Mr. Big Oil seeks to rewrite history in a recent Human Events interview and gets called out on it by Rachel Maddow and the Washington Post Pulitzer Prize winning reporter Eugene Robinson:
There sure seems to be a lot of this going around, isn't there?Rachel Maddow and Eugene Robinson do some fact checking on Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour's recent bit of revisionist history, attempting to sanitize the racism and rewrite the Civil Rights movement in the South and how the Republicans have been taking advantage of the racial divide in America for decades.
Eugene Robinson did an especially good job of following up Rachel Maddow's critique of Barbour's interview with the right wing Human Events and explaining why Barbour is frankly just full of it when he tries to pretend he didn't experience segregation himself growing up and at the schools he attended.
As they noted it looks like he's trying to shine up his image with white voters who might not want to vote for someone they consider a bigot in the 2012 presidential elections.
Oops, looks like you got some splainin' to do Mr. Barbour. Maybe you could also explain some of your other fantastical statements at the recent Hoover, Alabama event (hosted by you and "good buddy" Alabama Governor Bob Riley) the Southern Governors Meeting while you are at it:
Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, who has charged that the moratorium has worsened the economic impact of the spill on Gulf states, welcomed the news that some rigs might be allowed to drill sooner than Nov. 30, but he urged the officials to press for a lifting of the moratorium as soon as possible."I know the determination is to be safe, safe," Barbour said. "But, we've drilled 30,000 wells, and this is the first time this has happened, and we probably know why. Because they didn't follow procedure."Barbour said that, when a pilot make mistakes and a plane crashes, the government does not cancel all flights."There are a lot of people at Southern Governors' which view this moratorium as something we need to get behind us," Barbour said.
One word Mr. Barbour in response to "...this is the first time this has happened..." IXTOC. As far as the plane analogy goes, generally when planes crash they don't destroy an entire ecosystem and have the potential to threaten the health of a massive body of water for decades.
Senior Presidential Adviser Valerie Jarrett sat the Mississippi puffer fish right back on his ample behind:
Jarrett listened as Barbour talked and assured him that the administration understands the drilling industry is important to Gulf states, but not more important than the safety and welfare of people and communities."It might have been pilot error, but we don't know yet. Perhaps it was something else," Jarrett said. "I think it was important to take a pause before we did any more harm."
|Haley and Riley's body language speaks volumes in response to Jarrett's call for pause on lifting the drilling moratorium|
That's a triple insult for him, a woman whose black and a Democrat. Priceless.Wonder how your friends with the Council of Concerned Citizens felt about that? That's a tolerant group isn't it?
The 'Uptown Klan' Reborn
Political influence has always been a point of pride for the Council of Conservative Citizens. Founded in 1985 by Gordon Baum, a worker's compensation attorney and longtime white-power activist, the CCC rose from the ashes of the Citizens Councils of America Brown vs. Board of Education.
(CCA), a coalition of white-supremacist groups formed throughout the South to defend school segregation after the Supreme Court outlawed it in
Unlike the "white trash" KKK, the CCA groups — commonly called "White Citizens Councils" — had a veneer of civic respectability, inspiring the nickname "Uptown Klan." While there were plenty of bare-knuckles racists attracted to the Councils' anti-integration slogan, "Never!" the members also included bankers, merchants, judges, newspaper editors and politicians — folks more given to wearing suits and ties than hoods and robes.Many of them, including Trent Lott's uncle, were elected to state and local offices. Some were even more powerful: governors, congressmen, U.S. Senators.
|CCC sponsored Blackhawk BBQ July 19, 2003 Carroll County, Mississippi|
(L to R: Mississippi GOP aide Chip Reynolds, State Senator Bucky Huggins, Ray Martin, Haley Barbour, John Thompson, and CCC Field Director Bill Lord)
During the 2003 election, the CCC was at the center of another controversy involving the endorsement of a major politician.
In July, Mississippi Republican gubernatorial nominee Haley Barbour, who served as Chairman of the Republican National Committee from 1993 to 1997, attended a CCC-sponsored barbecue.
Though the attendance of local Republican and Democratic office-seekers at political events partly sponsored by the CCC usually evokes little controversy, this year the group posted on its Web site a photo of Barbour at the barbecue
Barbour comes from a familial line of "Eastland Democrats" (ED) which was founded by James Eastland the staunch segregationist senator who was often called "The Voice of the South." Barbour admits his father and grandfather were both ED's according to a September 2, 2010 Salon.com article.
Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin video of a Mike Wallace 1957 James Eastland interview.
(warning-- may contain offensive language, y'think?)
Barbour's "roots" run deep and dark, he knows it and is actively trying to "whitewash" history to win the suburban voters he will need if he challenges Obama for the 2012 campaign--but he won't announce anything firm until after the November elections. That should give him enough time to come up with some additional fiction to try and portray himself as anything but the bigot he is.
This weak attempt by Barbour to refer to the 1960s South as if it were some kind of "integrated paradise" is deceptive and fraudulent. We have to wonder why he even went that route when the facts and history are so easy to fact-check against what he claims. It's either brazen or just downright stupid--maybe both. But worse than that it dismisses the real pain of racism and the Old South's crimes against an entire race of people in some weak attempt to distance fellow Southern Republican office seekers from a past they cannot rewrite.
**As a side note Barbour has weathered controversy amazingly well considering he has granted pardons to five murderers, three of them killed their former girlfriends.