Palin defends her bloodlust politics

Sarah Palin: Does she even give a damn?

Prominent Republican Sarah Palin defended her fiery rhetoric on Wednesday but ignited a fresh controversy by accusing critics of “blood libel” in linking her to a deadly Arizona shooting spree.

A defiant Palin, leaping into a roaring debate on the consequences of overheated political rhetoric, said her critics had been irresponsible in rushing to blame Saturday’s gun rampage on vitriolic campaign speech.

“Especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn,” Palin, a potential 2012 White House contender, said in a video posted to her Facebook page.

Palin’s reference to “blood libel,” a false, centuries-old allegation that Jews were killing children to use their blood in religious rituals, launched a new round of criticism of Palin’s rhetoric.

“We wish that Palin had used another phrase, instead of one so fraught with pain in Jewish history,” said Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League.

The accusation of “blood libel” has been employed for centuries to justify the killing or expulsion of Jews. The phrase had been used by other conservative commentators, including a Wall Street Journal column, since the shooting of Representative Gabrielle Giffords, who is Jewish.

“Perhaps Palin honestly does not know what a blood libel is, or does not know of their horrific history — that is perhaps the most charitable explanation we can arrive at,” said David Harris, president of the National Jewish Democratic Council.

Suspected Arizona gunman Jared Lee Loughner faces five federal charges in the weekend attack, including the attempted assassination of Giffords, who is in critical condition after being shot in the head while talking to constituents outside a Tucson supermarket.

The rampage fueled a growing debate about whether the heated partisan rhetoric featured in recent U.S. political campaigns can lead to violence, and politicians in both parties have suggested cooling the tone of discourse in Washington.

“Palin’s invocation of a ‘blood libel’ charge against her perceived enemies is hardly a step in the right direction,” Harris said.

FOCUS OF CRITICISM

Palin has been a focus of criticism from the left since the shootings for urging followers to “reload,” not retreat, after the healthcare debate and publishing an electoral map identifying vulnerable Democratic congressional districts, including Giffords,’ with rifle cross-hairs.

The 2008 vice presidential candidate, a favorite of Tea Party conservatives but a lightning rod for liberal critics, has hinted at a presidential run but polls show her trailing many possible Republican rivals and President Barack Obama.

Seated before a fireplace and an American flag, Palin said in the video it was reprehensible for critics to say political rhetoric was to blame for the shootings.

“They claim political debate has somehow gotten more heated just recently. But when was it less heated? Back in those ‘calm days’ when political figures literally settled their differences with dueling pistols?” she asked.

Blame for the shooting should not rest “with all the citizens of a state, not with those who listen to talk radio, not with maps of swing districts used by both sides of the aisle,” she said.

Palin had been silent on the shooting for days since posting a message of sympathy for the victims on her Facebook page, even as other Republican presidential contenders spoke out about them.

Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty was the only potential Republican contender to distance himself from Palin, although subtly. He told The New York Times the crosshairs map was “not a device I would have used.”

Palin’s comments came on the day Obama headed to Arizona to attend a memorial service for the dead, who included a federal judge, a 9-year-old girl and one of Giffords’ young aides. Her colleagues in Congress put most of their work on hold and held a bipartisan prayer service.

Palin was not the only conservative voice to defend campaign rhetoric from the right.

Losing Nevada Republican Senate candidate Sharron Angle, a Tea Party favorite, condemned criticism of her call during the campaign for “Second Amendment remedies” — a reference to the constitutional amendment on the right to bear arms.

“Inappropriately attributing blame of a singular tragedy to achieve a political agenda is contrary to civil discourse, and is a media ploy to which I refuse to belong,” Angle said in a statement.

Copyright © 2011 Reuters

Enhanced by Zemanta

18 Responses to "Palin defends her bloodlust politics"

  1. THOMAS BONSELL  January 13, 2011 at 2:39 pm

    We have heard the right beg off responsibility for all things before.

    But remember:

    All the rhetoric about abortion being “murder”;

    The “gay agenda” is a threat to America and gays are trying to recruit your babies;

    Liberal professors are brainwashing college students;

    Marxist talk turns western minds into communist minds on the spot;

    In WWI the US imprisoned a pack of socialist for counseling against the draft because their words could lose the war;

    Movies and TV programs depicting violence blamed for all the crime in US;

    Obama telling kids to stay in school amounted to brainwashing kids into socialism;

    Northern Exposure and Picket Fences attacked as liberal propaganda that would brainwash the population;

    And of course, Murphy Brown was responsible all out-of-wedlock pregnancies.

    Written by Michael Winship on Truthout.org:

    “Remember the notorious ‘GOPAC Memo’ back in the 1990s, created for the Republicans’ leadership training institute and endorsed by Newt Gingrich? Titled ‘Language: A Key Mechanism of Control,’ in it, candidates are instructed in what words to use when defining their opponents (i.e., liberals). ‘These are powerful words that can create a clear and easily understood contract,’ the memo said. ‘Apply these to the opponent, their record, proposals, and their party’ (in other words, demonize them).

    “Among them: intolerant … lie … pathetic … radical … sick … steal … traitors.”

    So, the right always argued that sound minds could be influenced by talk the righties considered brainwashing or propaganda and the right could use specific words to achieve specific goals.

    But now the right tells us that:

    Bill O’Reilly constantly calling George Tiller, “Tiller the baby killer” had nothing to do with the murder of that physician;

    The gay bashing had nothing to do with the murder of Matthew Shepherd;

    Bashing professors had nothing to do with the Virginia Tech massacre;

    And now all the ranting and raving about socialists, communists trying to take our freedoms and all the ranting by Fox News stars obsessing about assassinations of politicians and murder of media figures; Sarah Palin targeting politicians with rifle crosshairs while telling Americans to “reload” and to “aim” high; and Sharron Angle telling right-wing nuts there is “a second amendment remedy” for them not getting their way on everything, has nothing to do with the Arizona massacre.

    That means the right is now arguing that disturbed minds aren’t influenced by all their hate speech, assassination proclamations, bigotry and demonizing all the “others.” And if their “talking” doesn’t influence anyone, why do the nation’s billionaires pay hundreds of million of dollars annually to have these people continually assail others who actually believe in democracy?

    The shooter’s reading list indicates an obsession with oppressive governments, and the right-wing nutjobs are constantly claiming our democracy is oppressing them when it is doing nothing of the sort.

    Do the logic.

  2. Michael Cooper  January 13, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    Hitler had his agenda , however abhorant that was, he was trying to rebuild Germany. Ms. Palins’ attitude as I see it, is to hell with America ,this time is MY time. First time I’ve liked someone less than the “W” regime.

  3. eve  January 13, 2011 at 7:30 pm

    Isn’t that pic of Tina fey?

  4. Carl Nemo  January 13, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    I think you are correct Eve. After copying the photo I then enlarged it; I can see the unique scar that Tina has to the left side of her mouth and jaw.

    Also I couldn’t see Sarah Palin posing as such, at least within the past ten years or so. It seems posed for photo appeal as found in a Tina Fey skit for Sarah Palin impersonations.

    Carl Nemo **==

    • logtroll  January 13, 2011 at 10:09 pm

      Great detective work!

    • Almandine  January 14, 2011 at 12:25 pm

      Indeed.

  5. Sandune  January 14, 2011 at 11:39 am

    The Teaparty, religious right, neo conservatives are all ready to return full force against the liberals the closer we get to the election. I have many old friends who refuse to read my comments as they know that the Tparty, etc., will be blamed for the Tucson shootings. The seeds were planted by the Birch Society and now the churches have added support against abortions and gay rights acceptance. The opinions writers all over the internet are being fired up by Fox, Rush and Beck. They have been turned off by other writers, newspapers, cable news and automatically anyone who dares to comment on the massacre in Tucson.

    The automatic anger is simply guilt as they know they have written, shown and opined on anger often in the name of God. I sent an analysis from an old friend to one such writer and he turn angry assuming I would blame the religious right. No, it was an analysis of the language made by the killer that pinpointed where he got his information to guide him to murder. There are many psychotic wanderers picking up this type of information. I saw it during the Birch Society and again during the McCarthy trials. I remember reading several books on the Kennedy murders and again the paranoia was focused on our own government.

    I can understand how this happened when I read about Blackwater. It was Pat Robertson’s University who organized Blackwater and of course financed by V.P. Cheney’s Organization. Halliburton. I have many books on the CIA who ended up taking out the enemy of the White House. 9-11 has a dozen books written on how much Bush knew and when.

    I keep hoping this entire load of crap will be exposed and either accepted or denied. Apparently the truth on many of these things, can never be exposed due to the reclassification of documents from the last Republican Administration.

    Neither side of the aisle is clean and unless we gather as groups who demand exposure, we will have to learn to accept what we are told. Every morning I wake up and wish I could simply not give a damn about our new American values. I have to remind myself that the voters have elected and reelected the last 44 Presidents and what we ended up with is the will of the people.

    Orwell was accurate in his warnings even down to the narcotics handed out to the people including the children. Our politics is designed by men like Roger Ailes and NBC, owned by GE.

    I look forward to this weekend and I can watch my football games and ignore the hatred and violence of my government. Who knew?

  6. Almandine  January 14, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    And while all your many touchstones and your analysis may be explicitly true in its own right, there is no ability whatsoever for us to tie them to Loughner and his deeds. He may not have encountered any of your readings, or have been exposed to many of the ideas you reference, and apparently was self-directed away from political discourse in the media. He seems to have been somewhat of an island.

    It would also seem that none of it speaks to Palin’s so-called blood lust, either. Of course, lack of applicability is a well-worn flaw in our political speech.

    Super Bowl contenders?

  7. Sandune  January 14, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    I’m simply trying to present where this anger and terrorism came from. I am more concerned with Loughner’s angry audience after this shooting. The reaction to the shooting is just as dangerous as the shooting itself. He is a walking psycho loose on the rest of us. The government and the “law” has no interest in the mentally deranged.

    I know where Palin’s blood lust comes from but I will be thrown out again dare I mention her many years under the thumb of Evangelicals. I am not speaking of political problems but of the mental problems of far too many Americans. Remember I am from California and my kids went to Berkeley. They were watched closely for any hint of anti-social aggression. We lived in the Hollywood area and era and I was quick to spot losers like Dennis Hopper and his pals.

    I always annoy you Almandine but I have faced many of the same problems that I see today in the news. One of my best friends had a lovely daughter picked up with the Manson Family. We gathered the mothers together and decided we would write of the clues that something was wrong. We took turns writing for many of the California newspapers and our message was received gratefully. When my youngest (no street sense) left for Berkeley she had several classmates from her Christian School who simply disappeared on campus. They fell into a cult of Gurus who told them he was Jesus. Those girls had no street sense and felt safe with their new leader. At that point, I was a single mother with full care of my girls. By damn! we made it through those years and both girls are professional adults and the last one is now a published writer who is working on putting her last book into script form.

    I guess I should stop my writing stuff but I know what is killing American values. If someone told me tomorrow that the government quit and we had no leadership and no safety net, I would understand. I will always ask myself if I should have written more. I see little future in America as it stands now. My kids and grand-kids are adults and living the lives they want. But what about their children? Will they be sucked into an Orwell form of government?

    Sandy

  8. bogofree  January 14, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    The guy was a fruitcake. He had no discernible politics except what fantasies were rattling around in his skull. This pot head crackpot was hooked up to his i-pod and not talk radio and was probably clueless to which party even holds the executive office. Toss in the fact he is an atheist – so much for any religious concoction. He freaking lived in mommies basement! The big influence on his life is a grammar book, Peter Pan and his grow room.

    Naturally provocateurs like Dupnik jumped the gun only to have to back off when reality hit home. This was the same reaction that happened when everyone went “rag-head crazy” after the Oklahoma City bombing only to discover it was a domestic whack job.

  9. Sandune  January 14, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    Bobo, nobody here blames Rush or Sarah for the shooting. What we are all worried about is the reaction to the shooting. The reaction comes from the words and imagery presented by Fox and Rush. I too have been threatened in Arizona due to my Atheism and my returning to California. My daughter wants me out of here by Feb. 1st. The reaction to just about everything has brought threats to me and my family.

    I wish you would research more about his list of people and books who have influenced his madness. Dupnik was right about Arizona being the mecca of intolerance and bigotry. I do not have to live here and am not tied to my empty home. It is listed and will sell due to its charm. My yards, front and back are nicely landscaped. I kept this place neat and clean even with the critters.

    Not all of us here at CHB went overboard after many of the things you listed. I have been aware of the skin heads and American terrorists for years. I wish I could link you to the research that is being done but I will not put anyone in line with a bullet. It will be done and many here will recognize who it is.

    • Almandine  January 14, 2011 at 9:36 pm

      The reaction to the shooting comes from the far left… in the manner of “Rush should be hung and Palin should be killed” which I suppose you mean results from their prior words and imagery. The problem is, though, it’s your fellow atheists and supposedly progressive Dems that are spouting that “kill them” crap. That damned sure doesn’t sound so enlightened to me.

      • logtroll  January 14, 2011 at 10:54 pm

        Really! I must protest. I haven’t heard a single atheist or progressive dem spouting any such thing. I have heard them saying that Rush should get some better drugs and Palin should be forced to watch reruns of “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” until her mascara runs.

        The very problem with progressive dems and atheists is that they have no standup leaders or gods telling them who to kill.

        My scanners have picked up the “reaction” source as coming from beyond the Black Stump. And we all know who lives beyond the Black Stump…

        • Almandine  January 14, 2011 at 10:59 pm

          Shrek.

          • logtroll  January 14, 2011 at 11:03 pm

            Yer just guessin’, my man. Don’t yer google key worK?

            • Almandine  January 14, 2011 at 11:16 pm

              Just explorin my sense of humor…

              besides, what other ogres would be responsible for throwin such rhetorical bombs?

  10. bogofree  January 14, 2011 at 7:42 pm

    This has only to do with one single issue and that is the sanity of this nutcase. He didn’t read newspapers, watch TV, listen to the radio or just about anything else. What I rally against is loose cannon characters like Dupnik who automatically assume this is just some wingnut. He ain’t. You see this same level on both sides of the spectrum as they jump the gun, draw irresponsible conclusions and attempt to make political points where none exist.

    Influenced his madness? Give me a break! What? Communist Manifesto? Peter Pan? The guy is a nutcase! He is more influenced by Marvel Comics than anything else.

    Now did I single out any posters? Was this in reply to a post? This was not about anything on CHB. This is not a partisan issue as the litter box is fouled by right, left, moonbat and wingnut. I am sick of folks making something where nothing exists and if Dupnik is an example of what Arizona has I’d head out pronto.

    I am a known atheist where I live. Have had many articles written about my views. I have never once had a threat. In line with a bullet? Sorry, you are coming across like paranoid city.

    • Almandine  January 14, 2011 at 9:43 pm

      Easy my friend… it’s a general perception, based on strong opinions about organized religion and social “progressivism”, and not aimed at you. Trust me.

Comments are closed.