The genius of FNB politics is that it can make those who diagnose it sound like barking moonbats. ~Rick Perlstein

Why would anyone say that comparing a Nixon commercial to Birth of a Nation makes you sound like a barking moonbat?  Isn’t the connection obvious to everyone?  I think we all remember how powerful the Klan was in Yorba Linda, don’t we?  Yeah.

Perlstein must have some kind of second sight–and way too much time–to come up with this crazy stuff.  This is the same guy who conjured up an elaborate vision of Romney sending coded signals to neo-Nazis and Anglo-Saxonists through his choice of venue at the Henry Ford Museum.  It apparently never occurred to Perlstein that Romney could simply be politically tone-deaf and a little bit dense when it comes to symbolism, but then he didn’t have the advantage of seeing Romney destroy his position in Florida with an ill-chosen invocation of Castro’s favourite slogan.  Perhaps what Romney was really trying to do in reclaiming that slogan for a “free Cuba” was to show his secret support for the continuation of the communist regime, or perhaps he was indirectly admitting to his own lifelong, hidden devotion to communism.   

It is actually possible to find Limbaugh tedious, vacuous and offensive without constructing baroque theories of coded boundary maintenance and cunning psychological manipulation of unconscious prejudices.  There’s nothing clever about what Limbaugh and Coulter do, and no need to dig deep to find out why it has an appeal.  For people who really loathe the politics, the personality and the general worldview of a John Edwards, Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama, any mockery will do.   

Perlstein says later:

The bonus: His [Nixon’s] charge also revealed liberals as shrieking and hypersensitive.

You see, no one would ever have gotten that idea on their own.