Your quote of the day, courtesy of Gov. Deval Patrick (D-MA), unhinged by the Beck rally in DC on Saturday.
Wait, did I say rally? I meant, the chance collection of a slightly larger than usual number of tourists passing between the monuments that day, according to MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell, who Beck has lots of fun goofing on, here:
Meanwhile, Lexington Green of the Chicago Boyz has an interesting take on what he sees as Beck’s strategy:
Someone who asks what the rally has to do with the 2010 election is missing the point.
Beck is building solidarity and cultural confidence in America, its Constitution, its military heritage, its freedom. This is a vision that is despised by the people who have long held the commanding heights of the culture. But is obviously alive and kicking.
Beck is creating positive themes of unity and patriotism and freedom and independence which are above mere political or policy choices, but not irrelevant to them. Political and policy choices rest on a foundation of philosophy, culture, self-image, ideals, religion. Change the foundation, and the rest will flow from that. Defeat the enemy on that plane, and any merely tactical defeat will always be reversible.
Beck is unabashed that God can be invoked in public places by citizens, who vote and assemble and speak and freely exercise their religion. They are supposed to be too browbeaten to do this. Gathering hundreds of thousands of them to peaceably assemble shows they are not. But showing that the people who believe in God and practice their religion are fellow-citizens who share political and economic values with majorities of Americans is a critical step. The idea that these people are an American Taliban is laughable, but showing that fact to the world — and to potential political allies who are not religious — is critical.
Beck is attacking the enemy at the foundations of their power, their claim to race as a permanent trump card, their claim to the Civil Rights movement as a permanent model to constantly be transforming a perpetually unjust society.