Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Who knew that when you go around accusing Obama of being a foreigner, outsider, unpatriotic and basically a terrorist sympathizer Manchurian candidate it would unleash the frothing hatred that Republicans have been whipping up in the "base" all these years?
Just a few recent examples of hate-mongering run rampant:
Yesterday, John McCain delivered an unhinged anti-Obama diatribe in New Mexico, and when he posed a rhetorical question -- "Who is the real Barack Obama?" -- someone shouted, "A terrorist!" McCain paused momentarily, but did not comment on the remark.
Also yesterday, Sarah Palin repeated one of her unusually stupid attacks, rehashing the nonsense that Obama "pals around" with terrorists. One man in the audience, responding to Palin's smear, shouted, "Kill him!" Palin also did not comment on the remark.
At the same Florida event, Republicans shouted abuse at journalists, hurling obscenities. The Washington Post reported, "One Palin supporter shouted a racial epithet at an African American sound man for a network and told him, 'Sit down, boy.'"
And just to top things off, last night, the Republican Party of Pennsylvania announced its belief that Obama is "a terrorist's best friend."
As Steve Benen put it:
I expected Republicans to fight hard to win this year. I also expected them to ignore traditional norms, throw caution to the wind, and dispense with honesty and decency. But I didn't expect a wholesale descent into madness. These folks have just lost their collective minds.
Are McCain and Palin responsible for lunatics who shout insane comments at their rallies? Of course not. That said, when the Republican campaign, mired in desperation, deliberately stokes the fires of hate and fear, using disgusting lies to argue that Obama is literally dangerous, no one should be surprised when the far-right Republican base becomes frenzied.