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Sunday, May 14, 2023

MAGA meets South County

South County has always had a sizeable conservative population, but it’s getting ridiculous

By Will Collette

Now's your chance, guys
According to Russian news media, Russia hopes to lure up to 7 million conservatives from the US, Canada and Europe to migrate to Russia. They already have washed-up action movie star Steven Segal so now they need 6,999,999 more. They're calling this "ideological immigration" and if you are white and very conservative, you may qualify.

BYO toilet. 
On May 11, state-owned media outlet RIA Novosti reported that a new village is being constructed for them outside of Moscow. This offer does not include the promise of plumbing or electricity. 

Given how often these items are looted by Russian soldiers in occupied areas of Ukraine, you may have to bring your own.

Jim Mageau, are you paying attention?

I am singling Mageau out because he is the most vocal Trump supporter and recently has used the Westerly Sun and Town Council meetings to propagate lunatic right-wing issues.

Lately, Mageau has had his letter-to-the-editor guns blazing, taking on all comers in his defense of private ownership of weapons of war, such as the AR-15 assault rifle.
Mainly, Mageau defends guns by conflating gun deaths with abortion, automotive fatalities, the price of bananas and whatever other distraction he can concoct. Hey Jim – the only purpose of weapons of war is to kill people. 

Mageau also weighed in on the Russian invasion of Ukraine with another letter where he blames the war on Joe Biden. Of course he does. 

With his usual keen reasoning and grasp of history, Mageau says that because Obama did not go to war with Russia over their 2014 seizure of Crimea, Joe Biden is to blame for the current war. 

He contrasts Presidents Biden and Obama’s conduct of foreign affairs with that of his idol, sex offender Donald Trump. According to Mageau, Trump showed his mastery over North Korea, Iran, Russia and China in Rooseveltesque “carry a big” stick style. 

During the last conversation I ever had with Jim Mageau, I listened to a spittle-filled diatribe against President Obama and Hillary Clinton, where he predicted that Benghazi would be the political death of both of them. Mageau is such a prophet!

On February 13, Mageau stood before the Charlestown Town Council to testify on behalf of an obscure MAGA priority, the convening of a new national “Convention of the States” to amend the Constitution. He spoke of a bill, introduced by state Representative Arthur “Doc” Corvese, one of the most conservative DINOs in the State House, with no co-sponsors and no chance of passage.

The reason why there is a MAGA riptide pushing a new Constitutional Convention is to block any future federal mandates like the anti-COVID measures put in place during the pandemic and to rein in some imagined abuses by the IRS. 

The effort is being funded by the notorious Koch Industries.

Mageau asked for Charlestown resolution in support of a new convention. 

Pack your bags, Jim, cuz you’re not going to get what you want. Better luck in Russia.

And when you leave, take Doc Corvese with you along with the other super-DINO, Westerly’s own state Rep. Sam Azzinaro.

Azzinaro once declared that he takes his direction on how to vote not from voters but from the Catholic Bishop of Providence. Maybe that’s where Sam’s recent bill to criminalize distribution by school libraries – and if Sam has his way ALL libraries – from distributing material Sam deems offensive to anyone under age 18.

In a bizarre interview Sam gave to Alex Nunes at the Public’s Radio, Azzinaro said:

“The bill is saying that anyone under the age of 18 should not be allowed to go into a library and take a book out that is showing all kinds of pornographic illustrations of sex acts: oral and intercourse–men with men, woman with women, and so on and so forth…I don't think a child of 10, 11, 12 years old should be able to go and get a book, and bring it up, and say, ‘Look at this book–wow.’”

Azzinaro broadly defines the types of materials he considers criminal to include any depiction of nudity (goodbye, Michelangelo’s David) full or partial (goodbye crucifixes). It also criminalizes any depiction of sexual intercourse. Goodbye Bible. 

Oh, and it’s not surprising that among the small cadre of General Assembly right-wingers co-sponsoring Sam’s bill is none other than Doc Corvese.

Look, I understand how MAGAnuts have made ignorance and illiteracy into public virtues. Trump himself, in a rare moment of honesty, declared in 2016 that “I love the poorly educated.”

However, most people believe that education is the magic bullet for individual success in life and the good of our community.

That’s why Charlestown and its Chariho partners, Richmond and Hopkinton, need to prepare themselves for the approaching storm if the MAGA Council majority in Richmond succeeds in installing MAGAnut Clay Johnson to file a vacancy on the Chariho School Committee.

The Richmond town council appointed Johnson to fill a Chariho vacancy instead of following the Town Charter that requires vacancies to be filled by the next-highest vote getter. Johnson didn’t even run for election, but Jessica Purcell did.

Purcell missed getting elected by only 27 votes, but is, under the Town Charter, the person who should be filling the vacancy.

This controversy is detailed HERE, another insightful piece by Alex Nunes, and has had its hearing before the RI Supreme Court. Clay Johnson showed his intellectual prowess and rightwing hardness in a remarkable 2018 NBC 10 News Conference with Bill Rappleye, a preview of coming attractions should the Court allow him to stay.

The Richmond MAGA Council was represented by none other than Charlestown’s Narragansett-hating lawyer, Joe Larisa.

If Purcell loses and Johnson keeps the Chariho seat, I predict an all-out war over books, race, teacher salaries and tenure that will rip through the Chariho towns pitting neighbors against neighbors. 

Mageau hasn’t weighed in on the Chariho controversy yet. Maybe he’s too busy defending assault rifles and packing his bags for Moscow.