My frustration with some on the left

No time, but want to make a quick point. I am frustrated as hell that we continue to damage our own cause and make it easy for Michelle and Charles and others to continue their ear-splitting crusade about “the vicious, hateful left.” No, it’s not a fair crusade, as they always cherry-pick, while ignoring the cesspool of hatred permeating every thread over at LGF. But still, why would a prominent lefty blog hand over to the wingnutosphere its own head, gift-wrapped with a pretty red bow on a silver platter?

I’m sorry. No matter how much we dislike Tony Snow, to make any allusions to the idea that “what goes around comes around” as we learn the sad news that his days are (probably) numbered is just plain stupid and self-defeating. No good in any way can come from it. If we harbor such thoughts, that a Bush crony – or anyone at all – deserves to die of cancer, we should keep them to ourselves.

I worry about liberalism’s future when those in the forefront continue to demonstrate such appalling judgment.

(updated 2.45pm beijing time)

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Richard Burger is the author of Behind the Red Door: Sex in China, an exploration of China's sexual revolution and its clash with traditional Chinese values.

The Discussion: 20 Comments

“we learn the sad news that his days are numbered is just plain stupid and self-defeating.”

Ironic that your post lacks the very decorum that you call for, no?

March 28, 2007 @ 2:37 pm | Comment

Where is the lack of decorum? Do I say anywhere that I think anyone deserves to get cancer? An odd response….

March 28, 2007 @ 3:40 pm | Comment

Well, I always think that if one can’t find a way to interact reasonably with others, ignoring them is always an option, with a focus on something more concrete. Is blogspot working where you are, btw?

March 28, 2007 @ 4:09 pm | Comment

well, go read the very long thread on Firedoglake, if you want to feel better about left blogostan. Also the Kos thread.

There are always going to be asses on all sides of the ideological spectrum. I’d say though that there has been far less nastiness towards Snow than what we saw slung at Elizabeth Edwards.

March 28, 2007 @ 4:16 pm | Comment

Lisa, I am totally with you. I read those threads on Free Republic about Edwards. But here’s the thing: Why don’t people who write for Huffington Post get the simple fact that we who lean left are held up to a different moral standard than those on the right? A great example of this was Howard Kurz’s softball “profile” of she-witch Michelle Malkin some months ago, never mentioning her insanities, her defense of racial internment, etc. Soon after he covered liberal blog comments in unbalanced detail (though he made a half-hearted attempt to right his wrong yesterday with his piece comparing LGF comments and lefty comments). Why don’t we just get that even the APPEARANCE of an improper remark is going to get distorted coverage and amplification by the Wurlitzer. Sorry, it’s unfair as hell but it’s life – we need to be above the right in terms of inappropriate personal remarks, whether that inappropriateness is real or perceived. We simploy have to acept it, and if we were smart we’d never hand over ammunition like this to the rightosphere. It’s self-defeating and pointless. Let’s not descend to their level.

March 28, 2007 @ 4:36 pm | Comment

Blogspot isn’t working….

March 28, 2007 @ 5:02 pm | Comment

Richard

As ever in politics the fringes of right and left blogostan join in a pretty unattractive swamp, as a right wing realist I am rarely surprised by comments out of either field. In fact I wonder if it is not part of a healthy political discourse.

I would be more inclined to accept your point that if you said that all the parties in the political debate should be held to the same high standard, a point that C at LGF was making in his “half heated” response. A response which at least addressed the issue when WaPost etc has been noticeably silent. The recent furore over Coulter calling Edwards a “fagot”, was widely report but even though Bill Maher said this was unacceptable he had recently said the Republicans had a “gay thing about Ronald Regan” – pray tell what the difference is? Little I suspect. But if you live by the word of political correctness you will die by the sword of political correctness.

The main failing of the left is that they failed to address the substantive issues head on. Though they and you have a near pathological disgust for MM and CJ you have rarely been able to show a consistent position in opposition to many of their points (rather than their or fellow Lizards style). As the recent riots in Paris show you can legislate away name calling on grounds of PC or “public order” grounds but still the riots in Paris happen and be they youths or Muslim youths the Grad du Nord still gets trashed.

I am not sure that you can still say “call a spade a spade” but if you call MM a “she-witch” (a profoundly insulting comment to all practising Wickens such as myself), do not be surprised if the other kiddies in the playground insult your false Gods.

March 28, 2007 @ 8:04 pm | Comment

I’m sorry, since when was it considered appropriate to refer to someone who’s learned that their cancer has returned to as “his days are numbered”? I must have missed that etiquette class. However valid your posting, the kind of language that you use to air your views is inappropriate and, frankly, negates the point you’re trying to make.

This isn’t about right or left; Tony Snow has said that he’s going to fight and be back at work soon. Whoever is forced to step up and take on this horrible illness – be they Bushies or not – deserves all the respect and encouragement that can be offered.

That was all…

March 28, 2007 @ 9:50 pm | Comment

The recent furore over Coulter calling Edwards a “fagot”, was widely report but even though Bill Maher said this was unacceptable he had recently said the Republicans had a “gay thing about Ronald Regan” – pray tell what the difference is?

The difference is the difference between a comedian satirizing the homophobia of the Right, and a “commentator” expressing that homophobia.

Michael

March 28, 2007 @ 10:52 pm | Comment

Sam, my brother was diagnosed with cancer that metastasized to his vital organs and lymph nodes, and yes, I told my father that my brother’s days were numbered and I didn’t fool myself. This was not said at all in disrespect about Tony Snow and why you want to see it as such, and why you want to make an issue out of it, I don’t understand. And I did add “probably,” in case you didn’t notice.

March 28, 2007 @ 11:49 pm | Comment

Jack, you are truly wrong. I have called Malkin and Charles on many specific sins. Please don’t defend them on this site. Anyone but those two.

March 28, 2007 @ 11:52 pm | Comment

All of these cheap shots and “happy to see them die” spouting just makes it easier for Obama to stroll into office.

March 29, 2007 @ 12:36 am | Comment

Statistics can only tell you how a group fares and what the probabilities are. How an individual does is a different question. Tony Snow’s situation is extremely serious, but some people do beat those odds. My best wishes to him.

March 29, 2007 @ 1:32 am | Comment

Lisa, mine, too. I hope he beats the odds. I also hope we figure out that the most excellent post can be ruined by one careless phrase – that we can’t afford to throw red meat to the Malkins of this world, who constantly seek to prove we left-leaners are wicked, wishing death and pain on those who disagree with us. Of course, she never says a word about the frequent calls of LGF commenters to nuke large swaths of the Middle East.

March 29, 2007 @ 10:11 am | Comment

Sorry to hear about your brother. I made it an issue because your posting was originally about the use of language, and how its misuse by liberals can ultimately prove damaging to its ongoing slugfest with the right.

Can you really not see a problem with referring to someone fighting cancer as saying “his days are numbered” (or “probably”)? Would you say that to your brother? If so, then I have no problem at all and wish you luck in introducing civility into the left-right discourse. If not, then clean up your posting, please.

March 29, 2007 @ 11:22 am | Comment

Sam, why are you going on about this? Let it go. Point taken.

March 29, 2007 @ 11:28 am | Comment

Other Lisa has it exactly right: “There are always going to be asses on all sides of the ideological spectrum.” This is not a political issue, it is a decency issue.

The sad thing about incredibly insensitive comments like the one of which you write is that they work against real discourse, which in turn works against real solutions.

March 29, 2007 @ 2:11 pm | Comment

Totally agree, CLB. I just don’t understand how anyone on the left or right can rejoice in the personal tragedy of others.

March 29, 2007 @ 3:38 pm | Comment

Another example in the news.

March 30, 2007 @ 12:54 am | Comment

I can find no excuse for anyone’s wishing anyone any kind of illness or harm, or for rejoicing at anyone’s illness or other suffering. I wish many people — Democrats as well as Republicans — a fair trial in which what I regard as probative evidence of crimes under US and international law is brought forth.

April 4, 2007 @ 12:52 am | Comment

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