Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Bullies Can Dish It Out--But They Can't Take It

E. J. Dionne, touchy-feely leftocrat, has an article this week in my favorite Democratic house organ, The New Republic. Dionne is the gentle stalking-horse of the Democratic cadres, a horse that can see all those cruel fascists that the Republicans can't see, but wears blinders so he can't see the thugs and liars among his friends.

The article is entitled: All Isn't Fair--How to fight extremism with civility. And what better magazine to publish it in than the New Republic--the magazine that headlined an article by its own senior editor, John Judis, a few years back entitled: I Hate George Bush? Dionne uses an age-old method of proving that your opponents are out-of-control by citing an alleged member of that opposition who is in agreement with you. The old joke is that liberals love citing Christians to prove their point, as long as they are dead Christians. And they love citing Republicans, as long as they no longer have any standing within the Republican Party.

Dionne's tender sensibilities have been offended by the in-your-face opposition to the Obamassiah, particularly at the tea party protests. And sure enough, he found a "Republican" who agrees with him. Former Congressman Jim Leach spent thirty years "Going his own way. If this meant standing against his caucus, he was content to do so." Pretty heroic, huh? A maverick even. Or maybe just a RINO. But since he agrees with Dionne on the current Republican leadership failing to slap down the "extremists" within their midst, he is therefore the perfect "dead" Republican to cite.

And Mr. Leach is all touch-feely too. Dionne describes him by saying "The characteristic Leach look is a comfortable sweater worn under a tweed jacket, in season and out. That's about as fashionable as the persona of old Mr. Chips, the warmhearted and mildly Victorian headmaster who was the hero of James Hilton's 1934 novel (they made a movie out of it too, in case you hadn't noticed). Yes--Mr. Chips. Doesn't that just warm your cockles?

So now cometh the perfect Republican to go after those Republican leaders who can't get control of their crypto-Nazi troops with the hateful signs and hateful words. Leach, indistinguishable from the Democrats, lost his seat in 2006 because in that Democratic landslide the voters figured they might as well have a real Democrat rather than a Democrat calling himself a Republican. Ah, but he wasn't bitter, says Dionne. "He turned to academia, not the lobbying trade favored by so many other defeated politicians, and in 2008 engaged in the ultimate act of a maverick (a real one) by becoming a Republican for Obama." What a shock. The maverick Republican candidate for President wasn't far enough to the left to suit this maverick.

And glorious Obama, the Anointed One, returned the favor by appointing Leach chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Says chairman Leach: "Little is more important for the world's leading democracy (are we still the leading democracy after 11 months of Obama?) in this change-intensive century than establishing an ethos of thoughtfulness and decency of expression in the public square." Golly, I wish I had thought of that. If I had, I could have understood such thoughtfulness in Democratic discourse as "Bushitler," and "I hate Bush," and "Bush lied, people died." And the gentle, thoughtful Democrats haven't stopped, even today.

"If we don't try to understand and respect others, how can we expect them to respect us, our values and our way of life." And who, exactly, are "we?" "Words reflect emotion as well as meaning. They clarify--or cloud--thought and energize action, sometimes bringing out the better angels in our nature, sometimes lesser instincts," says Leach. "Leach's speech is the kickoff for a 50-state civility tour, and my hunch is that this very civil man may have to put up with a lot of incivility along the way" says Dionne.

Which type of incivility are you referring to, Professor Dionne? The Republican/conservative/tea party kind where they hold up signs that are very disrespectful of the Chosen One, or the SEIU/ACORN beating people up with their signs kind? The "vote against Obama, he's a socialist" kind, or the baseball bat, chain-wielding voter intimidation kind (thank you, New Black Panthers)? Yes, indeed, words can wound metaphorically, which is why we have a First Amendment. You have your panties in a bunch over tea party words that might lead to violence, while continuing to wear those blinders about leftist words which have actually been turned into violence, frequently.

And finally, I should point out that Dionne and Leach don't attack the tea partiers and other anti-Obamists directly. They know full well that those movements can never be squelched by the words and phony peace-offerings of the left. So they address their complaints to the Republican leadership (whoever they are) in terms of their intentional or negligent failure to rein in the "extremists." Well, you two, I have some news for you. Conservatives don't take orders from the entrenched leadership of a fractured party trying to find its way back to its foundations, and conservatives don't march blindly to the tune of their "superiors" in DC and the state houses. Unlike Democrats.

15 comments:

Tennessee Jed said...

Hawk - nice post. Hypocracy always is nast and although we are all probably guilty at times of that sin, I think the socialist democrats have helped define the term. After 8 years of bush bashing, whining about civility and coming together rings rather hollow, particularly when they constantly are getting caught doing just what they claimed they wouldn't do in office.

patti said...

my life experience tells me to try the civil way first, to lead with the higher road, but there are issues that will not be solved with niceties and that's the time we draw our lines in the sand and defend against the army marching towards us. i love that when we use words on poster boards and loud voices they get offended...wusses.

and "leftocrat" gave me a lol. bravo.

patti said...

link'd...

StanH said...

E.J. Dionne is the classic liberal weenie, metrosexual, dweeb. Look up RINO in the dictionary and you’ll find a picture of Jim Leach. As is typical of the left, their definition of a Republican is a big government liberal, with a R, instead of a D beside their names. This of coarse is the problem with Washington politicians, and their cronies.

We (conservatives) are not supposed to protest, but shut up and pay the bills. Washington is in shock over this, even if they wont admit it. At the 9/12 Tea Party in Washington, I read that our representatives were sending their aids into the crowd to see who these people are, their reports back from their aids had the Washington elites shaking in their boots. Government only works with the consent of the governed, and the Tea Parties represent a beginning fracture. You are so right the left cannot take it. 2010 is going to be a rough year for the political class, IMO.

AndrewPrice said...

Right, we're supposed to be civil now that Obama is in charge. And patience is now a virtue. Forget that.

LawHawkSF said...

Tennessee: I avoided using the word hypocrisy only because it's self-evident in almost everything the left does and says. Holy, Holy, Holy, ACORN Almighty. The left thrives on "civilized" behavior from conservatives because they see it a s a weakness. But when a single conservative at a tea party rally says "boo," they go into full victim/martyr mode. So let's remind Dionne and Leach and their whole silly "can't we all just get along?" gang: Politics ain't beanbag.

LawHawkSF said...

Patti: Those of us who spent much of our lives in the urban judicial trial jungle had a litigation concept: First, conflict avoidance. Second, conflict resolution. Third, if one and two fail, go for the jugular and rip out their throats. I think that the left is so well-entrenched at the moment that they have put us somewhere between two and three.

Thanks a million for the link. I'm sorry I didn't get back to you sooner, but as you might be able to tell, I was only just now able to get to the computer. And I'm on west coast time. You're always our pal.

LawHawkSF said...

Andrew: You and I have spent so much of our lives having to be civil to idiots--clients, opposing counsel, judges, and the court reporters who write down our every word for posterity. Like so many of our friends, we've tried our best to translate that into civility in public debate. But the longer this administration is in power, and the longer I have to watch SEIU thugs, Black Panther vote-threateners, and ACORN poverty pimps, the less civil I feel.

I'll just try to be a little less nasty than New Republic editor John Judis in my criticism of the president: "I intensely dislike Obama!" Was that civil enough? LOL

How long this "civilized" lawyer can hold back his other side--the 60s radical activist--is a matter between me and my Boss upstairs. I'll just settle for saying the left is bringing out the bad boy in me for the first time in a whole lot of years.

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, I'm a fan of civility. . . unless the other side isn't civil. And the left has not been civil. We can't be the only ones following the rules.

Writer X said...

Where were Dionne's self-righteous editorials during the Bush presidency? Now he's all about civility? And he had to go dig up Leach? Smells like desperation to me. A few bizarro posters at a tea party are nothing compared to what I saw while Bush was in office. Cry me a river. And get used to it.

LawHawkSF said...

WriterX: The sign that prissy Dionne found so offensive (posted with his New Republic article) was "Obama," spelled with the "O" in the shape of a hammer and sickle. Oh, the offense! Where's my digitalis? But when thousands of destructive leftists marched around breaking windows, setting fires, beating up bystanders, and carrying pictures of President Bush being hanged, or Bush and Peres with Hitler mustaches and Nazi garb, that was just "making a point." Here in San Francisco, the most popular sign was "we'll support the troops when they shoot their officers." These phonies need to get their heads on right and recognize that what's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. They should thank their lucky stars (they don't believe in God, unless you count Obama) that we are not half as violent in theory as they are in practice.

HamiltonsGhost said...

Lawhawk--I can personally testify to the fact that even back in my day, civilized discourse didn't preclude a harsh word now and then. George, Tom, John, James, Patrick, the rest of the gang and I all had some choice things to say to each other over the Declaration and the Constitution. Somehow, the Republic survived without lectures from pinky-fingered philosophers busy sipping French wine and adjusting their wigs.

LawHawkSF said...

Andrew: Rules--rules! I don't need no stinking rules. Of course, the left had better remember that some of us followed a set of rules called "Rules for Radicals," and haven't forgotten the lessons, even though we're now on the other side. Each day, my inner Alinsky tried to bubble to the surface. Maybe it's time to listen to that side of me. Wait 'til they get a load of the sign I'll be carrying at the next rally.

LawHawkSF said...

WriterX: The answer to your question is that they were the ones writing the agenda to provide the messages the left wanted to get out. They're like circus lions. They are only allowed to act vicious on cue.

LawHawkSF said...

HamiltonsGhost: I'm searching for my copy of the New Oxford Dictionary of American Slang. I seem to have forgotten some of the juicier words I want to hurl at the sweet peacemakers of the left.

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