Liberals Redefine “Extremism” And The “Political Center”
On every front, the pattern in recent years has been for the left to starkly redefine all political debate to the point that anything which does not conform to the liberal agenda is instantly characterized as “rancor,” “extremism,” or “hate.”
Among the major factors inspiring the conservative grassroots across America to take action is the seeming inability of those in office to stand fast against the liberal onslaught. And while this has always been a problem for career politicians, no matter how sincerely and idealistically they began their terms of office, the situation has clearly gotten worse in recent years. With the recent raising of the debt ceiling, Barack Obama was granted a veritable green light to shamelessly continue his outlandish spending binge. Worse yet, those relative few in the Congress who sought to hold the line on spending have since been essentially criminalized, and are regularly denigrated in the harshest of terms.
Meanwhile, Democrats continue spewing absurd claims that every negative consequence of the reprehensible debt increase somehow does not redound to the deal itself, but is entirely the fault of those who warned of its pitfalls. It is as if Standard and Poors, and every other bond rating service was indifferent to Washington’s intentions to relentlessly borrow and spend the nation into oblivion, but got really concerned when those few principled members of Congress dared to argue the point.
Of course the perversion of political discourse is hardly confined to the government’s fiscal disasters. On every front, the pattern in recent years has been for the left to starkly redefine all political debate to the point that anything which does not conform to the liberal agenda is instantly characterized as “rancor,” “extremism,” or “hate.” Even on such seemingly oblique topics as “global climate change,” an issue about which it might once have seemed reasonable to analyze and evaluate scientific data and arrive at objective conclusions, the left dodges honest discussion and resorts to invective and accusation. The field is sharply divided between those who suggest that recent temperature fluctuations be considered in light of historical data, and apoplectic liberals who assert that any doubt can only be the conspiratorial sedition of “climate change deniers.”
While the American left has engaged in such tactics since its inception, the degree to which it currently does so has burgeoned in recent years. Though the practice was codified in Saul Alinsky’s 1971 publication “Rules For Radicals,” it was in the wake of the 2000 presidential election debacle that the Democrat/liberal political machine made a determination to put the strategy into high gear.
Having failed to alter the outcome of the Florida recount even after several attempts, and finally being thwarted by the Supreme Court, Democrats were forced to concede the race. However, even though they were never able to manufacture the votes necessary to change the outcome, they determined to thereafter use the close tally, and the manner in which they were prevented from continuing their chicanery, as an excuse to incessantly assert that the race was somehow “stolen” from them. To their surprise, weak kneed Republicans responded in a manner that conveyed defensiveness and even conciliation. Thus they were emboldened to continue and even expand the practice.
President Bush’s misguided and insipid “new tone,” pursued on the heels of the election in naive and futile hopes of “reaching across the aisle” and “ending the rancor,” only served to further motivate them. And in the end, after a very brief respite in the wake of 9-11 (during which they were compelled to act not as partisan Democrats but as patriotic Americans), the venom and malevolence resumed and eventually reached unprecedented levels. In the process, the “center,” according to the movers and shakers, was shifted significantly to the left.
Public disillusionment with a Republican Party that had largely accepted this premise led to the electoral disasters of 2006 (No, it was not the Iraq War) and eventually, 2008. GOP spending excesses (though they now seem minuscule), along with a willingness to expand entitlements and encroach on freedoms, convinced America that the Republican Party lacked the courage and resolve to steer the nation back to its proper course. In the wake of Barack Obama’s inauguration the revolting fawning and acquiescence to his agenda further solidified the notion in the minds of the American people that the “inner circle” Republicans had indeed completely lost their way.
So it was that when the “Tea Party” arose from the ashes of the 2008 electoral debacle, political insiders from both sides of the aisle perceived it as a mortal threat to the perks and benefits of their status quo. And while some perceptive Republican pragmatists, along with the relative handful of true conservatives in the Congress have recognized the ultimate value and worthiness of truly committed and principled conservatives at the grassroots, establishment politicians from both parties are unrestrained in their contempt for the movement and attempts to disparage and trivialize it. Their primary tactic is to portray it as hopelessly out on the extreme right “fringe.”
Hence, devotion to fiscal sanity is “draconian” and “mean spirited.” Concern for the moral preservation and restoration of the nation and its foundational institutions including traditionally defined marriage, is “homophobic” and “hateful.” Protection of the unborn is “sexist” and “anti-woman.” Recognition of the cultural and spiritual roots of the nation, and their critical importance to its future are “religious intolerance” and “xenophobia.” And the list goes on. Yet Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D.-CA) is dubbed “mainstream” despite having ranted to an audience of far leftists that “The Tea Party can go straight to hell,” which she followed with the transparent threat “And I intend to help them get there!”
Undoubtedly the most valuable collaborator of this abhorrent ruse is the all too common “Republican” who agrees with such subversive premises. Senator John McCain (R.-AZ) once again proved his worth to the left when he derided the Tea Party as “Hobbits.” Former Senator and RINO extraordinaire Alan Simpson of Wyoming did likewise, while proving just how out of the mainstream his version of a “Republican” is. In an April 2011 interview, he ominously warned MSNBC host Chris Matthews of GOP members who oppose the homosexual agenda and advocate traditional morality.
Nevertheless, the voice of the heartland, maligned and ridiculed though it may be among the “Ruling Class,” constitutes an incredibly powerful stabilizing factor in the nation’s current discussions. Those who would reinvent “right” and “wrong” along lines that serve their personal agendas, while perverting the foundational cultural and moral pillars on which the nation was established, are finding to their dismay that Real America is no longer listening to them. With each passing day, it is they who, despite their self-absorbed grandstanding and claims of birthright and pedigree, are further relegated to rightful status as “the fringe.”
Christopher G. Adamo is a resident of southeastern Wyoming and has been involved in state and local politics for many years. He writes for several prominent conservative websites, as has written for regional and national magazines. His contact information and article archives can be found at www.chrisadamo.com, and he can be followed on Twitter @CGAdamo.