Most of us are cognizant of what left-wing political dementia looks like, of how it presents in its subjects, a prime manifestation being the assignment to Obama of quasi-messianic status. Political dementia knows no partisan limitations, and the following, then, is an oddly disquieting presentation of right-wing political nutbaggery.
Blogospheric commentary on this spectacle has been, as one would expect, voluminous and predictable, with the left hauling out the tropes of populist conservative racism, and referencing the dreaded Southern Strategy of the GOP realignment. It cannot be denied that there is a kernel of truth to that analysis, given the occasional presence of stuffed-monkey toting nutbars at McCain rallies last autumn, but racism cannot suffice to explain the above manifestation of political dementia. Race, after all, is often itself a trope, a convenient adumbration of a broad array of political, cultural, and economic concerns, and in this instance, is not even the object of the ire of the crazies at the Delaware town hall meeting. Rather, what transpires in this video is altogether more interesting, more subtle, and, for that very reason, more profound: those who have latched onto a certain cause have essentially reified, distilling, as it were, into a physical symbol, a profound sense of political and cultural alienation - dis-identification - from a politician, the present configuration of the political establishment, and the direction of the country. An inability to identify with a president and his political programme became a judgment that he was deficient in his Americanism, according to a variety of partisan metrics; and that judgment, in turn, was crystallized, literalized, in the claim that the president was not even an American citizen.
At this point, one might as well apply the strictures against conspiracy theorizing previously and fruitfully discussed on this site to the bizarre movement now setting down roots on the right, as exemplified by the embedded video clip.