Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Politics of personal destruction

Every day brings another White House directive to be dealt with. At a whirlwind breakneck pace, the Obama White House, with the help of a Democrat-controlled Senate and House, has cajoled, pushed, and jammed its agenda down the throats of the American public.

Anyone who gets in the way is dealt with swiftly and soundly as observed by RedState's Erick Erickson, writing The return of the politics of personal destruction:
Not yet into his first hundred days in office, Barack Obama and his political advisors have proven themselves to be a most ideologically liberal administration practicing the politics of personal destruction against anyone who dares to challenge them — even their own. They would have us believe they are defending the country from Rush Limbaugh, Congressman Eric Cantor, and a relatively unknown private citizen named Rick Scott.
Who is Rick Scott?
Now Obama’s minion have begun attacking private citizens. Obama promised to lower healthcare costs. His preferred policy is to drive up private healthcare costs so public healthcare looks cheaper in comparison. Rick Scott, the former President and CEO of Columbia/HCA, founded Conservatives for Patients’ Rights to defend the free market healthcare system from the White House’s policy prescription. Instead of attacking his arguments or advancing their own arguments, the left coordinated an attack against Mr. Scott personally. The coordination began on one of Mr. Podesta’s 8:45 a.m. calls.

On March 3, 2009, Jonathan Cohn wrote at the New Republic that Scott is “public enemy number one.” Ezra Klein, who also coordinates attacks against the right with journalists on a private email list, then took to the American Prospect to attack Scott for business practices at HCA. Two days later, John Podesta, on Fox News, tried dodging a question Rick Scott had raised about the costs of Obama’s program by smearing Scott. On March 11th, Christopher Hayes parroted his left-wing brethren at the Nation writing, “Having Scott lead the charge against healthcare reform is like tapping Bernie Madoff to campaign against tighter securities regulation.”
The personal attacks by Obama began immediately against conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh:
The character assassinations began less than a week after Barack Obama moved into the White House. Obama told Congressional Republicans “You can’t just listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done”. John Podesta then attacked Limbaugh, distorting Limbaugh’s statement the he wanted Obama to fail if Obama a socialist agenda. Next, Americans United for Change ran advertisements declaring Rush Limbaugh the “real leader” of the Republican Party.
Mr. Limbaugh pushed back and still has not backed down, calling out the Obama administration and showing he has a backbone against the radical left.

Then Obama turned his sights on Virginia Republican Congressman Eric Cantor who is the GOP Whip:
After attacking Limbaugh, Barack Obama and his minion turned their sights on Congressman Eric Cantor, the highly effective Republican Whip. Patrick O’Connor, writing at the Politico, noted, “At last month’s White House summit on entitlement reform, Obama painted Cantor as a poster child for obstructionism.” Anti-semitic attacks, which started when Cantor was named a potential Vice Presidential nominee in 2008, have returned in the form of robo-calls in Virginia. In 2008, the attacks, featured on the Democratic National Committee’s website, stated that “both [Jack] Abramoff and Cantor are Jewish.” The new attacks hit both Cantor and his wife. Americans United for Change ran advertisements tying Cantor to Rush Limbaugh.
Conservative talk show host Sean Hannity has also found himself as the target of Obama's barbs.

What is so familiar about this scenario? It is reminiscent of the Clinton White House years and, indeed, the same team is in place planning and plotting for Obama:
The Politico, earlier this year, ran two articles about coordination between White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, James Carville, Paul Begala, and ABC News’s George Stephanopoulos. One article noted the four trade regular phone calls. Emanuel told the Politico the calls “are about what’s happening, what the implications are of what’s happening and what’s going on.” Another alluded to Carville, Begala, and Emanuel working to turn Limbaugh into a target. Shortly after Obama picked fights with Limbaugh and Cantor, Stephanopoulos reported Cantor had “repudiated” Limbaugh on This Week. In fact, Stephanopoulos had selectively quoted his interview with Cantor to make the case — leaving out that Cantor had actually reiterated Rush Limbaugh’s key points from Rush’s now famous CPAC speech.
Read the rest of Erick's well-written post ... the Obama team has gone after their own as well as Republicans ... which proves the old proverb, "Know thine enemy." That is never more true for Republicans than now.

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