For some time now there has been a delusional right-wing fear that President Obama and his socialist henchmen were plotting to confiscate every firearm in the nation and force the patriopathic gun-lovers of America into servitude. These NRA-theists are the weapons version of Birthers and Truthers, and since they believe that the government intends to seize their armories, I am calling them “Seizers.”
Setting aside the fact that there has been no effort to prevent any law-abiding citizen from exercising their right to keep and bear arms, the psychotic fervor that is present in these fanatics has been so emphatic that it has overflowed the banks of wingnuttery and flooded the media and even congress. One of the latest and looniest theories is that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has been buying up bullets as part of a scheme to deplete the market so as to deprive citizens from having access to ammunition. That’s actually a softening of their prior theory wherein they thought that the DHS was preparing for warfare against a rebellious population.
The DHS has explained repeatedly that they are not buying any more bullets than prior administrations and, in fact, their purchases have declined (from 148.3 million in fiscal 2010 to 103.2 million rounds in 2012). But that hasn’t stopped the Seizers from frantically squealing about the imaginary conspiracy. What really makes this notion epically inane is that in a free market the only thing panic buying would do is motivate the manufacturers to increase production to meet demand. And now Fox News has gotten around to reporting this simple economic reality. But not without editorializing it in a false and negative way:
The article interviews an employee of – get this – Stockpile Defense by the name of – not kidding here – Steve Warholic (I wish I could make up stuff this good). This article goes to great lengths to advance the conspiracy theories of the Seizers before eventually getting around to reporting a bit of truth. They lead off with with some familiar Fox fear mongering:
“Massive government purchases, including a plan by the Department of Homeland Security to buy more than 1 billion rounds of ammunition, have further stoked fears – and suspicions.”
However, later in the article they get to what is truly at issue:
“Ammunition manufacturers are reporting record profits and sales, with increases that number in the double and sometimes triple digits. Olin, which owns Winchester, reported last week the company’s first quarter earnings climbed 190 percent over the same period last year.”
There you have it. This whole escapade by the administration was actually an effort to enrich the weapons industry. They were probably in cahoots with the NRA the whole time. Consider this: Since we know that the NRA is not a grassroots organization of citizens, but rather a lobbying group for arms manufacturers, then they have an interest in pumping up sales for guns and ammo. And the Obama administration has been struggling with weak job growth even as the economy has been heating up. So they would welcome anything that puts more people back to work. Therefore, news like like this would benefit both Obama and the NRA:
“Ammunition manufacturers are struggling to make enough and have hundreds of millions of dollars in backorders. They’ve added hundreds of employees and equipment and increased overtime, and, in some cases, are running factories around the clock.”
It’s a win-win. And accomplished courtesy of crackpots who are easily persuaded that their world is falling apart and they must stockpile munitions to protect them from their ravenous neighbors and the jackbooted thugs they used to revere as first-responders.
This sort of economic stimulus could be replicated with any number of other conspiracy theories. Reaching back to some golden oldies, why not reprise the Birther craze, but this time add a profit component that would convince people that they need to get their own documents in order. That would create a demand for paper to print new birth certificates and spur hiring at Kinkos and other quick copy emporiums. Or how about priming the climate change “hoax” in conjunction with oil companies to jump start the sales of gas guzzlers and petroleum products.
With the abundance of lunatic conspiracy theorists out there we could bring unemployment down to 4% in no time if we manage these nut cases efficiently.
[Update] Apparently unsatisfied with the response they got to this article, Fox republished the exact same piece five days later. They are really pushing to make something of this clunker.
6 thoughts on “How Screwball Conspiracy Theories Can Rescue America’s Economy”
The NRA uses irrational paranoia and wildly unrealistic scenarios to help sell products. Proof is in the speakers lineup at the Houston convention. So let’s get this straight, I should want to buy shit tons of weapons because the government sucks and they’re eventually going to get me killed. Right? I mean, what does their position boil down to? It’s not simply, ‘The 2nd amendment, and that’s all!’ They’re selling a story/prediction that’s more telling than just that. They only help blur the line between hatred of this country and loving this country. To be honest, it almost seems like a force of radicalization. Your message is encouraging irrational paranoia and distrust while at the same time cultivating an intense hatred of half the country, and then calling that proper and appropriate patriotism. Seems to me to be the very definition of a force of radicalization.
Colbert hit it on the head Monday night. Aside from how stupid the idea of any kind of civilian force being able to stand against the marines, the air force, the navy, the army, the national guard, and the coast guard is, the ignorance needed for 44% of a party to believe that they will need to start an armed insurrection in modern America is fucking terrifying. So….fucking stupid. It’s disheartening to know that 44% of the republican party is that stupid/gullible.
Yeah, it is silly to believe any meager civilian force could stand up to the might of the military.
However, 100 or 200 million of dissidents and militia would do it. 😉
I do believe a revolution needs to happen soon in this country to supplant America’s corrupt government, not for the reasons the fringe in the right call for of course.
It does not even need to happen with arms. Everyone could just refuse to participate. Change through non-violence has actually toppled regimes.
Don’t you find your first sentence disturbing – that we should be more afraid of the government and it’s military than it should be of its people? Doesn’t the specific fact that our military is soooo big now that the people could fear it’s use bother you at all? Set aside the 2nd ammendment here – shouldn’t the government always fear its people more than the people fear their government?
Let’s keep this simple – we have a bill of rights that includes this specific right – and has been ruled by the supreme court to apply to individuals. I’m not willing to negotiate away any part of ANY of those freedoms – maybe you have no issue with it, but many of us do. You can try to twist it any which way you want, but in the end, that right, along with several others, are ours and are not granted by any state or whatever. We own them no matter what the state says. Why don’t you tell me and everyone what freedoms you think should be modified “for safety” and which we can just have.
Fanatics find their heaven in never ending storming wind.
Auguries of destruction be their lullaby for rebirth.
Funny how this article could easily have been about abortion rights and attempts in the past to “regulate” abortion in some way. I’m sure you would be completely open to new federal “protections” related to abortion, just so long as it wasn’t made illegal – right. How does you trust in government translate in that situation? I’m sure you will come up with some leftist logic about how these constitutional rights are different in some way so as to justify your hypocrisy.
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