Republicans lose it over health care

March 26, 2010 • 7:58 am

In today’s New York Times, Paul Krugman describes the irrational and petulant behavior of Republicans over their defeat on the health care bill. Racial epithets, death threats to Democrats, warnings of Armageddon, even juvenile refusals to work past 2 p.m.—all this should all be an embarrassment to thinking Republicans (or perhaps that’s an oxymoron).  How can Armageddon come from allowing people with pre-existing medical conditions to get insurance coverage?  In all my life I’ve never seen either political party behave in such an immature and irresponsible way.


For today’s G.O.P. is, fully and finally, the party of Ronald Reagan — not Reagan the pragmatic politician, who could and did strike deals with Democrats, but Reagan the antigovernment fanatic, who warned that Medicare would destroy American freedom. It’s a party that sees modest efforts to improve Americans’ economic and health security not merely as unwise, but as monstrous. It’s a party in which paranoid fantasies about the other side — Obama is a socialist, Democrats have totalitarian ambitions — are mainstream. And, as a result, it’s a party that fundamentally doesn’t accept anyone else’s right to govern.

And, especially delightful in view of the death threats, Sarah Palin’s PAC has put out a map with pro-health care Democrats targeted with—get this—gunsights:

And Palin’s blurb for her Facebook page urges dispirited Republicans to “reload”:

Unbelievable.  I’m sure Palin’s not calling for treating Democrats like she treats wolves, but still, isn’t this a bit . . . unseemly?

56 thoughts on “Republicans lose it over health care

            1. He claims that someone shot at his office in Richmond; turns out the building’s not marked as his, it’s in a bad neighborhood, and the police are saying that it was just someone shooting in the air.

  1. Not being from the US, I’d already began to thought that Sarah Palin’s participation in the 2008 election was a kind of satirical project by some pranksters. But this appears to be real, and it is so sick. Those cross hairs are so sick.

    (How do those lunatics opposing healthcare in your country by equating Obama with Hitler actually react when they are confronted with the fact that other developed nations with public healthcare are as far from totalitarianism among the world’s nations as it gets? Do they actually ever consider this fact?)

    1. Do they actually ever consider this fact?

      Hardly. These facts don’t fit in with the narrative that the US is the best country in the world. Even the suggestion that maybe things in other countries might be better is considered anti-American.

      1. Many of these idjuts still maintain that the US has the best healthcare in the world. They cannot handle the fact that the US might not be the absolute best at every single little thing.

        You can be extremely patriotic and proud of your country and still recognize that there are some areas where other people do better. This seems to be a difficult concept for the teabaggers.

  2. Is it only when death threats come from rethuglicans that they are not treated as crimes worth investigating?

    On high time men in white coats come to take Saracuda away to a padded cell?
    Here in Europe ‘Sarah Palin’ means ‘totally deranged’ among normal people.

    1. “Here in Europe ‘Sarah Palin’ means ‘totally deranged’ among normal people.”

      It does here in the USA too. The US is a world leader in many areas. Including the largest and craziest lunatic fringe. They even have their own political party and Fox news.

  3. If someone is actually assassinated, the Palinistas will of course blame the Democrats.

    Then, who knows, burn down the Reichstag?

    Then maybe the country will be god-fearing enough that we can ride dinosaurs again.

  4. yes they are melting down, but democrats have been too. The racial epithets Lewis claims to have heard never happened, there are several youtube videos, and even two of his own staffers had cameras. the N word appears on none of them. Lewis is blatantly lying, and by doing so, he is fomenting anger and hate.

    Frank was called the F word, only once, and that was corroborated by several sources. But now he, who insults and ridicules everyone he disagrees with, is out there saying it happened several times. No it did not, again he is lying to stoke hatred.

    I’m tired of hearing about “violence from the right” when it is not happening. Sure there are a few occurances of violence (like the Code Pink guy who bit the finger off of an old man who was protesting against the health care bill). Should conservatives assume all liberals are finger biters now? Of course not.

    I think everyone needs to calm down, and people on both sides need to stop fanning the flames of hate by lying about the other side.

    1. Yes, correct, the broken windows are imagination, the broken gas line is too.

      The above map with gun sites is also a figment of imagination. All the disgusting signs with racist slogans and fake pictures are all fake.

      Take off your blinders and wake up.

    2. You’re giving FOX News too much credibility here … In Lewis’ case, the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Same with Frank. And Cantor flat-out lied about his “incident”. You’ve fallen for the BS.

    3. Reminds me of the claim that the catholic church “has been unfairly targeted” for the pedophilia that it harbors.

    4. @Plutosdad…

      You state outright that Lewis and Frank are lying. How do you know this?

      Also, you have pretty warped reasoning. Lewis came on camera and said someone called him a “nigger.” And that’s why people are throwing bricks through windows and sending threatening faxes with nooses on them? I don’t see how that computes?

      You’re grasping lamely.

      1. And yes, it should be acknowledged that Barney Frank is whip smart, has an acid wit and razor sharp tongue.

        You certainly can see why dip-shit Republicans and Libertarians resort to violence… not to mention oh so clever insults such as “faggot” and “nigger.”

  5. “It’s a party in which paranoid fantasies about the other side — Obama is a socialist, Democrats have totalitarian ambitions — are mainstream.”

    That is just the GOP start. The latest story is that 24% of the Theothuglicans believe Obama is the Antichrist. More believe he is a Kenyan, Moslem terrorist. Usually the Pope of the RCC is the Antichrist but it looks like he lost one of his jobs.

    The death threats aren’t trivial. Already some right wing extremists have gone on shooting sprees.
    1. A guy in Pitsburgh killed 3 cops because he was afraid that Obama was going to take his guns away.

    2. Some self appointed border patrol agents in Arizona killed a Mexican national.

    3. A Xian terrorist assassinated an MD in Kansas.

    Obama has received more death threats than any other president in history. Calls for his assassination are frequent and sometimes come from fundie xian ministers.

    With all this rhetoric about violence and killing, there is likely to be more in the future.

    1. I am just curious about what would have happened if Muslims in the US had used the same rhetoric, the incitement to violence and the explicit hatred as do these rethuglicans. Public outcry, hopefully.
      So why not now?
      Freedom of speech should not be a permission to whip up hysteria on a grand scale like so many of the GOP ‘spokespeople’ do. Why aren’t the decent ones shit embarrassed, and why don’t they speak out, calling the lunacy for what it is?
      The worst part is that the rabid morons have guns as well.

  6. all this should all be an embarrassment to thinking Republicans (or perhaps that’s an oxymoron).

    Didn’t used to be, is now. I used to know a number of people that I would classify as “thinking Republicans”. All of them have disassociated themselves with the GOP over the past ten years, without exception. Some held on longer than others, a couple even held onto the Republican label through nearly all of the Bush administration. But the ascendancy of Palin was the last straw that got even the stragglers to say “no more”.

    There used to be thinking Republicans. IMO, they were wrong, but they at least were thinking about things. These days? Not so much. All the thinking Republicans have discovered that the party no longer represents their principles in any way shape or form. Small government? States’ rights? Adherence to the constitution? Please. The actions of today’s GOP don’t reflect any of those ideals. Whether you support those ideals or oppose them, either way you can’t support the Republican party while simultaneously, you know, thinking about it. It’s become the Party of Stoopid.

    1. Small government? States’ rights? Adherence to the constitution?

      Just when was the lost Aiden when Conservatives pushed for those things? The first isn’t even Conservative–“small government” is the archetypical Liberal position.

    2. Well there’s plenty of stupid people for them to represent, I guess they’re on a winner with that one!

  7. What most interests me are those who argue vociferously against “government-run healthcare” — which this isn’t — while DEMANDING that we improve Medicare.

    It’s all about people who already “have theirs” not wanting others to “get some”…

    And with a nasty undercurrent of racism that is, frankly, appalling.

    Sadly, we’re nowhere near as advanced as we like to claim. And the Rethuglicans know this and tap into it.

    1. There is no ‘undercurrent’ of racism. It is right out front, on the streets. The Republican party has been the party of racism, bigotry, hate and xenophobia since the 1960s.

  8. When all the smoke clears, I’m ready to quote my favorite line from Schindler’s List – the scene where he’s thrown in jail for kissing a Jewish girl, and his cellmate asks, “Did your dick fall off?”

  9. Can we agree that this “derangement” is at least partly the result of the perversion of the media through deregulation and conglomeration of media ownership into a very few hands?

    The United States is the laughingstock of the free world because there is no real marketplace of ideas in our national conversation. Even though polls show that Americans embrace liberal ideologies, the national conversation we have in the media is skewed very heavily to the right. This is not by accident, it is the result of rapacious media purchases by right-wing interests who sponsored an expensive thirty-year long propaganda campaign involving think tanks, columnists, talking heads, and propagandists by the likes of Rush Limbaugh, who is now the de facto leader of the Republican party.

    Quick example – these people have made “union” a dirty word. Yet, newspapers used to have a “Labor” section as well as a “Business” section.

    We need to break up the huge media conglomerates, have some standards about what the word “News” means on our airways, and hopefully restore the Fairness Doctrine so that we can have a rational national conversation again.

    I really am sick and tired to be living in a country dominated by such feckless stupidity.

    1. Yeah, a bullet through Rupert Murdoch’s head would be a good start. Followed by the closing down or sell-off of all News Corps’ assets and interests.
      The playwright Dennis Potter said he wished he had the courage to do it just before he died from cancer. Would maybe have saved the world from all the FuxedNews white thrash.

      But sadly, we are too civilised and reasonable, which the thugs know.

      1. Glad to see you are making the other side’s point. 🙁

        [No, I _still_ don’t think US is completely mad. Just watching more and more people join the parade, is all.]

  10. I know that Palin’s words about “reloading” and taking aim at Dem politicians could lead one to think of the crosshairs in a sighting scope but what struck me, and I have looked thru more than one scope in the past, were the extensions of the cross lines in the symbol.

    Go and use a Google Images search for Aryan Cross – then come back and tell us what you have found.

  11. Krugman says that “today’s G.O.P. is, fully and finally, the party of Ronald Reagan”. Yes. Reagan’s pivotal innovation was to lie, all day, every day, through his teeth, and to find that he could get away with it. “Hey, Republicans!” he said. “Check this out! What you tell people doesn’t have to have any connection with the truth! None!” This is the key to Republican policy since Reagan. More here.

  12. What, just what is happening to this country? The health care reform is the best that we have ever seen and all these Republicans are out of the world.

  13. I’m a liberal, but my fellow liberals are embarassing me over the “gunsight” business.
    I’ve worked as a typographer, and I can assure you those are printers’ registration marks.
    They allow press operators to align the four negatives used in color printing.
    You’ve probably got them on at least one of the programs on your own computer.

    1. Oh, I’m sure that’s how Palin and her posse think of them. They have to do with four-color process printing. How could I have missed that?

  14. For someone watching the American political scene from Europe, the view is ghastly.
    The virulent political germs that nearly destroyed Europe on the eve of WW II seem to be taking hold of minds and souls. When Sarah Palin is urging her partisans to ‘reload’, it’s not just their guns, it’s their entire delusional matrix that is being reloaded. We’ve seen this before, and it ended in ruins. When a party, like the Republicans, deems itself the natural majority, the Party of the People, forever denying their opponents the right to govern, a technical term applies. The Republicans won’t like it. It’s called Bolshevism.

    Those claiming the Conservative sobriquet for themselves would do well –but won’t be able– to ponder George Orwell’s verdict on Rudyard Kipling:
    Although he had no direct connexion with any political party, Kipling was a Conservative, a thing that does not exist nowadays. Those who now call themselves Conservatives are either Liberals, Fascists or the accomplices of Fascists. He identified himself with the ruling power and not with the opposition. In a gifted writer this seems to us strange and even disgusting, but it did have the advantage of giving Kipling a certain grip on reality. The ruling power is always faced with the question, ‘In such and such circumstances, what would you DO?’, whereas the opposition is not obliged to take responsibility or make any real decisions.
    Delusional, armed irresponsibility: a recipe for disaster.

    1. It’s called Bolshevism.

      The term is really dictatorship, but admittedly, that term wouldn’t have such an impact on the Thuglicans as they seem to think that it would be their god-given right to dictate.
      *sanity, why do you abandon us?*

      1. The term Bolshevism was intended precisely, as defined in the context.
        At the 2nd Congress of the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party (RSDLP) in Brussels and London in 1903, the party was split down the middle, with Lenin’s faction in the minority. Lenin lost one key vote on party statutes 28 to 23.
        After a row on unrelated procedural matters, several members stormed out in protest. Lenin hijacked the proceedings in their absence, obtained a narrow majority, and from then on his faction made itself known as the Bolsheviki, the Majority, and their opponents as the Mensheviki, the Minority, despite the fact that Lenin’s opponents were still, and on many occasions for years to come, the actual majority in the party. Lenin never left any doubt about his faction and his views representing the ‘true’ Majority, no matter what the ballot numbers would have been. This is the origin of the term Bolshevism. The rest is history.
        Marx supposedly said: ‘History repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce.’ The present Republican party shows that it is possible to have both at once.

  15. Sarah Palin, Limbaugh, Beck et. al. all are making use of violently charged metaphors. But if violence ensues, they do have plausible deniability because the metaphors were, obviously, only meant to be taken as metaphors.

    1. Yeah, but then you have all the armed loonies listening to them and acting on the incitements.
      That’s the ones nobody knows who are, and they could be closer to you than you’d think.

  16. Great propaganda here. Your arguments are irrational and taken out of context. Have any of you realized that the government cannot do it all? You must think that if the government does something, it must be the best. Government run health care does cost money. You cannot give out free health care and expect that it will have good quality. About the Sarah Palin so-called “death threats” you should google search the word ‘metaphor’. The mainstream state-run media has shown things such as violent TEA Party protesters, that throw eggs and beat people. However, if you pay more attention, those that are violent are democrats just trying to make republicans look bad. One violent “TEA Party” protester turned out to be a union member, who was told to appear as a protester in order to frame conservatives and call them violent. Government run health care is unconstitutional. There is a legitimate cause for challenging the government. Use intelligence and logic for once, liberals. Do not silence the Truth.

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