Politicus Vomitus

An opinion is an opinion is an opinion. Yes, there is a difference between expressing an opinion based on fact versus one based on personal belief. Also facts are made to be altered, misunderstood, distorted and misinterpreted. It seems to me the larger question is -- does the first amendment mean what it says or only what current political winds interpret it to mean.

Some examples: 

Yesterday I was running errands and Rush Limbaugh showed up on the FM dial. I haven't listened into the olde Rush dog in awhile so I gave him his sixty seconds. It seems some sheriff in Arizona said that right wing commentators, specifically Rush rhetoric, had caused a 22 yr. old adult to open fire on those people in Tucson.*

*notice I have used some facts here. Tucson is a fact. People and open fire are facts. I have gleaned from the news that he was 22 yrs. old. I have added what I consider to be a fact that he is an adult not a "kid" or "disturbed youth" as some reports have characterized him. I would compromise on "young man" but that's as far as I would tolerate this stretching of the facts.

Back to Rush. Apparently the sheriff in question went on to say that one political party was trying to save America and the other was attempting to destroy it. So Rush asked whether he should turn the other cheek and not respond, after all the sheriff was speaking under some duress. But Rush being Rush suggested that the sheriff was being coached by 'democrat policy makers'. I have no problem with this Rushism, he is who he is. You know that first amendment thing I mentioned before, let them all speak I firmly believe.

Here is where Rush and I have issue. While ranting (I rant, you rant, he rants, we all rant...) Rush said that he clearly disagrees with the sheriff's characterization of the republican party and the good Rusher went on to make some good points about how the politics of the last two years illustrates the democrats may not actually be "saving the country". Again, no problem with the argument at all. Rush further said that making statements like that about the two parties only serves to divide us further at a time when everyone should be working together in a non-partisan way. Particularly, says Rush, on issues like the Arizona shootings. No place for inflammatory speech. Now I was a bit shocked to hear that out of the olde Shockmeister himself, so I stayed tuned.

Rush once again read the sheriff's statement verbatim; one party saving, one party destroying. Then, wait for it, you knew he would. Rush said: "Since I completely disagree with the sheriff and I happen to believe just the opposite is true about the two partys." Well so much for non-partisan, non-inflammatory, we're all in this together. Al Franken was wrong; Rush Limbaugh is not a big, fat liar; he is simply a bigot and he knows it.

Part two. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tripping and falling down is not news. And no matter how much Wolf Blitzer, Hannity, Rather, Koppel or whomever is playing the role of talking head today protests-- you are not journalists. At best you host an infotainment show on cable, at worse you are a media whore hucking Toyotas and Subway foot longs for your corporate overseers. By the way, CNN (The Cable NEWS Network) did a montage this morning of dozens of politicians slipping and falling. You all remember Gerry Ford right. No not John Steward nor Steven Colbert but CNN, I assume Fox covered Hillary's pratfall as well, but possibly with some comment about Obama's foreign policy taking a fall.

Let me repeat - Not News!

Final part for today, I had six but three will be enough, I am beginning to feel better.

Sarah Palin, need I go on?

Seems Sarah had a 'hit list' for last fall's election. Seems Sarah has a graphic display of the U.S. with  gun sight superimposed on each congressional districts she was "targeting", seems Sarah does not think that was inflammatory. Now she could have approved something like a braying donkey or maybe a donkey sitting on his ass or even a big, bold red X over those congressional districts. Nope it was a gun sight.

Yesterday Sarah said linking that graphic to the violence in Tucson is ridiculous. I agree. Not that her ad was a good idea, but that she had the right to use it. However, Sarah also said yesterday that we should all be working together to lower the level of the political debate that has gotten so out of control Sarah Palin said that, no really Sarah Palin. Next thing you know Ann Coulter will be wearing flowers in her hair.

So to Sarah's speech writer, try this on for size.

"You know, sometimes things get by us when we have a big staff. In hindsight, we should not have used that graphic. We should be debating the merits of our positions and not demonizing our opponents who hold views different from our own. Using that image, which appears to be a gun sight was poorly conceived and I regret that we used it."

You see we call that lower the rhetoric, I believe that is what Sarah was suggesting we all do. I suggest leading by example.

I will now return to never-neverland where all the men are beautiful, all the women are strong and they all think I'm wonderful.
US Map graphic -- NYTimes