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Rightwing thought leader and occasional goatfucker Erick Erickson is a big fan of Supply Side Jesus, and following the slight unpleasantness on the US-Mexico border Sunday, took to the Twitters for some holiday thoughts about good governance. Not here in the Land of the Free, where we're in great shape, but down South, where things are a mess.

Oh sure, some pansy "Christians" get all hung up about Jesus's admonitions to welcome strangers and care for them -- at the risk of eternal damnation, if you believe that sort of thing. But not Erick Erickson! He far prefers Manly Realpolitik Jesus. The Jesus who would give Henry Kissinger a Nobel Peace Prize and overlook the occasional stray bomb in Cambodia or coup in Chile. Because honestly, those people really need a firm hand, don't they? Here's his prescription for solving the problems of Latin America: The US should cultivate the next crop of Augusto Pinochets in the region! But don't worry, he adds, he's only MOSTLY serious!


Here's the brief Twitter thread where Erickson laid out the basics Monday night, copy-pasted for your reading convenience. You see, it's all about efficient use of foreign aid!

The US spends $618 million in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, and Mexico. We could double that and it'd still only be 11% of the cost of the wall. And we could deploy the money to find and prop up the next generation of Pinochet types.

These countries are corrupt. We will not exterminate that corruption. But let's not pretend we should let corrupt autocrats thrive who work against our hemispheric interests and cause refugee caravans to approach our borders.

Support strong leaders who will force through free market reforms and promote economic stability, even if with a heavy hand.

That all seems remarkably easy, so it should go off without a hitch. Now, as it turns out, Erickson fleshes out that outline in a bit more detail in a bloggy post published today, adding that sure, Pinochet was a dictator and all, and he had some unfortunate excesses, so no, let's not replicate those. See? Erickson admits right up front that Pinochet was a very bad man, before praising all the wonderful things he accomplished, and that means there's nothing the least bit sociopathic going on in the brainmeat of Erick Erickson!

Augusto Pinochet was a corrupt tyrant in Chile. He also reformed Chile's economy, drove out the communists and socialists, and put Chile on the path to reform and stability. President Trump should seek out future Pinochets in Central and South America. The United States needs to get its hands dirty in the Western Hemisphere and be willing to support tyrants and autocrats who do not share our view of human rights.

You see? It's in our national interest, and if some blood is spilled in the quest for hemispheric dominance, that's only understandable, you see, because we have to do it:

We need to do it because China is doing it, Russia is doing it, Cuba is doing it, and they have no qualms about human rights. We need to do it because we value free markets and stable, pro-America regimes that will fight MS-13, failed socialist policies, and a socialist-communist resurgence in the Western Hemisphere that threatens our borders.

Dang, you'd think maybe he could have managed a nice reference to dominoes falling in there, too, or something about protecting Quemoy and Matsu from the Red Chinese.

Does Erickson even mention that Pinochet overthrew an elected government led by Salvador Allende? Heck no, why would he? Allende was a dirty commie, and Pinochet merely did what must be done. And today, unless we want to be up to our armpits in asylum seekers (because a few thousand people annually would certainly overwhelm our resources), we must learn from history: Brutality WORKS, and since there's really nothing to be done about corruption, we may as well have free-market corruption instead of the socialist kind.

Yes, we are dealing with corrupt regimes. We will probably not stamp out the corrupt. But, again, consider Pinochet. He was a corrupt tyrant who ruthlessly exterminated communists, cracked down on criminal and gang elements, and moved Chile into a stable, free market country.

Our foreign aid in Chile these days is only $2.3 million. We need to find future Augusto Pinochets in Central and South America and get behind them, support them, teach them about and help them promote free markets, provide them a few helicopters, and then let them ruthlessly deal with their nation's gangs, communists, and others who are causing the caravans of people fleeing those failing nations.

On Twitter -- but not in the article -- Erickson even made a funny edgy joke that puts him in league with those cheerful white supremacists he sometimes says he doesn't like at all:

You see, this is a very funny reference to Augusto Pinochet's death squads, which flew in helicopters all over Chile scooping up and executing suspected communists/socialists/liberals or just plain anyone who opposed Pinochet. If you want to get super technical, actually executing people by throwing them out of helicopters over the ocean was more of an Argentine dirty war deal, but hey, Latin American dictators played rough in all sorts of creative ways. Either way, it's a very funny joke for the American right!

BUT WAIT! HE IS JOKING -- HA HA ONLY SERIOUS!

After all the straight-faced praise of being more tolerant of dictators, Erickson turns around and admits he is just presenting a very serious joke, don't you see?

Now, everybody breathe.

No, I'm not actually fully on board with my own idea. Pinochet was actually a ruthless dictator who dropped people out of helicopters. And I actually think Pinochet has been treated more unkind by history than he should be, but only by a bit.

I didn't support Trump because I acknowledged that even if I got everything I wanted from him, he was still a terrible person and we shouldn't be propping up terrible people to give us what we want.

The same goes for abroad.

What a relief! You see, he actually just wants to introduce a bit of let's be supportive of brutal murderers thinking into the national dialogue so people will understand that we need to address the Root Causes of problems in Central America, lest someday America foolishly elect "a Democrat President again who might just fling open the doors even if you have a wall."

And then won't we be sorry for treating our neighbor as ourself, because our neighbor is poor, worthless, and a commie.

But instead of allying ourselves with outright tyrants in the name of economic freedom, says Erickson, we should instead be willing to "ally with some unsavory types," although he doesn't quite say what level of brutality he's OK with. Anything that stops short of the brutality a Chinese-supported autocracy might impose, apparently. Or maybe more brutal, as long as it's USA-oriented autocracy -- he really doesn't bother with the specifics, except for warning that American liberals are hypocrites who want open borders.

Erickson even generously concedes military coups wouldn't have to be our go-to strategy, although he doesn't seem particularly bothered by 'em either. Just as long as you don't end up renaming the national stadium for some commie folk singer who was executed there.

So don't worry about all of the jolly helicopter jokes and pretended support for dictators. The whole thing is merely Swiftian satire, don't you see? At least, if Jonathan Swift had been in favor of only eating Irish babies when absolutely necessary.

[Erick Erickson on Twitter / The Maven]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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