The new breed of Tea Pot Republican is utterly oblivious to both fact and law. That they win elections is testimony to the deliberate ignorance of too many American voters. This is perhaps the core reason for pessimism about the American democratic experiment.
One of the worst examples to come to light is Martin Harty, a Barrington Republican elected to the Vermont legislature. He's a nonagenarian who, according to his own party members in the legislature, is "constantly confused, easily swayed, hard of hearing, and prone to offer up unrelated commentary or go off on unrelated tangents." He recently told a constituent who manages a community mental health program that there are "too many defective people," and that such people should be "shipped to Siberia to freeze to death and clean up the population."
Then there's Michelle Bachmann, the Minnesota congresswoman whose lack of knowledge of American history would have disqualified her from voting under state regulations in many southern states before passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. She thinks the Battle of Concord took place in New Hampshire.
Republican folly and lawlessness is not limited to isolated fruitcakes like Harty, Bachmann and Rand Paul. The entire majority leadership of the House of Representatives qualifies.
For purely political purposes, these geniuses demanded that President Obama unilaterally declare and enforce a no-fly zone over Libya -- a clear act of war under international law. We're already bleeding our military and our treasury fighting two other illegal, unwinnable wars. These fools want us to launch a third?
If, indeed, a no-fly zone is an effective instrument in bringing down a ruthless dictator and assisting a democratic revolution in Libya, the Arab League has offered a legal way of doing it by petitioning the United Nations to establish a no-fly zone.
As neighbor states to Libya, they act in strict accord with the United Nations Charter, Articles 41 and 42. The first gives the Security Council authority to decide what measures NOT involving military force may be taken against any nation which mounts a breach of the peace. Article 42 allows military actions, such as the no-fly zone, when non-military tactics fail.
But the half-cocked crazies in the house majority can't be bothered with legal procedures and nuances of the law. They're NRA card-carryin' whoop-de-doo Bush II cowboys who shoot first and ask questions later.
As long as someone else's sons and daughters are doing the real fighting.
Remember, too, that these great humanitarians told us, when Bush II's wars were squandering our surplus and plunging us into debt, that Saint Ronald the Reagan had proved that "deficits don't matter."
Except when you can make political capital by demonizing Obamacare, destroying unions and ruthlessly cutting funds for programs that millions of common citizens and unemployed Americans desperately need. Then suddenly the tea brains tell us the Deficit Bogeyman has to be slain this very minute.
Fact? Law? That's real world stuff. Don't disturb their Tea Pot fantasies with reality.