The Paranoid Style of Comic-Book Villainy

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The apostle of white populism melts down:


I think it can now be said, without equivocation -- without equivocation -- that this man hates this country," the conservative radio host said. "He is trying, Barack Obama is trying, to dismantle, brick-by-brick, the American dream. There's no other way to put this. There's no other way to explain this. 

But recovers just in time to tinker around with the tin-foil:

Have you heard this new movie, the Batman movie, what is it, The Dark Knight Lights Up or whatever the name is. That's right, Dark Knight Rises. Lights Up, same thing. Do you know the name of the villain in this movie? Bane. The villain in The Dark Knight Rises is named Bane, B-a-n-e. What is the name of the venture capital firm that Romney ran and around which there's now this make-believe controversy? Bain. The movie has been in the works for a long time. The release date's been known, summer 2012 for a long time. Do you think that it is accidental that the name of the really vicious fire breathing four eyed whatever it is villain in this movie is named Bane?

There's so much here happening here at once: delusion, get off my lawn, and narcissism, all wrapped in one. The inherent contradiction in not being aware of a movie which hordes of Americans will flock to see, and yet claiming to have some deep understanding of the country, is stunning.
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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

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