On Friday’s edition of "Democracy Now" on (taxpayer-funded) radical Pacifica Radio, leftist writer Max Blumenthal promoted his new book "Republican Gomorrah," complete with the bizarre theory that the Grand Old Party is a movement based on sadomasochism, that James Dobson’s book "Dare to Discipline" was essential: "By creating a belt-wielding army of milllions, Dobson created the next generation of Republican shock troops, who are more radical than before."
Under this theory, Dobson found in Newt Gingrich and Tom DeLay men who were viciously abused boys who were ready for his message: "Dobson has been able to get close to and work with in the Republican Congress and in American culture who have been viciously abused as children. And he understood that by advocating violence against children, deliberate violence, he was creating this sensibility, which would produce a radical generation of political followers."
Blumenthal was interviewed by Pacifica co-host Juan Gonzalez, a columnist for the New York Daily News.
MAX BLUMENTHAL: Where did Dobson’s fortune come from? How did he erect this empire? It came mainly from one book, which I quote from extensively in my book, Republican Gomorrah—Dare to Discipline, which is essentially a manual for corporal punishment, for beating your child. In this book, he says pain is a marvelous purifier that a child should be—that pain goes a long way with a child, that pain should be dispensed sufficiently enough to make a child cry, but then the child will crumple to your breast, and you should welcome the child with warm, open arms. This is a recipe for sadomasochism. And sadomasochism, as I discovered in—
JUAN GONZALEZ: And he saw himself originally as the antithesis to Benjamin—Dr. Benjamin Spock.
BLUMENTHAL: Dr. Benjamin Spock, who tells you to basically pick your child up and cradle it. And, you know, I mean, I was—you know, for whatever it’s worth, I was raised along those guidelines. When your child’s crying, you pick up the child.
By creating a belt-wielding army of millions, Dobson created the next generation of Republican shock troops, who are more radical than before. And sadomasochism—I know this sounds a little strange—is what defines the essential character, you know, that—this is what—at least what I’ve discovered—of the Republican follower of today. They’re sadistic in that they want to lash out at deviants, at people who are weaker than them, homosexuals, immigrants, foreigners, socialists. At the same time, they’re masochistic. They are followers of a higher cause, of a strong leader, a magic helper like Dobson or George W. Bush or the macho Jesus archetype that they worship. And this is what defines this movement.
So many of the people that Dobson has been able to get close to and work with in the Republican Congress and in American culture have been viciously abused as children. And he understood that by advocating violence against children, deliberate violence, he was creating this sensibility, which would produce a radical generation of political followers.
Tom DeLay, for example, who Dobson converted from Hot Tub Tommy, a dallying, philandering, no-name legislator in Texas, you know, who lived in a house that was nicknamed "Macho Manor," Dobson converted him into this hardcore—you know, into "The Hammer," the man who whipped the Republican Congress into shape and turned it into one of the most radical congresses in history.
Ted Bundy, who I write about extensively in my book, Republican Gomorrah, who is the most notorious serial killer in American history, Dobson helped convert Ted Bundy on death row into a born-again Christian and then got the final interview before Ted Bundy was executed and sold tapes of this interview to raise a million dollars for his political empire and to generate national renown.
Is that true? Ted Bundy funded a political empire? Liberal U.S. News writer Dan Gilgoff wrote in his book "The Jesus Machine" that "Focus on the Family drew fire for selling videotapes of the interview for twenty-five dollars, prompting it to donate the proceeds to Christian antipornography groups."
Then Gonzalez pressed Blumenthal to explain how Dobson can rehabilitate misbehaving conservatives:
JUAN GONZALEZ: And Dobson has also become sort of like the counselor of choice for politicians who fall by the wayside, in certain ways, hasn’t he?
MAX BLUMENTHAL: Well, Newt Gingrich, for example, another person who was viciously abused as a child, Dobson led the coup against Gingrich that helped remove him as Speaker of House—as Speaker of the House when a lot of Republicans were concerned that his leadership was weakening when they were trying to impeach Clinton, because Gingrich was carrying on an affair with a woman twenty years younger than him who was on the congressional payroll at the same time. She’s his wife now.
When Gingrich decided to resurrect his political career, he decided—the Republican Party is controlled by the Christian right. He’s not a stupid man. "What do I do? I have to confess all of my sins by going on James Dobson’s radio show," catering to the culture of personal crisis that lurks behind the right’s politics of resentment. And so, that’s exactly what he did. He basically prostrated himself before Dobson, who has, you know, no political—supposedly has no political standing. And the next thing you know, he’s back on the national stage. He’s welcomed at the Christian right gatherings. You can see him on Fox News now. So, that shows, you know, how powerful Dobson is. But it’s not just Dobson; it’s a mentality that defines conservatism.