79 thoughts on “The “Real Victims” of “Blood Libel”.

  1. john sherman says:

    The best comment on Palin I saw was one by a Jewish group saying that unless she had been accused of killing Christian children to us their blood to make matzoh, she should not use the phrase.

    You left out the fundamentalists and the “war on Christianity” (or sometimes “war on religion” because there is only one). Wish Bill O’Reilly “Happy holidays” and you’re practically crucifying Jesus all over again.

  2. Mike Kennedy says:

    I thought Henninger had an interesting analysis today in the Journal. Palin must really be a threat to the left to get so much attention.

    I wouldn’t vote for her in a million years, but she sets off near-panic among the left.

    I saw several Republicans and Tea Party leaders — two on Meet the Press alone on Sunday — who were more eloquent than anyone I’ve seen on the left, though Obama did a nice job last night. However, we see what we want to see and hear what we want to hear.


    1. frogster says:

      Don’t be silly. Leftists like me salivate at the thought of Palin gaining the 2012 nomination. We could run Obama’s pal Bill Ayers and still defeat her.

      1. Mike Kennedy says:

        Actually, I don’t think she has to run, nor does she even have to be in politics. I think the left is frightened by the fact she sells so many books and gets covered in the media constantly and seems to be everywhere. I heard she even had a reality show. Seriously?

        It seems to me she can do more harm to the left by being………..well, Palin.

      2. Oh good lord, Mike. I like a put-on as much as anyone. But tell me you’re joking. Because if you look closely it ain’t the Democrats who are worried about Palin.

      3. Mike Kennedy says:

        No, I’m not. Liberals are preoccupied with her. I think some conservatives are afraid she will run, but it is liberals and their frothing, foaming at the mouth that keeps her relevant.

        She is not going away and the media is not going to stop covering her as long as she raises so many liberal hackles. She just generates too many readers, watchers etc.

      4. PM says:

        The left isn’t afraid of Palin–rather, they see her as a caricature of the right (just like Glenn Beck). Both of them embody everything that the left assumes of the right–that they are stupid and shallow and emotional and don’t believe in science or logic or reason, that they rely solely on TV and talk radio for their information, etc.

        And, frankly, palin and Beck pretty much are caricatures.

        People like watching Sarah Palin for the same reason they watch automobile crashes and train wrecks, or all of that really bad reality TV.

      5. PM says:

        The real problem is that there is, or was, or should be, a lot more to the right than Palin or Beck.

        Seriously, Mike, don’t you agree?

        can’t the right come up with something better?

    2. Jim Leinfelder says:

      Except you, though, right? You’ve got the market cornered on objective reality, right? Everybody else, hopelessly self deluded. But you, ah, gimlet-eyed and tuned right into unalloyed realness. Must be frustrating.

      1. Mike Kennedy says:

        Hey PM: No, I don’t think Palin and Beck represent the right any more than Keith O and some of the frothing liberals at MSNBC represent the left.

        Look, if the liberal message worked on Air America and MSNBC, The NYT and other places, the left wouldn’t be pissing and moaning about Fox News and talk radio.

        The left can believe any distortions it wants about the right. It’s not the left that the right is trying to win over. It’s the 80 percent that don’t define themselves as left or liberal.

        That’s why Henninger had it spot on in the analysis the other day — neither side will stop fighting with each other.

        Um, Jim, I have never claimed to be objective. I’m conservative in some ways — more liberal in others. But I do vote conservative most of the time.

        I don’t have all the answers but I have opinions, just as many as you have, if not more. Also, my life doesn’t revolve around politics, though I like to irritate ideologues………………..like you.

  3. PM says:

    One of the things about the conservatism of the 1970’s and 1980’s i admired was the way that they were willing to call out the “victimology” that went along with identity politics and multiculturalism, etc.

    Now, they wallow in that same mantle of victimhood constantly, even fight for the right to don it as soon as possible.

    What happened?

    1. Well, right there in Arizona, in John McCain, is a good example of what happened to conservatives. Few high figures have disgraced the,selves as badly as McCain. And why? Because paranoia-whipped talk radio-style “Republicanism” would have ended his career in a heart-beat if he hadn’t repudiated almost everything he was once admired for.

  4. I think of myself as a reasonably well informed person and I’d never heard the term “blood libel” before yesterday. I’m glad to have had it explained to me and now recognize its offensiveness. But it’s absurd to think most people should have dropped over in a dead faint upon hearing it. Well, now we know.

    As for comparisons between yesterday’s contributions to the national dialogue from Sarah Palin and President Obama…there were many differences. But the most telling one was that Obama made it collectively and inclusively about us. Palin made it all about her. It is ever thus…and an important distinction to bear in mind. Obama sees himself as the leader of a nation; Palin sees herself as Kim Kardashian.

    1. PM says:

      Minnesota can be a parochial place. Working with a prominent CEO of a Fortune 500 here in town (now since retired, he was born and raised here, but went to Ivy League schools for his BA and MBA), we had a major success, and i said to him “mazel tov”, and he had no idea what i was talking about.

      Jewish culture hasn’t had much of an impact here in MN.

      1. Jim Leinfelder says:

        Must’ve been a Minneapolis-born chap, likely coming of age when Mpls had the unfortunate distinction of being described by Carey McWilliams as “the capital of anti-Semitism in the United States.”

        Its fraternal twin, St. Paul, by contrast, was not so ill-disposed. Had he been from across the river, he likely would have gotten the reference readily and with good cheer.

  5. Newt says:

    Palin was pilloried as the cause of the shooting within hours of its occurrence. She was fully justified in issuing the statement she made.

    As for “blood libel,” America is getting fatigued by limitations on English language usage. A certain ethno-religious subset lays claim to being the only victims the world has ever known and thus has claimed exclusive right to certain phrases and terms.

    Sorry, it doesn’t work that way.

    1. PM says:

      Truer words were never spoken, Newt–who are these people who want to deny Republicans like Sarah Palin equal status as victims? What do those jews have that she doesn’t?

    2. Newt: You’re like the poor Tourette’s kid in the back of the class shouting “treason” every couple minutes, by way of trying to contribute to a discussion.

    3. Newt says:

      Aren’t you tired of seeing people being castigated for using “holocaust,” “genocide,” “gulag” or “Nazi” because people like Alan Dershowitz insist – for example – that the slaughter of 7 million Russians or 2 million Cambodians is not worthy of these terms?

      And now “blood libel” violates the speech code?

      What other speech is off limits? Please do share.

      P.S. (In defense of Dershowitz, he stepped up to say that Palin’s remarks were not anti-semitic.)

      1. Dennis Lang says:

        Come on Newt, cut the verbal diarhea, break through “the limitations of the English language” and share with us philistines your knowledge of “ethno-religious subset” persecution. Have you ever experienced a reasoned conjecture, let alone an original idea? (The beauty of anonymity on these things….)

  6. Yeah…I don’t know how Obama failed to mention Palin as one of the victims in this tragedy. He could have put her right between the nine-year-old girl and the guy who died shielding his wife from the bullets.

  7. Mrs. Fay says:

    I have heard one Republican, Trey Grayson, go on record (with NPR, I believe) saying that maybe we need to have a more civil conversation. Secretary of State (KY) Grayson was the person that Congresswoman Giffords had sent an email to on this topic, the night before she was shot.
    If you are looking for Mrs. Palin’s echo chamber, try reading Michelle Malkin’s take on the Memorial service…talk about being victimized.
    I did find the crowd’s demeanor a bit off putting for a memorial service, but the attending a Lutheran Church in New England as a child would make anyone super duper stoic. I think even the President was abit taken aback by the enthusiasm. He kept his cool and his speech was perfect in tone.

  8. I wonder how many people commenting on this post would have said the same things about Ronald Reagan in 1980 that are being said about Sarah Palin today. Point being that the things we find reprehensible about Palin might be things that actually appeal to the authoritarians present in the American electorate.

      1. Only if you consider a small, unbudging minority a “signficant number of people.”

        Lots of differences between Palin and Reagan. But one huge one is that Reagan did not hide from open debate or scrutiny by conventional media. He did not need scripting or protection from aggressive interviewers. There was abundant evidence that he could read.

        Oh…he also served two full terms as governor of the country’s most populous state. Palin managed a half term as governor of Alaska, a state with fewer than a million residents.

        As I have previously stated in this digital space, Palin hints at presidential ambitions in order to maintain her highly profitable personal brand. I believe there is next to no chance she will actually run.

      2. PM says:

        I agree with pretty much everything you said–but she continues to have some significant appeal–which is totally beyond me.

        Maybe it is just a deep unwillingness on the part of the right to criticize her. maybe it is fear that if anyone does so, they will in turn become the target of the Rushes and beck’s who seem to dominate the right (and seem to really like Palin).

        I really have a hard time understanding her appeal.

    1. Big shock here, I was never a fan of Reagan’s. Still today he strikes me as the perfect pitchman for status quo (which usually implies regressive social policies) corporate-think. But I never thought of Reagan as “un-civil”. His combat rhetoric was mainly focused on the Rooskies and all our other enemies (usually fed to him on 5 X 7 note cards by Michael Deaver). Another thing we’ll never know, but I suspect he’d be horrified and mortified by the ugliness of the “new conservative” message machine. It took the Bushies to see the need for Lee Atwater.

      1. Mike Kennedy says:

        Well, well, well, another myth of the left perpetuated:

        To wit: Brian’s strikingly refined view that Ronald Reagan just read off note cards.

        If any leftie would actually do some heaving lifting and read more than their party’s talking points, perhaps they would learn something. Then again, hell migh freeze over, given our current climate change.

        But for those who are reasonable lefties, you might try to pick up a copy of “Reagan in His Own Hand,” a collection of his letters and writings that show this was hardly a man who didn’t think and think big.

        It is a very interesting look inside the mind of a man that liberals never fully understood or wanted to understand. Or try “Ronald Reagan: The Power of Conviction and the Success of His Presidency.”

        Caution: This takes time and effort. Oh, never mind.

  9. I might agree that there are big differences between Reagan and Palin, but I also wonder whether the electorate has changed – it seems to me we have become much more authoritarian since the Reagan days. Who would have imagined that a US president would setup our own gulag archipelago where virtually unrestricted torture would occur, and a Democratic president would continue many of those policies?

    1. Mike Kennedy says:

      Well, Rob, your comments just confirm my observation about you — same with
      Brian — good leftie foot soliers to the bitter end.

      Challenging you to read anything that would show you something other than your concrete, programmed view of the world is a waste of time.

      Tally Ho, then. Carry on.

      1. I’ve read plenty of books by conservatives and their movement. What did I say that made you think I’m some sort of automaton? That Reagan was programmed by his years with GE?

    2. Mike Kennedy says:

      Now isn’t that just priceless, Brian. You’ve swallowed the liberal hook line and sinker for so many years I’m surprised you haven’t sprouted gills.

    3. I always liked this, from Matt Taibbi:

      ” … while some of us are old enough to remember that once upon a time, these arguments always had at least some sort of ideological flavor to them, i.e. the throwdowns were at least rooted in some sort of real political issue (war, taxes, immigration, etc.) we’ve now got a whole generation that is accustomed to screaming at cultural enemies as an end in itself, for the sheer dismal fun of it. Start fighting first, figure out the reasons later.

      Sarah Palin is the Empress-Queen of the screaming-for-screaming’s sake generation. The people who dismiss her book Going Rogue as the petty, vindictive meanderings of a preening paranoiac with the IQ of a celery stalk completely miss the book’s significance, because in some ways it’s really a revolutionary and innovative piece of literature.

      Palin — and there’s just no way to deny this — is a supremely gifted politician. She has staked out, as her own personal political turf, the entire landscape of incoherent white American resentment. In this area she leaves even Rush Limbaugh in the dust.

      The reason for that is that poor Rush is an anachronism, in the sense that his whole schtick revolves around talking about real political issues. And real political issues are boring.

      Listen to Rush any day of the week and you’ll hear him playing the old-fashioned pundit game: he goes about the dreary business of picking through the policies and positions and public statements of Democrats and poking holes in them, arguing with them, attacking them with numbers and facts and pseudo-facts and non-facts and whatever else he can get his hands on, honest or not, but at least he tries. The poor guy nearly killed himself this summer trying to find enough horseshit to arm himself with against the health care bill, coming up with various fairy tales about how state health agencies used death panels to try to kill cancer patients who just wanted to live a little longer, how section 1233 is Auschwitz all over again, yada yada yada.

      Rush is no Einstein, but the man does research. It may be fallacious and completely dishonest research, but he does it all the same. His battlefield is world politics and most of the time the relevant action is taking place in Washington. As good as he is at what he does, he still has to travel to the action; he himself isn’t the action.

      Sarah Palin’s battlefield, on the other hand, is whatever is happening five feet in front of her face. She is building a political career around the little interpersonal wars in the immediate airspace surrounding her sawdust-filled head. And in the process she connects with pissed-off, frightened, put-upon America on a plane that’s far more elemental than the mega-ditto schtick.

      1. Mike Kennedy says:

        Yeah, interesting reading — makes some good points. I think he’s right, for the most part, on the difference between the two personalities.

        Rush is by far no dummy. In fact, I’ve listened a handful of times and it’s clear he does a lot of research and is no dim bulb.

        I think the reason more people tune into conservative stations, TV shows etc. is that they are tired of liberals telling them how dumb they are. Hey, but keep it up.

        I don’t listen to Rush much but I’m becoming addicted to the Hank Haney Project with Rush Limbaugh.

        Haney, as you may know, used to be Tiger Woods coach and works with celebrities in trying to improve their game, Charles Barkley, Ray Romano and now Rush. It’s a hoot. Haney said Rush learns quickly because he’s a smart guy. Rush isn’t a half bad golfer, though, as Haney said, he has no confidence on the course.

        The bonus is that the show increasingly is showing Haney’s hot wife, who at first I thought was his daughter. Kudos, Hank.

    4. frogster says:

      I agree. I thought that Bush would lose in 2004 after the torture revelations at Abu Gharib (and the worsening situation in Iraq in general), but Kerry didn’t capitalize on it and the electorate didn’t seem to think it was that big a deal. Bush apparently co-opted the Democratic leadership with his briefings about the torture, and they spinelessly assented to it.

  10. Stephen says:

    Come on Brian; Would it have been a hilariaous moment if Hank Kingsly had been accused of inspiring OJ’s murdrous rampage through his nightly TV appearances?

    The humor springs from Hank’s clueless narcassim, lack of proportion, and reflexsive unsolicited grab at the spotlight.

    Palin responded to media and political opponents, who REPEATEDLY accused her of being an inspiration and accessory before the fact, to the (probably insane) massacre in Tuscon.

    Engage your frontal lobe before you try to make an argument OK?

    Respectfully, from the “parinoid worm” afflicted brain of someone “scared witless”. (Jesus, you guys really understand and practice civility don’t you?).

    1. As I say, what fascinates me is the degree to which the call for a civil discussion is taken personally by “conservatives” (and I continue using quotes because by even Reagan-era definitions they are something very different.). i appreciate your efforts to reaffirm my point.

      1. Stephen says:


        It surprises you when your call to conservatives for a civil discussion is taken personally?

        Try making the call without characterizing them as: “blowhards, paranoia-stoking, fearful and ill-informed, comically fervid conspiracy mongers, carnival hucksters, relentlessly self-aggrandizing, bombastic blusterers, vulnerable personalities, avid consumers of distorted messages, fearful and highly defensive” etc. (I mean; REALLY? all in one short blog post! Masterfully done.)

        You haven’t told me (us-“conservatives”) why you feel it’s germane to compare Obama’s speech to Palin’s FB message? Obama was speaking at a eulogy for the victims, and Palin was responding to public accusations that she inspired a multiple homicides. Is it because you agree with Obama and disagree with what Palin said?

        It’s would be like comparing Ronald Reagan’s Brandenberg Gate Speech to Bill Clinton’s news conference on Monica Lewinski…unfair and complete apples to oranges. Better would be Ronnie’s testimony on Iran-Contra to Billy’s testimony for the grand jury. Fair, and maybe even useful.

        What is the evidence supporting the inference her (and conservatives) political speech were the inspiration for the killer’s motivation for murder? You got anything substantive? At all?

        And if her words were the inspiration for this nut-case killer; what of it? Would you then support the proposition that Al Gore and Earth in the Balance should be “toned down” as “hysterical-to-incendiary political rhetoric”? They were favorites of the Uni-Bomber after all.

        What you’re defending I think (Conservatives cause murder) is dangerous, because I believe it is political speech you want to limit, and if you’re successful, you will find out that it isn’t just conservative speech that get’s limited. We’ll all be the poorer for it.

        Any chance you migh knock it off? Just asking.

      2. Let me reiterate a few points I’ve been trying to make,this week

        1: I don’t know what influenced Loughner. No one ever will, I suspect. i never mentioned Palin’s “surveyor’s markings”.

        2. in the context of a discussion of our coarse public, political dialogue I don’t think there is any comparison — none — between the reckless and often ridiculous distortions of fact — “tyranny”, ‘Socialist takeover”, “death panels”, “Second Amendment remedies”, etc., etc., etc. — on the part of the heavily marketed, widely broadcast, so-called “new conservative” movement and really anything on the left, beyond the occasional outburst of some cable TV jock or a raging commenter.

        3: I remain flabbergasted at the clear emotional connection between the hucksters, meaning the likes of Palin, Bachmann, Limbaugh, Hannity, Beck, etc. — and otherwise every day Republicans. It leaves the unshakable impression that those characters really are the leaders and prime message carriers for modern conservatives, and that is … astonishing.

        4: While mainstream journalists prefer to avoid inflaming the debate by saying, directly and unequivocally, that the vast preponderance of reckless invective is coming from one side of the spectrum — the right — I don’t. I believe the more cathartic angle might be to lay it out and let the public reach a clear consensus. But then I don’t have to live off the fruits of anxious sales executives.

        5: I write this blog because I LIKE the wrangle. Even it means batting the likes of Newt and bertram like a cat with balls of twine. i enjoy a good argument … and I enjoy it even more if you can bring a counter argument.

        6: But pal, Obama and Palin were speaking nearly simultaneously about the same event.. Both are regarded as national leaders. One chose to apply a healing perspective on a tragedy, while all the other could think to do was add yet more silly, ill-informed, highly personalized, “blood”-charged invective against her perceived enemies.

        In a nutshell, that’s the difference we’re talking about.

        And you’re rallying to her defense?

  11. bertram jr says:

    Even Souder starts foaming and rending his sailor suit when faced with attractractive women with conservative values.

    Who would have thunk?

  12. Mike Kennedy says:

    Souder seems to understand Reagan more than the run-of-the-mill liberal.

    I knew there were some on this board who think for themselves.

  13. maginnisbd@aol.com says:

    Hey, Bri,

    Are you going to get around to that massacre at Ft. Hood?

    Maybe next week?

    Maybe Leinie will chime in with some deep thoughts on that event.

    Seems it didn’t really register with you guys, for some odd reason.

    Don’t recall The One telepromptering about it either….

    I believe, what ,13 were killed by a psycho gunman……?

    1. Newt says:

      Ouch dude.

      The immediate clarion call by liberals for patience and fact finding after the Nidal Malik Hasan massacre was conspicuously absent in the Jared Loughner case.

      Maybe if Loughner had cried, “Allahu Akbar!” and had exchanged emails with terrorist imam Anwar al-Awlaki he would have been cut some slack by the left.

      Remember: We must not rush to judgment.

      1. Jim Leinfelder says:

        What are you on about, Newt/Bertram? Have you no self awareness? This is exactly the sort of half-assed innuendo (liberals are sympathetic toward terrorists) in place of reasoned argument critics of the right’s rhetorical excesses are pointing to.

        The issue with Hasan, as best as I can recall, was the semantic argument about whether or not his massacre at Ft. Hood was an act of “terrorism,” or just the a spasm of violence from a disaffected, self-pitying, narcissistic malcontent who didn’t want to serve in Iraq and decided to exact a bloody revenge.

        Even Mag…er, sorry, Bertram, labels him a “psycho gunman,” rather than a terrorist. So even he of the crystalline opinions seems confused.

        Conservatives, operating from a political perspective, naturally wanted his actions labeled as terrorism, and him a terrorist, in order to pin a failure to prevent an act of domestic terrorism on Obama. Certainly there were indications of failures to recognize certain of Hasan’s behaviors and communications by both Army staff and Homeland Security that could have been interpreted as signs he was a danger to others. His communication with certain radical clerics were cited as evidence for the designation of terrorist.

        More objective observers argued that his actions were less political or ideological at their core than they were personal and motivated by his unwillingness to serve in Iraq.

        It just doesn’t seem a very apt comparison to me.

      2. Newt says:

        It was the left’s mortal fear that Muslim Americans would experience a “chilling effect” if Hasan’s radical fundamentalism were linked to his massacre.

        God forbid that anyone establish a link between terrorism and Muslims. That was the left’s basis for heading off anyone’s rush to judgment. Obama led the charge.

        By contrast, the left was calling for Palin’s head within hours of the Loughner mess.

  14. john sherman says:

    The Washington Times just referred editorially to the criticism of Palin as “the latest round of an ongoing pogrom against conservative thinkers.”

    Just when you think conservatives have reached the bottom of the barrel, they open up a whole new barrel.

    Maybe those who defended Palin on the grounds she didn’t know the meaning of “blood libel” will claim the Times editors don’t know what a pogrom is.

  15. Mike Kennedy says:

    I wonder if conservatives will start speculating that this guy represents the left……nah, that would be cynical, despicable and dishonest. And only one side does that, eh?

  16. Mike Kennedy says:

    Not sure why, but apparently I can’t post the MSNBC report about one of the victims shot in the leg in Tucson threatening to kill Tea Party members.

  17. Mike Kennedy says:

    Me, high minded? Who the devil ever used those words? I resent that. I’m as low-minded as anyone here.

  18. bertram jr says:

    I’ll drink to that.

    And to Leinie saying he “doesn’t recall” the Ft. Hood massacre by the dereanged Muslim “fundamentalist.

  19. Jim Leinfelder says:

    I wrote: “As best I can recall,” which certainly exceeds your own powers of recollection or ability to merely scroll up. Make an effort.

    Speaking of domestic terror, the IED-containing backpack planted along an MLK parade route in Spokane, where along this great nation’s ideological spectrum do you suppose we’ll eventually learn its makers fall, hmmmmmmmmm?

  20. Mike Kennedy says:

    Well, this falls in line with the left’s 72 hours of baseless blame in Tucson.

    Sounds like we have us a reguuuuuuular Paul Krugman in our midst.

    1. Jim Leinfelder says:

      To paraphrase Damon Runyon: The race isn’t always to the swift or the battle to the strong, but that’s the way to bet. But, yes, I have no idea who planted it, Mike.

      We’ll see. Or, maybe we’ll never know, given the cowardice of the anonymous act of terrorism.

  21. bertram jr says:

    Of course there is “battleground state”, “war on crime”, the Trget Corp logo, camouflage sold at Gander Mountain, the song “Gimme Back my Bulletts” by Skynyrd, the band Rifle Sport, the horse named Trigger and….

    Dpon’t worry, the lefties will fix this

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