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Remember the Black Helicopter crowd?

Some of our younger readers may find this hard to believe, but for much of the 1990s, President Clinton's Republican critics had some deeply strange conspiracy theories involving the United Nations.

I never could wrap my head around the nuttiness, but the gist of the argument was that Bill Clinton opposed American sovereignty, wanted to create a one-world government, and had a secret plan to hand over control to the United Nations, which apparently would invade American communities in black helicopters.

It was as ridiculous at the time as it appears in retrospect, but the right seriously pushed this nonsense for years. Apparently, now that there's another Democratic president, a similar nuttiness has resurfaced.

Ian Millhiser posted this clip of Tom Head, a county judge in Lubbock, Texas, who shared a unique perspective on his local Fox affiliate. For those who can't watch clips online:

"[President Obama] is going to try to hand over the sovereignty of the United States to the U.N. Okay, what's going to happen when that happens? I'm thinking worst case scenario here. Civil unrest, civil disobedience, civil war maybe. We're not just talking a few riots here and demonstrations. We're talking Lexington-Concord take up arms and get rid of the guy.

"Now what's going to happen if we do that, if the public decides to do that? He's going to send in U.N. troops -- with the little blue beanies. I don't want 'em in Lubbock County. Okay. So I'm going to stand in front of their armored personnel carrier and say, 'You're not coming in here.' And the sheriff, I've already asked him, I said, 'You gonna back me?' He said, 'Yeah, I'll back you.'"

There's no evidence this guy was kidding.

Did I mention he's a judge? I wonder whether those who appear in Tom Head's courtroom have confidence that he'll be fair, level-headed, and impartial in his judicial responsibilities.

I've generally found it hard to relate to the most extreme elements of anti-Obama hatred on the right, in large part because I've never fully understood what it is he's done that enrages them. At least in this case, he hasn't done anything -- except inspire fear that beanie-wearing U.N. troops will arrive in Lubbock County in armored personnel carriers.