Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Right and "name calling".

Why is it that right wingers, rather than engage in arguments, always accuse their opponents of name calling?


-- Resistance to the vast expansion of government power, intrusiveness and debt, as represented by the Tea Party movement? Why, racist resentment toward a black president.

-- Disgust and alarm with the federal government's unwillingness to curb illegal immigration, as crystallized in the Arizona law? Nativism.

-- Opposition to the most radical redefinition of marriage in human history, as expressed in Proposition 8 in California? Homophobia.

-- Opposition to a 15-story Islamic center and mosque near Ground Zero? Islamophobia.

Perhaps Krauthammer's time would be better spent by telling us why so few black faces appear at these Tea Party rallies? Do black citizens not care about taxation as much as white citizens? Aren't they equally concerned with intrusiveness and debt?

And the charge of Islamophobia is proven by the fact that so many Republicans have decided that they are at war with Islam rather than al Qaeda.

Krauthammer knows that the charges are largely correct, but he - and others at Fox - are deliberately playing on the economic fears people have as a result of the financial meltdown which occurred under the last Republican administration's watch. It's very easy in such a climate to scare people even more and direct their fear and frustrations towards other ethnic groups who are "having it easy".

To see this, one only has to turn on Fox News and listen to the stories they have been concentrating on recently to catch the mood of whites being disenfranchised and too much power slipping towards other communities:
[B]lack people preventing them from voting (New Black Panthers), stealing their elections (ACORN), and treating them unequally (Shirley Sherrod and Eric Holder's Justice Department); Muslims who want to conquer their country and celebrate over their Christian corpses (the Triumphalist Ground Zero Mosque); invading, marauding Latino armies coming to steal their property and rape their women while their Marxist allies in Government (led by a black Muslim President) disarm the white victims.
Virtually every story which gets Fox riled up seems to have race somewhere in it's theme. Every story seems to be about power moving towards blacks and away from whites. And this, we are asked to believe, has nothing to do with the fact that the US has just elected it's first ever black president. Nor is it remotely significant that most of these people who take to the streets in protest at Tea Party events and want "to take back" their country are over 45 and white.

Matt Tiabbi:
What we’re watching is a calculated campaign to demonize blacks, Mexicans, and gays and convince a plurality of economically-depressed white voters that they are under imminent legal and perhaps even physical attack by a conspiracy of leftist nonwhites. They’re telling these people that their government is illegitimate and criminal and unironically urging secession and revolution.

The Fox/Rush/Savage crowd in the last 18 months has taken the anti-Muslim fervor that launched a phony war in Iraq, carried George Bush to re-election, and pushed through the Patriot Act, and re-directed that anger at a domestic nonwhite enemy. In doing so they’ve achieved a perfect storm of political cross-purposes: they’ve almost completely succeeded in distracting the public from the real causes of their economic misfortune (i.e. Wall Street corruption), they’ve re-energized a Republican party that was devastated by eight years of Bush-era corruption and incompetence, and, as usual, they’ve made Rupert Murdoch a shitload of money.
But don't call them out on it. That's name calling.

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