Monday, January 10, 2011

NEW VOICE COLUMN UP, about the Giffords shooting. The fallout has in some ways been what I'd expected: as with Pentagon shooter John Patrick Bedell, conservatives have been quick to label Jared Loughner a liberal even though his actual politics as expressed in his ravings could best be described as aphasic.

The thing that took me aback was the vehemence of some of the more prominent rightbloggers on the subject. Ole Perfesser Instapundit, for example, did several posts with more manic intensity than he usually betrays -- including a couple of bizarre references to "blood libel." The Southron, apparently, is the Jew of Liberal Fascism.

This is taking conservative victim status to new heights. But why? I think they may be suffering flashbacks to Oklahoma City -- to which, I notice, they increasingly refer as a scam by Bill Clinton, or in the words of Tea Party Nation's Judson Phillips a "tactic" which "worked then, backing conservatives off and possibly helping to ensure a second Clinton term," rather than as an act of mass murder. Their rapid-response muscles have been so assiduously trained for so long, it seems, that they're constantly on hair-trigger, and every event, however horrible or moving, they immediately perceive as a political opportunity before anything else; I imagine they were working out their spin for this before the bodies hit the floor.

Favorite outtake: HillBuzz, who's also obsessed with this, discovering that the assassin's Facebook and MySpace pages were no longer available, and demanding to know, "What is the Left hiding on these pages?" Wait'll he finds Loughner's Facebook manifesto, ghost-written by Aaron Sorkin! Then Hillary will surely consent to lead the Army of God.

UPDATE. The Perfesser's charm offensive continues: "FLASHBACK: Sarah Palin hanged in effigy during 2008 campaign." That might mean something if she were the one who got shot. But people like her seldom are.

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