Comments on Liberal Hategate
comments received over the past two days on the Tucson massacre, the liberal campaign to charge conservatives with mass murder for being conservatives, conservatives’ awakening to the truth of what liberals are about, Palin’s “blood libel” charge, Obama’s Tucson speech, and related matters. Since there have been so many entries relating to the overall topic which has consumed the country for the last six days, I am putting all the comments together in this one thread.
THE BIG TRUTH
Jeff W. writes:
Very good work today in writing about the Big Truth.
Nobody else does it like VFR.
The blogger Stag Heath has a powerful commentary on “The Big Truth.” Here is an excerpt, but the whole thing should be read:
I know a faithful Christian couple who have always been very much on what we now call the “Tea Party” side politically. A few years back one of their sons announced he was “gay” meaning he had begun engaging in homosexual acts. While they, especially the father, have struggled to make peace with this unwelcome fact, they now celebrate holidays with the son and his “lover” and do their best to be gracious about it.
I saw the parents recently just after the leftist’s “DADT” putsch. Ordinarily the father and I and others in the group would have discussed this development, candidly expressing our opinions. As it is however, the topic was effectively off limits out of deference to the man with the gay son. As the mother was preparing to leave she emerged with her coat and I heard her make a jest about “coming out of the closet,” which would have been hard to imagine from her ten years earlier.
As the so-called Sexual Revolution completes its “Long March Through the Institutions,” we can expect to see more such incidents. Gradually each of us has come to know someone who is openly living in a sodomitical relationship or who has a child or other close relation who is. It’s following much the same trajectory that co-habitation did in the 1970s. What once was regarded with shame and contempt becomes, if only because of its ubiquity, something for which one faces social ostracism for criticizing and which finally becomes standard practice.
Mark P. writes:
What is even worse is that homosexual marriage must eliminate even the concept of parent. Parents contribute biological material to a child. In any gay marriage, at most one entity contributes such genetic material, creating a household of a single parent and their live-in lover. Or worse, neither parent is a biological donor, meaning they are, at best, foster parents or caregivers.
D. W. Nelson writes:
Philip M. has reduced this issue to a simple, cogent statement. I believe, as William Blake wrote (interestingly, for our purposes, in The Marriage of Heaven and Hell): “Truth can never be told so as to be understood and NOT (my emphasis) be believed.” Whether there is sufficient will on the conservative side to act to counter the left’s destruction of the family is a difficult problem. Most conservatives, confident and secure in their own relationships, are inclined to be tolerant of and uninterested in aberrant, minority social relationships.
WAS PALIN RIGHT TO CHARGE LIBERALS WITH “BLOOD LIBEL”?
Andrew T. writes:
You so clearly see the fullest dimensions of Sarah Palin’s use of the phrase “blood libel.” When I first saw the media charge after her I quickly came to see the spark of imagination behind her use of the term. So striking in its correlation, bold! Poetically gripping, it is a shot across the bow utterance. And I salute you for your finely tuned grasping of this. I am not a big Sarah Palin supporter either. Your past comments on her have always rung true. However, one of the reasons I go back to you again and again is because, way beyond fearless, you always give credit to where credit is due.
One last point: Richard Weaver’s writings on the power of controlling the rhetoric in the political arena (Obama and the liberals are masters at this, topping Republicans it seems) should be deeply pondered by modern day conservatives in the arenas of leadership. Sarah Palin’s ability to seize on the colorful makes her a standout. If she can hone her rhetorical skill (and get that darn screeching out) she will be a player.
E. in Florida writes:
By the way, I’ve associated with huge numbers of Jews my whole life and had no idea till two days ago that the use of the term “blood libel” meant you were anti-Semitic. I did not know it had anything to do with the Middle Ages in Europe.
No one ever said that using the term “blood libel” is anti-Semitic; that charge was just your standard leftist opportunistic attack on Palin. It’s the blood libel itself which is anti-Semitic—the charge that Jews murder Christian boys and use their blood to make matzos.
That makes sense, but I had never heard of the Jewish angle till two days ago. I have never used the term. I could easily do a Mrs. Malaprop. Sort of like W. used to do, all too often.
Mark A. writes:
I think you’re making a great point about the awakening of conservatives. I’d like to bring up another important point, however: What the Obama rally represents is not the strength of leftism in America but rather its weakness. The left is losing its grip on mainstream white America, and somewhere, deep down in the bowels of the left, it knows it. In many ways, the triumph of the left is causing its own destruction. Let me illustrate two examples:
First, I routinely hear at work and on the street that the Arizona/Obama rally is a disgusting event that politicized a tragedy. One white woman at the water cooler at work remarked, “But why is a congresswoman so important? What about the teller who was shot at TD Bank on———-Avenue last week?” I’m not hearing these things just from disgruntled conservatives, but from numerous white Americans around the water cooler. Note that gun sales surged in Arizona following the shooting. Nobody in white America believes Obama’s nonsense about this event. (Side note: Whatever happened to popular support for gun control? It’s dead.)
Second, Section 8 housing and affirmative action have spread black America throughout the country exposing white America to black social pathologies and their individual psychopathic behavior. Exposure to black America was formerly limited to mostly blue collar whites who didn’t/couldn’t escape the cities. Now blacks are everywhere. This has politicized white Americans like I have never seen. I live in a very “blue” state and I recently sat in a DMV listening to two white union workers rant about Obama and his love affair with helping out the black man.
Perhaps I’m making too much out of anecdotal evidence, but I believe the left and the Democratic party are losing their grip on white America. The Democratic Party is scared to death of this happening, because despite the demographic trends of the past 50 years, the presidency still requires white America’s vote.
The left wanted gun control, Section 8 housing, and affirmative action. These used to be positions that white America, guilty over slavery, often considered appropriate in 1980. Few believe it anymore. The current economic downtown, which is worsening, will only harden white attitudes further. Obama is scared. If he isn’t, he should be.
I am very doubtful of conservative analysis of liberalism which speaks of liberals’ “desperateness.” This is standard fare at movement conservative sites, with their addiction to conservative triumphalism. In my view, the left would be doing what it’s doing, i.e., trying to intimidate and silence conservatives, whether it was “desperate” and in fear of losing, or whether it was confident of winning. I think the entire conservative movement should any reference to the notion that “Liberals are desperate” for the next ten years.
SOMETHING NEW, CONT
Nile McCoy writes:
I’ve come to the much the same conclusion over the events of the last six days. It seems like all the pieces are starting to fall into place and a clear picture is emerging. We’re not seeing the left of ten, twenty, fifty, or one-hundred years ago; this is something new that is happening in America. There’s no other word for it than fascism. It occurred to be a few hours after watching the memorial-as-campaign rally in Arizona. Starting Saturday afternoon, the left on the media and the web began the overt criminalization of conservatism, which despite Obama’s rhetoric, will continue to persist. At the rally, Obama disavowed himself from it, while his allies, political surrogates, and followers will continue down the same road.
It begs the question, if a different event had happened, or a new event occurs in the near future, where if there is even the slightest connection to the Tea party, conservatism, or Republicanism, its not impossible to imagine what could occur. I’m thinking back to Germany after the Great War, as Nazism slowly took hold. I could entertain my worst fears—given the events in Europe of the last one-hundred years, they’re quite dark. The left, liberalism, or whatever we want to call it, project onto conservatives the same vile hatred Nazis projected onto the Jewish people. I don’t see it stopping any time soon—not when the tribal drums are already starting to beat for the upcoming Presidential election. What stops me cold is that this nation hasn’t even reached the two-year point in Obama’s Presidency. I shudder to think what this country will have become when Obama’s tenure as President ends.
James P. writes:
Paul Hair writes,
THE NATIONAL CEREMONY IN ARIZONA
… This is an excellent illustration of World View Subversion. When your adversary has conditioned you to think his thoughts, and articulate his wishes, your battle is already half lost …
Indeed, conservatives think their adversaries’ thoughts and accept their premises. The right reflexively defends its own existence instead of going on the offensive and attacking the left—even when leftists are so clearly in the wrong.
In Soviet military theory there was a concept known as “reflexive control,” alluded to here. The Soviets believed that in principle, one could manipulate an opponent’s thought processes so that he would automatically make decisions favorable to one’s own side, without ever knowing he had been manipulated. Ultimately, the enemy would go down in defeat never knowing that his thought processes were tainted and never even believing his decisions actually benefited his opponents and not himself. Now, I do not contend that such a technique has been purposely practiced on America by the American left or by the Russians. The fact remains, however, that people on the right in large part automatically make decisions favorable to the left, without ever examining the premises behind these decisions or considering that leftists in the schools and the media molded the way they think. If this is not studied in military psychological warfare schools as an outstanding example of “reflexive control” theory in action, it certainly ought to be.
Kathlene M. writes:
The national ceremony was described more as a college campaign pep rally than a respectful memorial service. The venue was a university campus. There were free campaign-style t-shirts there with a “Together We Thrive, Tucson and America” statement printed on them. One commenter asked when the peanuts and beer would be served.
John Boehner has already been criticized by the left for deciding to go to a low-key memorial in Washington DC rather than this Obama campaign-style spectacle. I think Boehner did the right thing, probably realizing ahead of time that this wasn’t about the victims but about Obama starting off his 2012 campaign.
Today’s USA Today headlines has “Words that heal, not wound” on its cover, but I wonder: how long before the left is back to calling us “teabaggers?”
And let me make one more observation: Obama tries to be Martin Luther King Jr. but comes across like Rodney King. After the L.A. riots, when massive damage had been done, Rodney King had the audacity to come on TV and ask “Can we all just get along?” Same applies here. After four or five days of damage done by the left, Obama has the nerve to now ask for civility? Where was he from the beginning on the shameful “blood libel” by the left?
In the aftermath of the L.A. riots, any hope for reconciliation and understanding between blacks and whites vanished for years in this country. Similarly, five days of leftist hate and libel have done the same thing: poisoned any reconciliation and understanding between leftists and conservatives in this country for years. I do believe and hope that more people have been awakened by this ugly episode.
Ken Hechtman, VFR’s Canadian leftist reader (who somehow also votes in the U.S.), writes:
“TOGETHER WE THRIVE”
This is the guy who ran for president promising a new era of civility in U.S. politics, and as soon as he became president he revealed himself as a nasty leftist and the most partisan president anyone had ever seen. And now he turns around again and calls for an era of civility? You’d have to be a complete chump, a hopeless idiot, to take any of this seriously.
We see things differently. I heard bits and pieces of Obama’s speech on the radio this morning and I can’t help thinking of Sonny Corleone’s line in “The Godfather”: “No more advice on how to patch things up! Just help me win!”
Another reason to ignore the memorial service is that contemporary America is at its worst at these official national events designed to “bring us together,” with all the orchestrated treacly sentiment and mass manipulation of emotions that such events always involve. Our national “church” is false and grotesque. It is something to be avoided.
Say what you like about John Edwards’s personal life. President Edwards would know what to do right now, He wouldn’t position himself above left and right, above Republican and Democrat like some kind of national marriage-counselor-in-chief the way Obama is doing. He wouldn’t triangulate himself a position in between the killers and the killed the way President Hillary would do. He’d understand he’s first and foremost the leader of his party and his party is at war. He’d help us win.
Kilroy M. writes:
Apropos the picture, what I see is the irony of the message on the shirts contracted with the complete absence of people.
James P. writes:
Handing out tee-shirts of this kind at a memorial service is simply grotesque and inappropriate. As commenter Philip said in the previous entry, people simply have no idea how they should behave at an event like this—but handing out tee-shirts is worse than spontaneous rhythmic clapping, because the shirts officially sanction and encourage absurdly inappropriate behavior.
Charles T. writes:
“Together we Thrive” brings to mind another famous slogan: “Liberty, Equality, Fraternity.” We all know how that one turned out with Robespierre at the helm.
Buck O. writes:
I have not read Liberal Fascism or Robert Paxton’s Anatomy of Fascism. Mr. Paxton reviews Liberal Fascism and makes two points that you have made—that Fascism is not on the “left” and the general worthlessness of Jonah Goldberg. Mr. Paxton, who sounds like he knows a good bit about this subject, hammers Goldberg for his deemed scholastic shortcomings and intellectual dishonesty. He begins his review, somewhat ironically, by labeling Goldberg as a liberated claimant of victimhood—one of the more crowded ports of modern liberalism. He writes about Goldberg: “Feeling oneself a victim is wonderfully liberating. Anything goes.”
Mr. Paxton seems to be bothered more by ongoing misunderstandings and confused definitions—which should be mostly academic. Obviously, differing definitions makes discussion difficult. He dislikes the broad terms “liberal” and “liberal mind” and seems to be complaining that each use isn’t sufficiently defined by Mr. Goldberg—as if there is no useful broad meaning as in “liberal mind” in modern terms—as many of us use “modern liberal.” Maybe he takes it personal. He does say that “Fascism … adapted anti-socialism … using means that often owed nothing to conservatism.”
E. in Florida writes:
You are on target again. He can take the “high road” because he knows the MSM and the majority of his supporters will take the low.
DHS “MEMOGATE,” RESOLVED
Ken Hechtman writes:
The incredible answer is that, in the minds of the left, not only was Loughner “linked” with AR, but AR itself is “linked” with the conservative movement, the tea parties, and the Republican Party. As the left saw it, to demonstrate AR’s complicity in the mass murder was to demonstrate mainstream conservatives’ complicity in the mass murder. In reality, of course, AR, with its race conscious, white-nationalist philosophy and its belief in the reality and importance of race differences, has nothing to do with mainstream conservatism, and mainstream conservatism has nothing to do with AR; indeed, mainstream conservatives, not to mention the tea partiers, barely know of AR’s existence. But these obvious facts are beyond the comprehension of the left. They actually believed that the putative link between the mass murderer and his putative mastermind, AR editor Jared Taylor, demonstrated the guilt of the entire conservative movement. And the reason they believed such an absurd thing is that, in their view, mainstream conservatives and tea partiers are as “racist” as Jared Taylor himself.
You are asking a lot of the left here. Personally, I have some sense of which people, groups and ideas are considered marginal and which ones are mainstream within the right. So I can place Jared Taylor on the spectrum compared to David Duke, compared to William Pierce, compared to Glenn Miller, compared to Jim Gilchrist, compared to Pat Buchanan, compared to you and so on. But, like my old economics professor used to say, “information is available at positive cost.” I’ve put in hundreds of hours over ten years to figure out what I know about the various players on the right. You might say I have the soul of a stamp collector, I see the world in categories and classifications so this stuff comes very easily to me. And yet I still don’t know it all and I never will.
For one thing, I’m chasing a moving target. What was marginal a few years ago might be mainstream now and vice versa. You’ve seen this yourself with opposition to gays in the military. A marginal group can try to reinvent itself as mainstream and it’s not immediately obvious whether the change is sincere (the British National Party) or just better message discipline (the Militia of Montana). Think about the number of man-hours you and your readers have invested in trying to figure out whether the BNP’s transformation is sincere or not and then remember that was one single group out of thousands and you begin to understand the scale of the problem. Remember also that you were evaluating the BNP as a potential ally—would you have taken the same time and trouble evaluating a leftwing group? Or a Muslim one?
For another, you can’t trust the secondary sources. You really have no choice but to read people’s own words yourself. Pretty much everyone who does this kind of classification for public consumption (I’m thinking of Southern Poverty Law Center on the left and Discover the Network on the right) is selling something. They’re selling the idea that every one of their opponents is tarred with the same brush—exactly the problem you’re complaining about. The last effort I can think of to do this kind of work in an accurate and comprehensive way was the Dictionary of the American left and the Dictionary of the American right and those came out 30 years ago.
This is interesting, but is besides the point of my post. What you say about the difficulty of correctly scoping out the true beliefs of each group/individual does not change my point that the left sees American Renaissance as being part of the same evil as the tea parties, Palin, and the Republican party.
Ken Hechtman replies:
Your point is completely accurate. The vast majority of the left does not understand those distinctions and it would be helpful for everyone if they did. I don’t have a good solution for that but after ten years of thinking about the problem I’m certainly open to suggestions. Do you have any?
The old Dictionaries of the American right and left were great resources in their day and I wish someone could do something like that now. In a perfect world, you’d be able to look up Jared Taylor in an online listing somewhere and see that he’s rated three or four burning crosses out of ten where David Duke gets eight, Richard Butler gets ten and Dick Armey and Sarah Palin get zero. But putting out those Dictionaries with over 8000 listings each was the full-time job of a university professor and a whole crew of grad students. No professor could do that now, though. Today even the universities are too politicized to trust with that kind of work.
Paul M. writes:
15 years ago, Bill Clinton was pinned the blame for the Oklahoma City bombing on conservatives like Rush Limbaugh who, he said, “keep some people as paranoid as possible and the rest of us all torn up and upset with each other.” It worked. The “Militia Movement” collapsed and Clinton’s popularity soared. Because the public had no alternative to the liberal media for its source of news and—more important—alternative interpretations of the news.
Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 14, 2011 05:33 PM | Send
Times have changed.
Take a look at this article from the Washington Post, and then read the comments.
The Post is still trying to make the link between the tragedy in Tucson and “incivility” (i.e. any disagreement with Obama), but only five days later the average person understands what the liberal media is trying to do, and is prepared to argue back.
This is the power of the Internet. If anything is going to save our country, it is the Internet and the ability it brings to circumvent the propaganda machine the Ruling Class Elites have spent decades building.