Thursday, April 16, 2009

Reality Check

When I first heard about the DHS report regarding threats from right-wing extremists, a few things occurred to me -- as they must have, I'd guess, to anyone who stops and thinks:

  • Government reports are generated very slowly.
  • Any major report coming out early in the Obama administration's tenure must have started in Bush's.
  • One might expect that there'd be a similar report on left-wing extremism, especially assuming it was in the Bush administration that the process began.
  • Despite the above, the Right Wing Screamers will go nuts.
And I was right, by golly.

If the DHS is about identifying and responding to threats, it would be malfeasance not to consider all possibilities. Over the years, there have been incidents from extremists at both ends of the spectrum (although, it must be said, none on the left have had the killing power of those on the right. McVeigh and Poplowski have no leftie counterparts, kill-count-wise). There are crazies everywhere. And, despite the howls from the right, the report was talking about crazies, not your average reality-averse but generally calm and couched conservative. Paranoid?

What's different at the moment, and unprecedented as far as I can see, is the extent to which violent vitriol is coming from national media, in the form of Fox News (sic) and the entirely unbalanced (in both meanings of the term: insanity, and lacking counterweight) RWS.™ It's a deadly combination: well-armed crazy people plus nationally ranked cheerleaders, constantly telling them "You are threatened from within, people are coming to round you up, take your guns, put you in concentration camps. You must rise up and resist this threat to our very survival as a country, to everything you hold dear. A Nazi/Communist/Socialist/Muslim/Black Guy is going to destroy you. Take to the streets! Set him on fire. Drive a stake through his heart."

Give a guy a gun, whisper in his ear. Not a formula for domestic tranquility.

Have I said anything untrue? Might it be a concern for law enforcement? Aren't there very recent examples?

[Update, 4/17: like my first commenter below, Pat Robertson, that paragon of religious nuttiness, misconstrues the whole point of the DHS report, and suggests his followers jam up the DHS phone lines. Brilliant, no? Disable the hotline by which actual America-protecting citizens might warn about a, y'know, bomb threat. Good going, Pat. I guess if the call doesn't get through and the bomb goes off, it'll be your god getting revenge on gays, right? This is what we're up against.]


SeaSpray said...

I don't know ANY conservative people like those you label and it is hardly fair to lump conservatives in with McVeigh types... their evil and nuts and do not represent conservatives.

Bill Ayers? he didn't care if anyone died when he was setting off bombs.

I don't blame liberals because of jerks like him.

And what the head of homeland security said about the soldiers..linking them as potential right wing terrorists when they come home. Oh my God!

What an insult! That is one of the most disgusting comments I have ever heard and she can apologize all she demonstrates where here thinking truly lies.

And releasing that secret info so now the people they aren't willing to call terrorists (the REAL terrorists)are privy to all that.

And I would've gone to our local Tea party if I wasn't doing taxes and I can assure you I don't fit the description of these comments and I guarantee my words would've been spelled correctly.

I am an easy going person who has compassion (I know compassion and conservative seem to be an oxymoron for some) and respect for people.

The press was not accurate or fair in it's reporting.

And I am FRIGHTENED that people are linking people with conservative values to murders and terrorists and this doesn't even sound like the America I grew up in.

And I am deeply saddened.

And that concentration camp video was done by a major liberal activist in the 90s and has nothing to do with the facts and that whole concentration camp thing is a hoax.

And Glen Beck was on his show tonight/last night now...stating that violence was wrong. He held up a picture of Martin Luther King and said how he got change done through peaceful efforts was the way to do it.

I do not know of one conservative who is calling for violence... but the opposite and they uphold human LIFE.

And Glen Beck was talking about how BUSH and OBAMA have us on this spending spree and has said how both the dems and republicans are responsible.

And I also saw his rally where he knocked the democrats -crowd cheered and then he knocked the republicans - crowd cheered.

And earlier this week...on Sean Hannity... Bernie (Goldman?) refused to attack Obama about taking the glory or something like that regarding the pirates and stated that he didn't like what some of the conservatives were saying and he was not going to do that.

I respect that.

people say Fox is not fair and balanced and I have been seeing honest statements. When they challenge the right...I believe that is honest and fair reporting.

My point in all of this is conservatives are just not the simpleton, backwoods, gun totin, Bible thumpin, volatile, unenlightened, illiterates some would paint us to be.

NOR... are we cold, heartless selfish people. We are just like you in that we love our family and friends and want the best for society. We all bleed the same... we are people before political parties.

I am offended. i am deeply offended and alarmed to hear supposedly intelligent people link conservatives to violence.

Ir seems... you are all forgetting about the REAL enemies...and they are... the REAL terrorists.

And those tea parties... they were peaceful. No one broke the law. thank God for our right to free speech.

I am not a screamer.

I am a kind, thoughtful, decent person who has been married to the same man for almost 33 tears and raised to fine sons. I believe in God and I am not ashamed of that. I abhor violence other than what is necessary for protection.

I'm sorry for rambling but between her saying that about our soldiers and this CRAZY, INFLAMMATORY linking conservatives to violence... is absolutely insane and has me seeing red and I am hurt.

Anyone doing this...fanning these flames should be ASHAMED of themselves.

Sid Schwab said...

Take a deep breath, Seaspray. Go back and read my post and see if you can find any place I linked "conservatives" to what I said. In fact, see if the word is used at all. Then, after you calm down, read the entire DHS report, to which I've conveniently linked. And then, try to wipe Glenn Beck out of your brain just for a moment, and think from the middle: if you are able, you'll see that the report suggests that the right-wing radical groups might try to RECRUIT military returnees. Does it strike you as entirely impossible, given, say Tim McVeigh as an example? If you were head of DHS, would you feel obliged to assess all possible dangers? Did you also not notice that there was a similar report about left wing radicals? It's a threat ASSESSMENT, ferchrissakes, a statement of possibilities. Really, the right-wing screamers (see, that's who I was talking about, and you can tell because those are the words I used) have no ability to see anything clearly, and they're amazingly able to flip their outrage completely, depending on who's in office.

Matter of fact, Bill Ayers, himself, DID make it a point not to hurt people, as opposed to McVeigh. Neither is excusable.

Like Glenn Beck and Michelle Malkin, you have taken the report very personally, when it was talking about extremists. Unless you are one, of course.

Funny, isn't it? When people were protesting the Iraq war, guys like O'Reilly were calling them commies and America-haters. When people are protesting Obama, based evidently, if your reaction is any example, on what they've been told to believe rather than based on fact, he thinks they're friggin' heroes.

So which is it?

And tell me specifically what I actually DID say with which you disagree. I'm happy to reconsider.

Sid Schwab said...

P.S: I'm glad you realize the concentration camp thing is a hoax (actually, it came from an X-Files episode.) The thing is there was a time when Glenn Beck didn't. Which, of course, was exactly my point.

Moms Hugs (Eve) said...

Sid, the Glenn Beck video is now a dud - apparently violated TOS - on both YouTube & DailyKos. I got the point anyway, & SeaSpray's point, too.

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