Bear with me.
I've discovered something of a "love-hate" relationship with the PaulBots. Why? Let me explain.
I'm one of those types who sometimes turns on the AM side of the radio dial to see what the crazies are saying now. I rationalize this as "knowing what the opposition is saying", but it may well just be masochism.
Anyway, it's a bit amusing lately to watch the GOP circular firing squad playing out on the right-wing airwaves--some hosts are in Romney's tank, others squarely in Santorum's. It sort of shows which ones are paid by the establishment (because, seriously, who could be genuinely enthusiastic about the cardboard standee that is Mitt Romney?), and which ones aren't.
But in the last three or four months, the most amusing part of these shows have been the PaulBots.
Why? Follow below the flip.
The conservative hosts--almost to a man--can't detect PaulBot callers. They're like viruses--appearing to be part of the conservative organism, then striking from within without warning. PaulBots are able to sound like conservatives for long enough to fool the right-wing talk-radio shows' screeners to put them on the air, and that's when the real fun begins.
PaulBots are like any other new converts to an ideology--they seek to evangelize their beliefs and spread the Gospel (according to Paul). Moreover, PaulBots seem to experience an almost rapture-like ecstasy in uttering their candidate's name on the air. As they approach what I've started to think of as "the Reveal", they start to gush. Their breathing gets heavier and their diction speeds up. They almost hyperventilate. This is usually the first warning the conservative right-wing talk-radio host has that something is amiss, but at that point, it's too late for him.
That's when the PaulBot springs the trap: "You know who the real conservative in the race is, right?" It's almost always phrased that way. That's the moment of horror for the right-wing radio host, because this is only going to go in one direction. As his finger races to the Mute button, the caller bursts forth with Ron Paul's name. The trap is sprung.
As far as most of these hosts are concerned, this is apostasy. It's like conservatism... but it's not conservatism. I've begun to call it "The Pauline Heresy". It's hard for the hosts to argue against it, because it uses enough conservative ideology and conservative memes to "pass". This usually sets the right-wing radio host--whether it's Michael Medved or Mark Levin--into an apoplectic, sputtering, incoherent fit of rage.
The part I find most amusing is that I detect the PaulBots a mile away. There's something very cult-like about they way they present things. I can almost "hear" that their eyes are glazed over, like a True Believer's.
The left-wing radio hosts I've heard PaulBots call into haven't had the same reaction. Some--like Mark Germaine (formerly "Mr. KFI / Mr. KABC")--spot them the way I do and preempt their orgasmic reveal. Others--like Thom Hartmann--swat them down the way they'd swat down any conservative caller (after all, what's the real difference?).
And that's the part that gives me so much schadenfreude. This is a problem for the right--and only for the right.
So if you see a guy driving around in a green Prius, giggling to himself, odds are that's me, snickering because Sean Hannity got ambushed by a PaulBot on the air.