Frank Rich: Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin Are 'Re-enacting Stalinism'

"The battle for upstate New York confirms just how swiftly the right has devolved into a wacky, paranoid cult that is as eager to eat its own as it is to destroy Obama. The movement’s undisputed leaders, Palin and Beck, neither of whom have what Palin once called the 'actual responsibilities' of public office, would gladly see the Republican Party die on the cross of right-wing ideological purity."

So wrote New York Times columnist Frank Rich in a piece that won't appear in print until Sunday, but was clearly intended to scare the Dickens out of the Times' few conservative readers on Halloween.

After all, in his "The G.O.P. Stalinists Invade Upstate New York," Rich unapologetically said no matter who wins in Tuesday's election for a House representative from New York's 23rd district, "the Republicans are the sure losers":

No matter what the results in that race on Tuesday, the Republicans are the sure losers. This could be a gift that keeps on giving to the Democrats through 2010, and perhaps beyond. [...]

That this pastoral setting could become a G.O.P. killing field, attracting an all-star cast of combatants led by Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, William Kristol and Newt Gingrich, is a premise out of a Depression-era screwball comedy. But such farces have become the norm for the conservative movement — whether the participants are dressing up in full “tea party” drag or not.

Imagine that. The New York Times has a columnist that actually gets paid to tell readers no matter what happens, Republicans lose.

Talk about a gift that keeps on giving for liberals! Makes you wonder if the Times has someone in the sports section that will tell New Yorkers the Yankees won the World Series no matter what happens on the field.

Sadly, Rich was just getting warmed up:

The battle for upstate New York confirms just how swiftly the right has devolved into a wacky, paranoid cult that is as eager to eat its own as it is to destroy Obama. The movement’s undisputed leaders, Palin and Beck, neither of whom have what Palin once called the “actual responsibilities” of public office, would gladly see the Republican Party die on the cross of right-wing ideological purity.

Wow. Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck "would gladly see the Republican Party die on the cross of right-wing ideological purity?"

Actually, in the past two major election cycles, the Republican Party has died on the cross of liberalism as it gave back the White House and both chambers of Congress foolishly thinking a steady move to the left would benefit it.

Now that real conservatives are standing up to take back the reins of a Party in decline since George W. Bush was re-elected in 2004, liberal media members just can't stand it:

The right’s embrace of Hoffman is a double-barreled suicide for the G.O.P. On Saturday, the battered Scozzafava suspended her campaign, further scrambling the race. It’s still conceivable that the Democratic candidate could capture a seat the Republicans should own. But it’s even better for Democrats if Hoffman wins. Punch-drunk with this triumph, the right will redouble its support of primary challengers to 2010 G.O.P. candidates they regard as impure. That’s bad news for even a Republican as conservative as Kay Bailey Hutchison, whose primary opponent in the Texas governor’s race, the incumbent Rick Perry, floated the possibility of secession at a teabagger rally in April and hastily endorsed Hoffman on Thursday.

Amazing. Conservatives across the fruited plain cheered Saturday's announcement by Scozzafava, but Rich saw this as a defeat for the Right:

The more rightists who win G.O.P. primaries, the greater the Democrats’ prospects next year...Writing in 1964 of that era’s equivalent to today’s tea party cells, the historian Richard Hofstadter observed that the John Birch Society’s “ruthless prosecution” of its own ideological war often mimicked the tactics of its Communist enemies.

The same could be said of Beck, Palin and their acolytes. Though they constantly liken the president to various totalitarian dictators, it is they who are re-enacting Stalinism in full purge mode. They drove out Arlen Specter, and now want to “melt Snowe” (as the blog Red State put it).

What astounding nonsense. Specter became a Democrat because he had no chance of getting re-elected next November as a Republican. As such, he wasn't driven out. He left to save his own political career. 

As for Snowe, calling her a RINO on Halloween is an insult to RINOs who don't need costumes to confuse the likes of Rich and his colleagues:

Only in the alternative universe of the far right is Obama a pariah and Palin the great white hope. It’s become a Beltway truism that the White House’s (mild) spat with Fox News is counterproductive because it drives up the network’s numbers. But if curious moderate and independent voters are now tempted to surf there and encounter Beck’s histrionics for the first time, the president’s numbers will benefit as well. To the uninitiated, the tea party crowd comes across like the barflies in “Star Wars.”

There is only one political opponent whom Obama really has to worry about at this moment: Hamid Karzai. It’s Afghanistan and joblessness, not the Stalinists of the right, that have the power to bring this president down.

Keep thinking that, Frank. Better yet, keep telling your readers that, for it's exactly this kind of cocky arrogance from liberal media elites like yourself that allowed conservatives to take back the House and the Senate in 1994.

One final comedic note from Rich:

This column has been updated from the version that appears in print to reflect the fact that Ms. Scozzafava suspended her campaign on Saturday morning.
How much would you pay to see what this idiotic column looked like BEFORE Scozzafava quit?
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.