I'll say one thing for being in an election cycle leading up to the most important election of my life: it's sure bringing the progressives and their ideology out in the open. What I find really interesting about that is how every time some leftist puts forward an extreme progressive point of view, it just seems to invigorate the people on the right and make them more active. It's almost as if the people on the left are shooting themselves in the foot with a fully automatic rifle, and just can't seem to stop pulling the trigger.
Just as an example, I was flipping through channels the other day and Chris Matthews had Sam Donaldson on his show. I didn't stay on that channel to see what they discussed (mainly because I was pretty sure that whatever they came up with, I wouldn't think it was anything resembling a real point), but I will say this, if that's the best they can do, the bottom of the barrel has indeed been scraped. Oh wait, since it's Chris Matthews, I'm sure he will be able to sink lower. Maybe next weekend he will interview David Letterman to get the bitter old serial philanderer point of view.
I have to admit, I used to watch Chris Matthews occasionally, mainly because I figured that at some point he was going to be dragged out from behind his desk by strong nurses in white coats and I didn't want miss that when it happened. Unfortunately, looking at the rest of the MSNBC lineup, these days he's kind of "camouflaged" and doesn't particularly stand out anymore.
While many people have opined that the bitter partisanship of this election, and how the two parties have been so divided in the current governance of the country is a bad thing, I think differently.
In my opinion, since the two paths our current candidates represent are so wildly divergent, I think it's good that the extreme differences between left and right have caused them to be right out front about those differences. I don't think it's time for people to appear as "middle of the road" as possible. I think it's time for the candidates to show clearly what they stand for, and what they want for the future of the country. This isn't an election between John F. Kennedy and Richard M. Nixon, or Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush. This is instead a choice between Barack Obama, an extreme leftist on one hand, and Mitt Romney, a successful businessman, who clearly understands the capitalist system on the other. I don't want them to hide those differences; I want them to get out there and clearly show what they believe in and what they stand for.
Because of the "heat" of this election, not only have the politicians involved in this shown a tendency to reveal their true colors, but many of the supporters of the right and the left have also "quit messing around". This part is pretty interesting. While there are certainly people on the right who behave inappropriately, or do something to embarrass conservatives, not only are these people relatively few in number, but as much as practical, they are self policed by the right. As far as I’m concerned, the stories propagated by the main stream media about people at tea party rallies holding up racist signs are myths. I think someone who tried that would be in a lot of trouble from the real tea party members. On the other hand, the statements from people on the left wishing conservatives dead, harmed, or using very nasty language just seem to keep on coming. As far as the left reining in that kind of rhetoric, their silence is deafening.
Actually, I do understand why the language on the left is so harsh. In fact, I can almost feel some sympathy concerning the plight of some of the more strident leftists. After all, these people find themselves in the position of trying to defend an ideology that has been pretty much unmasked. To put that in perspective, how would you like to wake up one morning and know that you had to go on television and try to convince all of America that not only has all of the attention and money the federal government spent in the war on poverty been just the thing, but we need to spend more to get it just right? Not only that, but when you get to the television studio, you find out that the only person who will have you on is Chris Matthews, just as soon as he gets through interviewing David Letterman. Man, talk about a bad day. Is it any wonder that people on the left resort to foul language? Maybe it's just because they're in a bad mood.
So let's see, people on the right can run on family values, the dignity of work, returning to the constitution, reducing the intrusiveness of federal government, and etc. The left has to try to run on its record, which lately has been (very) publicly shown to be pretty much against all of those things. I guess if I was on the left, I would be in a bad mood too, and possibly resort to some bad language (I wouldn't wish people dead though).
The coming election isn't just about Barack Obama or Mitt Romney; it's about the future of the United States of America. With so much at stake, do you really want the candidates to try to appear as moderates? Personally, I'm glad this has become a highly partisan contest between the philosophies of the right and the left. We have a serious choice to make this November, and knowing exactly where everybody stands is the kind of information we need before we make that choice.
Bruce Kreitler is the author of Obamageddon (the Culmination of the Progressive Looting of America) and posts this and other articles at BruceKreitler.com.