The Cal GOP thinks the ACLU is "communist."

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It's not a surprise that the California Republican Party is, ahem, a bit out of step with the mainstream of the state (you see a lot of Repubs holding statewide office right now? I don't.) And of course a San Francisco woman of color who isn't a complete right-wing loon is going to have trouble running for a state party office. But what made the Chron's story on Harmeet Dhillon so amazing was this:

"This is not a personal attack against Harmeet," Celeste Greig, president of the California Republican Assembly, said Tuesday. "The ACLU is a communist organization. Do we want somebody who is a member of a communist organization that has sued religious organizations numerous times because they don't like the cross and the Menorah" displayed on public property, Greig said, in explaining why she considers the ACLU - which has no official political affiliation - to be communist.

Gawd, we don't get to see that kind of red-baiting much any more. I used to get called a commie all the time; back in the 1980s, there really were some communists around, too. You'd see the RCP at rallies and events, and the CPUSA was still marginally functional, and there were Trots and Maoists and it was all very interesting, sorting them all out.

But outside of Cuba, there really aren't a lot of old-fashioned commies left. I miss them; nobody could give a four-hour stemwinder of a rhetorical speech like a commie leader. In the old days of the RCP, if you got accused of violating party discipline, you were sentenced to re-read "Combatting Liberalism," which was kind of like having a Catholic priest sentence you to saying ten Hail Marys for masturbating.

There aren't any communists at the ALCU; maybe once upon a time, but the left in America has moved way beyond that (oh, and the real commies never liked the ACLU -- they were never big on freedom of speech or the press.) Now we've got ten brands of anarchists, and a wide range of socialist types, and Greens, and progressives, and a whole lot of others with various ranges of economic critiques and analyses and social platforms, many of which I heartily endorse. But the commies have largely faded away. You'd think the GOP folks would know their enemies a little better.