Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Liberals equal terrorists

Via Atrios, I see that those icons of the right-wing blogosphere, Powerline, have penned the following remarks about a better American than they, in response to his apparently wrong prediction about the prospects for the Iraqi election:
Jimmy Carter isn't just misguided or ill-informed. He's on the other side.

To which Matt Yglesias responds:
Jimmy Carter left office as one of the least-loved presidents ever, and you'd still be hard-pressed to find a liberal who'll mount a really full-throated defense of his tenure in office. But on the other side? Not some academic or blogger or activist type, but a veteran of the United States military and a former President of the United States. On the other side. A traitor. These are serious allegations, seriously demented.

I don't think it's at all unreasonable to say that Hindrocket owes Carter a serious apology. Flinging this sort of totally unsubstantiated allegation is disgusting and utterly destructive of any effort to have serious debate about anything. Is Jimmy Carter really in league with the jihadist forces responsible for the murder of thousands of Americas? Is this what Power Line's fans and those who link to them believe? That a jihadist agent managed to get himself elected president? That an ex-president turned traitor?

Ah, but Matt: Being Republican means never saying you're sorry, whether you have to or not. You should know that by now.

But this is just par for the course for Powerline. Accusing liberals generically of being not merely traitorous in inclination, but in fact actually, knowingly aligned with radical Islamists is a stock in trade line of argument for these guys.

See, for instance, this earlier Powerline post:
We have often commented on how many leftists have seamlessly taken up the cause of Islamic fascism--a movement that superficially seems to have little in common with Marxism or other forms of Western socialism. The alliance between the Western left and Islamism suggests that Western radicalism was always mostly about hating the West in general, and especially, America.

Regular readers know that this "traitor talk" has long been a topic of this blog, and I've posted at length on many occasions about how it marks a real rise in latent far-right impulses. Still, Digby had one of the more insightful discussions of the problem the other day, bouncing off a similarly trenchant post by Ted Barlow. Both are worthy contributions.

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