I was scrubbing my toilet around 11:00 p.m.— don't ask, I do that sometimes, clean the house at night— and I started thinking about the Southern Poverty Law Center's Anti-Muslim Inner-Circle: a list of far-right, ultra conservative activists who have ratcheted up the anti-Muslim rhetoric in the past few years. Two on SPLC's list, Pamala Geller and Robert Spencer, were mentioned in Anders Behring Breivik's 1,500 page rant, which was posted online shortly before his killing spree in Oslo.
As I cleaned, I wondered if any of the ten listed ever scrubbed out their own toilet? Did David Horowitz—who was once a Marxist, and now hater-of-everything Muslim and everything liberal, who runs the David Horowitz Freedom Center and, this is only a wild guess, was instrumental in coining the term, "Islamofascism," and Pamela Geller, who has captured the imagination of nationalistic, anti-Muslim followers worldwide in her black-hearted Atlas Shrugs blog— ever bend over to scrub? Probably not, for if they did, they might not be spewing such bile into the blogosphere, where they wield an inordinate influence amongst their ilk. If they cleaned their own shit once in awhile, I reasoned, they might be a little less provocative with the hate speech, a little more humble with the accusations.
But you have to admit, Muslims make the perfect "other," like Jews of yore. Along these lines, I was surprised to learn that anti-Semitism among the far-right has fallen out of favor, replaced by hatred for Muslims. Geller, who the NYTimes and other media outlets have linked to Breivik's actions, denied any responsibility for the killings, calling any criticism of her, "patently ridiculous." But words have power as we know, and intolerant, furious, hate spewing words seem to have the most power of all.
What is amazing to me is how alike the anit-immigration, anti-tax, small government Progress Party, of which Breivik was a member, is to the Tea Party. Although no longer a force, the Progress Party served a small contingent of Norway's far-right, and, well, this profile fits the Tea Party, doesn't it? Breivik soon dropped out of the party and went on to develop his own ideas, the outcome of which we know. But we see it now in the GOP, in bed with the devil, standing on their principles— uncompromising, unwilling to listen or to reason; they announce their views as the only true religion. If you squint, the Tea Party could almost be the Progress Party, pre-Oslo, before Breivik lost his mind.