Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Under Their Skin

From the Poor Man:

a lot of techniques have been tried to make Republicans care that they, and their party, are supporting torture. Reporting facts has been tried, unsuccessfully. Releasing graphic photographs was also tried, to no avail. Asking nicely didnt work, begging didnt work, and guilt-tripping didnt work either.

But there was one thing that hadnt been tried yet, not really, not until Amnesty tried it the other day:

name calling.

Childish? Can be. But effective. Report, photograph, explain, analyze, moralize, all useless. But it the post-modern world of the modern right wing, where objective facts are socially constructs and the endlessly mutable text is all that really is, there is still one thing that has the power to inspire a reaction: words. Pick your word carefully, like, say, the word gulag, and watch the fun begin:

And from Arthur Silber

I see that Drudge has now launched what promises to be a full scale war against Howard Dean, making Dean into the devil incarnate. Im sure it will be all over the right blogosphere within hours, if it isnt already. Take the major warning: if you dare to tell the truth in unflinching, unapologetic terms, the rightwing propaganda machine, aided by our craven, servile media, will destroy you.

The offending language is the following:

Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean, unapologetic in the face of recent criticism that he has been too tough on his political opposition, said in San Francisco this week that Republicans are a pretty monolithic party. They all behave the same. They all look the same. Its pretty much a white Christian party.

The Republicans are not very friendly to different kinds of people, Dean said Monday, responding to a question about diversity during a forum with minority leaders and journalists. Were more welcoming to different folks, because thats the type of people we are. But thats not enough. We do have to deliver on things: jobs and housing and business opportunities.

I also noted this passage later in the story:

Dean, speaking in a roundtable discussion Monday, downplayed the controversy over his rhetoric.

This is one of those flaps that comes up once in awhile when I get tough, Dean said. We have to be rough on the Republicans. Republicans dont represent ordinary Americans and they dont have any understanding of what it is to go out and try and make ends meet.

Dean said that he had been addressing the matter of Americans standing in long lines to vote.
What I said was the Republican leadership didnt seem to care much about working people, he said. Thats essentially the gist of the quote.

I detect a pattern here. The conservative empire doesn't much care about facts or pictures or problems, but name calling just drives it batty. More of this, please.

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