Monday, September 28, 2009

"A Vast, Right-Wing Conspiracy"

You may recall that former First Lady (now Secretary of State) Hillary Clinton once blamed many of the problems facing her husband as the malign actions of "a vast, right-wing conspiracy." Well, according to former President Clinton, that conspiracy is still alive and well. Speaking yesterday on Meet the Press, Mr Clinton said that "...(the conspiracy is) not as strong as it was, because America's changed demographically, but it's as virulent as it was."

Conspiracy, no.

Strong, no.

Virulent, yes.

If the strength of a movement is based on the strength of its ideas, I think Mr Clinton has grossly overestimated the power of this imagined conspiracy. America has always been a relatively conservative nation, but that conservatism has always been tempered with enough liberal ideas and simple common sense to keep it moving forward and prevent the worst excesses of the extremists on either wing. The extreme right today is an embarrassment, reduced to frantic shouting about the President's birth certificate and the wildest ravings that compare our elected government to that of Nazi Germany. Doonesbury has called it right...

A census worker was murdered in Kentucky, apparently by those who thought his census data collection represented a grave intrusion into personal freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution...that would be the same Constitution that mandates (see Article 1, Section 2) a national census every 10 years to apportion Congressional seats.

Not that the extreme left is much's just that the extreme right is a bit more hysterically loud at the moment.

Pat Paulsen, the wonderfully deadpan comedian who ran for president on the old Smothers Brothers television show, once said, "Assuming either the Left Wing or the Right Wing gained control of the country, it would probably fly around in circles." He was correct. We need the best ideas of the conservative and the liberal sides of the political debate, without the most outrageous and intolerant excesses of either. One hopes that we'll see that happen soon.

But I'm not holding my breath.

Have a good day. Keep to the center. More thoughts tomorrow.



KKTSews said...

Pat Paulson, or the writers on Smothers Brothers, were spot on! Now that was television worth watching.

Jay said...

The Right Wing Noise Machine is very loud. And their Fake Outrage Generator is finely tuned.

The left has a Fake Outrage Generator too. But, like the democratic party itself, it's down for maintenance quite often. ;-)

Mike said...

The census worker story was unbelievable.