The first big thing that has riled us on the left has been the Washington Post, or WaPo as it is called. The Newspaper's Ombudsman, a woman by the name of Deborah Howell, made a rather big mistake in asserting that the Abramoff scandal was bipartisan, and that both Democrats and Republicans are involved. This invoked a storm of heated comments at the WaPo web site that was eventually switched off. Howell returned and, while admitting that the Republicans were the ones who were suffering the most about Abramoff, she pointed to some documents that WaPo had in their possession which showed that the Democrats had had money directed to them by Indian tribes on Abramoff's behalf.
Now some of you might know that recently I wrote an article about how frustrated I was that certain Democrats were involved. I'm not going to take that back just yet, but from what I have read the left-wing response to Howell's article was actually quite fair. At issue is this money that the Democrats received from these ubiquitous Indian tribes. These transactions were above-the-board contributions made to a political party in the same way as any person or business in America can do. So the transactions themselves were not illegal. Moreover, since Indigenous Americans have traditionally supported the Democratic party, these contributions have been going on for decades. What is interesting is that after Abramoff got involved, these contributions to the Democratic party went down, and more money was directed to the Republican party.
So it wasn't obfuscation - as though the lefties were indulging in problems of definition.
All this, to me, has convinced me that the Abramoff affair is entirely a Republican problem. There is the issue of James Clyburn (whom I complained about last week), but that appears to be an aside.
The lefties are very angry about how the MSM (Mainstream Media) have been influenced by Right-wing talking points without critical comment. They are howling for blood and poor Deborah Howell at the WaPo (who, as ombudsman, is supposed to be neutral and should listen to readers' comments) has been targeted. I can sense that the pressure in this area will force a backdown of sorts from the WaPo.
The second big thing that the lefties have been fighting over is the recent Osama Bin Laden announcement - well, not really, but about a right-wing commentator's reaction to it. Chris Matthews, from MSNBC, commented on air that Bin Laden seems to sound and act like Michael Moore. This linking between the world's no. 1 terrorist and America's best known lefty agitator has got a lot of lefties hopping mad. Associating Moore with Bin Laden essentially links American lefties with terrorism, something they are not going to stand for. Michael Moore reacted in a very Michael Moore way, and begun to post photoshopped images of Bin Laden and Chris Matthews going bowling together, drinking beer together, sleeping in bed together, and so on. As soon as Chris Matthews opened his mouth and uttered his stupid sentence, he essentially gave permission for every lefty (including Michael Moore) to satirise and parody his position.
So why is this big? John Aravois at Americablog is planning some diabolical activity with some of his agitator mates against MSNBC and Chris Matthews.
And the third issue is something in the background, but has really disturbed me as an Evangelical. Darksyde, one of the contributors at DailyKos, came up with the following:
The modern GOP is a precarious alliance between moderate, sane, conservatives, corporate interests understandably focused on short term profits, and a fundamentalist mob whose social policies poll anywhere between unpopular to repugnant among the majority of Americans.This belief may not be totally correct, but it is certainly indicative of how feelings are beginning to run. I have pointed out a few times that this period in history will see the "high water mark" of American Evangelicalism, which will, after the entire Bush/Iraq mess is sorted out, become one of the more despised groupings in America - not just among lefties, but among the general populance. I've seen American Evangelicalism's theological failures - a failure to preach the gospel of Christ and a failure to read, understand and apply God's word - and I am also seeing their political and social failures. These two major failures will dovetail together.
The moderates are the official face set forth in PR efforts, the corporate interests drive the money, and like in any feudal system, the cultish masses provide the votes and do the grassroots work. But there's a glaring weakness: Expose that extremist base for what it is, flip that rock over to illuminate the ugly squatting trolls hiding underneath, and it's game over folks. Here's one way to go about doing that, and in all fairness we should thank the GOP shills on Cable News and all across the blogosphere for bringing it our attention and warming up the soundbite for us so nicely.
But the heat that I am sensing amongst the lefties will actually go somewhere. I think it is the fact that time and again their warnings have been correct and that they have not been listened to. Who knows where this will go to?
From the One Salient Overlord Department
© 2006 Neil McKenzie Cameron, http://one-salient-oversight.blogspot.com/
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