan Whitman Littlefield (D) was a member of the Rhode Island Senate from the city of Pawtucket (1894-98), a progressive Democratic candidate for Governor of Rhode Island in 1900 and a heavyweight with the Anti-Saloon League (ASL). He was a great writer and despite his ASL activity one of my continuing inspirations.

Much to the chagrin of some Family members, I am truly dismayed with the path the GOP has recently taken - methinks to the far dark side. That feeling has been shared by many former Republicans (we are legion) who now embrace an Independent posture looking for the best candidate wherever they are, regardless of party, sex, color, religion or any other protected status. Come out, come out – wherever you are. I am not now, nor have I ever been a Democrat. I embrace liberal/progressive, moderate and conservative positions, judging issues on their own individual merits. I have voted for Democrats, Independents and Republicans though never for a Libertarian. For what it’s worth, I am considered by most folks as, “moderate.”

We at Might of Right have really tried hard not to further comment on dumber than dumb iconic hockey mom Sarah Palin (Paul Revere warned the British?) and others of her ilk though we did break down and post on The Donald after his continuing and nauseating antics and gaffs regarding President Obama. He predictably slipped and slid away to his real estate and TV Kingdom and hopefully out of politics. We have tried to shine the light of day on other political luminaries including President Obama, Joe Biden, Al Gore, Anthony Weiner and others whatever their party affiliation, gender, persuasion, etc. So much material to work with, so little time – for any journalist they are the gift that keeps on giving…

Then along comes Teabagger and the always camera-ready Michelle Bachmann, who represents Minnesota's 6th congressional district and is a candidate for the Republican nomination in the 2012 U.S. presidential election. Now we don’t care about Bachmann’s gender, political party, religion or sexual persuasion, but she is so far out in left (OK right) field on so many substantive issues and with her rise in popularity (?), she can’t be ignored. No, I don’t think her migraines are an issue… Some of her antics have been so absurd, however, I had to recheck the TV info just to make sure I hadn’t accidentally tuned into a Saturday Night Live (SNL) Tina Fey inspired skit.

When I first started this post I intended to tie together, list and elaborate in nauseating detail on her numerous significant and disturbing miscues, gaffes, skewed (many times wrong) knowledge of history, lies and beliefs. But that’s mostly old news that’s been addressed and continues to be reported to this very hour by respected journalists around the world. What is unnerving is that Bachmann’s aberrant behaviors continue to this very day reflecting that she is not learning and surely hasn’t surrounded herself with capable and qualified staff and mentors who have at least a grasp on reality and history.

We understand why many respect her staunch conservative viewpoints and that this post will surely not dissuade the many Bachmann supporters who share her revisionist, fundamentalist Christian philosophies. What we do hope is that this will cast yet one more beam of the critical light of day on Bachmann and motivate folks sitting on the fence to delve more deeply into her qualifications, or lack thereof. Here are some snippets and bullet points from the aforementioned nauseating details we feel call the question her ability to hold any responsible political office.

 Michelle Bachmann is lock step with the pathetic, delusional though apparently sincere Harold Camping and his several failed end of the world predictions. Likewise, Bachman predicted the imminent end of the world in October, 2006, “the day is at hand”. We wonder like J. Clifford Cook, Senior Writer for the liberal Irregular Times whether Bachmann has the, “… mental capacity to understand the metaphorical structure of her own religion sufficiently to avoid coming to the conclusion that the Earth is about the be destroyed” or sincere in her beliefs wonder why she is running for President in 2012 if she believes that the world is about to end? For many this this appears to be, “…an issue of psychological stability.” Some ponder whether she would be more prone to engage nuclear conflict becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy. We also note that there is a vacancy on the board of the Flat Earth Society.

 Bachmann’s stand on Gay Rights and her satanistic perspectives on homosexuality, throwing her sister and Family under the bus and then her faux pas use of Katy Perry’s pro-gay hit song, “Firework,” as her intro into an ultra-right wing conservative conference demonstrate for many that she has, “a profound misunderstanding of popular culture.” Maybe Perry can pen a new theme song for Bachmann – something like, “From the Bushes.”

We also wonder about the grandstanding Bachmann who introduced redundant, unnecessary legislation into the Minnesota Senate in 2003 by proposing an amendment to Minnesota’s constitution banning gay marriage. OK, but the Minnesota state legislature had already passed a law making same-sex unions illegal. Most politicians (for and against) were non-plussed and were, “floored by the brazen pointlessness of Bachmann's bill.” It didn’t pass.

 Bachmann's revisionist version of her family history Minnesota v. Iowa and her origins (how many generations? – Norway to Wisconsin and Dakota Territory, etc.) is nothing more than political pulp, living for the moment and ingratiating and reinventing herself for her audience.

 We certainly understand and respect differing religious perspectives including those who would interpret the Bible literally. That is their right though when this religious minority tries to discredit science and foist their beliefs upon the rest of civilization, I take offense. For example, Bachmann believes the age of the earth to be around 5,000 years. Never mind the consensus in the scientific community that the earth is around 4.54 billion years old.

Despite what some may say, there is no controversy, no reasonable doubt - the evidence is overwhelming. By the way, I saw an interesting TV documentary the other day featuring the Paleo-Indian civilization of the Pecos River Valley which dates back 12,000 years. I also have a wonderful rendering of the upper Paleolithic cave paintings in the Cave of Chauvet-Pont-d'Arc in the Ardeche region in France which dates from 30,000 to 33,000 years ago. I can go back as far as you want. Hmmm…

 Bachman would have us dumb down our educational system with nonsense and poppycock like Creationism and its carefully crafted anti-intellectual offshoot, Intelligent Design offered under the banner and guise of critical thinking. Think all you want - There is nothing intelligent about it and using words like critical, think or intelligent doesn’t make it any more credible or palatable. I’m on the side of Zack Kopplin, the young man from Baton Rouge, Louisiana who is rallying the cause against ignorance in education. Well done, Zack.

 Bachmann claims to be divinely inspired, that she speaks with God who has directed all aspects of her life. She states that she had no desire to enter politics, “…till God told her to.” So, if Bachmann is hearing only the Christian God, does that mean she won’t hear the opinions and relate to the needs of all our culturally diverse and multi faith population? Bachmann who feels she and those of her ilk have exclusive access to Heaven is clearly trying to impose her Christian viewpoints on everybody else and that alone makes her unfit for office. As a practicing Christian I do wonder what ever happened to the separation of Church and State?

 There was an old woman who lived in a shoe, she had so many children she didn't know what to do…. Now, we know that wasn’t Michelle Bachmann though she often claims that she “raised 23 foster children.” The Minnesota Department of Human Services records reflect that Bachmann was licensed and paid to care for up to three children at a time for a 7 1/2 year period. Kris Harvieux, a former senior social worker in the foster care system in Bachmann’s county reflects that some placements were almost certainly short term and that Bachmann, “…makes it sound like she got them at birth and raised them to adulthood, but that’s not true.

Issue: We also wonder why a bragging and chest-thumping Bachmann is want to treat her generosity and charity as a red badge of courage. We hope that most foster parents take in children because they want to make a difference in that child’s life and not as capital to fuel their political ambitions. Exploitation? One blogger recently noted that, “Being paid to take in a child for a short term, DOES NOT constitute raising them.” For whatever her foster care service was and for whatever duration and assuming Bachmann was sincerely motivated – Our Thanks. But, the self-serving characterization of her foster care activity leads to distortion and yet one more reason to question her motivation and character… Most folks I know that volunteer for worthwhile charitable causes like the American Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity, among many others, don’t talk about it as they aren’t seeking accolades or compliments. They just do it as part of their service to humanity…

 While claiming to take us back to our roots and the spirits of our forefathers, Bachman has demonstrated a woeful and skewed (many times wrong) knowledge of history. Methinks that any new naturalized citizen of the United States may know more about United States history than Bachmann. Some say these are not legitimate concerns but, we beg to differ. The President of the United States has to be able to put into context – especially from historical perspectives – all the information available in order to made critical, strategic decisions on domestic and international policy.

For example, while stumping in New Hampshire last March Bachmann twice claimed New Hampshire was the birthplace of the American Revolution and, "the state where the shot was heard around the world in Lexington and Concord." Well, WE all know that state/commonwealth is really Massachusetts, not New Hampshire. New Hampshire voters appear to be predictably turning their backs on Bachman.

 Michele Bachmann's gaffe about how the Founding Fathers (in which she included an eight-year-old John Quincy Adams), "worked tirelessly" to end slavery, despite the fact that many were slave owners and wrote the perpetuation of the slave trade into the US Constitution has been revealed to most on our planet. Having said that, some of the Founding Fathers including Jefferson and Washington freed (or tried to) their slaves upon their passing. John Quincy Adams admirably fought the institution of slavery his whole life (Amistad) while Father and second President John Adams it was mostly an issue of compromise. John Adams was opposed to slavery and did not own slaves but he never worked, “tirelessly” for its abolition. Most of the Founding Fathers were more concerned with establishing a union with all the Colonies (including the South) and keeping peace by being mostly mum on the subject. While Bachman’s statement isn’t factual this may be the closest she comes to the elusive light of truth on this subject.

 Then there was Bathroom Gate where Minnesota State Senator Bachmann in 2005 demonstrated an extraordinary lack of control, freaked out and completely lost her cool. Seems that she was participating in a constituent forum in New Scandia Township, MN when during the question and answer session, the subject of gay rights came up. Apparently an uncomfortable Bachmann cut the session short and sought refuge in the Ladies Room. She walked into the rest room with ex-nun Nancy Cosgriff who was asking Bachmann (according to the police report) a question relating to the, “moral issues of same sex marriage.” Bachmann and Cosgriff were joined by Pamela Arnold, another constituent who wanted to politely continue the conversation.

After an interval estimated to be some 20 to 30 seconds Bachmann suddenly started screaming, "Help, "Help! I'm being held against my will!" and ran out of the bathroom. She was followed by the two stunned constituents (they held the door open) who only wanted to talk with Bachmann. Bachmann contacted the local constabulary and accused Cosgriff and Arnold of kidnapping. According to the police report, Bachmann said that she was, "Absolutely terrified and has never been that terrorized before as she had no idea what those two women were going to do to her."

The Washington County, Minnesota attorney after a thorough investigation, however, declined to press charges reflecting that "It seems clear from the statements given by both women that they simply wanted to discuss certain issues further with Ms. Bachmann." If you want to see the police report it can be accessed on the Net. Remember, Ladies and Gentleman, this is a candidate for President who, above all, has to be able to maintain her composure and sometimes operate in the most trying circumstances. Yes, we believe Michelle was sincerely scared – and that’s the rub…

 When Bachmann announced her candidacy she made that now famous faux pas about which John Wayne was from her hometown (no need to comment here).

 Then Representative Bachmann recently signed a “Marriage Vow” offered by The Family Leader a homophobic, conservative right wing group based out of Iowa. Bachmann pledged to defend marriage from homosexuals and at the same time condemn abortion, infidelity and pornography. OK, but confusingly to this writer, the pledge also contained the following opening statement, "Slavery had a disastrous impact on African-American families, yet sadly a child born into slavery in 1860 was more likely to be raised by his mother and father in a two-parent household than was an African-American baby born after the election of the USA's first African-American President." The insinuation is that African-American children are far worse off now under the Obama Presidency than during slavery? What a crock

The nonsensical association of slavery in 1860 and Black Family values in the 21st century with pledges directed against gay marriage, pornography, abortion and infidelity (notwithstanding the absurd link to Obama) make this whole exercise ludicrous. Bachmann signed though later stated that she did not know or see any of the references to slavery which have since been removed by The Family Value which (sort of) apologized citing that the slavery reference had been misconstrued.

 Further, Bachmann has linked swine flu to Democrats, dismissed and characterized the Pigford decision as fraud and waste of government money, assured us that carbon dioxide is not a harmful gas, that elimination of the minimum wage would eliminate unemployment so employers could offer jobs at, “whatever level” and that a bill to raise the minimum wage would actually lower wages, her either for or against America perspectives on Congress smacks of McCarthyism, Bachmann a pro-lifer used the same slogan as the pro-choice movement in arguing against health care reform, assured the American public that "There are hundreds and hundreds of scientists, many of them holding Nobel Prizes, who believe in intelligent design." and many, many more.

While Bachmann has put together an impressive resume that includes stints in Congress and the Minnesota House, she does not appear to have the character, demeanor, critical reasoning, emotional control, collaborative perspectives, world view, tolerance, etc. required for the most important job in the World today. She is confrontational, obsessive, divisive and tends to bend and procrastinate on and embellish the truth and at an alarming rate that will surely keep the highly regarded and objective busy for some time. She scares me

Republican and former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson says it all for me with his comments on Bachmann’s commitment to The Family Leader Pledge. Johnson decried the pledge and concluded that, "The Republican Party cannot afford to have a Presidential candidate who condones intolerance, bigotry and the denial of liberty to the citizens of this country." Well done, Governor Johnson.

I attended a Fourth of July Concert with several Friends in the Dallas area which featured the Plano Symphony and a couple of choral groups and representatives of all branches of the US Military. They gave out small American flags which we all proudly and patriotically waved as we entered the auditorium. As we were taking our seats a man (no gentleman he) loudly and stridently commented to his sidekick that there surely were no Democrats in this crowd and if they were they would be waving their hammer and sickle flags! He then went on to invoke the spirits of Michelle Bachmann and Rick Perry as saviors of our Country.

Well, I guess the Republicans are reaping what they sowed. It now appears to some that Bachmann may be the most UnChristian among us.


Ned Buxton

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