publisher's note
March 27, 2009



Conservative hysteria, Nixon’s timidity
by Bruce Rodgers

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon, who as state attorney general never saw a death penalty sentence he couldn’t support, has gone weak-kneed under a conservative onslaught of indignation over a report released by the Missouri Informational Analysis Center (MIAC). The report gives an overview of the “The Modern Militia Movement,” citing past “militia activity,” trends, organization, ideologies and other identifying factors held by militia members

Ignoring those elements of the 8-page report, conservative politicians, commentators and bloggers focused on two short paragraphs on page 7 of the report under the categories of “Political Paraphernalia” and “Anti-Government Propaganda.” Here’s what the report stated:

“Militia members most commonly associate with 3rd party political groups. It is not uncommon for militia members to display Constitutional Party, Campaign for Liberty, or Libertarian material. These members are usually supporters of former Presidential Candidate (sic): Ron Paul, Chuck Baldwin, and Rob Barr.

“Militia members commonly display picture, cartoons, bumper stickers that contain anti-government rhetoric. Most of this material will depict the FRS, IRS, FBI, ATF, CIA, UN, Law Enforcement, and ‘The New World Order’ in a derogatory manor (sic). Additionally, Racial, anti-immigration, and anti-abortion, material may be displayed by militia members.”

Overlooking the word usage and grammatical errors, the statements are factual. The report backs those statements and others by first recounting violent incidents tied to militia supporters, including reported plans to bomb the Southern Poverty Law Center, gay bars and abortion clinics by the Oklahoma Constitutional Militia, anti-abortionist Eric Robert Rudolph’s killing and injuring of people supporting abortion, and the killing of a Michigan State Trooper by a Michigan Militia member.

Of interest also, and generally left out of news reports, is the report that “Rightwing extremists” believe FEMA has three concentration camps in Missouri including the former Richards-Gebaur AFB in Grandview. Also, Kansas City’s Smart Port is seen as a hub for the NAU or North American Union. “Conspiracy theorists” claim this plan would link the United States, Canada and Mexico under a single monetary system and “trade the dollar for the AMERO.”

While most conservatives don’t hold to such nut-ball beliefs, the uproar over a couple of paragraphs obscures the fact that the “MIAC Strategic Report” is accurate in which its dissemination among law enforcement personnel has the potential to protect officers and the public.

But the self-righteousness and refusal of conservatives to recognize the violent tendencies of some whom they share a level of belief, and politicians incapable of standing up to a torrent of irrationality and open the facts to public debate, indicates neither constructive dialogue or action in the public good.

Nixon’s run from supporting the report’s factual conclusions shows how completely he has left the tough prosecutor image behind as state attorney general and become yet another Democrat fearful of taking on the Republicans’ brazen manipulation of intentions that were never expressed in the MIAC report or by Missouri law enforcement officials.

Ironically, what the Republicans charge as political profiling by the state is done each election cycle by the very special interest groups so offended. Even more comically a Missouri pro-life group, Missourians United for Life, has asked the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) to help with a restraining order against Nixon for “abusing state law” and civil rights violations for warning law enforcement “that displaying ‘anti-abortion’ material may be a sign of a potential threat,” according to

What the MIAC reports alludes to and what Missourians United for Life demonstrates in attacking Nixon is that the pro-life movement — like many beliefs outlined in the MIAC report — is as much about being anti-government as it is about adhering to the principles the group first embraced as it reason for being.

Like the left of the 1960s and early 1970s, the right of late 20th and early 21st century hates its democratically elected government.

Bruce Rodgers can be contacted at


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