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Denver Republican's UN Bike Conspiracy Offers a Perfect Window Into the Wing-Nut Mind

In case you missed this yesterday ...
Dan Maes, the Tea Party-supported candidate in the Colorado governor’s race, has argued that a popular Denver bike-share program is a “very well-disguised” part of a plan by Denver mayor (and Democratic gubernatorial candidate) John Hickenlooper for “converting Denver into a United Nations community.” Last week, Maes told the press that Denver’s membership in the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) “could threaten our personal freedoms” because environmental initiatives like the cycling program are “very specific strategies that are dictated to us by this United Nations program that mayors have signed on to.”
He's really pushed this -- on another occassion he said, "This is bigger than it looks like on the surface, and it could threaten our personal freedoms.” But the outlandishness of it all threatened to become a chickens-for-checkups thing, so Maes went on MSNBC to 'splain ...
We’re trying to differentiate myself from the mayor. If I win the primary and when I win the primary tomorrow, people are going to say what the difference is. We’re both business people. When a mayor signs onto a program sponsored by the United Nations, that should bring concern to people as to how the program may or may not be compatible with our state constitution.
The thing that makes this so great is that it's kind of a wing-nut Mad-Libs -- like he's just stringing together a bunch of culture-war words that sound ominously liberal. You've got bicycles of course, which are vaguely hippie-ish and eco-friendly and which real men from the heartlan run over with their Hummers, the UN -- that America (and Israel!) hating body dominated by foreigners -- and it's all a big concern because the Constitution! Just toss those words with a nice vinaigrette, and you have an Alex Jones-quality conspiracy-salad. And, as is always the case, even the 'kernel of truth' in Maes' theory turns out to be bullshit. The ICLEI isn't a UN body. It's a membership organization of local municipalities that was established by officials from 35 communities in the U.S. and Canada. In 1990 it held its first Congress, which was hosted by the UN. That's the connection. And, again, we have an example of a wing-nut who may be oblivious, but is at least somewhat honest about the fact that he's just selling this wild tale to fire up the low-information Fox News suckers. The bike-share program isn't really an issue, he says, it's just that both he and his opponent are "businessmen," so he has to blather on about something vaguely tea-partyish to differentiate himself. Which he has. Hickenlooper belongs to the Sensible Party, and Maes is clearly running on the Silly Party ticket. It's going to be a long election season.
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