Politico's David Nather must have thought he was so clever. Here's how he opened a recent column: "It can happen to anyone, right? You rally behind a guy ... and suddenly he’s spewing racist bile and boy, does it splash on your face." Yes, I left out a few words, and I'll get to that. But before providing them, the quote just rendered would apply to how those at Los Angeles branch of the NAACP must feel about their now-withdrawn but not forgotten plan to confer a lifetime achievement award on Los Angeles Clippers' owner Donald Sterling, who has been caught on tape allegedly telling a woman that she shouldn't "associate with black people" or have blacks accompany her to Clippers games.
Let's revise Nather's blather a bit for another comic circumstance: "It can happen to anyone, right? You rally behind a guy because he comes over to your side on climate change, and suddenly he’s arrested in 'a 20-count federal indictment that includes charges of mail fraud, wire fraud and tax fraud.' Boy, does it splash on your face." Now I'm talking about the fools at Organizing For Action, who celebrated the "breakthrough" of having GOP Congressman Michael Grimm come over to their side mere days before his indictment, which occurred today.
These two far more damning examples demonstrate what a fool Nather was Thursday evening as he tried to tar Republicans who were expressing single-issue sympathy for Cliven Bundy in his ongoing battle with Uncle Sam's Bureau of Land Management with Bundy's later race-based remarks (bolds are mine):
Cliven Bundy’s first and last rodeo
It can happen to anyone, right? You rally behind a guy and his anti-government cause, and suddenly he’s spewing racist bile and boy, does it splash on your face.
Well, actually, it can’t happen to just anyone. It didn’t even happen to most people. It happened, specifically, to a handful of politicians and media celebrities who didn’t check out Cliven Bundy a little more closely.
Let's stop there. This is too much fun.
Let's adapt Nather's second paragraph to the other two current circumstances:
Well, actually, it can’t happen to just anyone. It didn’t even happen to most people. It happened, specifically, to the Los Angeles chapter of the NACCP, whose leaders gleefully took money and minority community freebies from Donald Sterling, and even planned to give him a lifetime achievement award, without checking out his histories of housing discrimination and racial insensitivity (and worse) out a little more closely.
Well, actually, it can’t happen to just anyone. It didn’t even happen to most people. It happened, specifically, to Barack Obama's Organizing for Action, whose leaders gleefully welcomed Grimm to the climate change crowd without caring that he was already the subject of a prolonged FBI investigation and has had a penchant for ill-tempered threatening outbursts before checking him out a little more closely.
One more paragraph from Nather:
Republicans like Rand Paul, Dean Heller and Ted Cruz are sprinting away from the Nevada rancher after embracing his fight against the Bureau of Land Management. And media figures like Sean Hannity, who built Bundy into a star for his battle against yet another heavy-handed government agency.
One more set of adaptations:
Civil rights groups like the NAACP and civil right "leaders" like Al Sharpton, who was and still is scheduled to receive a Person of the Year award at the same event where Sterling was to receive his lifetime achievement award, are sprinting away from the Clippers owner after taking his money and his minority-directed freebies all these years.
Hardened leftists at OFA are hoping against hope that their happy acceptance of the now-indicted Congressman Grimm into the community of climate change legislation advocates doesn't become more widely known and end up being the source of embarrassment that it should be. (OFA's post welcoming Grimm was still present at its web site at noon today.)
With its award, the LA NAACP was embracing Donald Sterling in his entirety. OFA cast Congressman Grimm as a supposedly shining example of political courage. With rare exceptions, those who have opined on the Cliven Bundy situation have expressed no such unvarnished support, but have limited their advocacy to objecting to the Bureau of Land Management's heavy-handed tactics and to the idea that Bundy and his family might deserve to continue to conduct their business as they have.
In other words, the Sterling and Grimm situations are steeped in embarrassing hypocrisy. The Bundy situation isn't.
I hope that crow you're eating tastes good, David Nather. I hear that lathering it with barbecue sauce covers up a little of the bitterness.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.