Sarah Palin reminds me, for some reason, of the late Helen Chenoweth -- the congresswoman from Idaho's 1st District from 1992 to 2000. Well, I actually can think of a lot of reasons: Maybe it's the slightly stilted, doll-like delivery in a red business suit. Or the beauty-queen smile. Or the absurd right-wingnuttery she sells with a distinctly populist style. Watch and judge for yourself.
Chenoweth was perhaps best known for being an avid promoter of the militia movement in Congress (though towards the end of her tenure shee made headlines for her extramarital affairs. Indeed, the above video is one I made from a video sold by the Militia of Montana as part of its New World Order conspiracy promotion, titled "America In Peril." It features Chenoweth speaking before an obviously preselected audience, prior to her election to Congress in 1992, as a "Natural Resources Consultant."
This snippet (the video is nearly an hour long) is from the first five minutes or so, and features Chenoweth holding forth on the causes of global warming:
What is some of the programs that the environmentalists are engaging in? Well, some of the programs are programs of fear -- fear that is so broad and so expansive that you and I can do nothing about it.
What about the idea that the earth is warming? You know, we hear that every day -- that the earth is warming. But when we look back, where are temperatures taken? Well, they’re taken from airports. Weather balloons go up from airports, where heat rises from miles and miles of concrete.
And you see, the satellites that are recording data around the globe will tell us that today, the earth is not warming. But you see, what the pseudoscientists -- who have turned into political scientists and lobbying scientists -- are saying is that these issues are so huge that you and I can do nothing about it.
You can almost envision Sarah Palin sitting at the back of the room taking notes. Indeed, as you can see, the camera irregularly pans to the nodding audience members, and one of these happens to bear a striking resemblance to Palin (she's at about the 5:40 mark of the video; you can see a still here). Not that this actually is Palin, but let's just say the imagery is complete.
The rest of the talk is similarly nutty, bizarrely commingling her fundamentalist religious beliefs with a kind of John Bircher conspiracism, all devoted to attacking the environmental movement as the embodiment of Satanic Marxism or something.
When we begin to realize what the battle really is, then we begin to focus on what we need to do. Because ladies and gentlemen, the battle isn't a scientific battle. The battle isn’t even a battle for species. The battle isn’t even a battle for certain areas of timber or certain wilderness areas. Only until we're able to understand that this battle is a full-fledged spiritual battle will we begin to understand and have the weapons to deal with it.
You see, always in the past, armies have clashed, and we've had physical lines of battle. We've had armies and armaments battling out back and forth for the conquering of countries. We’ve been able to see over the course of history battle lines drawn and battle lines moved. We've seen countries conquered, we’ve seen countries victorious. But ladies and gentlemen, today as I stand here in front of you, we are in a battle today that is far more insidious and far more dangerous as far as conquering our people, their soul and this great nation than we have ever faced before -- because the battle lines are invisible.
But the battle lines are spiritual in nature. Who are these environmentalists? These environmentalists are a group of people whose members are driven by a certain sect of esoteric concepts, with all the trappings of religious dogma. They believe that nature is God, where we know that the Creator, God Himself, is the one who created nature. And there comes the conflict.
... A man by the name of Marx developed what he called the Communist Manifesto. And ladies and gentlemen, when we understand that that was where the very depths of the darkness of this spiritual war began. They declared war on private ownership in the Communist Manifesto.
... But you see, of greater significance, and in more frightening detail, that manifesto went on to lay out a series of sequential steps by which this would be accomplished. Among the many goals that the Communist Manifesto predicted was the abolition of property and land and the application of all rents of land to public purposes. Today we call it taxes. The abolition of all rights of inheritance. That's a constant battle that we're waging. ...
You see, what the environmental movement is doing is breaking down state and national boundaries. And so with that one enactment, and the listing of that one species, we encompass northern California, Oregon and Washington. The unfortunate thing is that it breaks down the sovereignty of states -- and you see acid is no respecter of the national boundaries between Canada and America. And that’s part of the way we begin to globalize and break down the sovereignty of this great nation.
And ladies and gentlemen, the bottom line is that if we are forced to place our world resources in the hands of a few who are controlling a world government, that isn't what God planned for us, and it certainly is not in our best interest. We will certainly lose our liberties, and it begins with the breakdown of our state boundaries. And that's what the spotted owl issue did.
Because you see, for any land management, they believe in their spirit that we are trying to manage and move in and desecrate their sacred ground. Nature is God to them.
You see, this country flourished very well because we understood the role of God in this country....
Sure sounds like Sarah Palin's political mentor to me.