Liberal ruffians!

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010 @ 11:34 pm | Clueless Conservatives

So Joe Miller continues the anti-journalism crusade of the right when his goons handcuff a reporter for trying to ask him questions. I guess the press-fleeing tactics of Sarah Palin, Christine O’Donnell, Rand Paul, Sharron Angle, et al. just were too wussy. After all, the public isn’t crying outrage and is damn near on the verge of electing a few of these whack-jobs, so why not? This is so good:

The most shocking thing is that the right-wing media have harshly condemned the behavior of Miller and his staff. The Weekly Standard referred to the security personnel as “assailants.” Tucker Carlson’s Daily Caller called them “thugs” who “roughed up” the reporter. Sean Hannity, of all people, noted, “By the way, I want to just – this is the part where you’re holding up your credentials. He’s obviously getting in your face. He’s being overly aggressive. And then, you know, you obviously have the right to walk on a street, don’t you?”

Wait.

Wait one second. I’m getting confused in my old age. Those comments are actually from January 13, 2009 when Weekly Standard reporter John McCormack tripped over himself after Martha Coakley staffer Michael Meehan got in his face.

While it was clearly over the line to get in McCormack’s face, the wingnuttosphere quickly turned the incident into the My Lai Massacre. The Weekly Standard called Meehan an “assailant” while going with a misleading photo rather than the video, which shows…well, nothing, really. Daily Caller tried to bolster its daily readership of 13 people by going for over-the-top sensationalism, calling Meehan a “thug” who “roughed up” McCormack even though the reporter claimed nothing of the sort. Hannity suddenly discovered the concept of constitutional rights, patronizingly reminding us that McCormack has a 1st Amendment right to ask questions and wander down a public street.

Oddly enough, none of them have come to the defense of Alaska Dispatch reporter Tony Hopfinger. They are strangely silent on Hopfinger’s right to attend an event at a public grade school and ask questions and quite eager, parroting the official line from the Miller campaign, to depict Hopfinger as some sort of deranged maniac in thrall of his own bloodlust and looking for the most efficient way to behead Miller and consume his spleen.

It’s not really much of a surprise that this is what has transpired. The Me Party is this stunning trick that has allowed people who would ordinarily be ushered right off the public scene a chance to thrive and flourish. There are all sorts of reasons, of course, but the point is that they finally have a method by which they can bypass public accountability: reject any contact with actual journalists/journalism, find friendly Republican outlets who will ask no hard questions and even provide answers, and if anything bad gets out, it’s just a sign of how much the liberals in the media are out to get them.

That way it never matters that a) they know nothing b) they are corrupt c) their policies offer no solutions d) their positions are radical or e) as is the usual case, all of the above.

I mean, don’t wouldn’t you be okay being a politician if things could be that easy for you? Just let the Republicans know a few things, like a) You’re an evangelical Christian and b) you’re willing to convert your religious stridency into empty platitudes about the Constitution (no knowledge of Constitution required). Also, c) you’ll never truly challenge the status quo when push comes to shove.

I mean, c’mon. Christine O’Donnell was shocked that the First Amendment includes the text, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” And wingers are right there doing damage control. Look at “intellectual” Ramesh Ponnuru:

“Some bloggers and tv commentators have seized on remarks by Christine O’Donnell to suggest that she is unaware that the First Amendment prohibits the establishment of religion,” he writes. “I don’t think that’s right. What she denies is that the First Amendment requires ‘the separation of church and state.’”

Actual O’Donnell exchange:

“Let me just clarify,” O’Donnell pressed. “You’re telling me that the separation of church and state is found in the First Amendment?”

“The government shall make no establishment of religion,” Coons said, summarizing the gist of the specific words in the First Amendment’s establishment clause.

“That’s in the First Amendment?” O’Donnell asked again, eliciting further laughter from the room.

Who could pass up this gig? You can say anything. And if somebody plays you back an audio recording of you saying it, they’re just twisting your words. If I wanted to be set for life, I’d go Shit-Tea Party tomorrow.

-hw

UPDATE:

“After that debate my team and I we were literally high fiving each other thinking that we had exposed he doesn’t know the First Amendment, and then when we read the reports that said the opposite we were all like ‘what?'” – Christine O’Donnell

Self-awareness is a librul plot.

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