What the Left Will Never Understand About the Right
posted at 5:09 pm on September 7, 2009 by Howard Portnoy
Van Jones is gone, and writers on the left are gnashing their teeth. Jane Hamsher of FireDogLake laments that “he’s been thrown under the bus . . . for signing his name to a petition expressing something that 35% of all Democrats believed as of 2007 — that George Bush knew in advance about the attacks of 9/11. Well, that and calling Republicans ‘a**holes.'” David Sirota, writing at the Puffington Host assails Glenn Beck, the talk show host the left blames wholesale for ending Van Jones’ deservedly brief career in federal government, as “the man who leads a 21st century lynch mob looking to hunt down anyone (and especially anyone black) who has ever been a part of progressive movement politics. I don’t use that term ‘political terrorist’ lightly.”
But, see, the thing is that David Sirota and other people on the left do use terms like political terrorist lightly when it comes to criticizing conservatives. Likewise racist, witch hunt, and lynch mob. They conjure up with alacrity the ugliest, most hate-filled relics of our nation’s darkest days and apply these to conservatives for merely disagreeing with them. I defy any liberal to come up with examples of serious mainstream conservative commentators who have used similar language in regard to Democrats. I’m not even sure what those terms would be.
And an even bigger problem is that liberals cut themselves slack for things they would never countenance from conservatives. Hamsher notes, as though it’s a badge of honor, that 35% of all Democrats believed George Bush knew in advance about the attacks of 9/11. I don’t know if she is quoting a reliable source, but in the end she is supporting the argument that because a sizable percentage of Democrats believe a ridiculous conspiracy theory that it is somehow not a problem that one of the president’s special advisers believed it as well? I don’t know that anywhere near 35% of Republicans believe that Barack Obama is not a legal citizen of the United States, but as a blogger I can’t imagine citing their numbers as support for some other nut who believes the same blather and argue that he should therefore be given a pass.
Liberals’ favorite slur against conservatives is that they lack compassion and tolerance. Yet they dismiss out of hand Van Jones’s baseless, absurd — and intolerant — claim that white environmentalists hate black people so much they want to poison their neighborhoods. They write off the use of crass profanity he employed gratuitously to describe the opposition party, this as a representative of the federal government.
Van Jones may well have been the towering figure in the environmental movement that the Washington Post has painted him as. There may have been some merit to Barack Obama’s hiring him, provided you believe what Obama believes about the environment. What is undeniable about Jones is that he is racist, a self-avowed Communist, and believer in inane conspiracy theories, and for those reasons alone the nation is better off without him. Liberals might themselves recognize this, if they would just grow up.
Cross-posted at Zombie Contentions