Chris Matthews fantasizes about murdering Rush Limbaugh.
James Carville and others smear Rush Limbaugh as a racist who should not be allowed to own the St. Louis Rams or be allowed to have a radio show.
Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson do the same.
You don’t have to agree with Rush Limbaugh to be drummed out of polite society, the society of “nice” people. All you have to do is say that even though you disagree with everything he says, nevertheless you believe that he is a decent human being. That’s all it takes.
There is nothing comparable on the right. Some people on the right think Obama is both a communist and a fascist at the same time. Other people on the right voted for him. Some conservatives love Rush Limbaugh. Others think he is bad for conservatism. That doesn’t stop them all from having brandy and cigars together, along with any liberal friends willing to be seen with them.
There is a threat hanging over the head of anyone who steps out of line towards the right, especially those with a public persona. If my blog ever got popular, which I take pains to keep from happening, I would be out of business. If you are a conservative in academia, or the public schools, or the arts, or the MSM, or in the illegal drug distribution industry, you have to be very careful about what you say. If you’re a liberal, you don’t have to be careful anywhere except maybe a Navy Seals reunion, and even then probably not.
Conservatives became conflated with Satan during the 60s counterculture revolution because the conservatives were the ones primarily responsible for all the hypocrisy about civil rights and the war in Vietnam and soul-stifling squareness in general, the world of Mad Men. We on the far left were every bit as arrogant, intolerant, and ignorant as the left is today, but we had the excuse of being powerless.
Now the worm has turned. Conservatives are the insurgents. It takes as much fearless defiance of convention to become a conservative these days as it did to become a drop-out, long-haired, hippie revolutionary in 1965.
There is a natural tendency for reasonable, non-dogmatic people to want to give the benefit of the doubt to both sides of any conflict. This is often, even most of the time, the right thing to do. But sometimes it isn’t. Sometimes one side is really bad, and the other side, while far from perfect, is not really so bad. Recognizing this state of affairs is always unpleasant, and will be avoided as long as possible by most of us. Not by me of course. I, like Al Gore, am always looking for an excuse to declare apocalypse, but most people, like the constituents of Neville Chamberlain, would rather be left alone to lead their lives.
So now we have Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, and Harry Reid in charge of everything. Are they a welcome breath of fresh air that will move the country slightly more liberal, or are they revolutionaries who will cause major damage that will require decades from which to recover, if recovery is even possible? Is Rush an extremist or is he Jeremiah (the prophet that is, not the Reverend)? I’m getting too old for this, but I am reluctantly drawn towards the latter assessment.
I wish it were not so. I wish I could express myself freely among my dear friends. I wish I could look forward to a reformed health care system, fewer carbon emissions, a more peaceful world where America is loved and all of our troops could come home. But I just can’t do it. I think these guys, semi-consciously, are doing their best to wreck the United States. They think this is what they are supposed to do.
I used to think the same thing myself. I would have been right at home, as Barack Obama, Van Jones, Yosi Sergant, and Kevin Jennings are now, with Reverend Wright and Bill Ayers. I would have welcomed a government takeover of medicine. I would have been in favor of no nukes, no oil, all solar and wind energy. I would have applauded withdrawing our troops from everywhere. I would have loved to hear the President apologize to the world for America’s grievous sins. He wouldn’t have been able to do it enough, as far as I was concerned.
Now, I’m sorry, but it looks to me like the USA is on a knife edge, and Jimmy Carter is about to lose his place in history as our most destructive President, and the world is in big trouble.