Spot on post by Jay Nordlinger at NRO, both his article and his follow-up at The Corner:
Readers have made some points about my Rush Limbaugh bit in Impromptus today, and a few of these points, I forgot to make myself. In particular, I should have noted this: One of the creepiest, most disturbing things about the “war on Rush” — particularly as orchestrated from the White House? Limbaugh is a private citizen. A reader wrote, “The same people who gasped because the FBI surveilled John Lennon are more than happy to have government employees — including Emanuel and Gibbs — conduct a campaign to demonize and diminish a radio personality for political purposes.”
Rush is a big boy, and he can handle it. But still . . . There is something creepy about bringing the weight of the government down on a radio host, even if that host is prominent, influential, and brave.
Couldn’t President Obama save this heaviness for Ahmadinejad, Assad, Kim Jong Il, and other real villains?
Also, weren’t we supposed to have a new kind of politics in the Obama era? Change and all that? A discarding of the bad old ways? And here we have Carville and Begala . . .
Well, let that same reader talk about it: “So who’s working on the Rush campaign? Perhaps the two most execrable individuals in American politics, Carville and Begala.”
That’s putting it a little strongly, but, still, that’s putting it — and the Obama era doesn’t seem so terribly new, except for the galloping socialization of the country.
I made some of these same points directed at AllahPundit at HotAir:
Why the fixation on Rush as a “private citizen”? The idea, I take it, is that Obama’s bringing the enormous power of the presidency to bear on a poor, defenseless Joe Public, but Limbaugh’s anything but defenseless (as today’s debate challenge proves) and considerably more powerful, I think we’d all agree, than the average congressman who would be considered fair game as a public official. If the White House had picked him out of a phone book or was rooting around in his trash, that’d be an egregious breach of privacy, but he’s one of the most powerful people in American media, with a following in the millions, and they haven’t done anything untoward (yet?). In fact, strictly speaking, they’re not “going after” him at all. They’re going after the GOP, to tar them by association with Rush and they’re willing to inflate his influence to do so. It’s Republicans who are suffering from having to thread the needle between defending Limbaugh and rejecting the “I want him to fail” rhetoric. What harm has Rush suffered? His stature’s never been greater, as he himself acknowledges right here.
Take all this and substitute MICHELLE MALKIN in all places you reference RUSH and answer your own questions as I asked you in Ed’s thread on this. If the Federal government was trashing Michelle Malkin, misrepresenting her, smearing her and then propping her up as the leader of the GOP to tar and feather them with a false caricature of Michelle Malkin, would you be so quick to just throw your boss under the bus?
Michael in MI on March 4, 2009 at 5:23 PM
I’m saying he can handle himself, as can Michelle, and he did a fine job of it here. I concede there’s a debate to be had about how much influence someone would need to be able to have a “fair fight” with the White House, but I think a guy with 20 million listeners qualifies. Michelle probably doesn’t.
Allahpundit on March 4, 2009 at 5:28 PM
Being able to handle himself is not the issue, AllahPundit. Something isn’t just or unjust simply because the object of the attack can handle oneself. The onus is on the Administration.
It’s like a man hitting a woman. A man should *never* hit a woman, no matter whether or not she can ‘handle herself’. A gentleman simply does not do that.
Same thing with the Federal government. It is above the dignity of the Federal government to be attacking-smearing-making fun of media members. It’s a matter of dignity and unofficial ethics and class and respect for the position of authority.
I really can’t figure out why you don’t understand that, other than you just don’t like Rush Limbaugh so your view is tainted.
Michael in MI on March 4, 2009 at 5:35 PM
And this was my contribution to Ed Morrissey’s great take on this at HotAir:
But first, spot-on, Ed Morrissey. Spot-on analysis. This is an attack, NOT a “promotion”. When the Left smears Michelle Malkin and misrepresents her views and then “promotes” her as the leader of the Conservative movement with the purpose of discrediting Michelle AND all Conservatives, only the naive would call that a “promotion” that helps her.
When the White House, the mass media, the Democrats and the Left are taking everything you say completely out of context, smearing your message, misrepresenting everything you say and then propping up THAT as representative of you and your message, I don’t see how AllahPundit considers that a help to Rush Limbaugh.
What Rush Limbaugh does is what AllahPundit describes. He shines a light on the Democrats and the Left’s message, he plays their speeches in full context, he reads their idiotic op-eds in full context and then goes on to explain what they mean, using their own words in full context. That is NOT what the Left, mass media, White House and Democrat Party is doing with Rush.
The Left smears their opponents and then presents that message as representative of their opponent.
I’d like to know how AllahPundit would feel if this were the Left, President and Democrats going after Michelle Malkin in the same way. Would he say that smearing Michelle Malkin and misrepresenting her views was propping her up and making her more popular and would be a good thing for her website and reputation? What if the Left-President-Democrats decided to say that everyone on the right was represented by the homophobic, racist, anti-immigrant, anti-Hispanic, Bible-thumping, bigoted Michelle Malkin? Would AllahPundit just turn around and say that Michelle Malkin was not a private citizen and the Left-President-Democrat Party had every right to attack her like that? And then he would blow it off as he is doing with the attack on Rush?
Michael in MI on March 4, 2009 at 12:58 PM
Their motivation is nothing more or less than exploiting the fact that MICHELLE MALKIN is unpopular (or so they believe) with most of the country. If that’s true, it’s MICHELLE MALKIN’s fault, not theirs. They’re not insulting HER, they’re simply promoting HER to leverage that unpopularity against the GOP. If it’s untrue, then they’ve shot themselves in the foot by raising the profile of a WOMAN who might turn the country against them.
Here’s the bottom line: The only sure winner in all of this is MICHELLE MALKIN HERSELF, because this is bound to increase HER influence. That’s why it’s bizarre that so many of you are taking offense. If you truly believe that MICHELLE MALKIN is conservatism’s best messenger, then you should be euphoric over the free publicity SHE’s getting out of this. In fact, Peter Daou (a lefty) over at the Huffington Post is wringing his hands for precisely that reason.
Allahpundit on March 4, 2009 at 11:13 AM
Now, consider that statement and consider the way that the Left “promotes” Michelle Malkin and her conservative message. They don’t “promote” her in an intellectually honest way, explaining her beliefs and values and principles in context. They smear her, and then promote THAT as what Michelle Malkin represents. They work to marginalize her and ALL conservatives by putting up a completely bastardized version of Michelle’s views — an thus the views of conservatives — and then use that to turn people off to not only Michelle, but to all conservatism in general.
THAT is the effort that is going on now, AllahPundit. And the fact that you and many others cannot see that is very disheartening, to say the least.
Michael in MI on March 4, 2009 at 1:04 PM
For those questioning the validity of the “peace” protestor assault on the soldier and his family (which I posted about HERE) (1), feel free to actually go to the Gathering of Eagles-NY website and read the posted AAR (After Action Report) (2) filed and posted by the military member whose family was assaulted. They are working on getting their video posted and possibly filing charges against the people who assaulted them. They will be posting updates, so feel free to check back often there, instead of just ignorantly speculating on whether things are “fishy” or not.
Also, as a few have mentioned already, this is SOP for the “peace” crowd (3), and has been since 2003. These are not just simply a few ‘radicals’ that make the rest of the so-called “peace” movement look badly. This *is* the “peace” movement. They are not for peace, they are simply anti-‘American involvement in stopping evil around the world’. If the “peace” movement was truly for peace, they would be taking their asses to the countries where evil exists and protesting the terrorists, dictators and oppressive regimes that start these wars. But they don’t. Therefore, they are worthless. Not to mention, the leaders of these movements – Medea Benjamin and the Communists of CODE PINK, International A.N.S.W.E.R., World Can’t Wait, etc – are anti-America and pro-terrorists and pro-dictators. In fact, the CODE PINKo Commies held a fund-raiser and then sent the $600,000 they raised to the terrorists in Fallujah, Iraq back in 2004 or 2005. Google it.
No peace protester in history has ever done anything to stop evil. None. Period. The true peacemakers are those of the United States military. But you’ll never hear that acknowledged from anyone in the “peace” movement.
UPDATE: Deebow at Blackfive has posted on this and he is majorly Ticked Off: Can I Beat the Hippies Now? (4)
[ … ] I have arrested a few people in my career, and let me clear up for anyone wondering that anyone who puts a boot to someone lying on the ground or punches a minor in the face is going to be dealing with me and shortly after that, they will be on their way to jail in the back of my patrol car.
You have to go the link, if you haven’t already and read the first person account of what happened.
I am getting so tired of having to be angry about things like this. I know that our own civil disobedience counter protests is having an effect, otherwise they would not react this way. There should be no reason that the police are not taking sides; because that is their job.
But no CNN, no MSNBC, or the alphabet networks speaking to this. Just crickets….
Obama talks about chickens coming home to roost…
There is going to come a time in this country, that is probably not long from now, that these “peace” activists are going to get what is coming to them for the despicable ways that they are treating veterans and their families.
I am getting tired of these Peace Fascists, Libtard College Professors and Protester Thugs believing that their free speech is “more equal” than the free speech of my comrades in arms, who have shed blood, lost friends, lost limbs, saved children who are not their own and sanctified the ground of Iraq with their blood, and the blood of their friends to ensure that these oxygen thieving, mouth breathing, Luddite, uninformed, hateful, wastes of skin can take time away from sipping their lattes and eating their organic fat-free muffins so they can skip class and go down and throw verbal excrement and physically assault better men and women than they could ever hope to be….
“It behooves every man to remember that the work of the critic is of altogether secondary importance, and that in the end, progress is accomplished by the man who does things.”
I will try to just keep saying that to myself…..
Retired Colonel Harry Riley, one of the founders of Eagles Up, sent a letter to the Edinboro Borough Manager, Taras (TJ) Jemetz, about this incident and was sent the following response:
Sent: Wednesday, April 23, 2008 12:03 PM
Subject: RE: Iraq War Veteran and Family Assaulted!
Thank you for your inquiry.
The matter is under investigation. The DA is being consulted regarding possible charges against the people involved.
Taras (TJ) Jemetz
We shall see. I’ll believe it when I see it. I’ve included his address if you’d also like to address this issue as an freedom-loving American.
The police returned their camera today and they are preparing their video report of the event. Please help send this to as many media folks as you know. Pass it along and share it on your blogs. If you’d like to contact Carrie or Jason about this incident, let me know offline. Once I get the video, I’ll post for all to see!
I’ve got an update to this on my military blog, A Soldier’s Perspective. You won’t believe your eyes!!
[Cross-posted at my MySpace blog HERE.]