An oft-repeated refrain is that Americans are more divided than ever before. As one example, David Neiwert says that Republican Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann should be censured for saying the media should investigate members of Congress who hold anti-American views. Bachmann’s statement is not worthy of a Congresswoman; however, there’s much more to consider about the causes of the political and social divide, as I discuss at length below.
First, if Neiwert is honest he’d admit that Chris Matthews was obviously trying to taunt Bachmann into saying that Barack Obama is anti-American.
Why? Because that’s what he does. But if journalists were dogs, they shouldn’t be rottweilers like Matthews or Keith Olbermann when we’d be better served by bloodhounds in search of the truth.
Second, the truth – as Backmann ought to know – is that the Congress is unlikely to be harboring any true anti-Americans. It does include a significant minority of representatives who hold leftist political, social, and economic views that result in policies that are bad for the country. These people will acquire potentially unchecked power when Mr. Obama is elected president in just over two weeks and the potential for Democrats to do great misdeeds over the next two years, at a minimum, is quite high. This creates a climate of fear that is at least partially justified.
Third, at a time in which great power is transitioning to the opposition it may seem to conservatives as though the congressional left are anti-American when in fact they are only wrong. Republicans need to get a sense of perspective on the situation that they themselves created through their own incompetence.
Dave Winer recently wrote that when Republicans “attack people who support their opponents, they’re attacking half of the country they say they love and supposedly put first.”
Dave doesn’t say who is is that is being attacked by Republicans, but if we’re talking about Bill Ayers, Jeremiah Wright, and Tony Rezco, these are people whose relationship with the next POTUS deserves to be understood. Frankly, it does show poor judgment for Obama to accept a land-deal kickback from Rezco and to accept guidance from and give money to Ayers, a man who has no business whatever molding young minds.
Dave’s piece came out before the “Joe the Plumber” phenomena that’s resulted in left-wing investigations into the personal life and finances of an ordinary man who did nothing more than ask Barack Obama the question that every American has the right to know the answer to, “What does your tax plan really mean to me?”
The attacks on Joe Wurzlebacher are much, much worse than the inquiries, however pointed, into Obama’s relationships with Ayers, et al, because:
- He’s a simple, ordinary citizen with no defenses
- Some of the truth the attackers don’t wish to be known was revealed by his question
The latter is telling. Barack Obama wants to “spread the wealth around”. That is the truth, albeit one that cannot be said aloud in American politics. Wurzlebacher got Obama to do that and the Democrats’ immediate response was to rape him media-style for accidentally causing Obama to speak the core of the leftist economic agenda aloud.
Barack Obama is hardly unique in his socialistic views – wealth redistribution is the whole of the base on which leftist politics are based. But spreading the wealth around can only occur by taking from those who have and giving to those who do not. That’s the left’s economic policy in a nutshell – the government as Robin Hood – and honest liberals admit as much.
Consider this simplified example: The government needs $1M in financing for Project X and there are 1000 citizens to provide it. How to proceed?
- Option 1 – let the people pay as much of the project as they wish and no more. If they refuse, the project is killed.
- Option 2 – tax each person $1000 so each pays a fair share
- Option 3 – tax each person X% of income such that $1M is raised
- Option 4 – tax those with the most income at a high rate so that they pay for virtually all of the project and the poorest pay nothing
Which of these options is the fairest? And remember, be honest with yourself.
Obviously liberals strongly prefer the last option despite its inherent lack of fairness. But does that mean that all liberals are anti-American? Of course not, a fact Matthews and Backmann both realize.
Many of leftists love America as much as I do. That’s sometimes hard to accept, especially when I consider how much their social and welfare policies have done to destroy this country. But it’s true and deserves to be acknowledged/
Similarly, Barack Obama’s desire to increase the amount of wealth redistribution the government carries out must be recognized if we’re going to tell each other the truth about how America will be governed over the next 4 years.
Unfortunately, the truth is something that’s in short supply in certain circles in this country. It’s truly regrettable that one such circle is the American media, which has essentially thrown itself in league with Barack Obama and the rest of the liberal left.
It’s notable that Mr. Obama himself is not above trying to spin the media situation, as when he recently attempted to flame Fox News, saying “I am convinced that if there were no Fox News, I might be two or three points higher in the polls”.
I’m sure that’s true. Without Fox News’ right-leaning coverage there would be no alternative to the liberal media view that dominates in this country. Given such a monopoly on information dissemination it’s certain that Obama would be doing even better than he is.
However, the truth is that if media were less ideological and more focused on unearthing and reporting facts than prognosticating Barack Obama would have lost in the Democratic primaries and we wouldn’t be talking about him right now as the left’s political champion. But he is that champion and much of the media is fighting hard for him to win the presidency.
Witness Katrina Vandenheuvel, Chris Matthews’ side-kick for the Bachmann segment, as she provides a prime insight into how liberal, unfair, and unrepresentative MSNBC is in its coverage. After Bachmann signs off she said:
Chris, I fear for my country. I think what we just heard is a congresswoman channeling Joe McCarthy, channeling a politics of fear and loathing and demonization and division and distraction. Not a single issue mentioned. This is a politics at a moment of extreme economic pain in this country that is incendiary, that is so debased, that I’m almost having a hard time breathing, because I think it’s very scary. Because this is a country I love, and this woman had no sense of the history of this nation, which is one of struggle, of trying to fulfill the great ideals of this nation, of movements that have brought about the civilizing advances of this country, and she doesn’t even know who Saul Alinsky is — a community organizer who channeled the views of the people from below.
I think Barack Obama is going to win, and he’s going to have a lot of work because there is an extremism unleashed in this nation which you just heard on this program, which could lead to violence, and hatred, and toxicity. And against the backdrop of the Great Depression we’re living through, it could lead — and I don’t use this word lightly — to a kind of American fascism, which is against the great values of this nation, and which people like that are fomenting.
Admittedly it was stupid of Ms. Bachmann to let herself get bullied into saying the media should expose anti-Americanism in Congress.
But does Vandenheuvel’s diatribe admonish Bachmann for her real mistake? No, it’s a pure ideological rant that lionizes the glorious social revolution of the left and tars anyone who dares to think otherwise as violent and hateful. Worse, it is virtually all falsehoods designed explicitly to make murderers out of Republicans.
Is this a moment of extreme economic pain in this country? No. Compared with the Ford and Carter years Americans are fair better off than they were then.
Are we living against the backdrop of the Great Depression? Are we in another? No and no. A much-needed correction of the housing and stock markets took place and we’ll recover. The truth is that neither our stocks nor our homes were worth what the liars on Wall Street were telling us. But 6% unemployment is not high, even compared with the Carter years and no one was screaming, “Depression!” then like they are now.
Are Michelle Bachmann and other Republicans deliberately stoking the fires of prejudice, racism, and class warfare? No. They simply are desperate to see some sort of check placed on the liberals who are about to control all 3 elected forces of government.
In fact, liberalism is the political ideology that creates class warfare as part of its very definition. Wealth redistribution, the bedrock on which leftist economics are built, inextricably embeds class discrimination into the movement and the two cannot be separated.
That’s why so much hinges on Barack Obama and the leadership that he may or may not provide America over the next 4 years. It’s up to him to control the forces of liberalism, the very forces that propelled him, against the odds and all reason, to where he is now. The great irony is that so little is truly known about this all-important man because his record of public service is virtually a blank slate.
Obama is a gifted orator and a political cipher, a man who may well not be ready or able to fulfill the duties of the office he’s about to take. But it’s the state of the Congress and its control by the Democrats that really frightens people, not Barack Obama.
Winer says about conservatives, “if you love America, it seems you must love the people who voted for Gore, Kerry and Obama too.”
That’s true. Christ commands us to love our neighbors, though they may spite us for it. This is true even if our fellow Americans are liberals. But loving them is not the same thing as allowing them to force leftist politics and social agendas on the country.
The best way for Americans to love each other, it seems to me, and to heal the divisions that we’ve inherited, created anew, and allowed others to exploit, is to always tell each other the truth.
The truth is the rock on which relationships and societies can be built, you understand. Ideologies fail and are swept away by history. But the truth remains unchanged, obscured at times by the raging storm of events but never altered. To the extent we acknowledge and celebrate the truth America is a land of hope, justice, and prosperity; to the extent we obfuscate, we are all diminished.
PoliGazette Comments Policy
PoliGazette encourages comments from all viewpoints, especially those that disagree.
Comments submitted must, however, adhere to the following standards. Comments that violate
these standards may be edited or deleted without notice at the sole discretion of the editors.
Commenters who repeatedly or egregiously violate these standards or who attempt to argue
publicly with editors regarding the comments policy may be banned from commenting further.
(1) Comments should address the substantive content of the post. Comments that repeatedly
or blatantly misrepresent the content of the post or of others’ comments are not welcome. Comments that
respond to something other than which the contributor or commenter may have said are irrelevant and should
not be posted.
(2) Comments should avoid vulgarity as well as racial, ethnic, religious, or sexual bigotry.
(3) Comments should not personally attack the character, personal integrity, or professional
reputation of any PoliGazette contributor or of other commenters.
(4) Comments should reflect the contributions of the commenters themselves and should not
include extensive cut-and-paste reproductions of others’ words except insofar as necessary to supplement
the commenter’s own arguments. Link spam, trackback spam, and propaganda spam will be instantly deleted.
(5) Public figures are considered open to all substantive criticism of their policies and statements.
Comments that present objectively false factual information about public figures (i.e. “Obama is a Muslim”) or
that attack public figures by attacking their families are not welcome. Comments that merely repeat
slogans for or against a candidate without engaging in substantive comment are not welcome.
Questions or challenges to these policies or their application should be directed to the editors
by email only.