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Tuesday, September 25, 2007
(11:20 AM) | Stephen:
Manufactured Outrage Is Our New Biggest Export

When David Kurtz is on, he's really on. He writes about the faux-outrage over the Moveon.org advertisement:
You don't have to get into the appropriateness of the MoveOn ad or the intricacies of the NYT's ad rate schedule to conclude the obvious: The GOP is engaged in another round of cynical, exploitative caterwauling to change the subject from their party's Iraq debacle. The manufactured indignation over the MoveOn ad has the added benefit of letting the vast right wing fund-raising machine milk a little more money from what's left of its base, not to mention that it turns MoveOn into a proxy candidate for president, which may be the only candidate the weak GOP field can beat.
The GOP has done this for a couple of decades now. It was interesting to see Bob Dole's campaign in which he blatantly asked "where's the outrage?" I guess we should admire the GOP's adherence to their "principles" since right after announcing their entire political strategy in the 1996 Presidential election and losing, they stuck with it to produce the nonsense that was the Clinton impeachment.

Outrage, outrage, outrage. That the GOP relies entirely upon manufactured anger and fear to turn out votes is why they're so quick to label Democrats as "angry" and suffering from "Bush Derangement Syndrome." Sometimes you need to be careful of the ways in which you describe your enemies.

Thankfully the Democrats have gotten better at responding to this - sometimes - and even journalists are willing to call GOP politicians out on this type of thing.

Kurtz shows us a video of just such a thing happening, and his introduction of it is perfect:
Watch this David Shuster interview with the pathetic Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), who is prepared to slam the MoveOn ad and mock the NYT's financial difficulties (the point of which is what?), but who is brought up short, first when she is asked to repudiate a similar "betray us" remark made by Rush Limbaugh and then when she is asked to name the last soldier from her district to die in Iraq. She won't and she can't.

Yeah, it's "gotcha" journalism, but it's the right thing here. He's right; Blackburn can say all this stuff about the New York Times but she doesn't know diddly about a young man who made the ultimate sacrifice to his country just last month.

I hope you also noticed the amazing change in her demeanor, from the smug, cocky GOP hack doing what they do best - which is to deflect the conversation away from issues that matter and to create villians where none exist - to the oh-so-serious Member of Congress, very concerned about her constituents, falling back on utter bullshit about "working with families." She basically said the same sentence over and over, and even hid behind the military service of one of her staffers.

The Moveon ad doesn't matter. What matters is Jeremy Bohannon, 18 years old, 9 months into his military career, killed in Iraq while this nation's political leaders piss at each other and call it governance.

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