Chris Christie is the latest Galtian “it” boy. He got there by being loud, rude and factually challenged–but with a Jersey swagger. And like the other rising stars of wingnutopia, he is racing to make his bones by selling the idea that working people–especially teachers–are greedy little bastards who need to give back most of the wages/benefits they are paid.
It is, of course, all nonsense. In reality, teachers are not overpaid. In fact they are under paid for the job they do. The $1.67 average hourly-rate-per-child that teachers are paid does not look very high when compared to what babysitters get ($6.04) and the average nanny ($12). But unlike babysitters and nannies, teachers have organized into Unions to fight for better schools and a living wage–and that is why they must be crushed.
And the best way to crush these teachers is to make shit up and sell it as a data set that can be sold as an alternative to reality. Fact are avoided by your average wingnutter the way a vampire avoids sunlight. What has made Christie a rising star is his ability to hide his fact-free data set through loud bluster, bombast and bullying.
This was on full display last month in a seven plus hour Twitter fight Christie had with a Facebook poster. The battle between Christie and “stopthefreezeNJ” has been preserved by blogger Jersey Jazzman–who is a good source for following the growing Chris Christie mess.
The Twitter fight was over a math challenged press release that Christie put out pimping the magic of Charter Schools. Turns out that the facts in the press release actually told a story of Charter School fail. But those details didn’t stop Christie from hyping Charter schools as the golden pathway to Galtian Utopia in New Jersey.
I don’t describe this flame war as “astonishing” only because of Christie’s lack of candor and twisting of the facts; we’ve seen this before plenty of times. Nor would I say his evasiveness in the face of a direct question all that surprising as well; non-answering has become the standard operating procedure of the modern conservative pol. [snip]
No, what really made my jaw drop is Christie’s utter disregard for the dignity of the high office he holds. This is a man who not only engages in ad hominem attacks – he clearly relishes them. His first line of attack is to go after the motives of those who oppose him. This not only spares him from having to answer with a more compelling argument; it gives him a bizarre personal satisfaction that shines through even in the 140-character limits of his tweets.
I’m glad that Jersey Jazzman has preserved this example of high wingnuttery. It is a public service. This exchanged happened about a month ago, but something like it happens everyday as Christie and his fellow
Republican Confederate Party Governors compete to see who can best lead the attack on workers, the poor and the middle class. Christie is still the Galtian “it” boy, but Scott Walker is fast on his heels. As the competition for head pats, kind words and warm smiles from their Galtian Overlords heats up, there will be a lot more of these kind of things to document–and fight.