A disturbing number of political movements in this country act more like a cult.
Tea Party supporters defend the extremism of their movement with cult-like zeal, bombarding those who dare question their movement with invective-filled emails, threatening boycotts and waving signs that call opponents “socialists” or “communists” or “traitors.”
In the 2008 Presidential election, ABC’s Sunday morning news show host George Stephanopoulos had the gall to tell then Presidential candidate Ron Paul that he was not going to win the GOP nomination. The rabid Paul fans went bat-shit, flooding ABC with phone calls, calling on advertisers to drop sponsorship on the show.
Same thing happened on Capitol Hill Blue when I brought up Paul’s past membership in the John Birch Society and the racist rants published under his name in his newsletters.
And the Paul faithful predicted he would win, which of course he didn’t because he never stood a chance.
Ron Paul will never be President. Neither will his equally-racist son, Rand. Too much baggage.
Hovering over on the extreme fringes of the left are the fans of Ohio Congressman Dennis J. Kucinich, the one-time boy wonder who became the youngest big city mayor when he won an upset election as mayor of Cleveland and then drove the city into bankruptcy.
Question Kucinich’s extremism and you draw an avalanche of emails from his cult-like following. There must be something in the water in Ohio. Ex-con and former Ohio Congressman James Traficant had the same cult-like devotion from voters who overlooked his criminal activities.
Kucinich has also run for President and, like the Pauls, has no chance of ever winning. The Republican leadership of Congress tries, as often as it can, to distance itself from extremists like Paul while the Democrats keep as far away as they can from Kucinich.
But that doesn’t deter the followers of extremists from both the right and the left.
The cult-like devotion that these folks receive is a case study in mob psychology.
But when a political movement becomes a cult, it ceases to be a group driven by any form of reason.
It becomes, instead, a menace to society and should be treated as such.