Sunday, May 29, 2005

10 Reasons Not to Kill Bush

"10 reasons not to kill Bush" is the title of a column in the Oregon Daily Emerald, the University of Oregon independent campus newspaper. The author, Jennifer McBride, is presumably a student. I picked up the link from Drudge. If you haven't read it, you should.

McBride's hook for this column was the hand grenade found in the vicinity of the President during a speech in Georgia recently. She began:

I can't possibly guess the assassin's reasoning, but I've heard enough people on campus proclaiming their hatred of George W. Bush to know that some wouldn't have shed many tears. And that's a shame.

If the assassin were looking for a way to hurt America, blowing up the president would be a good idea. Bush's martyrdom would put the last nail in the coffin of the liberal agenda.

After listing her 10 reasons, she concluded:

In all seriousness, I don't hate President Bush. I dislike a lot of his administration's choices, but I think he's a good man doing a difficult job. As a leader, you're always going to be hated. I am too often shocked by the vitriolic repulsion many people feel for our leader and America in general, especially because the loathing is often poorly informed. I've met people on this campus who see America as the worst human rights abuser in the world (unlike the angelic paradise of Cambodia) and people who sway liberal not because they actually know anything about issues but because it's popular.

Liberalism has to be more than a college fad or a collection of loudmouths whose idiotic comments stir headlines. The rabid dislike some people feel for a man they've never even met makes me ashamed to be a Democrat.

Hmm. It's hard to disagree with those last two paragraphs if they're sincere. However, after reading the whole piece, I have to wonder if the conclusion was thrown in to protect the author from the Secret Service agents who may come a-calling soon. Frankly, it reminds me of that old bit on "Seinfeld." After making a comments that could be interpreted as being negative about gays, Jerry and George would throw their hands in the air and declaim in unison, "Not that there's anything wrong with that!" The humor was in the cynical attempt to counteract words already spoken, knowing full well that they meant what they said.

McBride's column makes me reflect on the wounded protests I got from a few liberals when I wrote The Politics of Hate. The intense hatred directed at the President by some more extreme liberals, especially tenured denizens of academia and the airhead children who listen to them, is clearly way over the top. Like the lady said, it ought to make a body feel ashamed to be a Democrat.


Anonymous Kevin from PK said...

As I recall, most of the protests you got from that earlier post had to do with how you downplayed absolutely comparable vitriol and hatred from conservatives. Particularly that aimed at the Clintons (including Chelsea).

There are segments on both extremes who traffic in vitriol and hatred.

I still think the Carnegie quote I posted as a comment on that earlier post summed up the situation then, and apparently still does now. Nobody can make you see that which you don't want to see. If you only wish to see it from Liberals then that's all you are going to see. C'est la vie...

1:26 AM, May 30, 2005  
Blogger Tom Carter said...

Kevin, as I indicated in the past, the vitriol (hatred, if you wish) directed at the Clintons in the past is not "absolutely comparable." There's a depth, intensity, and personal quality about the hatred some liberals direct at the President that makes it pathological. And, as McBride points out, not only do these people not know the man they so intensely hate, they're generally poorly informed. As a fellow I admire used to say, "And that's the way it is."

4:29 AM, May 30, 2005  
Blogger Kevin said...


I think that this young lady seems to have a very simple world view that does not account that there is such things as evil and there is right and wrong.

The bottom line a contrite statement about the politics of hate can not erase the fact that it is attitudes like hers that are causing common Americans to find refuge in the Republican party.

But then again like she said, liberalism is a college fad that is usually tempered by having to make a living in the cold hard world.


8:49 AM, May 30, 2005  
Blogger Tom Carter said...

Kev, one problem I had with the column is I'm not sure where she stands. The closing paragraphs are good, if those are her true views. But why write the other stuff? Writing like this about killing the President is bad business, no matter who the President is or what your reasons for doing it are.

10:46 AM, May 30, 2005  
Blogger carla said...


I think you are absolutely delusional in not seeing the analagous hatred on the right for the Clintons. The right seethes with it still. They have entire groups dedicated to undermine Hillary Clinton even hinting at running for President.

Face it...the hatred for the Clintons by the right is certainly similar if not eclipsing the vitriol some on the left have for George W. Bush.

5:52 PM, May 30, 2005  
Blogger Tom Carter said...

OK, enough already. I'll stipulate that conservatives hated and still hate the Clintons. I won't nitpick about about depth, degrees, and kinds of hatred, either. For the record, I didn't like that during the Clinton years, either, although I don't have blog posts to prove it. I was particularly disappointed by the Clinton impeachment--I thought it was a very dumb move by the Republicans.

Can we at least agree that mindless personal hatred of politicians in a democracy is a bad thing, no matter who the haters and hatees are?

6:25 PM, May 30, 2005  
Anonymous Kevin said...

I certainly agree with that, Tom.

For the record, I supported Clinton's Impeachment. It had nothing to do with my personal view of him. After all, I voted for him in '92. I just happen to believe that I, as a citizen, have both a right and a responsibility to hold my elected official accountable regardless of whether I like them or not.

7:17 PM, May 31, 2005  
Blogger carla said...

I agree that "mindless personal hatred" in politics is stupid and corrosive.

I didn't agree with the impeachment of Clinton...but I did agree with him having his law license to argue in front of the SCOTUS revoked (I think that's how it went down). I believe impeachment should be reserved for the most grave abuses of office..and lying bj in the White House just didn't cut it for me.

But ask me about lying about a war... go on..I dare ya. :)

6:03 PM, June 01, 2005  
Blogger profmarcus said...

this country wasn't in the greatest of shape before bush took office but where he has taken it since is unconscionable... he is intent on destroying the social compact between a government and its citizens and creating a society of indentured servants, working for the enrichment of the privileged few...

being a responsible citizen, working hard, staying within the law, and fulfilling your obligations, no longer counts for anything in the world of social darwinism bush is creating... if you're poor it's because you are no damn good and you full well deserve it... if you die in a war that was initiated for reasons that later proved to be false, it's too damn bad... if you come back disabled in mind or body, you are denied recompense... if you are gay, you are shunned... if you believe in human rights, you are ridiculed... if you want to work collaboratively across borders, you are weak... if you don't believe that torture is the way to obtain intelligence information, you are aiding terrorists...

how did we come to this...? more to the point, how do we get out of it...?

11:56 PM, June 01, 2005  
Blogger Tom Carter said...

See, Carla, it works! I learned a long time ago that once an argument has gone on long enough, the best thing is to just give in and agree. Works particularly well with spouses...then you can get back to the serious things, like watching a ball game on TV, or, if you must, tilling the dirt in your garden.

Lying about a war? Let's see...we'll keep it simple, 20th century only. Wilson lied about not entering WWI; Roosevelt lied about provoking the Pearl Harbor attack; Truman lied about getting us into Korea, Ike about getting us out; Johnson lied about the Gulf of Tonkin; Reagan lied about the Contras; Clinton lied about Bosnia and Kosovo...who else? Oh, yeah, Bush lied about Iraq. But actually, he didn't. The Iraqis really did invade Kuwait, commit atrocities, prepare to invade Saudi Arabia, and threaten to upset the entire world economy. So I guess he didn't lie. What? Oh, you mean this Bush. He didn't lie, either.

The fact is, crackpots, wackos, and conspiracy theorists of various stripes all claimed that the presidents mentioned above lied about wars. But the truth is, none of them did.

Let me try one more time: Being wrong is not the same thing as lying. Lying is a purposeful, intentional statement of something that is known to be untrue. The only recent presidents I'm aware of who have actually done that in an official sense are Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton (yes, perjury is an official lie).

Now I'm going back to the ball game.

3:33 PM, June 02, 2005  
Blogger Tom Carter said...

Profmarcus, thanks for your comment. I didn't understand much of it, to be honest. Tell the truth now--are you off your meds?

3:34 PM, June 02, 2005  

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