Monday, January 10, 2011

What Has the U.S. Shooting Taught us About Visceral Politics?

Sarah Palin had gun sights on her website, targeting Democrats. One of them was aimed at Gabrielle Giffords. Palin has since removed the targets.

However, Sarah Palin is just a symptom of a bigger problem. When corporations threw money into creating the "grassroots" Tea Party, they only wanted them to convince the government to give them more money. But when you stir up hatred, how do you control it, especially when so many of the people marching have genuine grievances.
The Tea Party – for whom Sarah Palin is a standard-bearer – stands accused of fuelling hate in US politics. The group’s vitriolic loathing of Barack Obama has included telling him get back to Kenya, his father’s birthplace. It also has strident right-wing views on abortion, immigration, social security, taxes and low wages. Inspired by its ideals, Republicans made huge gains in Congressional elections last November.

But Democrat Steny Hoyer, the then-leader of the House of Representatives, said of the movement: “It’s easier to stir up culture wars and cultural resentment. But they’re poisonous to our future.”
Between Fox News and the new direction of the Republican Party, the Americans have turned their political arena into a cesspool.

The following image came from the Pima County Republican website, inviting people to a fundraiser for Ms. Giffords' opponent, Jesse Kelly. The ad urges: Get on Target for Victory in November. Help remove Gabrielle Giffords from office.

And the same thing is going to happen here. Maybe not a shooting, but the same poison.

As Lawrence Martin reminds us, Stephen Harper does not look at the Liberals as political opponents, but has a visceral hatred for them. And he leads his most vocal ministers into an all out war, whether in the House of Commons or in committee meetings.

The media lap it up, referring to people like Pierre Poilievre and John Baird, as pit bulls, but how is that helpful? We didn't elect people to be pit bulls. We elected them to represent our interests.

Will this be a wake up call? Will the Republicans turn away from the politics of hate?

Will Stephen Harper change his strategy? Probably not. He may tone it down a bit, but it won't last. I don't think he's capable of working with others. As one of his insiders commented "It's not in his DNA".

I can't wait until we get our Fox News North. All hatred, all the time.


  1. Got time for a little cut and paste email campaign against Tom Flanagan?
    Dr. Elizabeth Cannon
    University of Calgary
    Bus 1-403-220-5617
    Fax 1 (403) 220-8225

    Re: Tom Flanagan's Death Threat

    Given you still employ Tom Flannigan as a university professor, will you please ask his opinion on the Arizona shootings in which Gabrielle Giffords and other people were critically wounded and/or slaughtered, including a 9 year old little girl, Christina Taylor Green?

    And given Flannigan’s call on national t.v. for Assange’s assassination, I’m sure his insight on the possible influence of hate-mongers such as Sarah Palin, Jesse Kelly, Allen West and Sharron Angle, just to name a few, on the accused would be appreciated by all.

    I call, once again, on the University of Calgary to accept Tom Flanigan's resignation.


    Send your email to below email addresses under cover of your bcc,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

  2. What a good idea Nadine. I think it's also time to step up the efforts to stop Fox News North.