Let’s Talk About Rush

October 25, 2008

Extremists have been boldly and prominently preaching hate in America  since Reagan abolished the Fairness Doctrine in 1986. Rush Limbaugh is not the worst of this group but probably the most prominent.  His prominence is due in large part to the fact that he has had the ear of legitimate conservatives and he has had a appreciable role in turning the country to the right while he has been on the air.

There is certainly nothing wrong with the country turning to the right, as it does from time to time.  My concern has always been the use of demagoguery in achieving this, fueling racial fears and fears of their sorts.  There is also concern about the use of misinformation, such as the fact that more than half of the population believed that weapons of mass destruction were actually found in Iraq after the invasion.  For democracy to work in a society there must be a threshold of trust among the people and dissemination of truth by the media.  The debate ought to be about what the facts mean, not whether a portion of the society is evil or should not be trusted.

For years extremists have been brandishing what I call hate propaganda on the media.  The theory behind the first amendment was that this ought to be allowed so that it can be exposed and brought to light.  The idea is that through open discussion the truth will come to light.  The problem the last several years is that there was no meaningful discussion.  Demagoguery was broadcast but not rejoined.

In this light it is very refreshing to see discussion of extremist statements.  This is really what the founding fathers wanted us to do.

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Negativity Pushed Powell to Obama

October 20, 2008

All the neo-McCarthyism and demogaguery caused Powell to pick the candidate that reresented an wscape from that  He concluded that  Obama was the one to lead us away from such nonsense.


Terrorists in our Midst

October 20, 2008

I’ve been listening to campaign speeches recently and learned that Obama is friendly with terrorists, that we don’t really know who he is and that he is affiliated with a group that is trying to undermine our democracy though voter fraud. You can’t help but admire McCain’s high mindedness when he said that Obama is a decent family man despite these shortcomings.

With Colin Powell endorsing Obama, you have to wonder whether he is in on this too. Come to think of it, this is an area in which the State Department is supposed to be active and Condoleeza Rice has been strangely quiet about this terrorist issue.

The last time that I recall that we had terrorism creeping into the system was 1988, the year Jesse Jackson jumped into the primaries and caused a lot of confusion. As I recall he was taken very seriously until he lost the California primary, although I guess Bill Clinton does not remember it that way. (Jackson’s associations helped us sort that one out too.) Anyway George H.W. Bush was able to defeat Dukakis at least in part by creating an association between Dukakis with the domestic terrorist Willie Horton.

There of course have been other campaigns before McCain in which we have been alerted to domestic terrorist threats. Goldwater, when he seemed to be losing, circulated literature in the South that called attention to the terror some were feeling in connection with the civil rights movement. Mostly though until Obama’s nefarious past came to light, the allusions have been mostly the oblique use of code words.

This age-worn tactic does not seem to be keeping people away from Obama speeches. Here are some amazing pictures of recent Obama rallies.