Paul Bibeau is one of today’s most brilliant satirists. Last week he wrote, What If They NEVER Come For Our Guns? I was going to use it for a quotations post, but there was nothing I felt I could cut, so you will just have to click over and read the whole thing. As you can probably guess from the title, it is written from the perspective of an Oath Keeper or other right wing Protector of Freedom™. But it’s a very special one who has started to have doubts. Certainly Obama is going to take away all the guns, but “the guy’s in year seven, and he’s really taking his damn time about it.”
For many years, I’ve been arguing that people who focus on conspiracy theories are missing what’s actually going on. There are the Jade Helm 15 types who have allowed their union jobs to be destroyed and their standards of living decline all while they worry about the coming marshal law. There are also plenty of liberal conspiracy theorists who do the same thing. But when you get down to it, all of the conspiracy theorists have a populist core that is upset that the power elite is rigging the system against them.
The rich have steadily warped the tax system so that they pay less and the rest of us pay more. But this is apparently too uninteresting to care about. And the rich have done a great job of limiting government programs that help the poorer classes. But again: not exciting. And the rich have managed to destroy unions while the middle class stands by and cheers. But who cares about such normal workings of society? It’s like documentaries about archaeological digs where we learn about the social structure of the Inca. Who cares about them when there are documentaries about how space aliens must have helped the Inca, because obviously they were too stupid to figure this stuff out.
Here is the core realization in Bibeau’s article:
Maybe rich people just used the information age to bushwhack us. And part of how they did it was by intervening in countries all over the world to dominate their governments and markets, which created the blowback that justifies this bloated security state and keeps us all terrified of foreigners so we don’t ask questions. And you and me and most of the guys in Hannity Team… well, we’re all vets of these campaigns, and some of us are cops and intelligence guys. So, it almost seems, sometimes, like we’re doing this guerrilla warfare role-play thing as a way to avoid thinking about how they already won the game. And how we kind of helped them.
If only we could get these people to think about this stuff. One thing that I continue to marvel at is that people have been saying this stuff for my entire lifetime. Yet their predictions continue to fail. They really are like people in cults whose faith only gets stronger as the prophecies crash and burn. But Bibeau really strikes at the heart of the central irony that these people who think they are fighting the power are actually doing its bidding.