No one who has followed Pat Buchanan over the years will be surprised by him using a questionable term like “scrub stock” to describe non-white foreigners. Well, no one outside of DC, at least. The real issue is why Buchanan’s jingoistic nativism has not disqualified him as a member of the elite punditry who gets to spend hours each week playing the cranky old uncle on MSNBC.
Late Update: TPM Reader TL takes exception:
Why does David Kurtz let Pat Buchanan off so easily? Labeling him as merely a “nativist” is tantamount to a slap on the wrist, and in light of the over-the-top, inflammatory innuendo in his article could even be perceived as a strange nod of agreement. …
Pat Buchanan … was born in 1938 and understands full well the meaning of “blood-and-soil” and “scrub stock.” His article is an endorsement — even embracing — of full blown Naziism, and the worst of Naziism (if there can be such a thing).
It’s not the “dip” into an “obscure racist phrase” (in TPM’s words) that is so disturbing — it’s the use of three phrases and the ideology behind them, tied together in one article, that rise to a level I’ve never witnessed in recent mainstream political discourse: “blood-and-soil,” “scrub stock,” and “(m)ost Americans remain visceral patriots. It’s in their DNA.”
This rises to a level that would likely, ironically, put Buchanan in prison in today’s more enlightened Germany, but might have earned him an officer’s commission in the SS in 1938, the year he was born.
David Kurtz is Managing Editor and Washington Bureau Chief of Talking Points Memo where he oversees the news operations of TPM and its sister sites.