Posted by Mike Zahara on Aug 6, 2009
Americans have always been a suspicious lot; it’s in our collective genetic code. Some think King George III is staging a comeback somewhere and that England will sail up the Hudson and reclaim the United States.
These flat-earthers and political luddites are nothing new in America, but they did take a sharp turn after the JFK assassination. There are millions who believe with all of their heart and soul that the ‘gummint’ covered things up.
Perhaps they did. We can’t handle the truth about anything and we really don’t want to know the truth about anything either; that’s precisely why all politicians in all parties lie to us. That too, is as American as apple pie.
We don’t help matters much either. Partisans in both parties will jump on the smallest kernel of information and create entire elaborate scenarios that have no basis in truth.
One was that Al Gore won the 2000 election; he did not. Credible media proved he lost, but still they insist on believing otherwise. The Gore campaign made a major historical blunder in not asking for the entire state to be recounted—they only officially requested four FL counties be recounted—so the processes in place left George W Bush the president with the electoral victory; this is fact. Had they asked for the entire state, perhaps the outcome may have been different.
That Gore lost his own home state, the first major candidate to do so in eons, pretty much telegraphed that he didn’t deserve to win either.
Gore, once the very conservative senator from Tennessee, morphed into a super-liberal later on, and was cynical enough to choose a Jewish man as his VP, solely with the thought that that would guarantee Florida for him. Can you get any crasser than that? Had he chosen anyone else, he would have been elected because there’s about 8-10 million voters between each major party that are just pure haters; they hate everyone and everything; Jews, Catholics, Muslims, gays, blacks, Hispanics, Asians…the list is endless, and they are the major contributors to the conspiracy theory nutcases out there.
No party is immune; no theory is too outrageous to contemplate for these people. Yes, they live in Idaho and Utah, but they also live in New York City and Las Vegas.
The do have the right to be wrong.
Al Gore lost the presidency not because of the US Supreme Court, but because he was cynical enough to choose Sen Joe Lieberman just because he is Jewish.
Nine years later, I don’t think there are many Dems out there who are very fond of Sen Lieberman anymore. Actions do have consequences Mr Gore; and the thought that Lieberman may have been a ‘heartbeat away’ is horrifying to me and millions of other Americans all these years later.
Now with President Obama, these ‘birthers’ have been at it since day one. Bankrolled by the old Swiftboaters, they had all the mechanisms to legally challenge the veracity of the president’s citizenship, and they were shot down all along the way. The thought that Congress, now the only body able to reopen any such query into the Executive Branch regarding a sitting president, would ever touch this in a million years, is ludicrous in and of itself. Even if it were true, it would mean that our Constitution was bastardized, and that our entire system of checks and balances failed.
They didn’t fail, they worked perfectly, and he is indeed, President Barack Obama of the United States of America.
This is why I believe all Americans need mandatory Civics lessons from the moment of conception until their deaths. It never ceases to amaze me how many otherwise reasonably intelligent people, have no idea how their own ‘gummint’ works.
The Internet (not invented by Al Gore, by the way) is both a blessing and a curse in modern politics. Obama would not have won the nomination without it, or the presidency. I’m all for free speech and am a stalwart defender of the First Amendment, but there has to be some responsibility under it too. You can’t yell ‘fire’ in a crowded theater, nor should you be able to blindly post vitriol on either side of the political spectrum without some basis in fact.
This is the primary reason WatchDogWag does not allow for blind posting replies. We’ve read the pure, unadulterated hatred all over the local and national blogs, and we simply will not accept that as being reasonable to reasonable political discourse.
The Founders wrote it and made it the First Amendment within the Bill of Rights, for good reason. They wanted all citizens to be able to call old King George III a horse’s ass right to his face and not lose their heads over it. The First Amendment protects only political speech; it was perhaps the most brilliant of the decisions made by our Founders to enshrine this concept as number one.
Your right to speak freely is not covered by the First however. And your right to speak freely may end as my fist connects with your nose. Speech is broadly defined, but always has consequence attached to it, even constitutionally protected political free speech has consequence.
I absolutely abhor the frightening concepts of campus speech codes and hate speech/crimes slowly but surely being ensconced into actual laws governing same.
Call me old fashioned, but I’ve always believed that the answer to hateful or offending speech is more speech, not less!
The last thing that I’d want are these people lurking underground somewhere because we’ve passed these laws, perhaps with good intention, but failing to understand or contemplate their consequences. I think we are slipping down a slope of a hybrid type of super fascism that frankly, scares the hell out of me.
I want the giant Keogh light of full, supernova bright sunshine all over these kinds of people all across the political spectrum. I don’t want them hiding or lurking as I think that is far more dangerous than anything they could possibly ever say.
Sunshine is nature’s very best disinfectant and it is politics very best disinfectant too! So, as annoying as these conspiracy nutcases are, I will defer to their right to be wrong with the hope that I will know exactly who these people are every day of my life.
You should too!