The Arizona Bloodbath: Let's Call It What It Is
Last night, Nine News Now (CBS) ran a piece blaming extremism of "both sides" for the curent political climate of demonization in place of debate. And of course, no specific -- or even general -- examples of extremism from either side were even mentioned. Mentioning examples of extremism of the right would only have angered the right-wingers; and mentioning examples of extremism from the left was even harder -- because there aren't any.
The news item did pay lip service to the obvious fact that the "news" media were partially at fault here -- but that was said with an uncaring smirk (and without specifics) before hastily blaming the Internet and moving on to something else.
But let's be honest here: the Republicans, their ideological bum-boys the Libertarians, and their radical-right supporting interest-groups have been responsible, not only for creating and maintaining a climate of demonization-as-debate; but for blatantly and consistently spreading disinformation and pandering to the most dangerous and irrational elements of the human psyche. This is not about politics; this is about normalizing insanity and getting insane actions as a result.
And no, this recent shooting is not just an isolated act of one loony; it's part of a pattern of escalating harassment and threats against government and elected officials, including historic numbers of death threats against our current (nonwhite liberal) President.
Since the media can't be trusted to describe the source of the problem, I might as well step in and do their job for them. You can thank me later...
Who routinely shouted down legitimate opposition by lebelling their opponents "pro-terrorist?" Republicans.
Who explicitly announced their intention to use an attack against all of America for short-term partisan gain? Republicans.
Who misled our country into a totally unnecessary war by flat-out lying about weapons of mass-destruction and inciting hysteria about an imagined threat of annihilation? Republicans.
Who routinely accuses Muslims of supporting terrorism and Sharia Law when all they want to is build or expand one stinking mosque? Repulicans.
Who made a national policy, and even an ideology, out of cuttting taxes for the richest Americans, making it impossible for the people to fund government services for which they had validly voted, choking our elected governments of the funds they need to do their job, and then pretending there was no money to do even basic things like funding cops and public schools? Republicans and Libertarians.
Who is clearly using such tax policies to divide Americans against each other by forcing us to fight over a smaller public revenue pool, when we used to be able to fund a wide variety of useful programs without division? Republicans and Libertarians.
Who explicitly supports an unending series of tax cuts in order to drown our elected government in the bathtub? Republicans and Libertarians.
Who routinely screams about "socialism" every time someone mentions the mere idea of sacrificing for the long-term common good? Republicans and Libertarians.
Who equates liberalism with fascism and accuses Barack Obama of supporting "slavery" merely because he talked about a national service program? Republicans.
Who promised help to an American city -- I repeat, an AMERICAN city -- when it was facing a hurricane, then knowingly broke that promise, then brought in disaster-recovery personnel for nothing but photo-ops, then sent them home without putting them to work in their actual profesion, then mocked the AMERICANS in that city for counting on their government to help them? Republicans and Libertarians.
Who routinely labels liberals "baby killers" merely because they want women to have control over whether they get pregnant or not? Republicans.
Who uses the word "feminazi?" Republicans.
Who called themselves "friends of Terri Schiavo" and spread relentless hateful lies about her husband -- and everyone else who disagreed with their idiotic "pro-life" position -- and then had another orchestrated meltdown when Terri's autopsy didn't support their lies? Republicans.
Who explicitly called for "retribution" against state and Federal judges who didn't rule their way? Republicans.
Who warned President Clinton that he could not travel safely to North Carolina? A Republican.
Who is now mindlessly pandering to the paranoid, tribalist, already-disproven, and overtly bigoted belief that Barack Obama is an alien sleeper-agent and not legally eligible to serve as President? Republicans.
Who has been spreading baseless allegations that Barack Obama is either an atheist, a Communist, an America-hater, an angry Black Panther, and/or a secret Muslim? Republicans.
Who completely ignored and lied about the actual content of Barack Obama's famous speech about race-relations and reconciliation in America? Republicans.
Who was last heard trashing Michelle Obama with the term "baby mama?" Republicans.
Who has been alleging for years that atheists are somehow (they never really say how) less capable of morality than believers? Republicans.
Who has been orchestrating the disruption of peaceful, legal public meetings between Congresspersons and their constituents? Republicans.
Who has been stoking mindless hysteria about "government takeovers of healthcare" and "death panels" that will kill our grandmothers? Republicans.
Who routinely uses the most ridiculous logic, and the most inflamatory hatemongering, to blame gay people for nearly every evil known to Mankind, including pedophilia and the Holocaust? Republicans.
Who explicitly opposes the teaching of honest science in public schools, and blames the theory of evolution for almost as many evils as they blame gays for (including, yes, pedophilia and the Holocaust)? Republicans.
Who routinely accuses everyone who criticizes Israeli policies of "antisemitism," without regard to the substance of the criticism? Republicans.
Who has explicitly said that we have to support Israel because their actions will bring about the End Times as described in one of the crazier parts of the Bible? Republicans.
Who is now engaged in a concerted campaign to rewrite our country's history, whitewash all references to events that don't make America look like a nation of saints, and misrepresent our Founders as a uniform group of fundamentalist Christians who wanted to create an exclusively Christian nation? Republicans.
Who explicitly and shamelessly supports a religious charlatan who has made a lucrative career out of calling innocent people "witches" and hounding them out of their villages? Republicans.
Who routinely accuses environmentalists of hating America and wanting to destroy civilization as we know it and drag us all back to the Dark Ages? Republicans and Libertarians.
Who supports the right to own guns on the grounds that personal ownership of guns will allow people to overthrow their government? Republicans and Libertarians. We just saw how that fantasy of "limited government" works in the real world -- and the result is NOT a freer or safer country.
Who first coined the phrase "Second Amendment remedy" -- AFTER a black liberal is elected President and death threats against the President spike to their highest levels ever? I'm pretty sure it wasn't a liberal.
That bit in Sarah Palin's website about "targeting" Giffords is only the tip of a huge, malodorous, disease-ridden iceberg. I'm sure there are plenty of questions I have missed, merely because I want to get this post out in a timely manner, and there's simply too much Republican demagoguery, over too many decades, to sum up in one day. If any of you have anything to add to my Q&A session, I'll be grateful to you for chiming in. It takes a village to stop a pogrom.
UPDATE: New Question added inside the Cut.