Take for instance former Wisconsin Senator Joeseph McCarthy whose last name became synonymous with unfounded witch hunts. I have no doubt that Senator McCarthy cared very much about the United States and I also have no doubt that Communism was a very real threat in the 1950s. However, going around accusing Americans of being Communists with little or no proof turned out to be pretty bad for his career and should serve as an example of how Americans don’t act.
Except that 60 years later we appear to be living the same thing all over again. Much like McCarthy’s allegations of Communist spies in the State Department, the Armed Forces and in the Executive Branch, another representative of the Northwest Territory, Minnesota representative Michele Bachmann, launched spurious claims of Islamist infiltration of the State Department, the Armed Forces and the Executive Branch. And Bachmann’s claims appear to hold about as much water as those of McCarthy.
Now, this should go without saying but people in sensitive positions like that of Huma Abedin, Secretary Clinton’s deputy Chief-of-Staff, are subjected to rigorous background checks that can lead to disqualification because of excessive debt. Don’t you think that someone who’s delving that deep into your background might notice if you had been developing ties with groups like the Muslim Brotherhood? On top of that, although some Muslim Brotherhood affiliated groups are considered terrorist organizations by the US government, as a country we have reopened diplomatic ties with the group so why would it even matter if she did have ties?
Bachmann is no stranger to idiocy and this most recent story only shows what kind of a bullet we dodged when she finally dropped out of the Presidential race. But sadly, she still has a lot of supporters. Add in the fact that an uncomfortably high percentage of the US population still believes that our Evangelical Christian president is a secret Muslim and you can see where this is a problem.
The only positive development in this latest Bachmann debacle is that even people from her own party have finally had to start admitting that she’s out of control. And unlike McCarthy’s four years in the limelight, throwing around allegations like confetti, Bachmann was roundly scolded within a few days. But if there was ever any doubt, I think we can all safely admit now that the former Northwest Territories are still a special place with some very special people.