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For Sarah Palin, best defence is attack

Mark Mardell | 15:51 UK time, Wednesday, 12 January 2011

People wait for University of Arizona memorial

Tucson The queue outside the sports stadium is already long, winding around the block. People sit on the pavement in the sunshine, hours before President Barack Obama has even left Washington.

He's coming to the "Together we thrive" memorial event for the victims of Saturday's deadly shooting here. But what do they want from their president? Above all, they tell me, they want unity, a sense of bringing the country together.

Most say the shooting was not motivated by politics, but most want the rhetoric turned down a notch. A few think he should lead this debate, but the majority of those I talk think now is not the time.

The leader of the local Tea Party movement, Trent Humphries, tells me that he may not agree with the president on a lot of things but Mr Obama is a great orator, an icon, and he can bring the country together. He doesn't think he will go near the debate on the tone of politics.



But Sarah Palin has. In a video, she condemns violence and the attack but also castigates those who would blame her rhetoric for creating a political climate where such things can happen.

She quotes former President Ronald Reagan, indicating that society is not to blame for crimes, only the criminal is.

She continues:

After this shocking tragedy, I listened at first puzzled, then with concern, and now with sadness, to the irresponsible statements from people attempting to apportion blame for this terrible event.

She suggests that strong language is not new in American politics, pointing out that in the time of the founding fathers, opponents settled their differences by duelling. She doesn't mention that the death in a duel of Alexander Hamilton at the hands of the then Vice-President Aaron Burr in 1804 brought the practice to an end and did for a time appear to change the nature of debate.

She declares:

No-one should be deterred from speaking up and speaking out in peaceful dissent, and we certainly must not be deterred by those who embrace evil and call it good. And we will not be stopped from celebrating the greatness of our country and our foundational freedoms by those who mock its greatness by being intolerant of differing opinion and seeking to muzzle dissent with shrill cries of imagined insults.

And she is strong in condemnation:

...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. That is reprehensible.

Her use of the term "blood libel" has already raised some hackles. It is a term used to describe the anti-Semitic slur of the middle ages that Jews ritualistically murdered Christian babies.

While the Anti-Defamation League wished she had not used the term their comments are not harsh and they also condemn the attacks on her.

The video tells us a great deal about Ms Palin. Even when attempting to make a statement about healing she cannot help but attack.

Her pithy direct language and anger is her greatest strength. But she finds it hard to sound more than one note. The worry over the term "blood libel" is entirely predictable. Her use of it is either naïve, in that she did not understand the meaning and resonances, or it is a sign she simply doesn't care and wants controversy. The remarks about dueling are also difficult to interpret.

But over all, she has made a prompt statement that does weave together notions of unity and strength with a very firm rejection of any sense of blame. There is no sense of second thoughts or self doubt and she clearly believes the best form of defence is attack. The self-described pit bull in lipstick will not be muzzled.

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  • 1. At 4:40pm on 12 Jan 2011, lamanga wrote:

    I find it very alarming that this person could one day be President of the USA just as it enters a period of, perhaps terminal, financial decline.

    In austere times people can become especially aggressive, indeed violent, towards members of out-groups and I genuinely fear that the USA will not be a nice place to live if you are non-white, non-heterosexual, non-Republican, and non-Christian.

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  • 2. At 4:41pm on 12 Jan 2011, Phil Linehan wrote:

    I suspected something awful would happen in Arizona when on 26 December I wrote:

    Sarah Palin and Jan Brewer – A Gruesome Twosome

    Will we ever see the day
    when Sarah Palin goes away?
    She now appears on a t.v. reality show
    in a landscape that’s always covered in snow.

    She showed us how in her land benighted
    one can shoot a caribou even if short-sighted.
    It is trapped and before a camera placed to make it look bigger
    giving Sarah plenty of time to pull the trigger.

    She yells about non-existent death panels in Obama’s health care
    but is seemingly totally unaware
    of the death panel in the Arizona of Republican Jan Brewer,
    a state which, since she has been governor, many compare to a reeking sewer.

    Given Brewer’s hatred of immigrants or anyone not white
    is she among those who think Obama to be President has no right?
    She wants people of whose face she does not approve
    to quickly pack up and themselves remove.

    When she manages to utter a half intelligible sentence she raises the alarm
    about people she is convinced might cause harm.
    She must bitterly regret she can’t pick up a gun and cook their goose
    just as Palin from her helicopter shoots her moose.

    While Sarah is broadcasting her mind-numbing pretentious rants,
    not a word from her as Jan pulls the plug on those waiting for organ transplants.*
    Many wonder just what Madam Governor plans to do with her huge stash
    of millions of dollars in unspent contingency cash.

    For reasons unknown Palin decided she would take a trip
    and stand on Haiti’s sinking ship.
    She arrived surrounded by a select chosen few
    consisting of a Fox News channel crew.

    Hasn’t that unfortunate country suffered too much
    for it now to be allowed to fall into Palin’s clutch?
    Haven’t the people been through enough
    without having to watch Sarah as she struts her stuff?

    Are those who tout her as a 2012 presidential candidate really serious
    or are they snorting something that makes them delirious?
    But if she does turn out to be the Republicans’ choice
    then throughout the land all sane people can rejoice.

    * Brewer cut organ transplants form the state’s health care system even though she is sitting on millions of dollars of unspent discretionary federal stimulus cash. Many think she’s the one who needs a transplant. – of a brain.

    Phil Linehan www.philitics.com

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  • 3. At 4:42pm on 12 Jan 2011, BluesBerry wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 4. At 4:42pm on 12 Jan 2011, Baldeeheed wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 5. At 4:42pm on 12 Jan 2011, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    “But over all, she has made a prompt statement which does weave together notions of unity and strength with a very firm rejection of any sense of blame”

    Not quite. There is indeed “a very firm rejection of any sense of blame”. But only blame against her and the Right. She’s quite happy to blame the left, the liberals, the ‘lamestream media’ etc.

    “Those who mock its greatness by being intolerant of differing opinion”. Because the Palin wing of the Reps is of course so extremely tolerant of those with a different opinion. “You’re a conservative but you disagree with us on some issues?’ They cry. ‘No problem! Our party is a 'Big Tent’. Disagreement and debate only strengthen us. We’re certainly not gonna call you a ‘Republican In Name Only’ because you're not as fanatical as we are, and try to replace you in the Primaries’. (See Angle, McDonnell, and the guy who lost in Alaska.)

    As far as I can see, the general attitude from the Right, especially Palin and her ilk has been something like this:

    1. ‘We have never engaged in extreme and hateful rhetoric

    2. Even if we have, it doesn’t cause violence

    3. The ones who have engaged in extreme and hateful rhetoric are the media and the Democrats.

    4. And that’s just wrong because it might cause violence – against us....'

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  • 6. At 4:43pm on 12 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    Mark...is there another politician in the USA other than Mrs Palin or are the BBC up to their old tricks of rooting for the left while claiming to be "just reporting the facts in an even-handed way" (HO HO!)

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  • 7. At 4:43pm on 12 Jan 2011, drector wrote:

    " But over all, she has made a prompt statement which does weave together notions of unity and strength with a very firm rejection of any sense of blame."

    Mr. Mardell, with respect, you are being far to polite (?) or disingenuous in you attempt at neutrality. Good reporting would also acknowledge that Palin and her followers have gone far beyond the pale of 'dissent' into the territory of innuendo, threat, and virtual incitement. True, interpretation is in the eye of the beholder. Appealing to the basest instincts on the fringes has spillover effects that infect the body politic.

    Please try a little more honest appraisal of Palin's place in politics: the poster child of the republican core base, that is to say, the right wing fringe.

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  • 8. At 4:44pm on 12 Jan 2011, manimal wrote:

    Palin runs attack ads targeting (in crosshairs, no less) the unfortunate woman who now lies fighting for her life, and now she has to come out fighting or be cast, perhaps rightfully, as a shameless bigot. The upside is that she hasn't the brains to avoid turning this whole situation into one massive career-destroying cesspit.

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  • 9. At 4:47pm on 12 Jan 2011, Leviticus wrote:

    A subtlety skewed article by Mardell that, typical of the BBC left wing liberal aparatchiks, continues to try and smear and involve Sarah Palin, the Tea Party and Republicans generally in this awful tragedy.

    And her reference to ' blood libel ', in this context, is absolutely clear to anyone with a modicum of intelligence. It refers to, as in this case, the seeking to smear a person or persons with a lie. As was the case with the Jews. Why should hackles be raised at an example of the Jews being smeared with a lie for her to illustrate what is taking place hear by the left wing media?

    ' She quotes former President Ronald Reagan, indicating that society is not to blame for crimes, only the criminal is '.

    She and Reagan are right and this article stinks.

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  • 10. At 4:48pm on 12 Jan 2011, OldScotty wrote:

    Recently Palin was described as “jaw droppingly stupid” a fair comment if she is unable to recognize the offensive nature of her rhetoric can lead to violence. It is incomprehensible that any country would consider giving her the power of the Presidency, even America.

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  • 11. At 4:50pm on 12 Jan 2011, Taff wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 12. At 4:52pm on 12 Jan 2011, Dana Blankenhorn wrote:

    No offense, Mr. Mardell, but dueling was popular in American political circles through the Administration of President Jackson, 1829-1937. Jackson himself fought and nearly lost a duel in 1813 (http://www.adena.com/adena/usa/hs/hs23.htm) and was nearly killed by Charles Dickinson in another duel, in 1806. (http://www.answers.com/topic/andrew-jackson)

    I have no criticism of your underlying point. Many trends begin to ebb when some event "jumps the shark" -- goes beyond what people will tolerate. Whether this shooting is one remains to be seen.

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  • 13. At 4:52pm on 12 Jan 2011, Steveh11 wrote:

    So she's not retreated, she's reloaded. But has she shot herself in the foot? That's down to Americans to decide.

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  • 14. At 4:55pm on 12 Jan 2011, MagicKirin wrote:

    Mark:

    Why don't you do a thread

    Best option for Paul Krugman to blame the Tea Party

    You still have not mentioned the Daily Kos target on Rep Gifford's face

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  • 15. At 4:56pm on 12 Jan 2011, Tony Harrison2 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 16. At 5:03pm on 12 Jan 2011, Charles wrote:

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  • 17. At 5:06pm on 12 Jan 2011, Angelo_Frank wrote:

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  • 18. At 5:06pm on 12 Jan 2011, alb1on wrote:

    Clearly Sarah Palin is either not very intelligent or willing to ignore the obvious for her own political ends. Both possibilities make her a rather unattractive individual. The issue is not whether particular statements led to a specific action (the shooting) but whether people with a predisposition to something can be influenced by the culture around them. If this is not the case then Americans need to explain why they have argued that pornography leads to sexual violence, and why their legal system often leads to cases being transferred to other jurisdictions due to local feelings, as may happen in this case. If the general atmosphere does not have influence then why is it of concern in these matters? I am afraid that Palin is doing what all politicians do; choosing her argument to fit circumstances when she will argue the opposite when it suits her.

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  • 19. At 5:08pm on 12 Jan 2011, gordonhillbilly wrote:

    So her standing on a podium, staring right at the camera, and shouting at people; "Don't Retreat - Reload!!" could in no way at all be misinterpreted as an incitement to gun crime?

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  • 20. At 5:10pm on 12 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    @1......Lamanga...Perhaps you should move to the UK...where it`s really good to be anything BUT white and British born and heterosexual and atheist ..like me!

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  • 21. At 5:10pm on 12 Jan 2011, Local Goober wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 22. At 5:10pm on 12 Jan 2011, Skippy the Wonder Lemur wrote:

    Sarah Palin's rants worry me increasingly. Read some of the comments made by the National Socialist Party in Germany in the late 1920s and early 1930s. There are too many parallels.

    John_From_Dublin got it just about spot on, except that the link needs to be made. The whole Tea Party movement is very disturbingly reminiscent of the National Socialist movement in the inter-war years. The rhetoric is almost identical, the predjudices are similar, as John_From_Dublin says, the blame game is the same...

    I for one am very, very worried by this woman and the politics she represents.

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  • 23. At 5:11pm on 12 Jan 2011, Angelo_Frank wrote:

    If a Muslim cleric had put a gun sight over a picture of a politician on their website, then a Muslim attempted to assassinate that targeted politician, it would be considered a terrorist act. When someone like Sarah Palin portrays the same thing on her website, and a white, non-Muslim, person attempts to assassinate the politician, then it’s considered an isolated case by a mentally unbalanced individual. This country is full of double standards and contradictions.

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  • 24. At 5:16pm on 12 Jan 2011, Andrew Prescott wrote:

    I just want someone to explain what she means by blood libel. I know what the words mean, but I can't see any possible connection with what she is saying.

    Are we going to have a new list of Palinisms to add to Busshisms and Reaganisms. Mrs Mallaprop perhaps.

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  • 25. At 5:18pm on 12 Jan 2011, BigCheezeu wrote:

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  • 26. At 5:19pm on 12 Jan 2011, inacasino wrote:


    Shooting those with whom you disagree is not unusual in the USA compared to other so-called developed countries.

    Perhaps they simply reap what they sow?

    (How that for a bit of folksiness?)

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  • 27. At 5:20pm on 12 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    Mark Mardell wrote: In a video, she condemns violence and the attack but also castigates those who would blame her rhetoric for creating a political climate where such things can happen.
    -----------
    What I fail to understand is why people are not addressing both sides of the political spectrum- extreme lefts and extreme rights?

    Why is the focus always on the right?

    I don't hear anyone asking the left to turn down the rhetoric...

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  • 28. At 5:21pm on 12 Jan 2011, raffistern wrote:

    America has developed such a complex ideological consciousness.
    Palin is able to cite this kind of frontier, hyper individualist understanding of society where no one has any responsibility for one another whilst at the same time constantly relying on a rhetoric of collectivism. I think it's an ideological contradiction that somehow goes unnoticed until events like this force notions of the individual and the collective to violently collide. I'd be interested to hear if people agree with this....

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  • 29. At 5:23pm on 12 Jan 2011, Fracking Tories wrote:

    The woman is an idiot and a dangerous idiot at that. She obviously has poor advisors or is so pig headed that she won't listen to them.

    Contrary to calming things down, this statement can only make things worse.

    Quoting that political arguments used to be settled through duels using firearms, after a political rival has been shot and using the term "blood libel" with the implications surrounding it, when Gabrielle Gifford is a Jew, shows ignorance & insensitivity beyond words.

    I just hope that the majority of Americans will see through this imbecile and not choose to inflict her on the rest of the world.

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  • 30. At 5:24pm on 12 Jan 2011, Julie80 wrote:

    Of course, she has no option but to condemn the specific violence in Arizona. It's amazing though how she always becomes the victim whenever she is criticised. Once again, it's the fault of 'the media'. She even had her assistant/spokesman/whoever Rebecca Mansour say 'we never ever intended it to be gunsights'. Really?

    Take some responsibility for your own words for once.

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  • 31. At 5:26pm on 12 Jan 2011, edmund wrote:

    Palin and the Tea party are like bunch of primates threatening to displace the animals in the jungle with shameless beastly practices.

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  • 32. At 5:28pm on 12 Jan 2011, Deputydave62 wrote:

    Most politicians in America - be they Democrat, Republican or Independent - have responded to this tragedy in measured tones. Both President and the leader of the House, despite their very differing views have responded in much the same way.

    By her partisan response, Sarah Palin has shown that she lacks the judgement needed to be a national political leader.

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  • 33. At 5:30pm on 12 Jan 2011, Anglophone wrote:

    9 Kentucker

    "And her reference to ' blood libel ', in this context, is absolutely clear to anyone with a modicum of intelligence. It refers to, as in this case, the seeking to smear a person or persons with a lie."

    errrr...no! That's just plain old fashioned vanilla libel! I'm absolutely sure that Sarah Palin meant the expression "blood libel" to mean falsely blaming someone for another's death! The trouble is that it is an expression loaded with anti-semitic baggage. Now nothing bugs me more than people, particularly on the left, who are hyper-vigilant for offence and cry foul at the slightest opportunity. As such it would be good if everyone didn't whip up a storm over this particular aspect of her comments.

    Frankly she's in enough hot water already over where all this gun-tot'n, root'n-toot'n rhetoric has got her without a silly bogus accusation of anti-semitism.

    She is either poorly advised or is unable to open her mouth without saying something potentially inflammatory. It'll run and run!

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  • 34. At 5:31pm on 12 Jan 2011, Steve wrote:

    How utterly irresponsible and preposterous suggesting the media has no influence of members of society. She'd have gained more respect had she apologized, instead of extending the blame game. Now she's lost complete credibility, especially after they have had several days to regroup and strategize. This is their wise response...?!? Shame. Shame.

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  • 35. At 5:34pm on 12 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 36. At 5:42pm on 12 Jan 2011, Nicholas wrote:

    Why on earth is anyone suprised at Ms Palin's use of the term 'blood libel'? In the larger context, it's a cry for help: she's using a term that she apparently doesn't understand to describe a situation that seems beyond her grasp. Her own role seems to be a mystery to her too. I don't see very much new in her speech... And yes, it offends me - but I've stopped expecting her to realise that!

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  • 37. At 5:43pm on 12 Jan 2011, Fracking Tories wrote:

    "She quotes former President Ronald Reagan, indicating that society is not to blame for crimes, only the criminal is."

    Yet she then says the following,

    "...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. That is reprehensible."

    So what is it Sarah, can hatred and violence be incited by the media and political rhetoric (such as crosshairs targeted on a political component) or is only the criminal to blame for crimes.



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  • 38. At 5:46pm on 12 Jan 2011, powermeerkat wrote:

    Re "blood libel"


    ONE-SICK-PUPPY wrote on HYS:

    "When Nidal Hasan an Islamist major in the US Army shot up the base of Ft Hood killing 13 people Obama immediatly gave a speech saying " we should not jump to conclusions about this".



    Yes, and he was correct.

    Unfortunately some of his followers aren't.

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  • 39. At 5:47pm on 12 Jan 2011, Geoff Kendall wrote:

    Sarah Palin; loves guns, hates people. Let's hope that the decent people of the US (the great majority) have the courage to reject the evil that she is.

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  • 40. At 5:48pm on 12 Jan 2011, BillinNY wrote:

    blaming society for the acts of an individual is an old liberal stance which ties right along with the unstated goal of relieving anyone from taking personal responsibility for their actions. No one can point to any TEA party or other legitimate conservative organization that even remotely encourages violence, but that hasn't stopped many commentators and politicians from saying that the "right" is at fault.
    American politics has always been vitriolic. Remember LBJ's ad which outright claimed that if Goldwater won the election your innocent children would die in a nuclear war and how, just a few yeas later, the "left" was running ads accusing him of being personally responsible for killing children in Vietnam?
    Perhaps it is because in Britain it is against the law to say things which some group might find offensive that you fail to see the importance of being free to say almost anything about anyone no matter how "hurtful" it may be.

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  • 41. At 5:51pm on 12 Jan 2011, Fracking Tories wrote:

    Other quotes from Ms Palin,

    "We need a final solution to the problem of higher taxes.

    We need to send our kids to concentration camps so they can improve their study habits.

    I've always wanted my lebensraum done in early American."



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  • 42. At 5:55pm on 12 Jan 2011, Maria Ashot wrote:

    In media time, three-four days is an eternity. I find none of the Republicans responded in a way that can actually be fairly called "prompt, convincing, heartfelt."

    If only the criminal is responsible for a crime, and there is no culpability of any kind attaching to families & groups that promote violence and poison the atmosphere with outrageous incitement, please tell me why the US led a war against Iraq? Why we are after al-Qaeda? Why are we appalled by the presence of underground cells plotting to do harm to others in our cities on the basis of exhortations from some imam? Or any other homicidal, sadistic demagogue?

    And what about Hezbollah then? And other terrorist groups? Should we stop worrying about them entirely, while they raise funds? Since only the actual terrorist who blows himself or herself up is the criminal -- not the people who teach & enable & condone such atrocities?

    At least Newt Gingrich adopted a more muted tone.

    It is impossible to justify the decisions of both George Bushes to embark upon costly, bloody military campaigns against states they perceived to be broadly threatening US interests, and at the same time to invoke the late Ronald Reagan in this way -- and out of context.

    The Reagan Administration got caught up in its own embarrassing doublespeak, with the Iran Contra mess.

    Palin continues to sink her chances. It is just so hard for her to look at those guns she loves to brandish, and see them exactly for what they are:

    Obsolete in most settings, outside a battlefield, as instruments to achieve valid goals.

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  • 43. At 5:55pm on 12 Jan 2011, powermeerkat wrote:

    worcesterjim wrote:
    Mark...is there another politician in the USA other than Mrs Palin.





    NO, worcersterjim, obviously there isn't.

    Perhaps if Hillary Clinton was taller, slimmer and Republican, Barbara Boxer a little younger and less shrilled, and Nancy Pelosi didn't have her face stretched too many times Mark might have been interested in diversifying.

    But as it is ...Sarah is the ticket and Mark is clearly obsessed by the "pit bull in lipstick". :-)


    [I wonder what's he going to do if Sarah does not run in 2012, or, which is even more likely, will not be even nominated by RNC]

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  • 44. At 5:55pm on 12 Jan 2011, IfImay wrote:

    does this woman have no idea or care about the words blood libel, they are surely offensive, these words have a specific usage totally unrelated to these events. No doubt the words come from some high priced word smith, but thats no excuse.

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  • 45. At 5:56pm on 12 Jan 2011, C_BristolUK wrote:

    The current problem in America is that politicians have followed where radio and tv pudits have led. Why do they think that it is alright to use the same language as the media? It is not confined to violent language but includes over exaggeration and sensationalism of just about every subject (i.e. some senators comments on BP oil spill, health care reform).

    Politicians hold a greater influence in society than any media person and, therefore, must speak with more dignity and caution.

    I just hope that our friends in the USA have more sense than to shy away from this debate just because of the self-centred statements of politicians who think that they can say anything and take no responsibility for their own comments.

    Palin is immature in the extreme if she thinks she can only express her political beliefs by using the language and images of the rifle range.

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  • 46. At 5:57pm on 12 Jan 2011, Anglophone wrote:

    20 WorcesterJIm

    "1......Lamanga...Perhaps you should move to the UK...where it`s really good to be anything BUT white and British born and heterosexual and atheist ..like me!"

    Jim...I don't get it? On your previous series of outpourings you were advocating the deep wisdom of the bible to us? Your a hell of a funny atheist!

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  • 47. At 5:57pm on 12 Jan 2011, DianneL wrote:

    Terrorism is very worrying. That is what terrorists want. To worry us.
    When a politician in Pakistan is shot because of his views, we find it horrifying. We are much more civilised in the West, we think. This shooting of this American politician give this the lie. I have friends in America who have been stirred by Sarah Palin, and I know her rhetoric has made them irrationally angry. Not angry enough to kill anyone, as they are mature people who would not go this far. Anyone with less grip on reality could listen to Mrs. Palin and become sufficiently maddened to do heinous things.
    The thought that this crazy woman may be President of USA is as scary as anything terrorists might do.
    I fear she may get us all killed.
    How I wish she would get back to her real job, looking after her family and her disabled child and allow more stable people to look after politics.

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  • 48. At 5:58pm on 12 Jan 2011, Richard Johnson wrote:

    A viable Presidential candidate from any party would have taken this opportunity to talk about changing the tone of the dialogue between the parties. They would have said that the verbiage of the last election cycle could not be repeated, for democracy to move forward. They would have discussed how the passion of campaigning needs to focus on issues and not ad-hominem attacks on personalities.

    However, as this was Sarah Palin, this would not be possible.

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  • 49. At 5:58pm on 12 Jan 2011, Edwin Cheddarfingers wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 50. At 6:03pm on 12 Jan 2011, Kimboi wrote:

    Fortunately, there is very little chance that Ms. Palin will ever be elected to the presidency of the USA.

    Unfortunately, she is the living embodiment of the degeneracy of our society.

    Not merely ignorant, but unaware of her ignorance and would not be troubled to remedy it. Utterly cocksure and self-righteous, lacking any hint of humility or reflection. A novice in the political arts who sees no need for expertise or refinement, and regards them as faults in any event. A would-be oppressor who is quick to don the cloak of victimhood. (This last is a speciality of the right, who imagine that it is a prime tactic of the left and typically take it to ludicrous extremes. The Watergate scandal was an example of this: Nixon, the butt of a minor and harmless political prank, took it to justify felonies and indeed a treasonous assault on the Constitution.)

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  • 51. At 6:04pm on 12 Jan 2011, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #16 and 17

    1. No surprise that the moderators don't remove this libel about Palin.

    2. since the Daily Kos put a target oout as well, why aren't you calling for it's operators arrest?

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  • 52. At 6:04pm on 12 Jan 2011, dave wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 53. At 6:05pm on 12 Jan 2011, JunkkMale wrote:

    '...those who would blame her rhetoric for creating a political climate where such things can happen.'

    And those others, elsewhere, as well, who would and still seek to keep the flames fanned, somewhat unidirectionally if this is any indication...

    For Sarah Palin, best defence is attack(32)
    The role of harsh language in politics(266)
    Febrile politics of Giffords shooting (812)
    Sarah Palin and the Arizona shooting(30)
    Sarah Palin and the Arizona shooting(249)

    Not seeing too much there about the crime of a lone, deranged gunman, amongst whom was a politician from a party one senses was not above exactly the same throughout their history as any other.

    Fortunately I get my news from across a broad spectrum of MSM and blogosphere sources, and still prefer to make my own mind up on the facts. Sadly, any relying on this section of the stalls might be missing something.

    Can't say I felt Ms. Palin seemed to be attacking very much, but all things considered a response seems to have been inevitable, if only as a reaction to the extent and volume of ''robust commentary" specifically upon her. Silence was hardly going to be graciously acknowledged. I was unaware that it was the function of the media to side with their idealogical political brothers, especially when it is in other countries, so overtly in this role, or with such breathtaking multiplicities of standards that are fast becoming the hallmark of certain major media organisation 'journalists'.

    One can only wonder what precedents are being set. For instance with twitter alive recently to the the intemperate tweets of many in the media, often complicit and even seemingly in an organisational role (if under the guise of wishing to be present at ratings-satisfactory mob gatherings), if the result is violence, maybe those reporting on it in such a manner can also be deemed to be tangibly culpable for the consequences of their own inflammatory (or the very least weighted) rhetoric?

    It is perhaps a blessing none of those who have been found very guilty in the recent 'student' riots were not (yet) also discovered to be sharing routes and strategies with half of the BBC twittosphere that seemed to be egging them on.

    Something else I am not too keen on funding, no matter how uniquely, frankly.

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  • 54. At 6:06pm on 12 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    Why are people blaming the right for mentally ill people?

    Don't ultraliberals realize that there can be mentally ill people regardless of political ties...?

    How about we call a spade a spade and call a mentally ill person a mentally ill person?

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  • 55. At 6:07pm on 12 Jan 2011, BillinNY wrote:

    ALB1ON,
    "The issue is not whether particular statements led to a specific action (the shooting) but whether people with a predisposition to something can be influenced by the culture around them."

    So which movies, TV shows, video games, songs and publications do you want to start banning? Will you be the one to decide whether or not someone might be wrongly influenced or should that be left up to some sort of appointed panel?

    The primary fault with "society" these days is that it fails to hold competent individuals repsonsible for their actions by having a truly deterrant punishment for crimes and fails to force mentally unbalanced individuals to either maintain their medication or remain under forced treatment.

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  • 56. At 6:09pm on 12 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    Come on BBC. If we cannot have honesty and objective reporting try a little balance. Since this terrible tragedy the BBC has been churning out its anti Palin rants in its HYS columns, with most contributors just stating that they hate her.

    Now this so called journalist joins the discredited pack of media vultures insisting she has no sense of doubt or second thoughts. Journalist Marc, who is writing your scripts?

    You work for the BBC, funded by licence payers. We expect better, especially as you have been paid to go to the US but merely copy material from the New York Times.

    I thought you would be rattled by her blood libel remark. Your anti Jewish masters in the BBC will require that to be laid to rest.

    Don't you know that you and your collection of HYS ranters here are creating the kind of divisions people are concerned about. If it wasn't for this kind of material we would not be seeing all the internet posts calling for Palin's assassination.

    We will remember you, when the BBC goes cap in hand for licence money increases. I will vote for the politicians who want to privatise the BBC.
    The BBC is finished, thank goodness, we have the internet to replace your biased reports.

    What kind of journalist are you? Just a peddlar of the gutters.

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  • 57. At 6:09pm on 12 Jan 2011, C Smith wrote:

    #9
    "Why should hackles be raised at an example of the Jews being smeared with a lie for her to illustrate what is taking place hear by the left wing media?"

    I can't believe you just said that!
    Either she is showing that she is woefully ignorant of the phrase "blood libel," (and as a national politician, she shouldn't be) and what it means;
    or she is arrogant enough to link herself with the millions of Jewish victims of "blood libel" throughout history.

    Either way, she is entirely focused on herself and not the situation in Tuscon, of dead and injured people gunned down by a probable paranoid schizophrenic living in a country where they are frequently not identified and diagnosed, let alone treated, because of the financial cost. What does she care about the human cost? In her speech she shows that all she cares about is poor Sarah Palin, the "victim."

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  • 58. At 6:09pm on 12 Jan 2011, penwith61 wrote:

    Opening up the media to input from Joe Public and it only takes a few paragraphs and exchanges before things get out of hand. This page is moderated preventing the more radical from airing their views - other sites don't do this and the vitriol pours out unstemmed. Watch some US TV shows and it is wall to wall confrontation, fake anger and "in your face" agressiveness - leave your kids in front of this and wonder why they're dysfunctional ?
    There is something wrong here at a fundimental level

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  • 59. At 6:11pm on 12 Jan 2011, unomebynow wrote:

    lamanga2004, are you trying to imply that Sarah Palin is somehow Christian? Why is that? To be in favour of the 'right' to carry guns is somehow a sign of being Christian? You sound like a bigot to me.

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  • 60. At 6:14pm on 12 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 61. At 6:15pm on 12 Jan 2011, MilwaukeeRay wrote:

    The funerals haven't even been held, and Palin is already back in form. Incredible.

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  • 62. At 6:16pm on 12 Jan 2011, prawnbutty wrote:

    Like anything in life ,I think first impressions count so Sarah,I've decided "I dont like you.

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  • 63. At 6:16pm on 12 Jan 2011, powermeerkat wrote:

    US district judge Cindy Jorgenson who deals now with the court cases that her friend and colleague Judge John Roll is no longer able to hear says: "It doesn't, from my perspective, have anything to do with the often polarising world of politics,"

    "From what I can see from the media this appears to have been a very unstable person. From my perspective it doesn't seem that this incident has anything to do with the political arena."


    Yes, but then Cindy Jorgenson is a judge, not a political activist or propagandist.

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  • 64. At 6:17pm on 12 Jan 2011, JunkkMale wrote:

    Interesting to be pointed towards pieces closer and, dare one say it, possibly more germane to one's understanding events so far away...

    http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/opinions/articles/2011/01/11/20110111tue1-11.html

    Given the vast body of work for some reason accorded this event, here, and in no sense anywhere near as impartial a manner, one can only empathise with '.. have to say at last . . . enough', especially as it applies to media that confuses news with personal or corporate advocacy to a ridiculous degree.

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  • 65. At 6:18pm on 12 Jan 2011, Andy wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 66. At 6:20pm on 12 Jan 2011, RHCracker wrote:

    After reading these posts I have came to the conclusion that Sarah Palin scares the hell out of liberals.
    I just might take another look at her for 2012.

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  • 67. At 6:21pm on 12 Jan 2011, fuflans wrote:

    it would be very helpful if the media stopped treating sarah palin as a legitimate political news story. i understand you can't ignore her completely, but she is nothing more than a minor celebrity - and a rather ugly one at that.

    her every vapid statement, tweet and posting is not worth the acres of coverage it produces.

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  • 68. At 6:22pm on 12 Jan 2011, Baldeeheed wrote:

    #35

    Oh for goodness sake worcesterjim, shoot the messenger why don't you!

    BBC represents a liberal patrician elite blah blah nonsense - no it ruddy doesn't!

    You may have missed the fact that over 53% of the British voting public voted for a liberal or centre left party at the last election, whilst 39% voted for a right or centre right party.

    Therefore, the BBC is simply reflecting the views of the majority in the country.

    Indeed they are far, far less biased than most of the rest of the proprietor-run media in this country and the US.

    You just can't stand any criticism of a gun totin' right-wing religios fundamentalist like Palin, can you?

    And by the way, with reference to your point at #20 I'm also a white, heterosexual, British born, married atheist and I'm doing just fine, thanks very much!

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  • 69. At 6:23pm on 12 Jan 2011, AlanDente wrote:

    I strongly dislike, even hate, Sarah Palin.

    But I agree with her on this matter. She bears no blame for these events, and has not incited hatred to an extent that can be said to be criminal. She has the right to say what she likes, within the law. If people think putting gunsights on maps is dangerous, then it ought to be debated in congress as such. Freedom of expression is for everyone. The same way that I, for example, am allowed to stand in front of Sarah Palin and tell her that her religious beliefs are ridiculous to me.

    Marijuana is well-known to have the ability to 'tip the balance' with those who have a pre-existing psychological weakness. This is still shaky neuroscience, but it appears that especially during formative years, the drug's use - especially more potent skunk etc.- can spark off bi-polar, schitzophrenia and other personality disorders.

    To say that Sarah Palin caused this young man to pull the trigger 20-odd times is ludicrous. He clearly, unfortunately, had a serious mental problem. Potentially caused by the unregulated use of a naturally-ocurring, occasionally dangerous, drug.

    Once again, America would rather hide behind the scapegoating rather than examine the possiblity that it does not have a paradigm cultural setup. It can't be that there's something rotten in society- it must be the crazy lady. A few hundred years ago, they'd be tying her to a stake.

    The societal issues raised by this for America (in brief):

    1. Were the shooter's psychological and emotional problems correctly identified and addressed by those around him?
    2. Were there feasible medical/psych services available, had his problems been identified?
    3. Are American young people looked-after by society, to the extent that they have no justification to want to lose control?
    4. If it is possible for someone to be born 'normal' and to end up in their 20s 'abnormal', is it sensible to allow a wide proliferation of firearms?
    5. Poems with obvious rhyming structures are very last 2 centuries, unless there is some creative or postmodern or sneaky inversion of metanarrative or reader expectation. Sorry dude.

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  • 70. At 6:24pm on 12 Jan 2011, MilwaukeeRay wrote:

    30. At 5:24pm on 12 Jan 2011, Julie80 wrote:
    "Of course, she has no option but to condemn the specific violence in Arizona. It's amazing though how she always becomes the victim whenever she is criticised. Once again, it's the fault of 'the media'. She even had her assistant/spokesman/whoever Rebecca Mansour say 'we never ever intended it to be gunsights'. Really?
    Take some responsibility for your own words for once."

    The thing is, most of "her" words aren't actually hers. Her books are ghost-written, and this statement certainly is, too. She is ignorant and inarticulate, and when she speaks on her own she can't put a grammatical sentence together. That's why she avoids live interviews with the mainstream press.

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  • 71. At 6:24pm on 12 Jan 2011, Leviticus wrote:




    33. At 5:30pm on 12 Jan 2011, Anglophone wrote:
    9 Kentucker

    "And her reference to ' blood libel ', in this context, is absolutely clear to anyone with a modicum of intelligence. It refers to, as in this case, the seeking to smear a person or persons with a lie."

    errrr...no! That's just plain old fashioned vanilla libel! I'm absolutely sure that Sarah Palin meant the expression "blood libel" to mean falsely blaming someone for another's death! The trouble is that it is an expression loaded with anti-semitic baggage

    /////////////////

    errrrrrrrr....yes. I know what a bood libel is thank you.She was drawing an example. I get it. Obviously you don't. But then you and the rest of the lefties don't want to do you?

    And while we are talking about toxic rhetoric - conveniently overlooked is Obamas gun reference at a fundraiser in Philadelphia in 2008.

    Don't count eh? Ah but then he's a socialist. Sorry mean a Democrat.

    People kill people not guns. In the same way they kill , sorry abort , 1.2 million babies a year, on average, in the US alone. Another of Obamas gung ho supporting policies, called pro choice. Some would describe it as mass murder of the innocent.

    While the left love to vilify Sarah Palin, the real vilain and betrayer of American values is Obama. Watch the film The Obama Deception.

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  • 72. At 6:25pm on 12 Jan 2011, David A wrote:

    I think it's time for the left to cool the overheated rehtoric before those of us who are more moderate start to feel threatened about the potential loss of both out First and Second Amendment rights. I am refering about the potential loss of freedom of speech because something we say could be percieved as inflamatory and cause some mentally unbalanced individual to commit some atrocity. As far as the Second Amendment, while I am not a gun owner, I oppose restrictions on ownership.
    I also think the left needs to get off their high horse after the nearly relentless attacks concerning the legitimacy of the Bush presidency. While I don't think it incited violance it certainly contributed to the polarization plaguing this country.

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  • 73. At 6:30pm on 12 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    It's a well known fact that a good commander-in-chief of a nation's armed services never makes mistakes, and Wasilla's wonderwoman never makes mistakes. She'll be the first to admit that fact.

    The former paller-around-with-secessionists and former mayor and former would-be bookburner (Eulalie Mackechnie Shinn lives!) and former half-term state governor and former vice-presidential hopeful will make an excellent resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, even if she'll wilt and quit at the first query from the IRS or whichever other arm of government shows an interest in her "private" affairs.

    She'll do well as the resident because she's never needed to say "sorry" to anybody about anything she's ever said or done. No mishap will ever be anything to do with her. In what respect, Charlie?

    She has an omnipotent being on her side, so she can bypass such conventions to which ordinary politicians have ever felt the need to adhere. She knows that activists in all other sides of politics think they have that omnipotent being on their side, but she knows that they're deluded about the allegiances of her big pal.

    The Teflon-coated shall inherit the earth.

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  • 74. At 6:30pm on 12 Jan 2011, Arden Forester wrote:

    Sarah Palin doesn't see to get it. She uses words like a Mrs Humpty Dumpty. Words to mean what she alone wants them to mean. By using the term Blood Libel she's going to get herself into more trouble. Maybe she should do a course in Practical Politics or buy a copy of Politics for Dummies!

    And as the song goes, sorry seems the hardest thing to say. She regrets RIEN!

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  • 75. At 6:33pm on 12 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    47. At 5:57pm on 12 Jan 2011, DianneL wrote:
    Terrorism is very worrying. That is what terrorists want. To worry us.
    When a politician in Pakistan is shot because of his views, we find it horrifying. We are much more civilised in the West, we think. This shooting of this American politician give this the lie. I have friends in America who have been stirred by Sarah Palin, and I know her rhetoric has made them irrationally angry. Not angry enough to kill anyone, as they are mature people who would not go this far. Anyone with less grip on reality could listen to Mrs. Palin and become sufficiently maddened to do heinous things.
    The thought that this crazy woman may be President of USA is as scary as anything terrorists might do.
    I fear she may get us all killed.
    How I wish she would get back to her real job, looking after her family and her disabled child and allow more stable people to look after politics.

    -----------------------------------
    I have singled out your mindless comment as typical of this BBC approach to the tragedy. Your evidence comes from american friends who have been made 'irrationally angry'. Others you suggest might be maddened enough to do henious things. Alright. Enough. You end with a warning that she is worse than a terrorist and dangerous.

    OK what are these things she is saying? The BBC have been producing your style of garbage since the murders and no one has come up with any serious evidence as to how she might be the architect of violence.

    You do betray yourself by insisting that she returns to her real job - a woman's job - of looking after her family. I believe this is the root of the problem. Your world, shaped by the drivel that pours out of BBC news and comments, is a place where the political classes make all the decisions and the rest of us have little say. The Palin's of this world don't fit, so you brand them as potential terrorists. I can see where you and your BBC educators want to take us. This double HYS attack on Palin is so revealing.

    Come on BBC. If you have any shred of that decency that could lift you out of the gutter, put an end to these ill informed and hate filled rants.

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  • 76. At 6:34pm on 12 Jan 2011, WhatsUpNow wrote:

    In regard to the distinguished Alaskan of cross hair rhetoric:

    There is a time when wolves are wise to go home and into the deep forest, far from humans, for prey and community with the PAC.

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  • 77. At 6:36pm on 12 Jan 2011, Anjami wrote:

    I've listened to Palin's speech, which was obviously written for her. It was slick, well rehearsed and choreographed but has taken several days work to pull together. I didn't warm to her comments on American exceptionalism and am not quite sure what she means by blood libel. All very well saying that the tragedy was the fault of one individual. Nobody disagrees but doesn't it occur to her (or her advisors) that a young man with severe mental health problems should never been allowed to buy such a lethal weapon in the first place. Also, despite his recognized problems, there was no query on Palin's part as to why had he not had any sort of compulsory psychiatric assessment or treatment, just simplistic rhetoric about evil and criminality, a quote from Ronald Reagan and the usual "God bless America".

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  • 78. At 6:37pm on 12 Jan 2011, AlanDente wrote:

    Post no. 40, a small point, but I'm afraid your knowledge of UK law is faulty. It's not against the law to say something that might offend others in the UK. In fact, in my opinion, we are a far more frank nation than the USA in many ways. Just look at how Christopher Hitchins offends people on your TV networks- I love it! Shoot from the hip, Hitch! (poor choice of words, sorry, sorry).

    The law here in the UK specifically relates to 'stirring up or inspiring hatred and/or violence and/or murder'.

    In practice, it is used infrequently. I would not be jailed for saying I hate gays or jews or whatever, for example. I would be an idiot. But I wouldn't go to jail for offending people. I would if I could be reasonably said to be inspiring others to go and burn down a synagogue. Do you see the distinction?

    Havin said that, I'm pleased to see a comment from an American that attempts to understand foreign cultures, so please don't let this comment put you off. A* for effort. C- for content.

    Muchlove.

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  • 79. At 6:43pm on 12 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    This posting cannot break the house rules. To other posters who are concerned about the BBC's encouragement of these libellous and unsubtantiated attacks on Palin, please copy your own attempts to counter them before they go off to be rejected by the moderators. There are many US web sites that are willing to publish what the BBC will not allow. One day, it will return to them.
    A few rebuttals are getting through, but we are seeing the blackest days of news and discussion.
    Someone is pulling some strings somewhere.

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  • 80. At 6:44pm on 12 Jan 2011, scmathisen wrote:

    It seems that the commentator knows exactly what he is talking about. I viewed her entire statement and found it to be correct, pointed and hit the nail squarely on the head.
    To attack someone who was wrongly accused and defended herself is wrong.

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  • 81. At 6:48pm on 12 Jan 2011, pvandck wrote:

    Sarah Palin posts a video portraying herself as a victim on her Facebbok page - a page where debate or diverse opinion is banned. The comments on her Facebook page are severely edited to remove any criticism whatsoever of St Sarah Palin.

    She is an awful woman who is only thinking of herself. She demands the right to say whatever she likes, as long as it's within the law. And that's perfectly ok. What isn't perfectly ok is that she pretends that, because what she says is within the law, it is without effect. She wants the world to believe that Political rhetoric is without effect if it is within the law. If she sincerely believes that herself then she is an incredibly stupid women. If she doesn't believe it then she is incredibly nasty.

    In any event a Political opponent is fighting for her life and Sarah Palin thinks the world is all about her. Quite disgusting!

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  • 82. At 6:48pm on 12 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/47477

    An excerpt:
    Palin warned against any efforts to limit free speech, saying, “We will not be stopped from celebrating the greatness of our country and our foundational freedoms by those who mock its greatness by being intolerant of differing opinion and seeking to muzzle dissent with shrill cries of imagined insults.”
    She noted in the video that less than a week after the shooting, “another member of Congress announced that he would propose a law that would criminalize speech he found offensive.”
    That was apparently a reference to Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.), who has said there may be a need for revised standards for talk shows on TV and radio.
    -----------
    So now due to the act of one mentally ill man some ultraliberals want to take away freedom of speech?

    (We already saw how they censored Mark Twain's books, thus changing/rewriting USA's history- personally, I would rather know the truth of what an author actually wrote rather than a politically correct lie created by someone who's not the author many years later)

    Americans have the right to freedom of speech and no matter how hard the extreme left fights to take it away, we must stand our ground if we want our future generations to have freedom of speech...

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  • 83. At 6:50pm on 12 Jan 2011, Leviticus wrote:

    33. At 5:30pm on 12 Jan 2011, Anglophone wrote:
    Frankly she's in enough hot water already over where all this gun-tot'n, root'n-toot'n rhetoric has got her without a silly bogus accusation of anti-semitism.

    She is either poorly advised or is unable to open her mouth without saying something potentially inflammatory. It'll run and run!
    /////////////////

    So what is she supposed to do, let the left and the liberals walk all over her?

    She could deliver the equivalent of the Sermon on the Mount and she would still be attacked and vilified by the liberal media.

    Why? Because they know that she represents at heart the core values of the majority of the American people, it's traditions and it's heritage.

    Worst of all for the left liberals, she is a Christian.

    Any cursory reader of HYS is surely aware of the rhetorical hatred poured out on here for any that identify themselves as being Christian.

    I wonder if there is the same interest in America for what goes on here politically, as all the British lefties seem to have for the US?

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  • 84. At 6:53pm on 12 Jan 2011, kec132 wrote:

    Palin is desperately trying to justify her own provocative and inflammatory actions and language as she desperately fought to make herself a political power-broker during 2010 election cycle. It even took her 24 hours to remove the target map from her website - the one that had target cross-hairs on Gabrielle Giffords.

    Given the tragic events in Tuscon her tone is unacceptable, her narcissism out of control and her powers of observation non-existent. People died. Others are in the hospital. Yet here's Palin trying to make herself the victim on this tragedy? Too bizarre to be contemplated.

    Then she used a term that reminds many of the horrible false accusations that were historically used against the world's Jewish population, during genocides, pogroms and the Holocaust. Raises questions: did she not know Gabby Giffords is Jewish? Or is she simply so poorly educated and so politically inept that she didn't know what the term represented to most of the world? Or, does her narcissism run so deep that she's the only real victim in this tragedy and that alone justified use of the term?

    What Palin did prove is that she's simply not got what it takes to be President of the United States of America, and, in her latest desperate attempt to become relevant, she proved that yet again.

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  • 85. At 6:56pm on 12 Jan 2011, baircash wrote:

    Sarah is using the usual right wing tactics: either attack or whine As a life long independent, I'm the kind of guy that either party has to
    snuggle up.In most states, we have more votes than either party on its own. Yet, both parties become blowhards to pander to their base. Where else is their base going to go? I think that most Americans have grown weary of the blather not unlike the way too manny TV Medical shows & tune it out.

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  • 86. At 6:58pm on 12 Jan 2011, DinTex wrote:

    It is strange to see how a majority of people on the left seem to forget, that there is as much blame for "deadly" rhetoric to be found on their side. Worse, the AZ sheriff investigating the shooting immediately jumped to conclusions, something especially this position should not be doing - and for the record, until now evidence of political right rhetoric has not been found.

    Most recently from Democratic Congressman Kanjorski, who said this about Florida's new Republican Governor Rick Scott on October 23:

    "That Scott down there that's running for governor of Florida," Mr. Kanjorski said. "Instead of running for governor of Florida, they ought to have him and shoot him. Put him against the wall and shoot him. He stole billions of dollars from the United States government and he's running for governor of Florida. He's a millionaire and a billionaire. He's no hero. He's a damn crook. It's just we don't prosecute big crooks."

    Now, if one looks into the attackers past, I have some questions, which might need more urgent answers:

    The shooter happened to contact the congress woman already in 2007, leaving dis-satisfied and angry after the encounter. Any connection here stronger than some obscure internet pages, he might/might not have read?

    The shooter was known to law-enforcement for a long time, had multiple instances of substance abuse, school threats, etc.. Dupnik (Sheriff) himself has admitted, that Loughner leveled death threats against others that were investigated by law enforcement. Sheriff why not keep an eye out for this individual?

    Like it or not (and I don't like it), but "killing" rhetoric has been used much earlier, and probably as much if not more by the left leaning.


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  • 87. At 6:59pm on 12 Jan 2011, Lynda J W wrote:

    If folks didn't realize what Sarah Palin and her bunch of caribou killing followers were about before this recent tragedy, I hope they do now. The fact that she quit her post as Governor of Alaska for money shows what kind of person she is. She should not be allowed to run for president. Doggone, gee whiz, you betcha, let's refudiate - after Dubya as Mangler-in-Chief we don't want this country to be a made a mockery of again. She makes even him look like a genius!

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  • 88. At 6:59pm on 12 Jan 2011, JKA wrote:

    For peace and for the good of the country, Sarah Palin should just go away, I mean very far away. This country needs to heal and re-evaluate how civility could be brought back to our political discussions. Our country needs intellectual dialogue without partisan provocation.

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  • 89. At 6:59pm on 12 Jan 2011, champagne_charlie wrote:

    #40

    billinny;

    "Perhaps it is because in Britain it is against the law to say things which some group might find offensive"

    No, it isn't. Must do better.

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  • 90. At 6:59pm on 12 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    http://www.businessinsider.com/clyburn-free-speech-2011-1

    An excerpt:
    Democratic Congressman Says It's Time To "Rethink" Free Speech In Wake Of Arizona Tragedy - Business Insider.
    The Democrats' third most powerful House member Jim Clyburn (South Carolina) told the Post & Courier that it's time for the country to "rethink" the parameters of free speech, while suggesting that some currently accepted speech should be in the category of yelling fire in a crowded theater.
    Meanwhile, Congressman Robert Brady (via Mike Riggs) also a Democrat, is pushing for legislation that would ban the use of violent rifle-sights imagery in advertising.
    -----------

    So this now has gone from an attack by a mentally ill man to now an attack on the American people's freedom of speech?

    Why are some Dem politicians trying to take away freedom of speech?

    Between Palin who supports freedom of speech and an ultraliberal who wants to take freedom of speech away, I choose Palin because I choose freedom of speech!!!

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  • 91. At 7:02pm on 12 Jan 2011, Sybarite wrote:

    worcesterjim wrote:
    @1......Lamanga...Perhaps you should move to the UK...where it`s really good to be anything BUT white and British born and heterosexual and atheist ..like me!

    Out of curiosity, Jim – how about providing details of all the actual ways in which you have been persecuted and discriminated against for being (presumably) straight, atheist, white and British?

    I admit that my curiosity is partly because, as a white, British (I prefer English, myself) atheist, I'm struggling to compile any such list for myself – so I'm sure you'll be able to point me in the right sort of direction.

    Thank you in advance.

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  • 92. At 7:05pm on 12 Jan 2011, Marton R wrote:

    "She quotes former President Ronald Reagan, indicating that society is not to blame for crimes, only the criminal is."

    One of the great bits of wishful thinking on the part of that poor, sick old man. Reagan, like Palin, refused and refuses to take any responsibility for their actions. During RR's reign of error, hundreds of thousands were murdered in Latin America. The policy of supporting death squads down there goes on to this day (I work with a humanitarian agency that deals with the problem among other problems). Not to speak of the hundreds of thousands killed in Afghanistan, Iraq and now Pakistan in silly and partly illegal wars.

    Some people should choose their moment for being quiet. Ms Palin does not know how to do this, because the moment she gets the slightest whiff of publicity, she is out there absorbing the spotlight.



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  • 93. At 7:05pm on 12 Jan 2011, WhatsUpNow wrote:

    Curious: Noting that the Most Honorable Congressional victim, a truly wonderful and respectful person, that was in Palin's cross hairs is of Jewish religion, is Palin, as a self professed Christian, representing herself and/or her PAC when she uses the term Blood Libel? Obviously she is smart enough to willfully pick words of vitriol rhetoric and know the history of her descriptive terms as does her PAC. When will it end and peace and unity come over the political landscape of hate for votes, PAC and Lobby money, and political power?

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  • 94. At 7:07pm on 12 Jan 2011, Blythespirits wrote:

    SP is a dissapointing and cliched politician. She gripes and snides and whinges with her only seemingly dreary goal to fight every single element of Obamas presidenicy and provoke anger and negativity.. She preys upons peoples fears and hopes, people who are struglging with hard times. Yet she offers nothing positive herself except for the occasional rant about claiming back the USA (From what? The cold war was over years ago deary, though it is true SP isn't quite sure where Russia is.

    Thank goodness the Founding Fathers of the USA were built from better stuff with insights and amazing dreams.

    What's SP got to offer the USA as it heads into the future...

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  • 95. At 7:08pm on 12 Jan 2011, C Smith wrote:

    #79 "There are many US web sites that are willing to publish what the BBC will not allow. One day, it will return to them.
    A few rebuttals are getting through, but we are seeing the blackest days of news and discussion.
    Someone is pulling some strings somewhere."

    You mean you don't like a website where Rupert Murdoch and his minions are not at liberty to pull the strings?

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  • 96. At 7:10pm on 12 Jan 2011, M Bergman wrote:

    Sarah Palin wants to hold everyone accountable but herself. She is a disgrace to women, to Americans, and to the Republican Party, which was once the Party of people like Abe Lincoln, whose rhetoric, we note, was considerably less hostile, violent, ruthless, and crass than what we're hearing from Republicans today. Palin is unrepentant for the fact that her actions and the actions of her Party have contributed to a climate that encourages and even promotes violent, vigilante crimes. She, and the other Republicans who share the "bullets over ballots" imagery and rhetoric, has declared war on the rest of America. She is accountable for that, whether she and her constituents like it or not.

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  • 97. At 7:11pm on 12 Jan 2011, kec132 wrote:

    Kentucker ....

    No, Sarah Palin is trying to make herself out to be THE victim here ... but because she's so wrapped up in herself she can't see that the use of such a historically horrific term is utterly unacceptable, that in actuality all she does is confirm herself as someone not intellectually competent to be President of US.

    Blood libel is a term identifying false accusations against Jews reportedly since the first Christian Crusades.

    The only folks Sarah Palin reached with here statement is her diminishing base. This statement of hers probably diminished those ranks of her base even more. Sarah Palin's "Crosshairs" Election Target List has come back to haunt her and her base, as well it should.

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  • 98. At 7:13pm on 12 Jan 2011, L A Odicean wrote:

    (Did she say "Pundents"?) How come this stupid woman is taken seriously as a politician by anyone? Has the world gone mad? Or is it just America?

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  • 99. At 7:15pm on 12 Jan 2011, jagtony wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 100. At 7:15pm on 12 Jan 2011, Peter Hodge wrote:

    I have to admit that I thought the idea of Sarah Palin being president of the USA was quite a humouous idea. She would certainly be the most attractive president ever.

    But her response to the claims being leveled at her suggest she should not be allowed with a mile of the White House. Regan and Bush Jnr were bad enough, but the idea of someone who cannot see that what has happened, whilst maybe not directly her fault, has its roots in the language of debate in the USA.

    But I suppose that we we are no longer in a special relationship with the USA, now that France is, according to Obama, "America's very best friend," we can just let them get on with it and sit back and w atch the lack of democracy that is the norm in America continue.

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  • 101. At 7:17pm on 12 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    46...Anglo...Anyone who has any grasp of history knows that the beliefs of Judaochristianity underpin not just Christianity and Judaism and Socialism as well.

    Yes..I am an atheist and a social democrat but the Bible was taught me as child and it still moves me ...and that`s why so much of this blasphemous evil boasting and cynicism sickens me.

    I feel as though I am among the worst sort of hypocrites.... but recognise that they don`t fully realise it about themselves....that they are not "saved" as my father would say.

    I am acutely aware that the main cause of American internal conflict as a nation is that (like Britain) it can`t face the truth that it`s fundementally rotten to the core.

    The truth is that we were ..and remain ...a bunch of thieving brigands who still make our livings by TALKING about God and Christ (and the teachings found in the Bible) while using every wicked and underhand means possible to control the rest of the world to our advantage and their disadvantage.

    That is why we are so angry and conflicted and why NONE of the other people contributing to this debate can take me up on the biblical references I have mentioned...for SHAME!

    Thou shalt not kill ?? Tell that to the gun-toting psychopaths who have wandered the world looting and murdering in the "name of Christ".

    But deep down in what my parents called their "soul" they know that our AngloSaxon empire is built on robbery and lies and hypocrisy...and that`s why they are frightened of Julian Assange and Bradley Manning ...and Sarah Palin...because they ALL tell the TRUTH.....and the very last thing they want is for people to go around exposing their lies!

    Now does that answer your question Anglophone?

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  • 102. At 7:17pm on 12 Jan 2011, will smithies wrote:

    I would just like to remind you that Sarah Palin has not been an elected official for a year and a half. Touting her as a "senior Republican" is a bit rich, may I suggest TV commentator, reality show star or simply right wing media darling?

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  • 103. At 7:18pm on 12 Jan 2011, Esperia wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 104. At 7:21pm on 12 Jan 2011, Edwin Cheddarfingers wrote:

    This is the same Palin that claims Wikileak's release of documents means Julian Assange has blood on his hands and should be hunted down as a terrorist of course (Source: http://www.salon.com/news/politics/war_room/2010/11/29/palin_hunt_down_assange/index.html)

    Which is it Sarah? Can someone have blood on their hands because of their exercising of free speech or not? Either you have blood on your hands Sarah, or he doesn't. Make up your mind, it simply cannot work both ways without breaking all logic.

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  • 105. At 7:22pm on 12 Jan 2011, slummoose wrote:

    Is it a coincidence that in the the UK we are facing severe tests associated with ownership and management of media outlets including what appears to be the systematic taping of private calls whilst in the US there is a media outlet employing people who peddle vitriolic rubbish on mainstream media with what appears to be the sole intent of rabble rousing. I wonder if these organisations are somehow related

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  • 106. At 7:24pm on 12 Jan 2011, hms_shannon wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 107. At 7:24pm on 12 Jan 2011, Dan wrote:

    I think Sarah is right to go on the offensive and it's an excellent judgment on her part. As the clearer heads begin to prevail, the true story here is the disgusting hijacking of a national tragedy by the Democratic party and the leftist media outlets such as MSNBC in order to score some political points. As the CBS poll shows, the American people are not buying the idea that some crosshairs on a map had anything whatsoever to do with the shooting. Both parties and, especially, the media have been using that kind of metaphors forever (war room, battleground states etc). The Democrats themselves had a map with bulls eyes on the districts they were targeting. The only thing that is new here is the idea of falsely accusing your political opponents of being accessories to murder. My prediction is that it will backfire badly on the Democrats in the next election.

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  • 108. At 7:27pm on 12 Jan 2011, HappyILeft wrote:

    I hope Palin is successfull in rejecting blame on her camp and splintering the Republican party with her recent response to the Arizona shootings.

    If they (republicans) do not distance her from their pack, they must stand alongside the images of crosshairs marking congressional districts to be attacked. How inconvienient that some died under the crosshairs.

    She is the epitome of the nature of incivility and ignorance that characterizes the US these days. The lot is declining and is already owned by China. In their ignorant arrogance, they realize neither.

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  • 109. At 7:28pm on 12 Jan 2011, Moorlandhunter wrote:

    Please let’s have some balanced reporting on here regarding this outrageous crime. If we are to get to the nugget of political speak then lets include the Democrats who used the same target cross hair image for the areas they wished to win and ask President Obama to account for his firebrand election rhetoric about winning the election, ‘If they come to the fight with a knife, we will meet them with a gun,’ or words to that effect.
    Balance is something that is sadly lacking over this crime and it seems that the actions of an apolitical criminal loner who had a personal hatred of the Congresswoman for some reason has been forgotten in an attempt by some to make political gain out of a horrible crime. If the fiery rhetoric of words used by the parties which both stoop to the level of gutter fighting when they want to win is the reason then let’s have any such mention of ‘fight’s’, ‘combating the issues’ or any other words a mentally ill criminal can take and harbour as an excuse to do what they do taken out of politics all together.
    To blame a very large section of society who are very discontent even angry with the some of the actions of their government and their political masters for this outrage it appears to me nothing but an excuse to brow beat and belittle voters of the Republicans and Tea Party implying they are in some way to blame for this crime when all they are, are disenchanted with the Democrat Government. If the same blame was ever placed on the actions of left wing violence after any election rhetoric there would be howls of outrage of bias reporting.
    Please let’s have some balance over this crime, not convenient scapegoats in the form of words used by people during and after elections because if we do then there are long lists of violent actions which we could attribute to left wing politicians and Union leaders.
    To try and blame Palin in some way for this crime because she happens to enjoy shooting and hunting and eating what she shoots, a lawful hobby in the USA and I might add here in the UK is stooping to a new level of nastiness of bigotry I never thought possible from media sources.

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  • 110. At 7:29pm on 12 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    91 Samsonite...I wouldn`t know where to begin...and this isn`t the place for such a discussion anyway. Write your own book please!

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  • 111. At 7:29pm on 12 Jan 2011, Capt Hogman wrote:

    To label Ms Palin as a "senior Republican" does the party an injustice.
    That label gives her a stature that she no longer deserves, if she ever did.
    She no longer holds political office and is now an entertainer employed by Fox News.
    She is more akin to a "shock jock" like Glenn Beck, paid for her ability to raise hackles among the literate and well-mannered.

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  • 112. At 7:34pm on 12 Jan 2011, hms_shannon wrote:

    101. At 7:17pm on 12 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote his post,

    Its the little yellow ones by the TV,two every four hours..

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  • 113. At 7:34pm on 12 Jan 2011, cuff wrote:

    I suspect Palin is a tempest in a teapot but what kills me is that she is making so much money in the meantime. She wallows in ignorance, jingoism, and name calling and has found an audience. Individually her dopey fans don't have much money, but because there are so many of them she can make a fortune selling all of them her stupid books even though they probably can't read. Remarkable.

    Yes, I know I have just engaged in name calling myself so please disregard the aforegoing comments. As one of the characters in Zoolander said: I think I'm taking crazy pills!! Doesn't anyone else see how mad this is?

    If she were elected President--a most remote contingency--I am leaving the USA for a more sane country like maybe North Korea. Or Iran.

    One good thing about her, though: she gives us all in the US a chance to rant. That's a valuable service she provides.

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  • 114. At 7:42pm on 12 Jan 2011, Roast Chicken wrote:

    Anyone who blames anyone other than the criminal himself for the gun ramapage in Arizona is a loon. Words can't make anyone do anything and this is yet another example of the political left refusing to embrace a culture of personal responsibility. In their world, someone else is always responsible for a person's actions rather than that person himself.

    "Liberalism is a mental disorder" - Michael Savage, conservative American pundit banned from traveling to the UK

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  • 115. At 7:44pm on 12 Jan 2011, IanMcDW wrote:

    It is hard to comprehend the vitriol in so many of the comments in this thread. This of itself seems to be evidence of the truly unpleasant and even dangerous state of politics in the USA at the moment.

    Having followed Mark Mardell's comments on this it is very difficult to see any left-leaning liberal bias as some commentators want to attribute. This seems to be more a case of: if you don't like the message, shoot the messenger. Wake up! You are only kidding yourselves. Reality can be disconcerting.

    Increasingly many on this side of the Atlantic find Americans collectively as a people, the USA, frightening. To the outside world this looks more and more like a country not wholly in control of itself. Get a grip guys!

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  • 116. At 7:46pm on 12 Jan 2011, Edwin Cheddarfingers wrote:

    Q: What's the difference between the Islamic extremist grouping in Pakistan, and the right wing tea party grouping in America that claims to be arch enemy with those extremist muslims?

    A: Very little, both want much stronger religious influence on politics and law, both often use very aggressive rhetoric, both claim to be a movement to bring power to the people and away from governments, now it's apparent from comments online and recent news events that some even support the killing of opposition politicians that they disagree with.

    The more right wing pundits in the US such as Sarah Palin say, the more they show similarities between them and the likes of Al Qaeda supporting hate preachers they claim to supposedly despise.

    Perhaps Sarah Palin and Osama Bin Laden could give each other a call, make amends and form the Opium Party or something? I think they'd go well together.

    Meanwhile moderates across the world be they muslim, christian, jewish, atheist, hindu, or any other belief are forced to shake their heads in disbelief at the utter train wreck that is the type of politics these folks play, and their supporters blindly follow. Some people even here seem to rather oddly believe that by supporting Sarah Palin they're supporting free speech, and yet, this is the same Sarah Palin who has made noise suggesting she wants Julian Assange and Wikileaks shut down which is clearly not free speech. It's this sort of contradiction that leaves us moderates a little puzzled as to what these folks even really want- they claim one thing, and push for another.

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  • 117. At 7:47pm on 12 Jan 2011, Andy Post wrote:

    Mrs. Palin and I agree on so very little, but I have to say this time I'm in complete agreement with her. Yes, the rhetoric got a little heated during the mid-terms, but even if the rhetoric were completely polite and civil, it would not have stopped Loughner. He would have found some other reason to go on a rampage.

    Homicidal maniacs never have trouble finding a justification for their anger. They're not capable of rational thought, so really anything can become a justification. They change reality to fit their needs.

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  • 118. At 7:48pm on 12 Jan 2011, KennethM wrote:

    I am sure that Sarah Palin was simply reacting to the irresponsible comments made by journalists.

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  • 119. At 7:52pm on 12 Jan 2011, DianneL wrote:

    Dr Llareggub, you say :- You end with a warning that she is worse than a terrorist and dangerous.

    Dr Llareggub, Where did you read the word 'worse"? Read carefully please. You are obviously over excited.

    You say "OK what are these things she is saying?"

    Dr Llareggub, I am quite sure you know what she has been saying.. but you think the same way?

    You say...The BBC have been producing your style of garbage since the murders and no one has come up with any serious evidence as to how she might be the architect of violence.

    Dr Llareggub, If you believe that killing those who do not agree with you is a good idea, then obviously THAT is how,
    If you believe everyone ought to have guns, obviously when people get angry, they MAY use them. That is how a few Presidents have lost their lives, sadly. In UK usually , we throw eggs. I hope the American habits of shooting don't come here.

    You say....You do betray yourself by insisting that she returns to her real job - a woman's job - of looking after her family. I believe this is the root of the problem. Your world, shaped by the drivel that pours out of BBC news and comments, is a place where the political classes make all the decisions and the rest of us have little say.

    Dr Llareggub, EH? Look in your Bible if you want to know about women's roles. Like many people, you seem to pick the bits you like, & ignore those you don't. However, my daughter works, I see nothing wrong in working women... just this one, in the job that SHE wants...

    You say... The Palin's of this world don't fit, so you brand them as potential terrorists. I can see where you and your BBC educators want to take us.

    Dr Llareggub, I think it certainly would be a nicer place than one where you have to worry if anyone sitting next to you on the bus has a gun in their handbag.

    You say "This double HYS attack on Palin is so revealing."

    Double what, Dr Llareggub?
    Sorry, you got me there.

    You say....Come on BBC. If you have any shred of that decency that could lift you out of the gutter, put an end to these ill informed and hate filled rants.

    I don't think there was any hatred in my post? Or rant? Maybe look in the mirror?
    I just don't like the look of the future with an ignorant, belligerent and hysterical woman leading a country, that's all.

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  • 120. At 7:52pm on 12 Jan 2011, ConcernedUSCitizen wrote:

    In the country I am from people are innocent until proven guilty. So please be so kind to show me the results of this investigation that proves Palin or any "right-wing" commentator is the catalyst for such a tragic event.

    This happened a block from my father's house and the Congresswoman attacked is a personal friend of my sister. They are greiving for their community and the loss of those 6 lives.

    Let's remember those who are effected and not focus on unsunstaniated claims from all fronts. Let us allow the truth to come to light and leave behind opinions so quickly to be believed as fact.

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  • 121. At 7:53pm on 12 Jan 2011, Andy wrote:

    Blood will be ‘on your hands,’ Whoopie Goldberg warned ‘talking heads’ in March.

    Hope those who she's taking about wore some marigolds.

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  • 122. At 7:54pm on 12 Jan 2011, kevinmaclean wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 123. At 7:56pm on 12 Jan 2011, WyomingPat wrote:

    I understand this shooter is mentally unstable and apoloitical - but the rhetoric from members of the public has to be heard to be belived. Then there are certain Christian groups who pray for Obama and his family to die - it is a crazy society.

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  • 124. At 7:56pm on 12 Jan 2011, Fer355 wrote:

    As a Britt living in the US for many years I cringe when ignorant, so call representatives, of the US have their ramblings publicized overseas. People like Palin should be ignored. They will then, hopefully, go away.

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  • 125. At 7:57pm on 12 Jan 2011, Uhuru wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 126. At 7:59pm on 12 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    Says Moorlandhunter (#109, "7:28pm on 12 Jan 2011"):

    "Please let’s have some balanced reporting on here regarding this outrageous crime. If we are to get to the nugget of political speak then lets include the Democrats who used the same target cross hair image for the areas they wished to win [. . .]."

    Dear Moorlandhunter (!), I seem to have forgotten about that particular representation of crosshairs. Would you be so good as to post a link to a picture of it?

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  • 127. At 8:03pm on 12 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    115..Ian..I share you feeling that America is frightening...and the more so because it`s obviously in control of Britain more than it is of itself,but I am also concerned about the involvement of the BBC over there.

    Despite all the carefully crafted praise the BBC orchestrates for itself I feel that the BBC is a major impediment to free expression and far too influential in our politics to be seen as just another broadcaster.

    I think it`s time there was much more scrutiny of the BBC`s activities both in Britain and elsewhere ...and I would start by asking why it runs an Iranian television station against the wishes of the Iranian government?

    And why the BBC spends our money on far too much coverage of the USA while telling us far too little about the EU that costs us a fortune and provides us with thousands more mouths to feed every year.

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  • 128. At 9:00pm on 12 Jan 2011, Joseph wrote:

    It is truly a bizarre time to live in the USA. What has occurred in our nation over the last decade or so can be compared to the propaganda spewed out by the Taliban or the corrupt regime of Slobodan Milosevic.

    Both of these regimes attempt to monopolize the political landscape and use symbols with weapons and threatening words to achieve their goals.

    Conversely, right wing radicals in the US routinely use hateful, indeed toxic rhetoric to attack anyone who does not agree with them. Coupled with this are closely aligned references to the 2nd Amendment of the US Constitution (right to bear arms).

    Anyone can deduce from such verbal and symbolic communication that such communication is threatening to the political process.

    Now, before our very eyes we have a southern, conservative town that is quite smothered in right wing toxic rhetoric offer up a lunatic who attempts to assassinate a member of the US Congress.

    Did Fox News and local hate radio stations in Tuscon (e.g. 104.1 FM...look at their "truth members"...what a joke) warp this mans young man's mind? One can only wonder.

    Nevertheless, there is clear circumstantial evidence that hateful rhetoric coupled with symbols of weapons in a political process is a recipe for disaster. If this goes on for much longer I would doubt if the nation spills into civil war.

    Could this happen in the USA? All I can say is right wingers continue to butter up their weapons and tout them at nearly all political rallies. Such antics are truly shameful and show these individuals are truly desperate.

    Looking deeper, the desperation is at a higher level. Anyone with a college education in political science and media studies knows the right wing propaganda is financed by corporations, not the public. The root of the problem is Republican leaders and their corporate leaders are reaching deep into their pockets to continuously fund this toxic propaganda. Why? They want to continue to recruit as many people as possible so they can continue their policies. Many of these polices are directed by the agenda of big oil companies.

    So, the root of the problem is actually big oil companies and other interests that fund hate radio and media in the USA. Everyone here knows big oil has infested Washington DC and will do anything to hold on to the political agenda to protect their tax incentives. It's a shame their tactics have come to this, but as anyone can see the writing has been on the wall for some time.

    Some in the USA are calling for a restoration of the Fairness Doctrine, which would require commentators to allow an opposing viewpoint in political discussions. Perhaps this is what is needed, along with making symbols of weapons (and weapons themselves) at political rallies illegal.

    Until then, God help the USA.

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  • 129. At 9:40pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    "Most say the shooting was not motivated but politics, but most want the rhetoric turned down a notch."


    Why and why now, specifically?


    Also, until today I did not know what "hackles" are. Maybe you were trying to say that Sarah Palin ruffles feathers? :)

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  • 130. At 9:49pm on 12 Jan 2011, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    # 20. At 5:10pm on 12 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    "@1......Lamanga...Perhaps you should move to the UK...where it`s really good to be anything BUT white and British born and heterosexual and atheist ..like me!"

    How very true. Why, I was just looking at a picture of the UK government.

    Completely composed of black, foreign-born, gay, religious fundamentalists.

    Mind you, almost all of them look like white, heterosexual UK-born straight men – but clearly the BBC, in league with George Soros and the CIA have done some Photoshopping, to cover up the dreadful truth....

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  • 131. At 9:51pm on 12 Jan 2011, foggybottom wrote:

    Has no one noticed the latest 'Palinism'?
    If you listen carefully to her video she says: 'journalists and pundints.'

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  • 132. At 9:52pm on 12 Jan 2011, U14613388 wrote:

    This is yet another example of poor political judgement by Sarah Palin. This will do nothing to counter hardened unfavourable ratings amongst the wider public and even many Republicans. I strongly recommend this link for more information: http://the-brooks-blog.blogspot.com/2011/01/sarah-palins-political-future-post.html

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  • 133. At 9:53pm on 12 Jan 2011, Robert Arthur wrote:

    Ms Palin't apparent surprise at the criticism being levelled at her doesn't ring true with her hasty deletion of some of her own posts on
    sites like Twitter. If there was nothing wrong with "Don't retreat,
    reload!" then why hurry to remove it?

    I'm not saying she is "to blame" for the actions of such a clearly
    disturbed individual, but her comments were crass and distasteful long
    before this tragic incident took place. Had she paid more attention
    to those—including Ms Giffords—who pointed this out at the time, she
    would now be spared some of the accusations against her.

    And she may also have been spared the niggling doubt: that little
    inner voice that, despite her public protestations, must now be wondering
    if maybe—just maybe—this might not have happened had she run a more
    civilised campaign.

    I for one will never forget the look on John McCain's face when he was
    booed by his own supporters, merely for defending Obama against their
    most hate-filled invective: it was the look of a good man suddenly realisingwhat a terrible mistake he's made.

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  • 134. At 9:53pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #4

    "This was no ordinary 'nutter goes mad with gun' episode, this had undeniable political overtones."

    Such as? Politicians were shot? I see.

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  • 135. At 9:56pm on 12 Jan 2011, champagne_charlie wrote:

    #130

    john_from_dublin

    "Mind you, almost all of them look like white, heterosexual UK-born straight men – but clearly the BBC, in league with George Soros and the CIA have done some Photoshopping, to cover up the dreadful truth...."

    Straight? I doubt it ;)

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  • 136. At 10:03pm on 12 Jan 2011, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    "Rush Limbaugh: Jared Loughner Has 'Full Support' Of Democratic Party"

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/11/rush-limbaugh-jared-loughner-full-support-democrat_n_807543.html

    Well - if Rush says it, it must be true...

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  • 137. At 10:04pm on 12 Jan 2011, Boneman wrote:

    Those who don't believe great oratory skills are key to political leadership haven't been paying attention to the last 2,000 years of human history. Words form ideas and ideas kill - when combined with the guns. It's clear that Palin didn't propose actually shooting anyone - and never would. That's not the issue.

    Can anyone in the UK imagine our disgust if one of major parties produced the graphics we see in the US ? It's the equivalent of Gordon Brown having a poster with a sniper aiming at Conservative Headquarters. We had a outcry over the ill thought out "Demon Eyes" poster. I am with iwinter @116 who says if these words and graphics were on a Islamic site there would rightly be an outcry. These ideas have no place in civilised society or main stream political discourse.

    The level of debate has become purile and pathetic. I am looking for leadership that takes me above myself not that drags me down into a gutter with high school level jibes and metaphors.

    More to come

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  • 138. At 10:11pm on 12 Jan 2011, Interestedforeigner wrote:

    133. At 9:53pm on 12 Jan 2011, Robert Arthur wrote:

    "I for one will never forget the look on John McCain's face when he was
    booed by his own supporters, merely for defending Obama against their
    most hate-filled invective: it was the look of a good man suddenly realising what a terrible mistake he's made."

    _________

    Don't know about that, but I do know that it was one of the classiest things I had seen a politician do in a long, long time: stand up fearlessly for the truth, and for the values of decency, fairness, reasonableness and respect for others in the face of a hostile mob.

    John McCain never stood taller.

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  • 139. At 10:12pm on 12 Jan 2011, Boneman wrote:

    Is Palin stupid ? Why does she jump in ?

    She is certainly ill-educated and poorly read - these are not crimes though. She strikes me as horribly cynical, populist and only really interested in self-promotion. She has zero chance of becoming president. She has every chance of settling into a very, very lucrative life as a celebrity - She already has.

    Blood libel - this isn't a casual term with mutliple meanings. Gifford is Jewish. It's used to create publicity and outrage.

    A senior politician is shot and you then say, "Back in those “calm days” when political figures literally settled their differences with dueling pistols?", i.e. What's wrong with a little gun action ? We politicans used to do it to each other. This isn't a serious comment. it's an inflammatory one. Why do it ? You are toast as a politican so join the O'Reilly's, Beck's, Limbaugh's and Savage's on the outragous circuit and feed the bank account.

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  • 140. At 10:14pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #18

    "I am afraid that Palin is doing what all politicians do; choosing her argument to fit circumstances when she will argue the opposite when it suits her."


    As are you. If the politicians shot were all Republicans, you would have blamed...what? Sarah Palin? The "atmosphere"?


    The transparency of your argument is laughable.

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  • 141. At 10:15pm on 12 Jan 2011, Interestedforeigner wrote:

    128. At 9:00pm on 12 Jan 2011, Joseph wrote:

    Some in the USA are calling for a restoration of the Fairness Doctrine, which would require commentators to allow an opposing viewpoint in political discussions. Perhaps this is what is needed, along with making symbols of weapons (and weapons themselves) at political rallies illegal.

    _________

    Amen.

    This, and many more things with an end to gerrymandering and campaign finance reform at the top of the list.

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  • 142. At 10:15pm on 12 Jan 2011, joel wrote:

    "The lady doth protest too much, methinks." Shakespeare had it right, 400 years early.

    Are ever going to rise above the foul behavior in Macbeth? Not as long as greed, avarice and blind ambition remain in humans' souls.

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  • 143. At 10:16pm on 12 Jan 2011, cada29 wrote:

    It never ceases to amaze me how the llberal left scurries to make political hay complaining about and by blaming the others for what they try to sell as intemperate behavior. Their use of the disaster in Arizona to make political hay is a prime example. How they can blame conservative talk shows, Sarah Palin and the like and give a pass to MSNBC's Ed's Show, Obermann, talk show:s David Letterman, James Carville and others is amazing. I suspect they are smarting from the results of the November election and now are flaying around like spoiled children. I hope they have enough respect for the citizenery to realize that they are all too transparent in their motives. It would be most appropriate if they respected those we have lost and those injured enough to stop their untimely political blame game.

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  • 144. At 10:18pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #128

    "Anyone can deduce from such verbal and symbolic communication that such communication is threatening to the political process."

    How so, specifically?

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  • 145. At 10:19pm on 12 Jan 2011, Brount wrote:

    The great American writer Sinclair Lewis once said, "Fascism will arrive in America wrapped in a flag carrying a cross".

    No one on the current American political scene can be any closer to emerging as dictator of the United States of America than the despicable,disreputable Sarah Palin.

    God help America if this present closet fascist ever rises to a position where the future of the United States of America and its people lay within her hands!

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  • 146. At 10:19pm on 12 Jan 2011, DenverGuest wrote:

    114. At 7:42pm on 12 Jan 2011, Roast Chicken wrote:
    Anyone who blames anyone other than the criminal himself for the gun ramapage in Arizona is a loon. Words can't make anyone do anything and this is yet another example of the political left refusing to embrace a culture of personal responsibility. In their world, someone else is always responsible for a person's actions rather than that person himself.
    "Liberalism is a mental disorder" - Michael Savage, conservative American pundit banned from traveling to the UK
    ---------------------------------------------
    Lordy that was brilliant! Where to begin.....
    First, how can a paranoid schizophrenic possibly be held to account for his own actions? The shooter's thinking was disorganized to the point of total dysfunction. Just check out his videos for proof.
    Second, you repeat a quote that exactly exemplifies the type of vitiolic rhetoric that comes from the right in torrents. Michael Savage paints liberals as somehow 'mentally deficient', lesser than the rest of mankind. The tactic is to make the 'other' seem to be 'less' than yourself, and that is one good ingredient in the recipe that makes up the incitement to violence. The second ingredient in the recipe is the use of thinly-veiled threats and the language of violence when referring to these now-marginalized 'others'. Think "reload"!

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  • 147. At 10:21pm on 12 Jan 2011, mscracker wrote:

    118. At 7:48pm on 12 Jan 2011, KennethM wrote: "I am sure that Sarah Palin was simply reacting to the irresponsible comments made by journalists."

    I agree & might add "libelous" to "irresponsible." But politics can be an ugly business & each new crisis brings new opportunity for political gain.

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  • 148. At 10:23pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #37

    "So what is it Sarah, can hatred and violence be incited by the media and political rhetoric (such as crosshairs targeted on a political component) or is only the criminal to blame for crimes."

    Not all reprehensible things are crimes, but all crimes are reprehensible.

    Repeat, as needed.

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  • 149. At 10:26pm on 12 Jan 2011, Robert Arthur wrote:

    Interestedforeigner wrote:

    "John McCain never stood taller."

    Agreed.

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  • 150. At 10:27pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #81

    "What isn't perfectly ok is that she pretends that, because what she says is within the law, it is without effect. She wants the world to believe that Political rhetoric is without effect if it is within the law."


    Do you have any evidence that her rhetoric is in any way related to the Arizona shooting?


    Making accusations without any proof is also considered stupid and awful and in some cases, against the law, as well.

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  • 151. At 10:28pm on 12 Jan 2011, alb1on wrote:

    #55 BillinNY; if you read my earlier post properly you will see that I am simply pointing out that you cannot argue that words/culture and atmosphere have no relevance in one situation and then argue they are important in another situation. If Palin was consistent (either way) I would not have a problem but, like politicians of all persuasions, she has the intellectual honesty of all charlatans. My key question is whether she is too stupid to understand this or simply too dishonest. My personal preference would be for there to be no legal limits on free speech, but remember that such a position requires, for example, that the Wikileaks material be freely available and that US citizens, if they wish, should be able to spread the most extreme versions of Al Qaeda philosophy. Guess that may be a bit more than you can swallow.

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  • 152. At 10:32pm on 12 Jan 2011, Tweddy821 wrote:

    In INDIANAPOLIS, I have NOT seen one American flag, lowered to half-staff, as ordered by our President. Not, at any business, home, church....
    The Club I volunteer at did not observe the National moment of silence, on Monday. Is America that divided? A house divided, cannot stand!

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  • 153. At 10:38pm on 12 Jan 2011, blefuscu wrote:

    "Quoting that political arguments used to be settled through duels using firearms, after a political rival has been shot and using the term "blood libel" with the implications surrounding it, when Gabrielle Gifford is a Jew, shows ignorance & insensitivity beyond words."

    I find Palin's words absolutely spot on. A half-wit Dutch arsonist set fire to the Reichstag in 1933. The International "Jewish" Press incited him with its constant vile attacks on the great aims of the NS Party said its leaders...therefore Jews have to be taken to task for their 'violent rhetoric' for their "negativity". Blood libel. Pure and simple. The writer above clearly misunderstands what 'Blutanklage' (Blood Libel) is and how disgraceful to compound "causation" for an event with one's own febrile political sensitivities as the Left too often has.

    There is NO connection between Palin, the Tea Party and this deranged murder. Only a political bias can attempt to make it so.



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  • 154. At 10:38pm on 12 Jan 2011, SirBedevere wrote:

    I am an American of rather libertarian bent, what most would probably call a moderate conservative. I cannot tell you how many times I have been called a fascist or even a Nazi. While we should place no legal limitations on our freedom of expression, all of us, of every stripe, should adopt a much more civil tone. Both of the major candidates in our last presidential election were, and have remained, models of civil behavior. It is remarkable that so many of their supporters are not.

    Incidentally, while "blood libel" was certainly the wrong term to use, I would suggest that "black legend" would be appropriate.

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  • 155. At 10:39pm on 12 Jan 2011, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    Some interesting examples of calm and non-incendiary political rhetoric. Original link here - http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2011/1/9/934563/-Guns,-God-and-Incitement

    “I want people in Minnesota armed and dangerous on this issue of the energy tax because we need to fight back” - Michele Bachmann
    "Don’t retreat. Instead — reload!"
    ~Sarah Palin
    "I hope that's not where we're going, but you know if this Congress keeps going the way it is, people are really looking toward those Second Amendment remedies and saying my goodness what can we do to turn this country around? I'll tell you the first thing we need to do is take Harry Reid out." - ~Sharon Angle
    ''Our nation was founded on violence. The option is on the table. I don't think that we should ever remove anything from the table as it relates to our liberties and our freedoms.'' - —Tea Party-backed Texas GOP congressional candidate Stephen Broden
    ''I'm thinking about killing Michael Moore, and I'm wondering if I could kill him myself, or if I would need to hire somebody to do it.” - —Glenn Beck, May 17, 2005
    "The exact phrase ’separation of Church and State’ came out of Adolph Hitler’s mouth, that’s where it comes from. So the next time your liberal friends talk about the separation of Church and State, ask them why they’re Nazis." - ~Glen Urquhart [Delaware Republican candidate endorsed by Mike Huckabee but lost in November 2010]
    ''The feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women. It is about a socialist, anti-family political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become l**bians.'' —Pat Robertson
    ''The Girl Scouts allow h**osexuals and atheists to join their ranks, and they have become a pro-abortion, feminist training corps. If the Girl Scouts of America can't get back to teaching real character, perhaps it will be time to look for our cookies elsewhere.'' - —Hans Zeiger, Republican candidate for Congress in Washington state
    ''My only regret with Timothy McVeigh is he did not go to the New York Times Building.'' - —Ann Coulter
    ''Obama's got a health care logo that's right out of Adolf Hitler's playbook ... Adolf Hitler, like Barack Obama, also ruled by dictate.'' Rush Limbaugh, Aug. 6, 2009
    ''The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama's 'death panel.''' - —Sarah Palin
    ''We need to execute people like (John Walker Lindh) in order to physically intimidate liberals.'' - —Ann Coulter
    ''Barack Obama ... chose to use his name Barack for a reason -- to identify, not with America -- you don't take the name Barack to identify with America. You take the name Barack to identify with what? Your heritage? The heritage, maybe, of your father in Kenya, who is a radical? Is -- really? Searching for something to give him any kind of meaning, just as he was searching later in life for religion.'' —Glenn Beck
    ''Baby Killer!'' - —Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-Texas), shouting at Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI)
    ''He has no place in any station of government and we need to realize that he is an enemy of humanity.'' - —Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ), on President Obama's decision to fund international family planning organizations that support legal abortion, Sept. 26, 2009

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  • 156. At 10:41pm on 12 Jan 2011, Kimboi wrote:

    A comment above expresses the belief that Palin terrifies "liberals," and indicates possible support for her candidacy in 2012. To which I reply, yes the possibility that she will NOT be a candidate terrifies me. With Palin as the opposition, Obama's continued tenancy in the White House is assured. Please, by all means, DO give her your support!

    Having seen the shallow grasp of complex concepts evinced by the troglodytes of the right, it shouldn't surprise me that they seem to believe that -- barring her having personally handed the poor demented soul his gun and driven him to the scene of the crimes -- they can't conceive of her bearing any responsibility for his acts.

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  • 157. At 10:41pm on 12 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    Try Dr Llareggub's nom de guerre backwards. That's what the gnihton fo rotcod proudly knows about history and about cause and effect.

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  • 158. At 10:44pm on 12 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    re: 117 Andy Post:

    Homicidal maniacs never have trouble finding a justification for their anger. They're not capable of rational thought, so really anything can become a justification. They change reality to fit their needs.

    I'd agree with you insofar as I don't think that any specific image or rhetoric used by Palin (or any one else, for that matter) caused this person to go on a killing spree.

    But I think that the mainstreaming of extreme rhetoric creates an environment where somebody who is on the edge is apt to weave the extreme images and rhetoric that are 'in the air' into the narrative that arises from their own paranoid and violent impulses. This could intensify these impulses. It will almost certainly contribute to shaping the narrative that the individual creates to make 'sense' of them.

    It seems to me prudent that political figures, as Boehner has done, take a step back from, maybe even outright denounce, some of the hyper polarized nonsense that is floating around.

    But then Palin is Palin, and if she drops the moral panic posture, she hasn't got much left to sell.

    But Palin's protestations notwithstanding, I'll wager you'll not hear a lot of the 'nudge nudge, wink wink' gun waving rhetoric from any responsible political figure for quite a while.

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  • 159. At 10:44pm on 12 Jan 2011, axt wrote:

    If I put up a page showing an image of Sarah Palin with crosshairs superimposed, and a caption "reload" would she understand it's purely symbolic and approve and defend it?

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  • 160. At 10:49pm on 12 Jan 2011, Kimboi wrote:

    Remarks at 133 and 138 indicate admiration for John McCain. At one time, it was possible to feel that admiration beyond his undeniably honorable and brave military service. Most regrettably, his shifting political stances and abandonment of principle on many question has reduced his standing considerably. Even in his defence of Obama, he didn't object to the woman's implication that being an Arab was bad, he just refuted her assertion that Obama was one.

    His daughter, Cindy, has become politically active and taken positions that are decent and credible. If there is any hope for the Republican party beyond demagoguery of the lowest sort, it lies with her and those like her.

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  • 161. At 10:49pm on 12 Jan 2011, BillinNY wrote:

    AlanDente (#78)
    "The law here in the UK specifically relates to 'stirring up or inspiring hatred and/or violence and/or murder'"

    I can think of at least 3 people from varying political and religious backgrounds who have been barred from entering GB due to public comments which violate this law. None of them advocated violence, but they did hold and voice strong opinions regarding Jews (both sides), Islam (both sides), Homosexuality and race. They were banned because the government feared WORDS.

    Perhaps it is cultural. The idea that it is fine to outlaw the expression of an opinion, no matter how ignorant, foolish or inflammatory (such as denying the existence of the Holocaust) it might be is alien to the American way of thinking.

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  • 162. At 10:51pm on 12 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    re: 149. Robert Arthur wrote:

    Interestedforeigner wrote:

    "John McCain never stood taller."

    Agreed.


    +1 from me. An act of leadership.

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  • 163. At 10:52pm on 12 Jan 2011, Boneman wrote:

    @140

    I don't think anyone is saying Palin should be blamed or stand trial. She cannot be used as a mitigant at the trial. I believe the response is to ask the politicians to avoid such very inflammatory language and graphics. Let's go back to civilised debate and behaviour.

    "Reload. Gunsight graphics. 2nd Ammendment remedies." And similar are going too far. Do they lead to murder ? They don't help. They do suggest that there are other routes to getting what you want then the ballot box. Can you legislate to ban this ? No. We rely on our politicians (mainstream) being responsible and sensible. Not sensationalist and publicity seeking.

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  • 164. At 10:55pm on 12 Jan 2011, Tazaan Nas wrote:

    Ah, you Brit Twits. You who lost the American Revolution as well as an empire, can never get over the fact that there is a country in which one can speak one's mind without fear. The Tucson police bungled in their many contacts with this sick, strange individual. The never bothered to write a report which would have been included in the FBI list of persons who cannot purchase firearms. And a special nod to the parents who somehow missed the fact that their son was more than a bit unbalanced and had an alter in their back yard with a skull at the top.
    This individual, it has been reported, was stalking Congresswoman since 2007. Before any one heard of Gov. Palin or the tea party. Whose argument is for a smaller, less intrusive federal government.

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  • 165. At 10:55pm on 12 Jan 2011, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #81
    She is an awful woman who is only thinking of herself. She demands the right to say whatever she likes, as long as it's within the law. And that's perfectly ok. What isn't perfectly ok is that she pretends that, because what she says is within the law, it is without effect. She wants the world to believe that Political rhetoric is without effect if it is within the law. If she sincerely believes that herself then she is an incredibly stupid women. If she doesn't believe it then she is incredibly nasty.

    In any event a Political opponent is fighting for her life and Sarah Palin thinks the world is all about her. Quite disgusting!

    _____________

    How come when some of us point out that those attributes reflect President Obama we are branded as racists?

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  • 166. At 10:55pm on 12 Jan 2011, nickname wrote:

    #83
    Please don't make assumptions. For example, I am a liberal and I am a devout Christian. My political values are rooted in the belief that the Christian faith is about treating others with dignity and eschewing obscene personal wealth, not accumulating it without regard for others' wellbeing and at the expense of the global economy. It's a scriptural thing. I'm sort of a stickler that way.

    On the topic of whether Ms. Palin could ever win a presidential election in the US: Yes she can. If there is any doubt in your mind, might I humbly suggest a listening tour of working class America and, increasingly, lower level white collar America.

    Many people with personal victim complexes seem to be motivated by Ms. Palin. Narcissists love her and America has its fair share of narcissists. Angry people love Ms. Palin; as another commentator pointed out, this economy breeds anger.

    Last point: If Ms. Palin does not believe that her violent rhetoric causes violent feelings, why does she bother using it? Her revisionist accounts of her intentions are a disturbing preview of what her presidential administration will bring. Her lack of a conscience and her ignorance of the consequences of her actions make me glad my husband and I have brought our family to live in another country.

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  • 167. At 11:00pm on 12 Jan 2011, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #141
    Interestedforeigner wrote:
    128. At 9:00pm on 12 Jan 2011, Joseph wrote:

    Some in the USA are calling for a restoration of the Fairness Doctrine, which would require commentators to allow an opposing viewpoint in political discussions. Perhaps this is what is needed, along with making symbols of weapons (and weapons themselves) at political rallies illegal.


    ______________

    the Fairness doctrine is an attempt of censorship.

    Because it only addresses talk radio.

    For instance the NYT whose has 5 liberal editorial writers, one of whom has lied about the Palin connection to this would not have to give equal space to 5 conservative editorial writewrs.

    Still waiting for you to remaark on the violent images of Daily Kos

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  • 168. At 11:04pm on 12 Jan 2011, richdix wrote:

    If Sarah Palin and the Tea Party scare a lot of people who don't like America it prooves they must be doing something right. I want America haters to have many sleepless nights.

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  • 169. At 11:04pm on 12 Jan 2011, Anglophone wrote:

    101 WorcesterJIm

    "Now does that answer your question Anglophone?"

    Absolutely! Top rant! Tell me...do you take off the tin-foil hat while typing or do you keep it on to stop MI6 and the CIA from controlling your mind?

    I find it odd that you are very exercised about the terrible exploitation of brown-skinned peoples around the world, to which we apparently entirely owe our wealth, and your frequently and barely concealed angst about those self-same brown-skinned peoples "coming over here and stealing our jobs"

    One of the key things I find is that one of the best ways of getting the truth out there is to make sure that your arguments are internally consistent

    Yea! God existeth not sayeth the prophet. Yet he guideth my every utterance! Worketh that one out" (Fallopians Chapter 4 Verse 22)

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  • 170. At 11:05pm on 12 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    re: 144 JClarkson

    #128

    "Anyone can deduce from such verbal and symbolic communication that such communication is threatening to the political process."

    How so, specifically?


    Sorry to butt in -- but I'd argue that encouraging a sense of panic, which requires extreme measures (e.g., '2nd ammendment solutions') to address, is not a good good for political stability.

    If you keep saying that things are so bad the only solution is a resort to violent measures, some people are apt to take it very seriously.

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  • 171. At 11:09pm on 12 Jan 2011, blefuscu wrote:

    154. At 10:38pm on 12 Jan 2011, SirBedevere wrote:

    I am an American of rather libertarian bent, what most would probably call a moderate conservative. I cannot tell you how many times I have been called a fascist or even a Nazi. While we should place no legal limitations on our freedom of expression, all of us, of every stripe, should adopt a much more civil tone. Both of the major candidates in our last presidential election were, and have remained, models of civil behavior. It is remarkable that so many of their supporters are not.

    Incidentally, while "blood libel" was certainly the wrong term to use, I would suggest that "black legend" would be appropriate."

    Noble Sir Bedivere, my agreement with what you say. There is a febrile atmosphere in this post Lehman Crash World and the Left sees it as their opportunity to strike. The attack on Palin is pure sleeves rolled up dirty politics. Civil Discourse is banished to the corner of the lists.

    Its cudgels and mud slinging. Equal viciousness has been perpetrated by the 'Left' including posters of Palin having a rifle pointed at her head (which shocked me for its violence)

    We pray, good sir knight, for happier times. If you are attacked as a 'fascist' that probably means you have a mind and don't let the heat of of rash emotion and political infantility cloud your countenance.

    'Black legend' will get the Left thinking, perchance. They will engage finger to keypad before braincell fires.

    Mark my words.





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  • 172. At 11:15pm on 12 Jan 2011, Anglophone wrote:

    71 Kentucker

    "Obviously you don't. But then you and the rest of the lefties don't want to do you?"

    It's strange. Here in Britain I'm regarded as being right of centre (slightly) in my views. In the States I'm a barking leftie it seems.

    We may share 98% of the same words but in my experience they only convey around 60% of the same meaning. I don't think that we share the same political spectrum at all!

    Each to there own. I mean you no ill!

    PS: I'm fascinated...is your online name your real name or do you hail from Kentucky or...none of the above?

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  • 173. At 11:17pm on 12 Jan 2011, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #159
    axt wrote:
    If I put up a page showing an image of Sarah Palin with crosshairs superimposed, and a caption "reload" would she understand it's purely symbolic and approve and defend it?

    ________________

    If you were a recognized political group or individual she would not have a problem with it.

    Now do you condemn the Daily Kos for their putting a target on the face of Rep Gifford?

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  • 174. At 11:18pm on 12 Jan 2011, ijuly13 wrote:

    If she "won't be muzzled" then why was her website with the targets taken down hours after the shooting???????

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  • 175. At 11:18pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #145

    "God help America if this present closet fascist ever rises to a position where the future of the United States of America and its people lay within her hands!"


    Are you suggesting that she needs to be taken out? :)

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  • 176. At 11:22pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #170

    "If you keep saying that things are so bad the only solution is a resort to violent measures, some people are apt to take it very seriously."

    Is the Arizona nutter one of those people who took someone's rhetoric very seriously?

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  • 177. At 11:24pm on 12 Jan 2011, Solaris999 wrote:

    Am I the only one that finds it digusting that the media is fixated on just one of the victims because she happens to have a high profile? What about everyone else? Where are the hourly medical reports about the others who we are told were critically wounded.

    So video games and rock music are legitimate items to accuse of harming the youth but wall to wall rhetoric that sails very close to incitement is just first amendment free speech.

    Remember folks that total freedom is in fact anarchy and anarchy is only avoided by acceptance of responsibility.

    Someone once said something along the lines of the greatest evil that man can do is to idily standby and do nothing. It is time to stop being idle and expect better.

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  • 178. At 11:25pm on 12 Jan 2011, Grass Roots wrote:

    After looking it over and trying to consider what Sarah's comment might have been an offense, I find all things in order with the Lady from Alaska! She has a tough-under-fire attitude that I really admire. It's not her fault that the press didn't know what she was talking about. We live amoung critices and because of that progress is slow at best. If all the critices would get in line to work for what was obviously right, we would have a great Army for the defence of the innocent.

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  • 179. At 11:29pm on 12 Jan 2011, Interestedforeigner wrote:

    167. At 11:00pm on 12 Jan 2011, MagicKirin wrote:

    "the Fairness doctrine is an attempt of censorship."

    __________

    Quite the contrary.

    The Fairness Doctrine is exactly the opposite. It is a means by which the rights of listeners and viewers to hear and see more than one viewpoint are preserved. It was upheld by the Supreme Court in a case called "Red Lion", (virtually the last time the Supreme Court took a stand to uphold the democratic rights of voters).

    If I remember correctly, the court at the time noted that it was not the right of the broadcaster to air is views, but the rights of the viewers and listeners to see and hear that was, and is, paramount under the first amendment protection of freedom of speech.

    There are several reasons why print journalism and broadcast journalism are different, but the principle and critical one is that the public airwaves are owned by the public, and broadcasters use them by permission.

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  • 180. At 11:41pm on 12 Jan 2011, AndreaNY wrote:

    Can anyone really blame Palin for responding? After all, she was accused of causing the shooting.

    Does it not strike anyone as odd that the same people who blame her are also calling for toned down rhetoric? Newsflash: If you want to tone down the rhetoric, you can start by not accusing someone of causing a lunatic's shooting spree.

    People who are serious about calming things down will acknowledge that the Left has contributed to our caustic environment. Even our president. Just a few months ago, he was out in those backyards speaking very negatively about the rich, etc.

    And all these calls for controlling political speech are concerning. What's next? Acceptable Speech Panels?

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  • 181. At 11:45pm on 12 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    re: 176 Is the Arizona nutter one of those people who took someone's rhetoric very seriously?

    In terms of specific content, I'd at this point say no.

    But I'd say it's possible he was influenced by the millenarian tone of the current public political discourse. We shall see.

    I understand this event as a kind of wake up call; a reminder that in politics language and tone matter.

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  • 182. At 11:49pm on 12 Jan 2011, lordBanners wrote:

    Palin's manner, values, overall attitude and body language is that of Trailer Trash. She got lucky in Alaskan politics, and rather than seize the Opportunity to Step-UP, she chose to DRAG everything she could, DOWN to the mire of her comfort-zone.
    I've often wondered if making Palin his running mate, was a Rep Insider sabotage of McCain's bid for Pres.

    It's not that Palin is not Smart, simply that the Low-Road is her preferred domain, which makes her Perfect for those looking to Profit from DISCORD within US Politics, by ANY Means.
    Palin, Beck, Oreilly, Limbaugh and other's of ilk are having FUN and Getting Rich at the same time. If nothing is done, I fully expect the Beliggerence and Implications for VIOLENT Persuasion to INCREASE.

    Saw a skit once entitled Red-Neck Olympics:- Staggering drunks trying to hit a Stop Sign with Empty Beer Bottles after they'd drunk the beer. A scenario which would be completely Normal in a Palin neighbourhood.
    We've all heard them at some time, Bragging of the Drunken Melee they enjoyed the night before, and how it was Worth the Hang-Over and black-eye they were sporting.

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  • 183. At 11:49pm on 12 Jan 2011, Solaris999 wrote:

    So Tazaanas reckons that the US is the land of say what you like without consequence does he?

    Chickens.....home to roost......oh dear! Media outrage............how dare anyone say such a thing.

    If I remember rightly the protagonist was hounded out of his University post. So much for say what you like.

    By the way, by todays standards, the people that fought against the British would now be called insurgents or even, dare I say it, the T word.

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  • 184. At 11:52pm on 12 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    I'm reminded of the violent rhetoric that Adolf Hitler spewed throughout the 1920s and 1930s. History tells everybody of any political or social bent that the antisocial bile that continually gushed from his mouth infected the sheeple of Germany to the stage where pretty well a whole nation lost its mind.

    Whereas when I visited Germany (in those days both Germanies) a couple of times in the 1960s I found umpteen people eager to raise the subject of Hitler and the Third Reich off their own bat and to apologise profusely to me—and, during one of my trips, to my black African companion.

    So a sick nation—including the godforsaken Westboro Baptist church in Topeka, Kansas—can mend itself. But it can take a while . . .

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  • 185. At 11:54pm on 12 Jan 2011, LukeJohn wrote:

    So one of Palin's campaign ads with cross-hair symbols caused all this?

    What about the movie made by the left of a hypothetical assassination of President Bush?

    What about President Obama's comment "If they bring a knife to a fight, we'll bring a gun"?

    What about the cross-hair symbols used on ads and literature by the left? - there are many, many examples.

    What about all the violent threats thrown at President Bush during his term in office?

    The deranged killer in Arizona likely couldn't have cared less whether his target was a Democrat - He was most likely attracted by the fact that she was an attractive, public figure that had not paid him the attention that his sick mind felt he was due. She could have been a Republican, a Democrat or a Moonie and it would have been the same to him.

    If we want to start throwing blame and innuendo around, what about the local sheriff who did not enforce existing laws, who allowed this clearly deranged individual to roam the streets freely, to gain access to guns (For those who do not live here, not just anyone can walk into a shop and buy a gun. There are supposed to be checks and criteria that have to be met)

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  • 186. At 11:54pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #167

    You:

    "Some in the USA are calling for a restoration of the Fairness Doctrine, which would require commentators to allow an opposing viewpoint in political discussions."

    Facts:

    "Some Democratic legislators have expressed interest in re-instituting the Fairness Doctrine,although no one has introduced legislation to do so since 2005."


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fairness_Doctrine


    Just clarifying who the "Some in the USA" were.

    Also, the reasoning behind Red Lion, at the time, was based on the limited number of radio stations available at the time. That is no longer the case, another reason why FIB is dead and buried, no matter what a handful of Democrats may say.


    "In June 2008, Barack Obama's press secretary wrote that Obama (then a Democratic U.S. Senator from Illinois and candidate for President):

    “Does not support reimposing the Fairness Doctrine on broadcasters ... [and] considers this debate to be a distraction from the conversation we should be having about opening up the airwaves and modern communications to as many diverse viewpoints as possible. That is why Sen. Obama supports media-ownership caps, network neutrality, public broadcasting, as well as increasing minority ownership of broadcasting and print outlets.”

    In February 2009, a White House spokesperson said that President Obama continues to oppose the revival of the Doctrine."


    Apparently, Obama did not waste his time at Harvard Law School. The issue is a legal dead horse.


    Keep beating it though, it may come back to life still :)

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  • 187. At 11:55pm on 12 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    . . . but I'm unsure about my feelings towards Firefox's continual invitation to me to "reload".

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  • 188. At 11:56pm on 12 Jan 2011, champagne_charlie wrote:

    #161

    billinny;

    "Perhaps it is cultural. The idea that it is fine to outlaw the expression of an opinion, no matter how ignorant, foolish or inflammatory (such as denying the existence of the Holocaust) it might be is alien to the American way of thinking."

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-11296303

    Banned for LIFE, for saying what half of you lot are thinking! Thats why foreigners who preach hatred are banned from the UK, for EXACTLY the same reason as the US maintains a "banned list" of foreigners who arent allowed in. Your constitution only applies to US citizens, as you would expect. Why should the British be any different? That does NOT mean that British citizens cant say what they want, when they want, in their own country, just as these delightful people demonstrated:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/beds/bucks/herts/7936485.stm

    You think you have a monopoly on free speech? What would happen if a group of Muslim extremists protested in the home town of a US regiment just returned from Afghanistan, calling your soldiers "baby killers" and demanding their beheading? How many people would end up dead?

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  • 189. At 11:56pm on 12 Jan 2011, shopvacmaggie wrote:

    As an American and a former Arizonan, I have something to say. The claims that there is no direct link so far between the shooter and Palin's type of hate speech is wrong. She is not alone in fostering a mean, vicious climate of politics in the U.S., and it does affect people. This guy did not go out into the desert to fire off some rounds to let off steam, he did not go to the nearest corner and start shooting people, he did not track down and shoot up a Republican politician. That is because he was influenced by the rhetoric of our nasty state of politics.

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  • 190. At 11:57pm on 12 Jan 2011, hubertgrove wrote:

    Mardell, please make an effort to maintain at least a semblance of balance?

    The reason that Sarah Palin had to make this defence wsas that she - or her rhetoric and that of her supporters - was attacked by a man who was at the incident, Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik.

    You know who he is because you have mentioned him before.

    What you never seem to mention is that Dupnik is not just a law enforcement officer as his title suggests but he's also a political electee, a Democratic politician. You never mention either that Dupnik has his own agenda in pushing the 'Palin's rhetoric is to blame' - specificaly, a number of reports by the shooter's colleagues and local police to Dupnik's office warning that Jared Lee Loughner was a potential danger, reports on which Dupnik did not act.

    Why haven't you mentioned any of this? I know you have a hardon for Palin and the Republicans but, come on Mardell, give it a rest and be a real reporter for once.

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  • 191. At 00:02am on 13 Jan 2011, LukeJohn wrote:

    #174 "ijuly13" Actually Palin's campaign web page with the cross hair symbols is long-gone BUT a liberal website with the SAME symbols was taken down the day after the shootings.

    #182 "LordBanners" - Your elitist, discriminatory drivel is exactly why this country fought and won our war of independence and why people like you who proclaim to be liberal, caring leftists are anything but that.

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  • 192. At 00:08am on 13 Jan 2011, roger wrote:

    Hello everyone

    I've been following comment strands on some American news websites (see, for instance, The Daily Beast).

    I've been amazed and rather alarmed at the bitterness and antipathy of some of the posts. To me, this rather proves the point that the rhetoric in American political culture is dangerously overheated. Amusingly, exactly whose fault this is has become one of the points of contention.

    From context, in American discourse, the word 'liberal' appears to be the foulest imaginable swearword (I suppose that's becoming the case here in Britain, but only since the Coalition commenced).

    It's reassuring that the tone of the posts here is a little more reflective and measured.

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  • 193. At 00:09am on 13 Jan 2011, Camo wrote:

    Hey how come people in a country founded on the promise of "liberty" think being liberal is wrong?
    Show me the line that says "pursuit of life, conservatism, and justice for all.."?
    Plus also, over here in Oz, the kneejerk, slapwad, reactionary squealing right wing is called the "liberal party" ... so reading all the kneejerk right wing reactionary screams about "liberals" being wrong is pretty funny.

    But mainly, and without any comment on either "side" of the argument - surely her script writers have realised the messenger is wrecking the message. Even if you agree with it, you cant say it is either beneficial or measured. Time to highlight the lipstrick rather than the pitbull.. and also, if you're following a dog - even one wearing lipstick - all you see is it's hairy back end... and you have to clean up its pavement nuggets.

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  • 194. At 00:11am on 13 Jan 2011, giltedged wrote:

    The PC politicians, the appeasers of Islam, the people who are giving us a new meaning to the term "paper money" would of course never take the hefty kick up their backside by the people in the November elections lying down.

    These people might not even notice the Muslim cleansing of the Christians in the Middle East taking place now, or the massacre of American Infidel soldiers by a Muslim officer but they sure noticed a Florida vicar who said he was going to burn the Quran.

    The hypocrites who had lauded Obama to the skies when he said "if they bring a knife to the fight we bring a knife" are now saying that the misfit who never watched the news or even got involved in political debate was effected by the majority's dislike of Obama and his crowd

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  • 195. At 00:13am on 13 Jan 2011, Tinkersdamn wrote:

    Scrutiny may undermine the potentially negative effects of the near risible high profile rhetoric of Sarah Palin, as it once did to Joseph McCarthy, while leaving the myriad lower profile effects underlying the problem to fester.

    The Arizona Republic reports the black Republican District 20 Chairman, Anthony Miller of Phoenix, resigned following the shootings, citing threats from the tea party faction of the Republican Party and concerns for his family's safety.

    http://www.azcentral.com/community/ahwatukee/articles/2011/01/11/20110111gabrielle-giffords-arizona-shooting-resignations.html#ixzz1AqMYTq70

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  • 196. At 00:15am on 13 Jan 2011, JSBenton wrote:

    Hello Mark: Actually, the 1804 death of Hamilton did not end dueling in the United States, nor (in part because this is an issue under state, not national control) was there any one year when it was generally banned.

    Between the Revolution and the Civil War the US Navy lost almost two thirds as many men to dueling as to the dangers of war. President Andrew Jackson was a noted duelist when younger, and once received a bullet to the shoulder from my cousin Thomas Hart Benton in a duel that more resembled a gang fight. Years later, the bullet finally removed, Jackson returned it to Benton, who had become a political ally, with the words, "Sir, I believe this belongs to you."

    Again, dueling did not end in 1804, nor did it in most states end with a specific legal prohibition. By the end of the Civil War, the people simply thought the practice a relic, and magistrates ceased to recognize it as a legitimate exception to the general laws regarding manslaughter or murder.



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  • 197. At 00:22am on 13 Jan 2011, sam_mp wrote:

    I do not find her approach about this whole episode to be damage control. She has speech writers, fact checkers and many experienced handlers to spot troublesome expressions such as "blood libel". She knows this week was not her best week. But she is grabbing it as an opportunity prevent the focus from going back to policy and substance. Recent furry of legislative activities by the US congress has already caused consternation in tea party circles. Some have openly stated their worry about resurrecting the Obama presidency. Palin is obviously very uncomfortable with policy matters and would like to take the rhetoric back to personal squabbles and philosophical debates about the size of government. In the mean time she would initiate a minor squabble with the Jewish community to demonstrate her credentials in bigotry without alienating independent voters. Mean while the gullible voters will be deceived in to electing her.

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  • 198. At 00:31am on 13 Jan 2011, CucaSean wrote:

    Here in the States the media accepts the words "blood libel" if it is used by a liberal: Washington Post's Eugene Robinson "...The blood libel against black men concerning the defilement of the flower of Caucasian womanhood." It is also perfectly acceptable for the Democrats to use bull's eyes to target districts as they did in 2004. By the way, when will President Obama go to Israel? The last time he visited/campaigned there as Senator Obama to curry favor and skipped an opportunity to visit when he was in Cairo.

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  • 199. At 00:39am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #193

    "Hey how come people in a country founded on the promise of "liberty" think being liberal is wrong?"

    Because a liberal is not a subscriber to enhanced liberty.

    Liberty -> libertarian

    Socialism -> liberal

    Promiscuity -> libertine


    They all sound alike but they mean very different things.


    Consider "National-Socialism". Sounds innocuous enough, doesn't it? The reality is little different...

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  • 200. At 00:41am on 13 Jan 2011, Red Elf wrote:

    Mark, your report was spot on, I feel. Loughner, by all accounts, seems
    to be a rather seriously disturbed individual - but who was probably not
    influenced directly by Tea Party rhetoric and who probably did not
    directly access any of their websites. Similarly anyone elses also. So
    it is ludicrous to associate Loughner's actions directly with any
    deeply-held political motivations - left, right or center.

    As Bill Clinton wisely put it in a very recent BBC report, no one on any
    side of any debate can really afford to indulge in demonising the other.
    It simply lets your opponent "off the hook" by handing them a golden
    opportunity to score strong procedural points about the fairness of your
    judgement and the media coverage. Remember Thatcher's retort "They would
    say that, wouldn't they!"?

    But all this is besides the point ... the whole issue has now become
    about Palin and the confrontational style of debate that she indulges
    in. She cannot deny that her strongly worded rhetoric is designed to
    motivate her supporters and to create an uncompromisingly uncomfortable
    environment for her opponents.

    What she fails to grasp is that the same powerful, vivid language helps
    create a corrosive climate of distrust and willful misunderstanding that
    could easily be misconstrued by the weak-minded and mentally unstable to
    take some very harmful and dangerous actions. Spoken words really do
    have consequences.

    Further proof of her general lack of understanding of such issues, if
    that were needed, is todays astonishingly naive statement involving the
    phrase "blood-libel". As Mark nicely puts it in his piece, it tells you
    a great deal about someone who, when trying to talk about healing, still
    winds up on the attack. No one can deny that this is a purely defensive
    reaction.

    A smarter and perhaps more cunning ploy on her part might have been to
    simply ignore the point (with dignity intact) and then, if and when
    pushed, express a pitying lack of comprehension, perhaps pointing to the
    lack of any substantive evidence linking Loughner directly to the Tea
    Party movement.

    The only reason anyone cares what the ex-Govenor of Alaska has to say is
    her ambition to be a future US President - and quite possibly, the very
    next one. I hope and pray that Palin will see for herself the harmful
    effects of her rhetoric and simply tone it down somewhat (which is
    certainly not giving in - it merely exercises strategic tact). To do so
    willingly would be a welcome sign of inner growth and strength.

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  • 201. At 00:41am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #189


    "That is because he was influenced by the rhetoric of our nasty state of politics."

    Evidence?

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  • 202. At 00:42am on 13 Jan 2011, Rick_in_OKC wrote:

    On Saturday in Tucson, Judge John Roll ,63; Dorthy Murray, 76; Dorwin Stoddard, 76; Christina Greene, 9; Phyllis Scheck, 79; and Gabriel Zimmerman, 30, were gunned down by a psychotic maniac who is reportedly addicted to marijuana, denounces religion, believes the U.S. Constitution is "treasonous" and lists The Communist Manifesto and Mein Kampf as two of his favorite books.

    This is hardly the picture of a right-wing zealot; yet less than an hour after news broke of the shooting, political cartoonist David Fitzsimmons said on CNN: "The Right in Arizona, and I'm speaking very broadly, has been stoking the fire of heated anger and rage successfully in this state."

    Shortly afterward, Paul Krugman of the Washington Post took to his blog to say, "We don't have proof yet that this was political, but the odds are that it was." He linked the shooter's actions to "the rhetoric of Beck, Limbaugh, etc." and spoke of "the violence I fear we're going to see in the months and years ahead. Violent acts are what happen when you create a climate of hate."

    Not once in all of the murderer's Internet rants did he reference talk-radio, the health care debate, the Tea Party, Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, or Fox News. NOT ONCE.

    Remember, it was Obama's former Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel who famously said during the theoretical bank meltdown, "Never let a good crisis go to waste. What I mean is, it's an opportunity to do important things that you couldn't do before." (Wall Street Journal, January 28, 2009)

    And here is their "opportunity" crisis: a 22 year-old cultish pothead wielding a gun in the parking lot of a Tucson grocery store. Game. Set. Match---as far as the Liberals are concerned. This is just what they need to silence their Tea Party critics. You are a criminal because you disagree with them. Now shut up.

    This is not a time for political opportunism. A nine year-old girl was killed on Saturday, and a Congresswoman is fighting for her life. Yet Democrats want to use this event to defame, smear and scare us into doing what they say. It is ironic that they use the term "hate speech" when all they do is vilify and defame others with labels like racist, homophobe and fascist. The hypocrisy is staggering:

    President Obama called Republicans "hostage takers."

    Former Rep. Alan Grayson called his GOP opponent Daniel Webster "Taliban Dan."

    Black conservative Kenneth Gladney was hospitalized in St. Louis after SEIU thugs beat him outside a Tea Party event. The NAACP has called him an "Uncle Tom" who "deserved" to be beaten, and said he wasn't "black enough" to protect.

    Governor Bobby Jindal's assistant was beaten and suffered a broken leg after she left a Southern Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans.

    Air America talk show host Montel Williams said of Michelle Bachman: "Michelle, slit your wrist. Go ahead... or, do us all a better thing. Move that knife up about two feet. Start right at the collarbone."

    The same target graphics seen on Sarah Palin's website that the Left famously denounced all weekend were splattered all over the Daily Kos website back in 2008 when they were moving to "target" Congresswoman Giffords and remove her from office.


    Still, Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., says "There's an aura of hate, and elected politicians feed it. Certain people on Fox News feed it."

    Democrats are furiously working on anti-gun, anti-free speech legislation after the Tucson tragedy. They are working on controlling the Internet via National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace. And more anti-Constitutional legislation on its way, you can be assured of that. They will not let this crisis go to waste.

    Liberals are exploiting this tragedy to infringe on our Constitutional right to free speech. If they can't silence us at the ballot box, they will regulate and control us to death.

    Free speech, according to Liberals, is dangerous, and causes left-wing potheads who worship communism to go to grocery stores and kill people.

    When the federal government controls our right to speak out, and controls our right to own firearms, that government will arbitrarily control every facet of our life.

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  • 203. At 00:44am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #196

    "President Andrew Jackson was a noted duelist when younger, and once received a bullet to the shoulder from my cousin Thomas Hart Benton..."

    Hmmm...Benton died in 1858. There is something odd about your relationship to him but I can't quite put my finger on it....

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  • 204. At 00:56am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #188

    "What would happen if a group of Muslim extremists protested in the home town of a US regiment just returned from Afghanistan, calling your soldiers "baby killers" and demanding their beheading? How many people would end up dead?"

    Probably most of the Muslims. And those who killed them would go to jail.

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  • 205. At 00:56am on 13 Jan 2011, eisimp wrote:

    I cannot believe this: the Republican National Committee just called me to solicit a donation to 'get its message out' in the face of the 'challenge' of the left. There are no election campaigns at this time and the call was an obvious attempt to leverage the Arizona shooting and related controversy into a fundraising opportunity. (I contributed to McCain and got on the Republican list of contributors.) I find the financial use of the controversy a ghoulish, cynical and tone-deaf manifestation of what is wrong with politics in this country today. People were maimed and the dead include a 9 year old girl. Why can't the party respond to the challenges with a restrained, thoughtful expression of grief on the high road -- or am I supposed to believe that they wanted my money to put out a tasteful advert that did that? I don't. Hideous behavior!

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  • 206. At 00:59am on 13 Jan 2011, William Johnson-Smith wrote:

    The problem I see with a lot of the posts here, is they are written mostly by left of center British people, who haven't got a clue about US politics and think that there's some great polarization of American politics, with a defined left and right wing.

    This is being largely being fuelled by left of center British political commentators who are applying a British left wing/right wing political concepts to American politics, when they don't apply to America and can't be applied to America.

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  • 207. At 01:01am on 13 Jan 2011, WCoastConservative wrote:

    Though I'm no Tea Partier, my heart goes out not only to the victims, but also to local Tea Party leader Mr. Humphries, who is devastated by the violence in his community and whom certain misguided people have irresponsibly blamed for the tragedy. And even though she's not my favorite politician, I whole-heartedly agree with Mrs. Palin that "No-one should be deterred from speaking up and speaking out in peaceful dissent." However, I'd rather she just take a page out of Mr. Humphries' book: mourn the tragedy, come together as a community, and forget about the blame game.

    As for the "blood-libel" comparison, I think it's well made: some folks blame every Tea Partier for the violence, which is about as absurd as blaming every Muslim for 9/11, every Christian for the Crusades, or every Jew for the death of Jesus. How can we talk about improving the public discourse while demonizing fellow citizens in the same breath? And no, neither socialists nor Tea Partiers are bloodthirsty demons who either eat babies or encourage assassinations.

    The vast majority of Americans (including me) want us to join together to grieve this loss, shut up about politics for just one second and stand together against violence, full stop.

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  • 208. At 01:03am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 209. At 01:06am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:

    She is nothing but an insincere hollow "B" rated actress who I wouldn't trust to buy soap powder from!

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  • 210. At 01:10am on 13 Jan 2011, john wrote:

    I have read with mouth agape at the viciousness and extremeness of some of the posters here - either right or left . With such a vituperative divergence of views it seems to me that the US is on the road to another civil conflict which may pit races against races or believers against others , or perhaps some other combinations . This is more likely with the present economic climate and problems abroad.
    By the way on a tv broadcast a Republican politician ( a real one ) supported the view that all the anti Palin rhetoric was the product of socialists who read ' Das Kapital' and 'Mein Kampf' . It is remarks like this which seriously damage your credibility in the eyes of the rest of us.

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  • 211. At 01:17am on 13 Jan 2011, Jessica Auckland wrote:

    It's funny. One group of posters thinks this blog is too left wing and attacking the Right much as Mrs Palin tried to claim. Another group think it's too tame by half and doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of how much the Right's tactics and rhetoric are to blame for the incident. You just can't please anyone. Personally, I think if you dish it out, you have to be prepared to take it and Mrs Palin and the Tea Party CERTAINLY dish it out. It would appear to them that everyone else is to blame for anything they fancy pinning on them. What goes around surely must come around? Not that I'm advocating any sort of retribution, you understand. I don't blame anyone for anything....

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  • 212. At 01:21am on 13 Jan 2011, Jessica Auckland wrote:

    Dear Rick at 202, I'd just like to point out that left or right, extremism and extremist beliefs tend to end up pretty much the same thing, as do the actions of extremists and the results of their actions.

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  • 213. At 01:23am on 13 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    re: 199 Liberty -> libertarian

    Socialism -> liberal


    Evidence?

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  • 214. At 01:27am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #32

    "Most politicians in America - be they Democrat, Republican or Independent - have responded to this tragedy in measured tones."

    Most politicians in America weren't blamed by the idiotic media and a fair number of simpletons, of culpability in the shooting.

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  • 215. At 01:28am on 13 Jan 2011, doulos wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 216. At 01:45am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #213


    "Evidence?"


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarianism


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberal_socialism


    Not sure in which definition you were interested in, so I provided both.

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  • 217. At 02:06am on 13 Jan 2011, Stevenson wrote:

    The blog comments here I find are refreshingly reassuring. I find that reassuring.

    But, I do miss MarcusAII and his comments and I do find that reassuring too--that I miss him.

    Conservative thought is ok, as long as its not from a gun.

    All things must pass, but I was hoping not individuals with brains as well. One must try... to be open minded even in these sad times.

    I pray that Marcus is ok somewhere and growing older and wiser :)))))

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  • 218. At 02:07am on 13 Jan 2011, bwglick wrote:

    I spent much of my life both in the USA and Europe and now live in Canada. I have a love for history and sadly conclude that the USA is in a parallel phase with the Duitsland of the late 1920's and early 30's. It shares many of the same traits and is broken. I do not think that it can be fixed. I wonder who the Hitler figure will be that is to be embrassed as the Saviour. Greed, fear, xenophobia, enormous debts, polarization, intolerance, ignorance, false pride, all contribute.

    Perhpas the US will decide to build a wall along the border with Canada as well as Mexico. Unfortunately it wil take more to stem the infection.
    What a waste of the promised land.
    BWGLICK

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  • 219. At 02:07am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #211

    "Personally, I think if you dish it out, you have to be prepared to take it and Mrs Palin and the Tea Party CERTAINLY dish it out."


    "What goes around surely must come around?"

    I think you already answered that, with the first sentence. I admire your honesty and how you don't pretend that there is any actual merit to the accusations.

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  • 220. At 02:09am on 13 Jan 2011, Almansoor wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 221. At 02:11am on 13 Jan 2011, William Johnson-Smith wrote:

    211. At 01:17am on 13 Jan 2011, Jessica Auckland wrote:
    It's funny. One group of posters thinks this blog is too left wing and attacking the Right much as Mrs Palin tried to claim. Another group think it's too tame by half and doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of how much the Right's tactics and rhetoric are to blame for the incident.

    Why do people insist it's the Right's tactics and rhetoric which are to blame for the incident? Loughner is a nut, with no political ties to the right or the left and less anyone forget he shot and killed John M Roll, a Republican, Federal judge.

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  • 222. At 02:17am on 13 Jan 2011, Kalabi wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 223. At 02:19am on 13 Jan 2011, McJakome wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 224. At 02:25am on 13 Jan 2011, TonyLen wrote:

    Am I missing someting? Why is it, that in the US, being labeled a "Liberal" is seen as a negative? What's so wrong with being a liberal?
    Liberalism is a philosophy committed to the ideal of limited government and liberty of individuals including freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, and free markets.
    If the world (and particularly the US) had more Liberals, we would all be better off.

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  • 225. At 02:27am on 13 Jan 2011, HabitualHero wrote:

    All this leftwing/rightwing liberal/conservative crap does my head in. If those words didn't exist some people would be incapable of writing a single sentence.
    Here's a tip - stop trotting out these meaningless banalities and do your utmost to expand your meagre vocabulary.

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  • 226. At 02:47am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #224

    "Liberalism is a philosophy committed to the ideal of limited government and liberty of individuals including freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, and free markets.
    If the world (and particularly the US) had more Liberals, we would all be better off."

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberalism


    Scroll down to Americas


    "Am I missing someting?"


    Yes. Geographic context.

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  • 227. At 02:50am on 13 Jan 2011, UpperLeftCoast wrote:

    I live in northwestern Washington State. Our new County Commissioner was (is?) a Tea Party organizer who has posted that she is "dedicated to eradicating liberal politicians and their policies." ERADICATE. I'm a local environmental activist and now look over my shoulder a lot these days. And I'm really glad that I'm only 100 miles from Canada. I might need to move up there in the middle of the night in a hurry if Palin and her Tea Party ilk have their way.
    The US is feeling more and more like Germany in the 1920s.

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  • 228. At 02:52am on 13 Jan 2011, William Johnson-Smith wrote:

    224. At 02:25am on 13 Jan 2011, TonyLen wrote:
    Am I missing someting? Why is it, that in the US, being labeled a "Liberal" is seen as a negative? What's so wrong with being a liberal?
    Liberalism is a philosophy committed to the ideal of limited government and liberty of individuals including freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, and free markets.
    If the world (and particularly the US) had more Liberals, we would all be better off.

    I take it you are not an American?

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  • 229. At 02:55am on 13 Jan 2011, Gerard wrote:

    I get the feeling Sarah Palin herself doesn't know what she's talking about.
    As ever with US politicians, this isn't important- as long as the words sound stirring and righteous, who cares?

    Some Americans have posted comments here along the lines of 'at least in the USA you can speak your mind without fear- unlike in the UK.'
    Try telling that to the man who, after speaking his mind about George Bush at his local gym shortly after 9/11, was arrested by the FBI.
    Imagine a vocally atheist president. No, neither can I.
    Not only can julian Assange not speak his mind in the US, the American government want to make sure he can't do it in any other country. Palin's views on this case are well known.
    But then her views aren't overly troubled by fact are they? According to her, we here in Britain have 'Death Panels' where we decide who will live or die in our healthcare system. Of course we have no choice- we are forbidden (we're a socialist country after all) to have the private alternative.
    The same people who Tony Blair stood 'shoulder to shoulder' with after 9/11, spouted this insulting nonsense without any embarrassment whatsoever.
    Do you know why? Because they know that their countrymen are the most uninformed, globally ignorant, politically malleable, bulls**t eating electorate ever to shuffle across the face of the earth.

    After Saddam Houssein was captured, people on the streets of New York where asked if he should have an open and fair trial. 'Yes' they said, 'cos that's how we do things here.' What?? Really?? Guantanamo Bay anybody? Ignorance is bliss.

    Because they know nothing of history- certainly outside their own country- most Americans bizarrely imagine they invented freedom. One can only assume this was achieved whilst slaughtering the original inhabitants of the 'New World'. (Of course, black people in the US had to wait a half century longer than those in Britain before they got their own freedom).

    And because most Americans know nothing of the rest of the planet, their politicians can make up any s**t about other countries they want so as to reinforce the idea that 'this is the best of all possible worlds'.

    So USA people, before commenting on what one can and can't say in the UK, have the decency to know at least a miniscule part what you're talking about.



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  • 230. At 02:58am on 13 Jan 2011, Interestedforeigner wrote:

    186. At 11:54pm on 12 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    "Also, the reasoning behind Red Lion, at the time, was based on the limited number of radio stations available at the time. That is no longer the case, another reason why FIB is dead and buried, no matter what a handful of Democrats may say."

    ___________

    [[This is, in fact, the rationale upon which the FCC voluntarily abandoned the Fairness Doctrine during the Bush, Sr., administration, and it has been taken as conventional wisdom since then, notwithstanding the fact that the case was decided the other way and the implied rationale in question were never actually put to the test.

    However, those comments were made before the FCC abandonment of the Fairness Doctrine, and before the effects of abandonment of the Fairness Doctrine became apparent - as they have done in the 20 years since, and particularly in the last ten years. It is a fair guess that the Justices deciding Red Lion did not foresee a number of the subsequent changes in broadcast news and opinion programming that were the spawn of the FCC decision.

    It may be that the Fairness Doctrine may never be revived under that name, but a call for (to quote your own words):

    "opening up the airwaves and modern communications to as many diverse viewpoints as possible. That is why Sen. Obama supports media-ownership caps, network neutrality, public broadcasting, as well as increasing minority ownership of broadcasting and print outlets.”

    "Network Neutrality", eh? The Fairness Doctrine by any other name.]]

    ----------

    "Apparently, Obama did not waste his time at Harvard Law School."

    [[Exactly so. But perhaps not quite as you think.]]

    [[The real issue, though, is the composition of the US Supreme Court. And that court has, as far as I am aware, at every opportunity since Red Lion, decided against the interests of voters in maintaining and bolstering the institutions of democracy. Can't see that changing any time soon, unless the composition and temperament of the court changes rather substantially.]]

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  • 231. At 03:05am on 13 Jan 2011, William Johnson-Smith wrote:

    229. At 02:55am on 13 Jan 2011, Gerard wrote:

    So USA people, before commenting on what one can and can't say in the UK, have the decency to know at least a miniscule part what you're talking about.

    Maybe you should do the same, because clearly you have a very blinkered view about America.



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  • 232. At 03:08am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #230

    ""Network Neutrality", eh? The Fairness Doctrine by any other name."

    I suggest you paste "Network Neutrality" in your favourite search engine and see what it actually refers to.



    Here's Wiki condensed definition. Compare it with FIB



    "Network neutrality (also net neutrality, Internet neutrality) is a principle proposed for users' access to networks participating in the Internet. The principle advocates no restrictions by Internet service providers and governments on content, sites, platforms, the kinds of equipment that may be attached, and the modes of communication."


    You are confusing "network" with Fox, it seems...

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  • 233. At 03:10am on 13 Jan 2011, Kalabi wrote:

    The Sheriff who's sworn to uphold "innocent until proven guilty" by NAME accuses Palin. She responds...and SHE is to blame? Huh? The anger is coming from the frustration that if you don't agree with the liberal line then you're a hate monger. Huh? If the only option is your option...we're going to have a problem. no doubt. By definition it is you who are the oppressor.

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  • 234. At 03:26am on 13 Jan 2011, Jay wrote:

    Of course Sarah Palins' best defense is offence.
    Have anyone ever seen a mad dog approached a person. Then politely accepted that it is mad and requested him for treatment (to cure the dog)!

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  • 235. At 03:39am on 13 Jan 2011, Rick_in_OKC wrote:

    224 & 225.
    You are absolutely correct. I should not have used "Liberal" in my closing sentences. I should expand my vocabulary. On this I am sincere.

    I'll wager that I am like most of you.
    I am Liberal on many things, both political and personal.
    I am Conservative on many things, both political and personal.

    I read bbcnews because you can not get unbiased news within the US. BBCNews isn't perfect, but for many of us, this is as good as it gets.

    Really. Truthfully.

    And it was a very poor choice of words on my part. But for decades within the States, our vocabulary has devolved to Left and Right, Liberal and Conservative, (your labels here)... We have left little room for the Independent and Libertarian. You must pick one side or the other, or "you don't count". It just shows the control these two parties have upon us, and their refusal to share power with those who are not Democrat nor Republican [sometime you should check and see what it takes to get on a ballot in Oklahoma if you are not one of the two parties].

    I should have used (perhaps) some other label for those who wish to impose thier social (societal?) beliefs and consolidate Federal power over us; to suppress our inalienable rights of free speech and self-protection.

    Perhaps one of the readers can chime in and help me find that word I am searching that describes those who would suppress dissension and speech. Those that would leave us helpless to protect our loved ones at shopping centers. Is is Nanny-State? Marxist or Stalanist? Despots? Benevolent Dictators? Beloved leaders? Blessed leader? Pundit? Newsreporter or Columnist?

    Or is it just Tweedledum and Tweedledee? That both sides would take your rights if they had half an opportunity to do so. Those who use our fears to control us; like a bombing, a plane crash, or psycho-gunman.

    Really, I'm reaching out. I should not have used Liberal. I'm sorry.
    I was just as outraged when the "Right" enacted the (evil) PATRIOT act.

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  • 236. At 03:42am on 13 Jan 2011, Suzy Q wrote:

    The lady doth protest too much, methinks.

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  • 237. At 03:44am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #234

    You are lapsing into whatever your native tongue is. Are you inviting comments on grammar? :)

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  • 238. At 03:45am on 13 Jan 2011, William Johnson-Smith wrote:

    Though I have no time for Obama as a president and I voted Democrat, at least he put his oratorical skills to good use today.

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  • 239. At 03:54am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #238

    That, he did. It's what got him elected.

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  • 240. At 04:01am on 13 Jan 2011, William Johnson-Smith wrote:

    239. At 03:54am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:
    #238

    That, he did. It's what got him elected.

    Partly, plus alot of people's anger over the Iraq war.

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  • 241. At 04:10am on 13 Jan 2011, diggerC wrote:

    "shrill cries of imagined insults"

    Nice speechmaking, lady.

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  • 242. At 04:37am on 13 Jan 2011, Camo wrote:

    Rick in OKC

    The word you are looking for is Authoritarian. Defn: "Favouring subjection to authority over individual freedom"

    AND, with or without clarkson's "geographical context", it is the opposite of liberal - which stems from the greek and latin words for "free".

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  • 243. At 04:44am on 13 Jan 2011, Rick_in_OKC wrote:

    :)
    Authoritarian. geez, I should have known that. And from what I've seen, it has no party affiliation.

    Thanks, Camo.

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  • 244. At 04:53am on 13 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    re: 235 Oklahoma Rick

    Perhaps one of the readers can chime in and help me find that word I am searching that describes those who would suppress dissension and speech. Those that would leave us helpless to protect our loved ones at shopping centers. Is is Nanny-State? Marxist or Stalanist? Despots? Benevolent Dictators? Beloved leaders? Blessed leader? Pundit? Newsreporter or Columnist?

    Rick, I appreciate your openness. It's late, so I'll only address the protection issue.

    Why is the gun thing the gold standard of 'liberty?'

    We have some pretty restrictive gun laws here in Canada, and the same holds true for Oz, NZ, and the UK as well. Not to mention all of Western Europe. And etc.

    If you can tell me how I, or any Aussie, Kiwi, Brit, etc., am/are, in any meaningful way, less free than you, I'd be happy to hear it. Other than, of course, the fact that we have, as societies, quite strictly limited the availability of firearms.

    The need to carry weapons to protect myself or my family from threats is not something I feel the need for. I live in a basically sane, safe, functioning society where I feel comfortable and free without packing heat.

    Moreover, I do not see the government as a threat to my liberty. I enjoy a good, basically non corrupt legal system, and legislatures and parliaments that more or less function transparently and in the public interest. I believe the best bulwark against tyranny is not weaponry, but education and citizen engagement.

    Anyway, maybe you should, with this in mind, consider that those of your fellow citizens who advocate some restrictions on firearms are not interested in leaving you 'helpless' in the face of criminals or open to tyranny. More likely, they are concerned with reducing the rates of gun crimes, nothing more.

    So maybe the word(s) you are searching for above is 'concerned citizens with a different point of view?'

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  • 245. At 05:47am on 13 Jan 2011, Pasha721 wrote:

    I certainly hope the American people are astute enough not to even consider Sarah Palin anything but a disaster. God help us if she is ever elected President of the United States.

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  • 246. At 05:48am on 13 Jan 2011, peejkerton wrote:

    A woman who thinks the individual should be blamed for the crime, not the mood that a person lives around, yet has no problem objecting to the "Ground Zero Mosque" which is neither at Ground Zero nor a Mosque, because of links to the ideology of those who committed the 9/11 attacks with Islam.

    What a hypocrite.

    She is one of the leaders of the right-wing rhetoric of violence that has permeated the political landscape ever since Barack Obama was elected. She has made the climate in the US in a very poisonous and vicious place, with people talking about "second amendment solutions" how Obama's healthcare plans would "euthanise the old" and using the language of revolution to poison misguided souls who think that the solutions to the problems capitalism has afforded to them are seen in her political party, the very one that allows rampant capitalism to spread without checks in the first place.

    No one is saying that Loughner was directly influenced by Palin, but her, and the right-wing media in the US that dominates the news and talk radio agenda have definitely made America a far nastier political place and it allows people like Loughner to flourish in their paranoid conspiracy theories. Heck, Fox News airs a daily paranoid conspiracy theory friendly show under the auspices of news, without fact checks, every weeknight!

    She either believes in the power of oratory or not. If she doesn't then she should give up her public speaking and give up continually quoting Reagan. If she does then she should tone down her rhetoric and start realising that her words have power, though hopefully she never ultimately will have.

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  • 247. At 06:10am on 13 Jan 2011, peejkerton wrote:

    @107 Dan.
    "My prediction is that it will backfire badly on the Democrats in the next election."

    I'm sure you're as accurate as predictions as... Mystic Meg or Nostradamus, as your "facts" you post about these polls are not only false, but the reaction across the board to Sarah Palin's release has been one of disgust.

    Don't give up your day job.

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  • 248. At 06:19am on 13 Jan 2011, sandross wrote:

    I am an American who follows the news and reads the comments more often than I post.I was surprised Sarah Palin was angry.The liberals who comment don't think Palin was responsible for the shootings even with her putting people in crosshairs and toting guns around.What most are wanting is a more general tone down of political rhetoric.Maybe that is what she is afraid of.

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  • 249. At 06:31am on 13 Jan 2011, CJ wrote:

    One thing you failed to mention is that Representative Giffords is Jewish, making Palin's remarks particularly in bad taste.

    Regardless of how the term "blood libel" was meant, there is no denying the historical connotations. You can't change the meaning just to suit your needs.

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  • 250. At 06:52am on 13 Jan 2011, KarmA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 251. At 06:56am on 13 Jan 2011, KarmA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 252. At 07:06am on 13 Jan 2011, Rick_in_OKC wrote:

    244.
    Great response. I really hate to respond because it was so well writen, but I bit...
    And I don't want to slide down the slipery slope of gun-nut rhetoric.
    I have read of the machete attacks in Australia, the blazen daylight home invasions/robberies in Britian, the nut taxi driver with a rifle in Britian, the school shootings in Germany, etc. Wasn't it in the news some months back that Australia was moving down the weapons "food-chain" banning first guns, then machetes, and recently sharp knives and that normal citizens were concerned their steak knives would soon be illegal...swear I read that somewhere (probably on BBCNews). And from what I have read, many Canadians would like to repeal the current gun bans.
    Bad people exist and will prey upon the weak.
    For the elederly and weaker sex (please don't hate me for using that term), a firearm has been and will remain an equalizer for those that may wish to rob or rape or do them other harm. Police (with firearms in the US) are never around when you need one. They typically show up to fill out the report after an event, whether a firearm would have been useful or not. I think that is their modus operandi just about everywhere except some public spaces (airports, ball parks, that kind of thing).
    And when firearms are obsoleted, and ray guns could be used by our wives and elderly, I am confident the State will not allow us to possess them. Many States and Cities do not allow possession of defensive devices today. But are they safer? Our crime statistics say otherwise.
    I am happy (really and sincerely) that you are safe in a basically sane functioning society. That's why Canada is one of my favorite countries to vacation. A truly, beautiful place. But then, I haven't been to Toronto in 15+ years now. And I have heard that it is not as clean a city as it used to be. But I refuse to believe that until I see it firsthand.
    I'm sure that's what the folks who went to the grocery store to meet the Congresswoman in Tuscon felt, that they were in a basically sane and functioning society. No need to pack heat - Heck, I live in a basically sane and safe neighborhood.
    Our (yours and mine) neighbor to the south has some of the greatest restrictions on firearms on this planet, but yet somehow they end up with machineguns (illegal to possess in US) and other weapons. Did you know that you go to jail in Mexico for just possessing a single bullet? Really! They have big signs at the border warning Americans as they cross the border into Mexico! I know many will say the guns are coming across the border from the US. I have no doubt that many are. Regardless, they are illegal to possess in Mexico, just as they are illegal in Canada. Laws restricting firearms are only obeyed by those who obey laws. What the psycho did in Tuscon was illegal and he now faces criminal charges. It didn't stop what he did.
    Now as for restrictions on firearms in the US, we have volumes of regulations, rules, and laws. I know we give eveyone the impression that we are a veritiable Bagdad, with all of us carrying an AK or somesuch. But I know you know better. The only US citizens you have probably ever seen carrying firearms are our police. The other law-abiding citizens may keep them in their home, or carry them concealed where allowed (which requires a very thorough local, state and Federal investigation of the individual which takes on average 90 days to complete).
    Now I will agree with you(this is probably some of the Liberal bit of me I mentioned), if we were all educated-empowered-involved-sane citizens in the US, there would be no need for us to be concerned about being in the wrong neighborhood after dark, or our wives leaving a Wal-Mart late in the evening in a lonely parking lot, (fill in your nightmare situation here). But those that commit crime, whether with firearms or not, do exist in the US (and Mexico and perhaps parts of the United Kingdom that you mentioned).
    I understand that it can be argued that the psycho in Tuscon was more effective with a firearm then he might have been with a candlestick. That is not lost upon me. But of the millions (closer to hundred million, I understand) of gun-owners in the US, how many went nuts in a shopping center that weekend? Only one that I read about.
    As for a fear of tyranny and of an authoriatarian government; what can I say? As an American, a distrust of government is in our genetic make-up. You see it from the left when the right is in power, and you see it from the right when the left is in power. Just the way we are. But neither has marched upon Washington just because they are armed. The firearms we are allowed to own are inferior to those our government owns. Gun owners know that. Do you think that is by accident? Nope, it's another one of those reasonable gun regulations you mention. As I said, we have books and books of those restrictions. But somehow they never stop the bad people from doing bad things. Go figure.
    History is rife with many governments who killed their citizens throughout the twentieth century. I know I don't need to list them, and we all know there were many more beyond the Nazis (which just so happened to enact gun control on the populace to disarm those the government did not trust). I know, I know - old news. The JPFO (google it) keeps quite an extensive list of these governments who killed their citizens last century.
    Are you any less free? That's a toughy. Your government has told you cannot use a handgun for your defense, or the protection of your wife, your children, your parents, your loved-ones. This reminds me of the don't resist rape strategy we used to teach our females. If you let them rape you, they will probably only beat you up and not kill you. Or what we taught our aircrews in resisting hijacking. Who would have guessed you could hijack a plane with a boxknife? Not me.
    So are you any less free? Nah, I guess not. Just as long as you abide by these restrictions in what you may use to protect yourself from evil people (like the one in Tuscon).
    I can tell that you do not fear guns, just that they are so readily available in many US States. It isn't funny that the states and cities with the most restritive gun laws in the US are also those with the greatest gun crime. It is just that we have left the law abiding with no defense. I'm sure some would fight back if they could.
    So, to my friends - the concerned citizens with a different point of view - I wish you no evil and hope you have a long and happy life.
    For me and a great number of other Americans, we will stay armend and vigilant for those of you who do not believe they should protect themselves from evil people.

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  • 253. At 07:20am on 13 Jan 2011, razant wrote:

    Poor Sarah. always the villian. When the word 'capitalism" shows up in the dictionary, her picture is beside it. She wonders why nobody is picking on Bachmann or aingle the same way. She has shown this venemous rhetoric and scute lack of diplomacy since day one. Hopefully the GOP guides will request she stays in Alaska and just hunts Caribou.

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  • 254. At 07:27am on 13 Jan 2011, roy smith wrote:

    The Left of America, the Democrats, have continuously demonised Sarah Palin from the second she appeared in the public forum. With her bright and breezy manner, her wide friendly smile she pleased the crowds and was an instant success. From that moment onward she was recognised as a threat to the "progressive" ideology of the Democratic left front and given hell in its various guises. With no insider reporting by the English press the stories breeching the Atlantic have been from the numerous and pernicious left wing American media. So we have it! A one-sided opinion and a very misguided stream of doctored news. Taken for factual truths we have a distribution chain circulating the globe giving a slanted view of personalities in the US deserving better.

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  • 255. At 07:33am on 13 Jan 2011, KarmA wrote:

    Obviously speaking .THE. TRUTH breaks House Rules then....and so THEN “and the then is best to be seen as now” House Rules need to be changed quick...either that or you who Moderates will be.... I AM My name by the way and trying to silence me will only add to yours that is awaiting you and in fact will speed you and its meeting place destination time of arrival up....and believe you me "and on the deepest level you are" wanting to believe it or not is not going to change the FACT that what i have told you is .THE. TRUTH and you have heard it here today and so there shall be no excuses when the tide cOMes in for you brother, NOT EVEN NOTHING is not registerd you see, and because you prevented EVERYONE from knowing THE PURE EVERYTHING OF MY hOMe YOU shall know only the less than nothing if you do not break through and change your fear based serpent serving ego automated judgemental thought processes. You shall recieve no more verbal warnings.

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  • 256. At 07:34am on 13 Jan 2011, KarmA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 257. At 07:36am on 13 Jan 2011, KarmA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 258. At 07:40am on 13 Jan 2011, KarmA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 259. At 07:50am on 13 Jan 2011, Moorlandhunter wrote:

    Leigh Oats.....Sure, here are just two for your viewing. It seems that use of the target or bulls eye icon on seats area two way thing, but Democrats and the left press will use any method to hit out at the very genuine opposition to the Republican side of US politics.
    It also seems that at least on Republican who opposes the Democrats gets his office window shot at on a regular basis.
    Now can we have some fair and balanced reporting on this despicable crime and put the blame where it belongs, on the offender not the heated words used by both sides during and after the election?

    http://www.dlc.org/ndol_ci.cfm?contentid=253055&kaid=127&subid=171

    http://www.postonpolitics.com/2010/04/democrats-our-bullseye-targets-on-house-districts-are-not-like-palins-crosshair-targets/comment-page-1/


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  • 260. At 07:53am on 13 Jan 2011, KarmA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 261. At 08:02am on 13 Jan 2011, powermeerkat wrote:

    Re #180 Andrea wrote:

    People who are serious about calming things down will acknowledge that the Left has contributed to our caustic environment. Even our president.



    It's hard to deny that there were images of George W. Bush with a gun pointed at his head, of 'Kill Bush' t-shirts and countless posters of the "Bush, the only dope worth shooting".



    Or that president Obama stated on different occasions:


    “They Bring a Knife…We Bring a Gun”

    “Get in Their Faces!”

    “I don’t want to quell anger. I think people are right to be angry! I’m angry!”


    “Hit Back Twice As Hard”

    Republican victory would mean “hand to hand combat”

    Obama to Latino supporters: “Punish your enemies.”

    Obama to Democrats: “I’m itching for a fight.”

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  • 262. At 08:05am on 13 Jan 2011, UNisPants wrote:

    Try as you may, you cannot influence the love we have for Sarah Palin with your shamefully biased article.

    In your pathetic attempt to continue with this unproven effort by the left to attribute this tragedy to "harsh rhetorics", you seem to have become blinded by your obvious dislike of her, by trying to rubbish her own defense!

    Any reasonable person will understand how it feels when you are attacked, blamed or accused for something you know nothing about. And as a famous personality who may not have any viable legal recourse in this particluar case, the least she can do is to say something in her own defense.

    Whatever your fears of Sarah Palin, some us know she will make a thousand times a better President than the current one[I dare not name him, waste of ink]. Live with it and back off! Journalists report the news, they don't make the news!

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  • 263. At 08:08am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #248

    "What most are wanting is a more general tone down of political rhetoric."


    Why and why now?


    "The liberals who comment don't think Palin was responsible for the shootings even with her putting people in crosshairs and toting guns around."


    What's that big river in Egypt called?

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  • 264. At 08:34am on 13 Jan 2011, Fracking Tories wrote:

    The Republicans have obviously written this speech for Sarah with the intention of sinking her boat.

    She's too much of a liability now, she was useful for a while keeping all the gun nutters on board but she's crossed a line that could marginalise Republicans who have a modicum of intelligence.

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  • 265. At 08:43am on 13 Jan 2011, powermeerkat wrote:

    #145

    "God help America if this present closet fascist ever rises to a position where the future of the United States of America and its people lay within her hands!"






    Imagine: if for whatever reason our president and vice-president had been (God forbid) killed/incapacitated in 2010 our Commander-Chief would be Nancy Pelosi.


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  • 266. At 08:46am on 13 Jan 2011, powermeerkat wrote:

    champagne_charlie wrote:
    #40

    billinny;

    "Perhaps it is because in Britain it is against the law to say things which some group might find offensive"

    No, it isn't. Must do better.





    Correct. And the original poster obviously never had any of the British tabloids in his hands. Let alone read it. :-)

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  • 267. At 08:51am on 13 Jan 2011, RomeStu wrote:

    Re the blood libel comment....

    I find it hard to believe that this phrase was used unwittingly and without full knowledge of its meaning and offensiveness to many people. Public statements like this are not knocked off ad hoc, but carefully scripted by well-paid writers to play to the audience.
    In this case the words were designed to rile the anti-Palin crowd in order to then make her into an oppressed victim of left-wing hatred in the eyes of her supporters, neatly turning the tables and strengthening her base.

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  • 268. At 08:57am on 13 Jan 2011, UNisPants wrote:

    powermeerkat who have put correctly. But we know that Mark does not see that way! All I like to see is a little fairness in Journalism.

    For all I can see, there's no evidence that this tragedy is a direct consequence of the heated political arguments.

    People should just lay off attacking Sarah Palin without any justifiable cause.

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  • 269. At 09:02am on 13 Jan 2011, RomeStu wrote:

    If anyone believes that political rhetoric does not enter into the cause/effect equation ..... then why is there so much of it?

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  • 270. At 09:04am on 13 Jan 2011, RomeStu wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 271. At 09:22am on 13 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    Supposedly about the Democratic Party's use of images of crosshairs, and supposedly in answer to my earnest question . . .

    "I seem to have forgotten about that particular representation of crosshairs. Would you be so good as to post a link to a picture of it?"

    . . . Moorlandhunter in #259 at "07:50am on 13 Jan 2011" replies:


    \_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_

    Leigh Oats.....Sure, here are just two for your viewing. [. . .]

    http://www.dlc.org/ndol_ci.cfm?contentid=253055&kaid=127&subid=171

    http://www.postonpolitics.com/2010/04/democrats-our-bullseye-targets-on-house-districts-are-not-like-palins-crosshair-targets/comment-page-1/

    \_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_


    Just as I thought, Moorlandhunter. You've scored as bullseye again. The word is getting around that the emblem of the Republican Party should be an evasive weasel rather than an unforgetting elephant.

    —Leigh Oats.

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  • 272. At 09:22am on 13 Jan 2011, PartTimeDon wrote:

    This was not the world view encapsulating statement of a stateswoman who may be a president in the making. This was the self interested statement of a partisan political pundit in waiting.
    Palin indeed was linked unfairly to this tragedy. The statesmanlike thing to do is to rise above the accusation. She has instead opted to complain about how unfair it all is.

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  • 273. At 09:23am on 13 Jan 2011, Magaloof wrote:

    John Del Vecchio in his great novel about Boonie Rats in the Vietnam War 'The Thirteenth Valley' (published in 1982) thought long and hard about how wars start. He argued that the American political system is set up to make people like Palin look good. Intelligent debate is impossible. The Pitbull with lipstick! What utter twaddle. Just another bully. It's nothing new.

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  • 274. At 09:26am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #269

    Nice oversimplification. The argument is not whether political rhetoric is or is not effective, but rather if it is effective on people who don't hear or see it. Like the Arizona nutter.

    Ever heard James Monroe's speech from December 2nd, 1823? Of course not, you weren't born yet and it wasn't broadcast. How has it affected you?

    That's exactly how the Arizona nutter was affected by Sarah Palin's rhetoric.



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  • 275. At 09:30am on 13 Jan 2011, 5050noline wrote:

    Mark Mardell,

    See (above) what you have set off. Better to stick to reporting the simple facts, which the BBC was renowned for, to let people make up their own minds rather than commenting, which leaves you open to all sorts of accusations of bias.

    As an observer from the UK:

    87. At 6:59pm on 12 Jan 2011, Lynda J W wrote:

    Wow! :-(


    92. At 7:05pm on 12 Jan 2011, MisterFubar wrote:

    One of the great bits of wishful thinking on the part of that poor, sick old man. Reagan, like Palin, refused and refuses to take any responsibility for their actions. During RR's reign of error, hundreds of thousands were murdered in Latin America. (I work with a humanitarian agency that deals with the problem among other problems.)

    I say, you do know he is dead, don't you? You have problems indeed.


    126.At 7:59pm on 12 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats message to Moorlandhunter

    Try: 'Democrat Congressman Harry Mitchell did the same thing to JD Hayworth a few years ago right here in Arizona, running a campaign ad featuring JD Hayworth in the crosshairs of a rifle.'

    I don’t think I am allowed to post a link here on HYS. You can Google it under Democrat Crosshairs, simples. Its on an 'Intellectual Conservative' page, so be careful.

    Both sides have plenty to answer for. But as an observer, I think it was very poor on the part of the Tucson sheriff to declare a political position. Government officials have no place doing that. Look what he started.



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  • 276. At 09:46am on 13 Jan 2011, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #179
    , Interestedforeigner wrote:
    167. At 11:00pm on 12 Jan 2011, MagicKirin wrote:

    "the Fairness doctrine is an attempt of censorship."

    __________

    Quite the contrary.

    The Fairness Doctrine is exactly the opposite. It is a means by which the rights of listeners and viewers to hear and see more than one viewpoint are preserved.
    _____________
    first we have that now. You could go to the exteme left of MSNBC or NYT to the conservative of the Weejly standard

    You ignored the point it would not applie to the NYT editorial staff which is almost entirely liberal

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  • 277. At 09:50am on 13 Jan 2011, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #249
    CJ wrote:
    One thing you failed to mention is that Representative Giffords is Jewish, making Palin's remarks particularly in bad taste.

    Regardless of how the term "blood libel" was meant, there is no denying the historical connotations. You can't change the meaning
    ________________

    I am Jewish as is noted lawyer and Israeli expert Alan Deshowitz.

    Deshowitz who is very liberal and hates Fox News and is not a Palin fan says her use of the term was appropriate.

    It's use has expanded he rightly named the Godlstone report as Blood Libel

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  • 278. At 09:53am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:

    I note the moderators removed my post 208. Can't debate the truth if the truth makes the US take a close look at itself eh. I will say it again, how can Sarah Palin look the camera in the eye and say "acts of monstrous criminality stand on their own, they begin and end with the criminals who commit them, not collectively by all the citizens of a state". My question is, how come 600,000 Iraqi civilians are now dead because of one criminal?

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  • 279. At 09:54am on 13 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    Says PartTimeDon in #272 at "09:22am on 13 Jan 2011":

    "This was not the world view encapsulating statement of a stateswoman who may be a president in the making. This was the self interested statement of a partisan political pundit in waiting."

    Please get the word right, Don. It's "pundint".

    The intellectual giant from within moose-moo of a Russian island in the Bering Strait can teach the world a thing or two about the English language.

    —Leigh Oats.

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  • 280. At 09:57am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:

    268. At 08:57am on 13 Jan 2011, championbubbler wrote:

    powermeerkat who have put correctly. But we know that Mark does not see that way! All I like to see is a little fairness in Journalism.

    For all I can see, there's no evidence that this tragedy is a direct consequence of the heated political arguments.

    People should just lay off attacking Sarah Palin without any justifiable cause.
    _________________________________________________________
    The justifiable cause is her obvious mock sincerity and lothesome attempt at political point scoring at a time of mourning. I would love for a reporter to ask her the names of the dead she is praying for.

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  • 281. At 10:01am on 13 Jan 2011, palewell wrote:

    JClarkson 237

    One has to admire your nerve, in sniping at other people's grammar.

    199 " Consider "National-Socialism". Sounds innocuous enough, doesn't it? The reality is little different... "

    That means ""National Socialism" is almost exactly what the words say - national socialism. "

    The meiosis towards which you were presumably struggling would be " the reality is a little different. "

    This applies in both English and American. Please don't try saying it was a typo.

    This helps us understand your confusion over the difference between liberalism and socialism. The history of conflict between parties avowing these two doctrines in Europe is long and frequently bloody.

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  • 282. At 10:08am on 13 Jan 2011, AlexisWolf wrote:

    Palin's got to be the best thing for the US for a long time. After all it's only the right wing bigots who are not laughing.

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  • 283. At 10:09am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 284. At 10:15am on 13 Jan 2011, eeyore wrote:

    A few points.

    Words are important. They are the basis of language and how else do we try to influence others than by the use of words.

    Why do people from the US, use the BBCs comments pages to expose their prejudices and political leanings?

    Very few are posting, listening, let alone hearing anything that would/could/should enlighten us on what is happening in and to the US.

    Let's think about a political landscape where the rhetoric of left and right was not at Code Red; in such circumstances would the perpetrator have committed these crimes in Tuscon?

    He would have committed some crime, given the evidence of his problems with authority in the past, which may or may not be attributed to mental illness, diagnosable or not. But would he have committed this crime?

    I think not.

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  • 285. At 10:15am on 13 Jan 2011, David wrote:

    This woman's rhetoric is clearly inflammatory and politically motivated. She is not "big enough" to let the criticisms of her own campaign wash over her, rather she has to engage in more vitriol. She is clearly not big enough to be President and I hope that this episode has exposed her true character to the people of the US.
    Obama has it right, this is about remaining calm and having an adult conversation about the problem.
    I have always found it hard to agree with the statement that the US is the greatest democracy in the world, it is founded on a great set of principles which probably are the best anywhere , however the practice seems to betray the possibilities of that foundation.

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  • 286. At 10:15am on 13 Jan 2011, instockholm wrote:

    I find it very interesting the comments that have been posted on this blog. I can see that comprasions have been made between the teaparty and germany in the period between the world wars. if this is true its very sad as it means no lesson's have been learnt from previous mistakes.
    At school i read a book called "A handmaids tale". does anyone know it?
    certain parts of the first few chapters are being played out in the USA at the moment. this is very toublesome and I can only hope the teaparty will never come to power

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  • 287. At 10:17am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:

    Again moderators remove my post 278, why? It is relevant! How can Sarah Palin claim "acts of monstrous criminality are the responsibility of the criminal perpetrator alone" when 600,000 Iraqis are dead because of Saddam Hussain?

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  • 288. At 10:18am on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    The US President gave a dignified address that which included a call for an end to the divisive and largely incoherent blaming over this terrible tragedy. Palin's address, delivered on Facebook, also called for an end to the blaming. Both, I sincerely hope, will return to the raw cut and thrust of democratic political discourse which is essential to the well being of political life in the world's largest democracy.. America, and the rest of the world faces numerous problems, which cannot be resolved by sanitizing political discourse in the way that British politicians have destroyed politics to the point where the major parties are virtually indistinguishable.

    This HYS discussion - the BBC have given us two - has been disgraceful. From the beginning it has largely consisted of ill informed hate filled comments about Palin and the Tea Party. Even after the President has called for an end to the blaming, we see HYS commentators continuing to push their their political agenda into this tragedy.

    Why is BBC moderation not working? Why are moderators censoring criticism of widely published calls for Palin's assassination which is appearing on Twitter, yet allowing every ill informed commentator to put in their views about Palin as a danger. Perhaps it is time for moderation - which is necessary in any debate - to be removed from the BBC and replaced by an independent authority that is free from bias and any political agenda.

    It gets worse. Today the BBC has scraped around to find fault with Palin's blood libel remark. Now she is offending Jews, implies the BBC; always there to make a political point rather than report objectively. Yet Palin is one of the few western politicians to declare herself in favour of Israel when the BBC and others are supporting its enemies. Double standards eh.

    On this terrible tragedy in Arizona those who have attributed blame have disgraced themselvse. Indulgence in anti Tea Party politics and toleration of hate filled rhetoric on HYS has dragged the once responsible BBC into the gutter, making itself part of the problem the President is trying to resolve.

    This week I have read coverage of this tragedy in the Sun, the Mail, and the Telegraph. All three have been more objective and dignified than the BBC journalists and guardians of the House rules for BBC debate.



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  • 289. At 10:21am on 13 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote:

    RHCracker(no 66) wrote "After reading these posts I have came to the conclusion that Sarah Palin scares the hell out of liberals. I just might take another look at her for 2012".

    That might possibly make you even more silly than she is.

    It is not about being liberal or conservative(whatever you take these over-simplistic labels to mean). It is that every intelligent human should be horrified of the prospect of this utterly ignorant and amoral cretin having any chance of being taken seriously as a politician.

    DinTex(no 86) wrote, among other things, "The shooter was known to law-enforcement for a long time, had multiple instances of substance abuse, school threats, etc.. Dupnik (Sheriff) himself has admitted, that Loughner leveled death threats against others that were investigated by law enforcement"

    So the mentally disturbed person who is alleged to have murdered six people was known to law enforcement and had a long history of issues with law enforcement? And was still able to walk into a shop and buy a gun over the counter? Without fitness tests, eye test, firearms knowledge tests?

    I mean, you do regulate driving in the USA? You cannot drive a car without a licence, can you?

    The USA regulates alcohol to a degree that most other nations find either obsessive or insane, but guns are not to be regulated in ANY meaningful way?

    Stevenson(no 217) wrote about how he does "..miss MarcusAII and his comments..". What happened to the mad MAII? His insane outpourings about the absolute evils of Europe used to be quite amusing.

    roy smith(no 254) mentioned Sarah Palin's "bright and breezy manner".

    The only thing breezy about Ms Palin is the wind blowing through the empty space between her ears.

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  • 290. At 10:28am on 13 Jan 2011, eeyore wrote:

    Why this clip from last year is high on today's video list on the BBC is anyone's guess but it does make an interesting counterpoint to Sarah Palin's words yesterday.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/today/hi/today/newsid_8482000/8482725.stm

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  • 291. At 10:33am on 13 Jan 2011, EnglishTeaparty wrote:

    Whilst many people love to hate Sarah Palin she holds views that are shared by millions of ordinary Americans and indeed people in other countries who distrust big government and it's ever increasing involvement in the lives of individuals. It is not necessarily idiosyncratic to want smaller government and greater emphasis on individual freedom, liberty & responsibilities. Whatever the future of Mrs Palin in US politics her views are not about to disappear and it is highly probable that a future Republican president will take these into account when framing public policy. So you can attack Sarah Paling and propagate as much criticism as you wish but in doing so miss the point. Large government is under attack in the USA and doubts are beginning to grow elsewhere. Many years ago the US President Thomas Jefferson said he thought a free press was a greater guarantor of liberty than an elected government and in principle he remains right today. All governments anywhere end up controlling and oppressing the very people they were elected to serve - that's governments of both right & left. It's time for a fight back - through the democratic process.

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  • 292. At 10:35am on 13 Jan 2011, reasonforit wrote:

    On blogs and forums (i.e. not verified by me), Gifford is described as a Conservative Democrat who is pro-life, pro-gun and pro-strong immigration control; not far from Palin in politics. Her attacker is described as a "Goth" and "pothead" and a "follower of Marx". The idea that Palin's rhetoric inspired this incident is unlikely.

    Jared Loughner's father works for "Child Protection Services" in Pima County and some are asking whether his wayward son was being shielded from prosecution for earlier threats and misdemeanours.

    As a poster to the BBC has pointed out, Palin's rhetoric is rich in phrases associated with National Socialism although for comparison we need to know how widespread they are in general discourse; "final solution" has become a common, tasteless hyperbole which I might have used myself.

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  • 293. At 10:39am on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:



    For those of you that continue to attribute this murder to Palin's rhetoric (by the way you never cite it do you - it looks pretty tame on you tube and facebook) please watch this very moving interview with the gunman's former friend.

    One thing comes over very clear. The gunman NEVER watched TV or listened to talk radio.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s6EsYIm9HOE&feature=sub

    I found this interview very moving. God bless the young friend in this video; he too is suffering with the victims.

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  • 294. At 10:43am on 13 Jan 2011, Dave wrote:

    What an absolutely disgusting webpage this has been turned into. An internet hate page for Sarah Palin hosted on the supposedly impartial BBC.

    Well done Mark, you've outed the political left, and their vitriolic rhetoric good and proper, with this article.

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  • 295. At 10:46am on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    280. At 09:57am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:268. At 08:57am on 13 Jan 2011, championbubbler wrote:

    powermeerkat who have put correctly. But we know that Mark does not see that way! All I like to see is a little fairness in Journalism.

    For all I can see, there's no evidence that this tragedy is a direct consequence of the heated political arguments.

    People should just lay off attacking Sarah Palin without any justifiable cause.
    _________________________________________________________
    The justifiable cause is her obvious mock sincerity and lothesome attempt at political point scoring at a time of mourning. I would love for a reporter to ask her the names of the dead she is praying for.
    ---------------------------------------------

    Moreham, You don't give up do you. No foundation for your assertion, just follow the mob. The debate has moved on: the point scoring has been coming from the left journos. Obama has called for it to stop.

    I see from your other posts you are trying to push this debate into your usual pro Muslim rant, where Bush, Obama, Blair and all represent the Great Satan, killing innocent muslims. Just have a little respect for those killed in this tragedy.

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  • 296. At 10:50am on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    289. At 10:21am on 13 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote:RHCracker(no 66) wrote "After reading these posts I have came to the conclusion that Sarah Palin scares the hell out of liberals. I just might take another look at her for 2012".

    That might possibly make you even more silly than she is.

    It is not about being liberal or conservative(whatever you take these over-simplistic labels to mean). It is that every intelligent human should be horrified of the prospect of this utterly ignorant and amoral cretin having any chance of being taken seriously as a politician.

    roy smith(no 254) mentioned Sarah Palin's "bright and breezy manner".

    The only thing breezy about Ms Palin is the wind blowing through the empty space between her ears.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    Your wit at this time of suffering is truly remarkable. Unfortunately I assume that you were not there to entertain and amuse the mourners at the memorial.

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  • 297. At 10:51am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #281

    "The meiosis towards which you were presumably struggling would be " the reality is a little different. "


    I'm a married man, with children. I no longer struggle towards any kind of meiosis but my doctor assures me that I would have no problems, if my wife were to change her mind about having more.

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  • 298. At 10:58am on 13 Jan 2011, Fracking Tories wrote:

    254. At 07:27am on 13 Jan 2011, roy smith wrote:

    The Left of America, the Democrats, have continuously demonised Sarah Palin from the second she appeared in the public forum. With her bright and breezy manner, her wide friendly smile she pleased the crowds and was an instant success. From that moment onward she was recognised as a threat to the "progressive" ideology of the Democratic left front and given hell in its various guises. With no insider reporting by the English press the stories breeching the Atlantic have been from the numerous and pernicious left wing American media. So we have it! A one-sided opinion and a very misguided stream of doctored news. Taken for factual truths we have a distribution chain circulating the globe giving a slanted view of personalities in the US deserving better.

    -----------------------

    Nah, I think we've got her number. You don't need to read any articles about her from any source, you just have to listen to her statements as broadcast to realise she is one Caribou short of a hunt.

    "With her bright and breezy manner, her wide friendly smile she pleased the crowds and was an instant success."

    You could say this about Shere Khan, just before he has you for dinner, if she was a steak she'd eat herself.

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  • 299. At 11:10am on 13 Jan 2011, Fracking Tories wrote:

    295. At 10:46am on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote:

    280. At 09:57am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:268. At 08:57am on 13 Jan 2011, championbubbler wrote:

    powermeerkat who have put correctly. But we know that Mark does not see that way! All I like to see is a little fairness in Journalism.

    For all I can see, there's no evidence that this tragedy is a direct consequence of the heated political arguments.

    People should just lay off attacking Sarah Palin without any justifiable cause.
    _________________________________________________________
    The justifiable cause is her obvious mock sincerity and lothesome attempt at political point scoring at a time of mourning. I would love for a reporter to ask her the names of the dead she is praying for.
    ---------------------------------------------

    Moreham, You don't give up do you. No foundation for your assertion, just follow the mob. The debate has moved on: the point scoring has been coming from the left journos. Obama has called for it to stop.

    I see from your other posts you are trying to push this debate into your usual pro Muslim rant, where Bush, Obama, Blair and all represent the Great Satan, killing innocent muslims. Just have a little respect for those killed in this tragedy.

    ------------------

    Oh come off it, the above reply is blatant point scoring wrapped up in pseudo sincerity, (is there any other type!)

    "Moreham, You don't give up do you. No foundation for your assertion, just follow the mob. The debate has moved on: the point scoring has been coming from the left journos. Obama has called for it to stop."

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  • 300. At 11:10am on 13 Jan 2011, TeaPartyBrit wrote:

    #291. EnglishTeaparty.

    I would like to express agreement with what you say. Like to start a party?
    The hankering for less government is not exclusive to the US, but is a widespread phenomenon.
    By the way LESS government does not equate with NO government, it just means more discerning and less intrusive government.
    Sarah Palin is not the cause, she is an effect of the push for less government, whether she will have a long term effect on the cause and its success or otherwize is an entirely different matter. Like all people who chose to be outspoken, they either succeed gloriously like Sir Winston Churchill, or fail miserably like Sir Oswald Mosley.

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  • 301. At 11:11am on 13 Jan 2011, PhearTheTurtle wrote:

    As always, Sarah Palin's message is essentially, "Gosh darnit, everything in our great nation is just hunkey dorey." It's the lazy man's cry of "Everything is fine!" when his wife tells him the roof needs fixing.

    This message resonates strongly with the lazy of the United States, who want to sit back and not solve any problems -- defer it all to another day. And Palin delivers this message once more. When we should be talking about the incendiary rhetoric and how it affects all of America and what every American can do about it, Palin's rallying the apathetic with her usual "Problems? What problems?"

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  • 302. At 11:12am on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    291. At 10:33am on 13 Jan 2011, EnglishTeaparty wrote: Whilst many people love to hate Sarah Palin she holds views that are shared by millions of ordinary Americans and indeed people in other countries who distrust big government and it's ever increasing involvement in the lives of individuals. It is not necessarily idiosyncratic to want smaller government and greater emphasis on individual freedom, liberty & responsibilities. Whatever the future of Mrs Palin in US politics her views are not about to disappear and it is highly probable that a future Republican president will take these into account when framing public policy. So you can attack Sarah Paling and propagate as much criticism as you wish but in doing so miss the point. Large government is under attack in the USA and doubts are beginning to grow elsewhere. Many years ago the US President Thomas Jefferson said he thought a free press was a greater guarantor of liberty than an elected government and in principle he remains right today. All governments anywhere end up controlling and oppressing the very people they were elected to serve - that's governments of both right & left. It's time for a fight back - through the democratic process.
    -----------------------------------------------
    This has to be the best post on this site. Our English contributors would do well to read it.
    It is very likely that the left and the mainstream media will destroy Palin's chances for the Presidency. Their campaign has been the most vitriolic I have ever seen. It has turned me away from the left and I cannot understand why the so-called progressives are campaigning for restrictions of free speech.

    The views expressed by Palin will be made by others. Maybe it is not fashionable to consider movies like Mr Smith Goes to Washington - not enough sex and special effects - but the moral views it expresses still reside in the ordinary people.

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  • 303. At 11:12am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #289

    "The USA regulates alcohol to a degree that most other nations find either obsessive or insane, but guns are not to be regulated in ANY meaningful way?"


    Is that what you heard? It's good to comment on what you hear. And wise.


    http://www.atf.gov/regulations-rulings/laws/


    In addition to this, there are 50 similar bodies of laws, regarding the regulation of gun, at the state level. So they already are.


    "That might possibly make you even more silly than she is."


    But he would have to fight you for it first, am I right?

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  • 304. At 11:20am on 13 Jan 2011, Anthony Mortlock wrote:

    I agree with "skippy the lemur". Tragically the post George Bush era has left a vacuum on the American right that Palin
    and her supporters have until now exploited very well. Their ideas and rhetoric are very reminiscent of the early Hitler speeches and it worries me greatly that these people could come anywhere near governing in the USA.
    Vulnerable people do respond the the conditions and behaviour shown by politicians and I don't think Mrs Palin has
    any defence to using rifle crosshairs in her speeches and advertising. She and her cohorts are out of their depth
    and should now back out of politics gracefully. I sensed that even Mark Mardell was struggling to find a balanced view of Mrs Palin !

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  • 305. At 11:28am on 13 Jan 2011, Kalabi wrote:

    The left, just recently, took off their "George Bush Goggles". Those are the ones where every issue was filtered through "how was this George's fault". With him gone they've slapped on their "Sara Palin Goggles". It would be nice if all things bad could flow from one person. Keep in mind the more that Palin is unjustly attacked (certainly plenty she can be rightly attacked for!) the more she is built up. Palin was dragged into this issue by the left she didn't enter it on her own. Mr. Sheriff fired the first...ummm I mean...started this NOT Palin. Thus you see the arguments that appear to be defending her but in reality if you were singled out like this of course you would defend yourself!

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  • 306. At 11:46am on 13 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #304

    "I don't think Mrs Palin has any defence to using rifle crosshairs in her speeches and advertising."


    Even if the Arizona nutter has never heard of Palin, or anything associated with her. Got it.


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  • 307. At 11:46am on 13 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote:

    296. At 10:50am on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote "Your wit at this time of suffering is truly remarkable. Unfortunately I assume that you were not there to entertain and amuse the mourners at the memorial".

    First things first; my sympathies are with the dead and wounded. I have no wish to "entertain and amuse the mourners at the memorial". Why on Earth would I? This comment is not relevant, and your attempt to smear by association is pathetic.

    Second, my thoughts about Ms Palin are exactly the same as they were after I watched her being interviewed by Ms Kathy Couric. She was an utterly stupid opportunist then and she is still one today.

    Third, my contempt is focused on the system that first offered an obviously disturbed young man no treatment, and also allowed him unrestricted access to lethal firearms, with the result we know.

    Fourth, I reserve even greater contempt for those, yourself included, who would use this incident and this forum to trumpet their petty partisan concerns.

    I have read every one of your posts on this forum, and at no stage have you expressed any sympathy for the victims of the tragedy. You have written a series of screeds, the basic point of them all being that the BBC refuses to serve as your personal echo chamber.

    I refer you to posts no.s 60("What is happenig(sic) to this country? Why is the BBC condoning such hatred?"), 75("I have singled out your mindless comment as typical of this BBC approach to the tragedy" and "Come on BBC. If you have any shred of that decency that could lift you out of the gutter, put an end to these ill informed and hate filled rants"), 79("There are many US web sites that are willing to publish what the BBC will not allow. One day, it will return to them.") and 288("This HYS discussion - the BBC have given us two - has been disgraceful.").

    Do not be attempting to claim some moral high ground, because you are head down in the partisan mud.

    And the point about the empty space between Ms Palin's ears is proven every time she speaks, Tweets or expresses herself in any other medium.

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  • 308. At 11:56am on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    299. At 11:10am on 13 Jan 2011, Dancin Pagan The Mad Kiltie wrote:295. At 10:46am on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote:

    280. At 09:57am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:268. At 08:57am on 13 Jan 2011, championbubbler wrote:

    powermeerkat who have put correctly. But we know that Mark does not see that way! All I like to see is a little fairness in Journalism.

    For all I can see, there's no evidence that this tragedy is a direct consequence of the heated political arguments.

    People should just lay off attacking Sarah Palin without any justifiable cause.
    _________________________________________________________
    The justifiable cause is her obvious mock sincerity and lothesome attempt at political point scoring at a time of mourning. I would love for a reporter to ask her the names of the dead she is praying for.
    ---------------------------------------------

    Moreham, You don't give up do you. No foundation for your assertion, just follow the mob. The debate has moved on: the point scoring has been coming from the left journos. Obama has called for it to stop.

    I see from your other posts you are trying to push this debate into your usual pro Muslim rant, where Bush, Obama, Blair and all represent the Great Satan, killing innocent muslims. Just have a little respect for those killed in this tragedy.

    ------------------

    Oh come off it, the above reply is blatant point scoring wrapped up in pseudo sincerity,
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    And you, I suppose, is an expert on genuine sincerity. Here is a suggestion. Put a sensible argument together, back it up with evidence, and try to avoid attributing beliefs and motives to others who may not share your prejudices. May I say, with all the sincerity I can muster, that you have nothing to contribute, nothing to say in support of the post I was criticising. You are just a hanger on, trying to score a few points here and there.

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  • 309. At 11:56am on 13 Jan 2011, the doctor wrote:

    Oh dear, ignorance about the role of journalism appears again from many of the posters. First the BBC IS INDEPENDANT OF POLITICAL INFLUENCE. Go read the BBC charter and be better informed.

    Also, the US media is far from 'free', its directed by the rich. Compare the number of aggressive politicaly motivated adverts in the US to that in the UK. We have laws against political adverts, that may be why we dont hate each other in the UK. Ive seen and heard first hand the vitriol that surround US political debate, primarily Republican statements which are out of proportion or direct lies. Its far from logical or progressive, its scary. To blame Democrats for all the US problems with no grounded alternative is the easiest position to take. Its not even 'argument'.

    As for the UK political parties being indistinguishable. Are you kidding me? The Republicans and Democrats are both right wing when compared to European politics. Palin verges on the edge of our most right wing parties. Compare how the UK coalition is currently slashing public services that Labour spend years building up. The only reason why you may say US media is 'left wing' is because, compared to you, everything else IS left.

    Go educate yourself

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  • 310. At 11:56am on 13 Jan 2011, Fracking Tories wrote:

    291. At 10:33am on 13 Jan 2011, EnglishTeaparty wrote: Whilst many people love to hate Sarah Palin she holds views that are shared by millions of ordinary Americans and indeed people in other countries who distrust big government and it's ever increasing involvement in the lives of individuals. It is not necessarily idiosyncratic to want smaller government and greater emphasis on individual freedom, liberty & responsibilities. Whatever the future of Mrs Palin in US politics her views are not about to disappear and it is highly probable that a future Republican president will take these into account when framing public policy. So you can attack Sarah Paling and propagate as much criticism as you wish but in doing so miss the point. Large government is under attack in the USA and doubts are beginning to grow elsewhere. Many years ago the US President Thomas Jefferson said he thought a free press was a greater guarantor of liberty than an elected government and in principle he remains right today. All governments anywhere end up controlling and oppressing the very people they were elected to serve - that's governments of both right & left. It's time for a fight back - through the democratic process.

    -----------------------------

    Isn't that what communism in Russia was originally supposed to do, the people running the government for the benefit of the people.

    Unfortunately the people who rose to power on the back of "freeing the people" were really only interested in grabbing power and using it for their own ends.

    I agree that Governments should not have too much control over their people, however Palin and her co-horts remind of me other rhetoric spouting populists from history who have a "bright and breezy smile" and promise freedom and a better life for the ordinary person. These type of people usually rise on the back of discontent and disillusionment with existing rulers and people are fooled with false hopes into somehow thinking, "This time it will be different".

    Until they get into power and they become the Government.

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  • 311. At 12:01pm on 13 Jan 2011, Peter wrote:

    Palin is smarter than some of her supporters here, but the bar isn't that high.

    The trick would have been to defend herself while resisting the urge to villify her detracters. This simply isn't the time for point scoring, and she had a perfectly good argument at her disposal that the Tea Party are patriotic concerned citizens. Politically, it was a dumb thing to do.

    The ADL's statement is interesting. They are take pains not to criticize her hershly for co-opting the term blood-libel, but they're obviously not happy about it either.

    http://www.adl.org/PresRele/Mise_00/5962_00.htm

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  • 312. At 12:06pm on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:

    295. At 10:46am on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote:
    280. At 09:57am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:268. At 08:57am on 13 Jan 2011, championbubbler wrote:
    powermeerkat who have put correctly. But we know that Mark does not see that way! All I like to see is a little fairness in Journalism.
    For all I can see, there's no evidence that this tragedy is a direct consequence of the heated political arguments.
    People should just lay off attacking Sarah Palin without any justifiable cause.
    _________________________________________________________
    The justifiable cause is her obvious mock sincerity and lothesome attempt at political point scoring at a time of mourning. I would love for a reporter to ask her the names of the dead she is praying for.
    ---------------------------------------------
    Moreham, You don't give up do you. No foundation for your assertion, just follow
    the mob. The debate has moved on: the point scoring has been coming from the left journos. Obama has called for it to stop.
    I see from your other posts you are trying to push this debate into your usual pro Muslim rant, where Bush, Obama, Blair and all represent the Great Satan, killing innocent muslims. Just have a little respect for those killed in this tragedy.
    ________________________________________________________
    Dear Dr Lagrub, I'm not trying to push the debate anywhere, I am merely pointing out the sheer hypocrisy of Sarah Palin and all others who see no contradiction in hundreds of thousands of innocents dead as a direct result of American foreign policy on the one hand being trivialized as acceptable "collateral damage", and the mock outrage and frantic hand washing over six deaths in the US that however sad probably wouldn't have happened if America was truly a peace loving nation.
    Also your post above No.288 you say "It gets worse. Today the BBC has scraped around to find fault with Palin's blood libel remark. Now she is offending Jews, implies the BBC; always there to make a political point rather than report objectively. Yet Palin is one of the few western politicians to declare herself in favour of Israel when the BBC and others are supporting its enemies. Double standards eh."
    The BBC isn't implying she used the term blood libel to offend Jews, you are. To state that Palin is one of only a few western politicians to support Israel and in the same breath accuse the BBC of supporting Israel's enemies speaks volumes of your own ignorance. You go on to say "On this terrible tragedy in Arizona those who have attributed blame have disgraced themselvse." Don't you see that your post is riddled with blame? YOU, Dr Lagrub are a hypocrite of the worse kind and it is there for all to see. Your final paragraph holds the key to your views, I see you sharpen your political analysis on The Sun, The Mail and The Telegraph, need I say more.
    PS There is no Great Satan Dr Lagrub, only men of ignorance who are easily led.

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  • 313. At 12:10pm on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:

    304. At 11:20am on 13 Jan 2011, Anthony Mortlock wrote:

    I agree with "skippy the lemur". Tragically the post George Bush era has left a vacuum on the American right that Palin
    and her supporters have until now exploited very well. Their ideas and rhetoric are very reminiscent of the early Hitler speeches and it worries me greatly that these people could come anywhere near governing in the USA.
    Vulnerable people do respond the the conditions and behaviour shown by politicians and I don't think Mrs Palin has
    any defence to using rifle crosshairs in her speeches and advertising. She and her cohorts are out of their depth
    and should now back out of politics gracefully. I sensed that even Mark Mardell was struggling to find a balanced view of Mrs Palin !
    _______________________________________________________
    Good post!

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  • 314. At 12:23pm on 13 Jan 2011, TeaPartyBrit wrote:

    The essence of political debate is, and probably always has been, exaggeration. You exaggerate the good effects of your ideas, and exaggerate the bad effects of your opponent's ideas. Right now the "left" in the US is accusing the "right" of somehow causing an acknowledged deranged individual to shoot and kill and injure several people, including a Democrat politician. If another deranged individual shot a Republican politician would it be the "left's" fault? Was the assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan the "left's" fault?
    The exaggeration in political debate is the problem; but it would appear carefully reasoned and temperate expression of political opinion gets no attention, makes no headlines, so is it the media's fault?
    It is said that Truth is the first casualty of war; I am afraid Truth dies long before the shooting starts.
    By the way what is "left" and what is "right"? Convenient but meaningless and misleading labels that prevent real debate.

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  • 315. At 12:24pm on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    307. At 11:46am on 13 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote:296. At 10:50am on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote "Your wit at this time of suffering is truly remarkable. Unfortunately I assume that you were not there to entertain and amuse the mourners at the memorial".


    ----------------------------------------
    Not worth copying the rest of your comments which basically amount to a defence of Ms Couric in her apallingly biased and edited interview with Palin and an attack on my so-called ego. If you had read my posts with any attempt to understand what I was saying you would note that my concern is with the ethics of journalism and how they have played out over this tragedy. Partisan? Not me. You are the one with an agenda. Turkey for Christmas eh.

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  • 316. At 12:33pm on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    312. At 12:06pm on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote: 295. At 10:46am on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote:
    280. At 09:57am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:268. At 08:57am on 13 Jan 2011, championbubbler wrote:
    powermeerkat who have put correctly. But we know that Mark does not see that way! All I like to see is a little fairness in Journalism.
    For all I can see, there's no evidence that this tragedy is a direct consequence of the heated political arguments.
    People should just lay off attacking Sarah Palin without any justifiable cause.
    _________________________________________________________
    The justifiable cause is her obvious mock sincerity and lothesome attempt at political point scoring at a time of mourning. I would love for a reporter to ask her the names of the dead she is praying for.
    ---------------------------------------------
    Moreham, You don't give up do you. No foundation for your assertion, just follow
    the mob. The debate has moved on: the point scoring has been coming from the left journos. Obama has called for it to stop.
    I see from your other posts you are trying to push this debate into your usual pro Muslim rant, where Bush, Obama, Blair and all represent the Great Satan, killing innocent muslims. Just have a little respect for those killed in this tragedy.
    ________________________________________________________
    Dear Dr Lagrub, I'm not trying to push the debate anywhere, I am merely pointing out the sheer hypocrisy of Sarah Palin and all others who see no contradiction in hundreds of thousands of innocents dead as a direct result of American foreign policy on the one hand being trivialized as acceptable "collateral damage", and the mock outrage and frantic hand washing over six deaths in the US that however sad probably wouldn't have happened if America was truly a peace loving nation.
    Also your post above No.288 you say "It gets worse. Today the BBC has scraped around to find fault with Palin's blood libel remark. Now she is offending Jews, implies the BBC; always there to make a political point rather than report objectively. Yet Palin is one of the few western politicians to declare herself in favour of Israel when the BBC and others are supporting its enemies. Double standards eh."
    The BBC isn't implying she used the term blood libel to offend Jews, you are. To state that Palin is one of only a few western politicians to support Israel and in the same breath accuse the BBC of supporting Israel's enemies speaks volumes of your own ignorance. You go on to say "On this terrible tragedy in Arizona those who have attributed blame have disgraced themselvse." Don't you see that your post is riddled with blame? YOU, Dr Lagrub are a hypocrite of the worse kind and it is there for all to see. Your final paragraph holds the key to your views, I see you sharpen your political analysis on The Sun, The Mail and The Telegraph, need I say more.
    PS There is no Great Satan Dr Lagrub, only men of ignorance who are easily led.
    -------------------------------------------------
    Well Moreham,
    You have succeeded in doing what I have accused you of. Hijacking this debate for your pro Islamic crusade. A few insults on the way. Your failure to comprehend what I am saying is captured in your penultimate sentence about the Mail, Sun and Telegraph. I was contrasting the BBC's standards with what are regarded as the lower standards in political reporting. The BBC I was suggesting comes out lower. However, there is one tripe filled newspaper which is worse: your source of information - the Socialist Worker Party rag. Move over, you are not in my league.

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  • 317. At 12:42pm on 13 Jan 2011, Fracking Tories wrote:

    308. At 11:56am on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote:

    299. At 11:10am on 13 Jan 2011, Dancin Pagan The Mad Kiltie wrote:295. At 10:46am on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote:

    280. At 09:57am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:268. At 08:57am on 13 Jan 2011, championbubbler wrote:

    powermeerkat who have put correctly. But we know that Mark does not see that way! All I like to see is a little fairness in Journalism.

    For all I can see, there's no evidence that this tragedy is a direct consequence of the heated political arguments.

    People should just lay off attacking Sarah Palin without any justifiable cause.
    _________________________________________________________
    The justifiable cause is her obvious mock sincerity and lothesome attempt at political point scoring at a time of mourning. I would love for a reporter to ask her the names of the dead she is praying for.
    ---------------------------------------------

    Moreham, You don't give up do you. No foundation for your assertion, just follow the mob. The debate has moved on: the point scoring has been coming from the left journos. Obama has called for it to stop.

    I see from your other posts you are trying to push this debate into your usual pro Muslim rant, where Bush, Obama, Blair and all represent the Great Satan, killing innocent muslims. Just have a little respect for those killed in this tragedy.

    ------------------

    Oh come off it, the above reply is blatant point scoring wrapped up in pseudo sincerity,
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    And you, I suppose, is an expert on genuine sincerity. Here is a suggestion. Put a sensible argument together, back it up with evidence, and try to avoid attributing beliefs and motives to others who may not share your prejudices. May I say, with all the sincerity I can muster, that you have nothing to contribute, nothing to say in support of the post I was criticising. You are just a hanger on, trying to score a few points here and there.

    ---------------------

    Said Mr Kettle to Mr Pot.

    I have no points to score, I have made my views on Ms Palin perfectly clear in earlier posts without resort to the hypocrisy of pseudo sincerity.

    Views which are independant of this particular regrettable occurance though obviously connected. Her statement yesterday was self pitying and inflammatory, she went for the smartass remarks, which would seem to be par for the course for this Lady and aimed to please the type of person who relates to this type of cheap soundbyte.

    People who are genuinely sincere do not have to boast and make a show about it. Using sincere regret as a way of scoring points is not sincere by any stretch of the imagination, it's a bit like telling everyone - I'm proud to be humble.



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  • 318. At 12:54pm on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:

    316. At 12:33pm on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote:

    312. At 12:06pm on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote: 295. At 10:46am on 13 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote:
    280. At 09:57am on 13 Jan 2011, moreram wrote:268. At 08:57am on 13 Jan 2011, championbubbler wrote:
    powermeerkat who have put correctly. But we know that Mark does not see that way! All I like to see is a little fairness in Journalism.
    For all I can see, there's no evidence that this tragedy is a direct consequence of the heated political arguments.
    People should just lay off attacking Sarah Palin without any justifiable cause.
    _________________________________________________________
    The justifiable cause is her obvious mock sincerity and lothesome attempt at political point scoring at a time of mourning. I would love for a reporter to ask her the names of the dead she is praying for.
    ---------------------------------------------
    Moreham, You don't give up do you. No foundation for your assertion, just follow
    the mob. The debate has moved on: the point scoring has been coming from the left journos. Obama has called for it to stop.
    I see from your other posts you are trying to push this debate into your usual pro Muslim rant, where Bush, Obama, Blair and all represent the Great Satan, killing innocent muslims. Just have a little respect for those killed in this tragedy.
    ________________________________________________________
    Dear Dr Lagrub, I'm not trying to push the debate anywhere, I am merely pointing out the sheer hypocrisy of Sarah Palin and all others who see no contradiction in hundreds of thousands of innocents dead as a direct result of American foreign policy on the one hand being trivialized as acceptable "collateral damage", and the mock outrage and frantic hand washing over six deaths in the US that however sad probably wouldn't have happened if America was truly a peace loving nation.
    Also your post above No.288 you say "It gets worse. Today the BBC has scraped around to find fault with Palin's blood libel remark. Now she is offending Jews, implies the BBC; always there to make a political point rather than report objectively. Yet Palin is one of the few western politicians to declare herself in favour of Israel when the BBC and others are supporting its enemies. Double standards eh."
    The BBC isn't implying she used the term blood libel to offend Jews, you are. To state that Palin is one of only a few western politicians to support Israel and in the same breath accuse the BBC of supporting Israel's enemies speaks volumes of your own ignorance. You go on to say "On this terrible tragedy in Arizona those who have attributed blame have disgraced themselvse." Don't you see that your post is riddled with blame? YOU, Dr Lagrub are a hypocrite of the worse kind and it is there for all to see. Your final paragraph holds the key to your views, I see you sharpen your political analysis on The Sun, The Mail and The Telegraph, need I say more.
    PS There is no Great Satan Dr Lagrub, only men of ignorance who are easily led.
    -------------------------------------------------
    Well Moreham,
    You have succeeded in doing what I have accused you of. Hijacking this debate for your pro Islamic crusade. A few insults on the way. Your failure to comprehend what I am saying is captured in your penultimate sentence about the Mail, Sun and Telegraph. I was contrasting the BBC's standards with what are regarded as the lower standards in political reporting. The BBC I was suggesting comes out lower. However, there is one tripe filled newspaper which is worse: your source of information - the Socialist Worker Party rag. Move over, you are not in my league.
    ___________________________________________________
    I agree I am not in your league, nor would want to be, it must be very lonely.

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  • 319. At 12:55pm on 13 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote:

    Dr Llareggub, in response to your posturing, I have presented you with an itemised list of my opinions. At no time did I attempt any defense of Ms Kouric. If that is the information you derived from my last post, your basic reading/comprehension skills are sadly deficient.

    Your response, wherein you refuse to answer or rebut anything I wrote, is a blatant and transparent attempt at evasion.

    Your posts do reflect any interest in the ethics of journalism, merely your refusal to accept that the BBC, this blog, and its comments did not, and do not, reflect your views exclusively.

    As for the last two bits, viz; "You are the one with an agenda. Turkey for Christmas eh", I honestly have no idea what you are talking about. The only agenda I have is an ingrained dislike of stupidity.

    I suspect that the inner voices are getting stronger, because your incoherent response has nothing to do with anything I wrote.

    I leave the judgement to the readers of this blog.

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  • 320. At 1:06pm on 13 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote:

    Is Dr Llareggub MAII in a new version?

    And could anyone tell me where did MAII go to?

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  • 321. At 1:12pm on 13 Jan 2011, BinfieldTiger wrote:

    I think its time to face facts: Sarah Palin is basically an idiot.

    What is the likelihood of her understanding the meaning of the phrase "blood libel"? Pretty remote I would think-she seems to know "diddly-squat" about most things

    We have to remember she didn't know the difference between North and South Korea.

    What we all have to hope and pray is that the American Public see sense and through this imbeciles ramblings. At some stage the Republican Party are going to have to nominate someone for the next US election. As it appears most of the USA think that Obama is a Moslim (courtesy Fox News), there is a fair chance that he'll be a one term president.

    If he is replaced by the former Governor of Alaska- we're all in deep .....

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  • 322. At 1:12pm on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    319. At 12:55pm on 13 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote

    If you can say anything without recourse to personal insults I will not evade giving you an answer. So far you don't appear to be doing this. Good day.

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  • 323. At 1:22pm on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    320. At 1:06pm on 13 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote:Is Dr Llareggub MAII in a new version?

    And could anyone tell me where did MAII go to?
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------
    He went to feed the turkeys

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  • 324. At 1:41pm on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    321. At 1:12pm on 13 Jan 2011, BinfieldTiger wrote:I think its time to face facts: Sarah Palin is basically an idiot.

    What is the likelihood of her understanding the meaning of the phrase "blood libel"? Pretty remote I would think-she seems to know "diddly-squat" about most things

    We have to remember she didn't know the difference between North and South Korea.

    What we all have to hope and pray is that the American Public see sense and through this imbeciles ramblings. At some stage the Republican Party are going to have to nominate someone for the next US election. As it appears most of the USA think that Obama is a Moslim (courtesy Fox News), there is a fair chance that he'll be a one term president.

    If he is replaced by the former Governor of Alaska- we're all in deep .....
    -------------------------------------------------------
    I think you have a point here. By the way, in the discussion on North Korea she used the correct term several times, but made one slip. So it was not an Ed Balls thing.

    I actually relish the prospect of her becoming US President. Just think of how Mr Cameron will grovel to her in order to maintain the special relationship. And just think if both her politics and her geography is as whacky as her opponents say. She gets an idea that Australia is a crazy communist country on the war path. What happens? Our government, supported by the opposition, will send ill equipped British Troops to capture Sidney Harbour.

    I think you have even more to fear from our grovelling governments here. Want a war Mr Bush, Obama, Palin. We support you, even if we are broke.

    However, I do support Palin because she is the expression of a nation's tiredness with big government, of a political class that excludes the people. Note what she said about the committee on transparency in government: 'I went but it was closed to the public'.

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  • 325. At 1:43pm on 13 Jan 2011, Kingvagabond wrote:

    Why didn't Sarah Palin just say "I want to offer my compassionate condolescences for those who lost their lives in Tucson and my prayers are with Gabrielle Giffords and those others gravely injured by the events in Tucson. We need to move away from the partisan mudslinging which we all have been guilty of due to our passionate feelings for our own causes and moving forward myself and the Republican party would like to discuss measures that we feel would avoid this situation happening again."

    There we go, rises above the partisan politics and makes her sound like a credible leader for the US. Instead she's gone back to reflecting attacks on her and attacking others in the same breath.

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  • 326. At 1:56pm on 13 Jan 2011, Sybarite wrote:

    ukwales, #106: ~~LOL~~

    worcesterjim: "91 Samsonite...I wouldn`t know where to begin...and this isn`t the place for such a discussion anyway. Write your own book please!"

    It's 'Sybarite', but thank you for responding.

    You, however, brought up these assertions. If you bring them into a conversation, it hardly seems sensible, when they are then challenged, to claim that they have no part of this conversation.

    Since YOU brought the issue up, I am asking YOU to back them up.

    Otherwise, it looks as though you're simply flinging a victimhood card into the conversation for effect, and cannot actually substantiate your claims of victimhood.

    Although that's possibly quite like Ms Palin.

    Roast Chicken (and assorted others): "Words can't make anyone do anything ..."

    You're right. The 'Koran', 'The Bible', 'Mein Kampf' ... none of these books (an many, many others) have ever had any influence on the actions of people.

    And of course, there was no link to politics in this shooting – it's entirely coincidence and utterly irrelevant to the situation that the prime target was a politician, at a political event, and that the man who is now awaiting trail for the shootings had posted ranting comments about politics and political matters online ...

    I'm convinced.

    Is there perchance any space next to you for me to put my head into the sand too?

    John_From_Dublin, #130: ~~LOL~~

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  • 327. At 2:26pm on 13 Jan 2011, mscracker wrote:

    You know,some of the ugliest & most mean spirited remarks I see on the internet tend to be by liberals in reference to Gov. Palin. The weirdest might be by conservatives in reference to President Obama.It's all unpleasant & sometimes bizarre to read, but it's been part of politics & free speech from the beginning.

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  • 328. At 2:30pm on 13 Jan 2011, Mikecq wrote:

    Palin is not an intellectual person but she is very shrewd and calculating. She has the ultimate street intelligence to know how to work on people's weak points. She is the mistress of one liners, not much more, and will use it to excite her base. She has no qualms to make things up so she can get a reaction. It's like throwing food on the wall and see what sticks, always something does. She thinks that she can win by keeping her base angry which works, but she is not winning any new converts. In fact she has lost some. Her tactics seem to be sitting at home and thinking, "what can I do to stir up the base?". So sad, if she had chosen another direction, she could have done good, but her first exposure with negativity stirred some people, so she adapted this mode of operation.

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  • 329. At 2:54pm on 13 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    326...Sybarite...I called you Samsonite because of all the baggage I associate with your tiresome BBC/Guardian cleverdickery.

    Open you eyes and take a walk through our sink estates and consider what democratic opportunities there are to challenge the rule of global capitalism and fundementalist reactionary religion over our virtual one-party state?

    And if you find UK Wales` adolescent insults about my needing medication so amusing then I think you may be too intellectually challenged to mix it with me!

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  • 330. At 2:54pm on 13 Jan 2011, Fortress Lamex wrote:

    Sarah Palin needs to accept that if she uses that sort of wording in her campaign then of course the media will jump on her when a politically motivated assasination attempt happens. I don't care what the consensus is... the coincidences are too profound, he was, no matter how little, politically motivated partially in that attack.

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  • 331. At 3:03pm on 13 Jan 2011, puldruk wrote:

    At least Tea Party/Sarah Palin/Republicans will never complain about rap lyrics anymore! Words have no power, only the choice people make.

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  • 332. At 3:26pm on 13 Jan 2011, Trumpton911 wrote:

    I listend to this live this morning, but found the speeches very odd for a country who's founding principles are based on a division between church and state.
    The long, barely intelligible, archaic quote from the old testament by Janet Napolitano was just downright weird. Sounded more like the sort of thing you'd expect to hear coming out of Iran.

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  • 333. At 3:34pm on 13 Jan 2011, 40yearoldprofessional wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 334. At 4:06pm on 13 Jan 2011, nancheska wrote:

    Palin's unfortunately either a.) intellectually impaired, b.) mean-spirited and narcissistic or c.) a combination thereof. Someone else writes her scripts; she should check to see if a comment's anti-Semitic first before speaking ("blood-libel", and the fact that Giffords is Jewish). Although it's not fair to single out Palin for the massacre in AZ, her hateful rhetoric's not helpful. Let's hope that Obama's speech will help toward setting priorities straight for the U.S.; I grieve for the folks in Tucson, including my relatives and friends who live there. I am so sorry about what happened, and I hold the victims and their families in my thoughts and prayers.

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  • 335. At 4:16pm on 13 Jan 2011, Chris wrote:

    #152
    In INDIANAPOLIS, I have NOT seen one American flag, lowered to half-staff, as ordered by our President. Not, at any business, home, church....
    The Club I volunteer at did not observe the National moment of silence, on Monday. Is America that divided? A house divided, cannot stand!

    I see America as a divided country - it always amazes me when I watch the elections every 4 years how all the inner states vote one way, and the ones near the coast vote another. (A little simplistic I know, but you get the point)
    I don't think there really is a "United" States of America!

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  • 336. At 4:45pm on 13 Jan 2011, _marko wrote:

    puldruk #331
    At least Tea Party/Sarah Palin/Republicans will never complain about rap lyrics anymore! Words have no power, only the choice people make.

    and Tea Party/Sarah Palin/Republicans will never complain about hate speech, muslims, muslim extremists, what certain Middle East leaders say, other nutters etc.

    Dr Llareggub, do you agree?

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  • 337. At 5:59pm on 13 Jan 2011, Kev316 wrote:

    " That woman, is an idiot." - Keith Olbermann

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  • 338. At 6:27pm on 13 Jan 2011, LukeJohn wrote:

    To all those who consider Sarah Palin to be somewhat less than intellectual: I invite you to research the long list of errors, miss-understandings and downright fallacies spoken by Obama, Biden, Pelosi, Reid, Kerry and Co.

    Starting with Obama's "I have visited the 57 states in the Union with one to go..."

    Remember how Kerry was promoted as more intellectual than George Bush, yet when their college transcripts were published, it revealed that Bush had better grades than Kerry.

    One wonders why Obama spends so much money to keep his college transcripts sealed - what is he trying to hide?

    Ms Palin may have flubbed once on North/South Korea (she got it right many other times) but the President of the United States should at least know how many states are in hos OWN country.

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  • 339. At 6:56pm on 13 Jan 2011, Californian wrote:

    If someone hates Governor Palin, then nothing she says will make the hater happy. In my opinion, Sarah Palin represents the very best in American society. He or she who criticizes her for comments on patriotism and American values should look in the mirror. He or she will see a bigot.

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  • 340. At 7:03pm on 13 Jan 2011, Blackadder wrote:

    Many, including myself, cannot believe that the US could consider someone of Palins low intellect, lightweight political awareness and insular World mentality for President.
    However, we make a basic error in our evaluation, we do not look at her from the perspective of the bulk of Americans, compared to whom, she may be smart. Hardly any Americans watch non-fiction TV, other than "reality Shows", which are by their nature unreal. Any occassional atom of news comes from the partisan TV channels, highly sanitized and biased, with virtually no effective challenge or investigation. Someone like Jeremy Paxman is needed here....what chance would you give Sarah versus Jeremy ??...LOL
    If Palin were President, the US would become a laughing stock.

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  • 341. At 7:05pm on 13 Jan 2011, regbs wrote:

    Mardell is a disgrace. He's continued to omit facts that fail to advance the leftist bias that the BBC is so famed for and which the BBC directors general concede. From phantom racists during the Obama-McCain campaign to this nauseating tripe.

    Mardell has yet to tell his audience that the Democratic Leadership Conference had a target-themed image identical to Palin's.

    What would you expect from a corporation that couldn't be bothered to call British troops "our" troops and who Colonel H Jones noted had divulged the Falklands attack on Goose Green by 2 Para?

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  • 342. At 7:13pm on 13 Jan 2011, mjacewicz wrote:

    So everybody who disagrees with Sarah Palin is evil?

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  • 343. At 7:18pm on 13 Jan 2011, caffinatedyank wrote:

    If you listen very closely after Sarah Palin opens her mouth, you may be able to hear the sound of millions of Americans slapping their faces into their palms, followed by a moan of embarrassment.

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  • 344. At 7:29pm on 13 Jan 2011, Californian wrote:

    My previous comment was "pre-moderated," and apparently shot down ! Why? Who knows ! I'll repeat : Governor Palin is an American patriot, and represents the best in our society. If folks outside the U.S. don't like her, that's too bad !

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  • 345. At 8:01pm on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    Well folks, it seems that Palin has been exonerated, she has won the argument with the left (at least that is what they call themselves) and despite her shortcomings listed on these boards, she is in good shape to take on the Presidency and I wish her well. Not for her, but for the little ordinary people who think, like Palin, that big government has failed.

    So here is what to look forward to.

    Cut backs in big government, shrinking the state.

    Steps towards energy independence - not depending on countries that are hostile to |America.

    No more global warming scams.

    Restoring pride in American values, freedom, christianity, no more apologising for America's past.

    Support for the constitution, and its Christian origins.

    No mosque near Ground Zero.

    Support for America's allies, especially Israel and no more kow towing to Hamas and terrorist middle east regimes. (Personally, I would add withdrawal of aid to the Palestrinians, so they can learn how to work and not live of handouts from the free world which they disdain).

    Get tough with North Korea and Iran. Serious sanctions and more if required, just as Reagan did with the Soviet Union.

    Remind the Brits that they will have to grovel for the special relationship; America is not a soft touch.

    That is for starters. You Betcha.

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  • 346. At 8:25pm on 13 Jan 2011, Roast Chicken wrote:

    The dumbest thing about a lot of these posts are all the people who accuse Sarah Palin of "butting in" or "opening her mouth."

    Hello folks, she is the one being attacked here! All she originally did in response to this horrible episode was express condolences within a simple, short public statement. It was the various voices of the politically desperate Left in America who dragged her into this by absurdly suggesting that she and other conservative pundits caused the lunatic in Arizona to go on his shooting spree with their language. She then was forced to defend herself with the "blood libel" statement.

    I guess people see what they want to see rather than the truth. And I'm truly afraid as a U.S. citizen for my future now that anyone who disagrees with the Obama/Democrat/Leftist agenda is labeled "hateful." The Far-Left is far more likely to plunge America into fascism and authoritarian government than the Far-Right that favors limited government.

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  • 347. At 8:27pm on 13 Jan 2011, DenverGuest wrote:

    I'm going to leave the Arizona shooter out of it entirely. He's beside the point. We are in the middle of a propaganda offensive that has been taking place now for over twenty years, non-stop, in an attempt to demonize the left. Not just to disagree with it's goals and ideals but to paint it as evil and worthy of destruction.
    I listen to Glenn Beck on my way to work in the morning and it is fascinating to see this process at work.
    A concrete example starts with his misuse of the word "socialist".
    First, he redefines it to include 'liberals' and 'progressives' but to exclude 'conservatives'. In reality, if the government builds a road using tax dollars, it is "socialist". Medicare, medicaid, the Post Office: All "socialist". That makes us all "socialists" by definition (anarchists excepted). He, however, describes "socialist" as a label that only applies to some.
    Second, he likes to say that these dirty liberal "socialists", like Obama, won't stop until we live in the USSR and the government owns everything. According to him, that's just what "socialists" do. They want to force more and more government ownership until the government owns everything. This is just complete and utter horse pucky. I don't hear any voices from the main-stream left calling for a conversion to Communism, and nobody in the Obama administration has any interest in dismantling capitalism. If he did, he would have tried to dismantle private health insurance companies and turn the system over to the public domain as opposed to regulating them more stringently.
    Third (and scariest), I heard him spend some time on his radio show equating 'socialists' with some group from the 1930s called 'fabian socialists' who advocated for killing babies who were born deformed or retarded.
    So, if you follow his logic, liberals/progressives are socialists are baby-killers.
    He makes these strange links that are totally false and uses them to paint his 'enemies' as monsters. You really think that this isn't part of the equation that leads to violence? The justification for violence is the belief that the person you are hurting is evil and is doing something that deserves punishment.

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  • 348. At 8:51pm on 13 Jan 2011, _marko wrote:

    To #345 Dr Llareggub

    "Cut backs in big government"

    As socialist defence is part of big government, why doesn't this cut apply to defence?

    As socialist foreign aid to Israel is part of big government spending, why doesn't this handout disappear?

    Please let me know your (or Sarah Palin's) explanation for the "little ordinary people".

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  • 349. At 9:02pm on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    347. At 8:27pm on 13 Jan 2011, DenverGuest wrote:I'm going to leave the Arizona shooter out of it entirely. He's beside the point. We are in the middle of a propaganda offensive that has been taking place now for over twenty years, non-stop, in an attempt to demonize the left. Not just to disagree with it's goals and ideals but to paint it as evil and worthy of destruction.
    I listen to Glenn Beck on my way to work in the morning and it is fascinating to see this process at work.
    A concrete example starts with his misuse of the word "socialist".
    First, he redefines it to include 'liberals' and 'progressives' but to exclude 'conservatives'. In reality, if the government builds a road using tax dollars, it is "socialist". Medicare, medicaid, the Post Office: All "socialist". That makes us all "socialists" by definition (anarchists excepted). He, however, describes "socialist" as a label that only applies to some.
    Second, he likes to say that these dirty liberal "socialists", like Obama, won't stop until we live in the USSR and the government owns everything. According to him, that's just what "socialists" do. They want to force more and more government ownership until the government owns everything. This is just complete and utter horse pucky. I don't hear any voices from the main-stream left calling for a conversion to Communism, and nobody in the Obama administration has any interest in dismantling capitalism. If he did, he would have tried to dismantle private health insurance companies and turn the system over to the public domain as opposed to regulating them more stringently.
    Third (and scariest), I heard him spend some time on his radio show equating 'socialists' with some group from the 1930s called 'fabian socialists' who advocated for killing babies who were born deformed or retarded.
    So, if you follow his logic, liberals/progressives are socialists are baby-killers.
    He makes these strange links that are totally false and uses them to paint his 'enemies' as monsters. You really think that this isn't part of the equation that leads to violence? The justification for violence is the belief that the person you are hurting is evil and is doing something that deserves punishment.
    ----------------------------------------------------------

    Dear Denver West,
    As a supporter of some - not all - of Palin's values, I must nevetherless agree with you over the misuse of the term 'socialist'. What is called socialist in current US politics is very different to what Europeans mean by the expression. And come to think of it, if you tore the cover off Marx's Communist Manifesto many right wing americans - not all - might agree with it. For it takes a lot of patience and skill to see what it is about, and how it conflicts with Bakunin's understanding of the International. Anyhow, boring you with this is not my intention.

    You mention Fabian Socialists of the thirties who advocated killing babies. The Fabians - after the Roman general who believed in a gradual way of fighting battles -oops militaristic jargon - believed in a gradual and piecemeal way towards socialism, capture the commanding heights of the economy, etc. The Play wright George Bernard Shaw was a leading Fabian, and you will see this in some of his plays and essays. They are still very influential within the UK Labour Party and produce many discussion documents. Some are very good, from whatever your perspective.

    The euthanasia of babies and severely neurologically impaired infants may have been one of their objectives and they sailed pretty close to the eugenics (popular in the US too) that inspired Hitler. This is something I have opposed throughout my life, which brings me to Peter Singer, now at Harvard and in contact with some of Obama's advisors on social policy. He wrote a book called Should the Baby Live? which advocated euthanasia for the neurologically impaired. He supports euthanasia, and dare I say it, he is a foe worthy of counter argument. I respect him and disagree with him and will continue to do so, but watch out for his influence in the debate on Health Care. None of this suggests that Obama is going in this direction.

    I have gone on too long and the sloganisers will come and dismiss me. I just wish that we could have a serious debate on the whole socialism issue, for it is so misleading as it stands and I thank you for drawing attention to it.

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  • 350. At 9:04pm on 13 Jan 2011, Roast Chicken wrote:

    At #345:

    Dr. Llaregubb, please run for office! I'll give you my vote NOW. LOL

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  • 351. At 9:17pm on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    348. At 8:51pm on 13 Jan 2011, _marko wrote:To #345 Dr Llareggub

    "Cut backs in big government"

    As socialist defence is part of big government, why doesn't this cut apply to defence?

    As socialist foreign aid to Israel is part of big government spending, why doesn't this handout disappear?
    Please let me know your (or Sarah Palin's) explanation for the "little ordinary people".
    ---------------------------------------------------

    I will be tolerant. Cut backs in big government mean less government control over people's lives. However, according to what used to be the liberal perspective, a strong military presence and foreign policy was something that government is obliged to provide in order to justify its existence. As Hobbes maintained in his Leviathan: the sovereign's legitimacy is derived from its ability to protect its subjects from a violent death.

    I never used the word 'socialist in my text, so if you want a serious discussion I suggest we don't add words into someone else's arguments. There are big governments -Saudi, Iran, that are not socialist in any sense.

    Little ordinary people. Thats me...the nobody's who try to work despite the mess made by politicians, bankers and bureaucrats. In her book Palin refers to the movie, Mr Smith goes to Washington. Not really today's movie, no sex or special effects, but it captures the values that are held by many of Palin's supporters, who are more important than she is.
    I don't worship politicians, but ocassionally they give expression to the feelings of little ordinary people, as Obama did during his campaign, and ended up showing the world that the US was a genuine democracy that was putting race behind it. I was so excited when he won. Now I think we have to move on.

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  • 352. At 9:35pm on 13 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    Dr Buggerall might have trouble introducing socialist ideas into an America with many millions of unemployed and a health care system that Cubans and some African countries might be ashamed of. The whole shootin` match would be completely unaffordable...unless you scaled down the cost of the military and CIA and foreign aid to countries like Pakistan and Israel.

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  • 353. At 9:36pm on 13 Jan 2011, Roast Chicken wrote:

    At #348:

    At 8:51pm on 13 Jan 2011, _marko wrote:
    To #345 Dr Llareggub

    "Cut backs in big government"

    As socialist defence is part of big government, why doesn't this cut apply to defence?

    As socialist foreign aid to Israel is part of big government spending, why doesn't this handout disappear?

    Please let me know your (or Sarah Palin's) explanation for the "little ordinary people".

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Dr. Llaregubb never said that the defense budget wouldn't be reduced in his post. For all we know, he wouldn't spare it, but he can speak to that.

    To clarify, I am not a Palin supporter and I've cast no votes for her, but I am indeed politically far-right. But I think that the U.S. defense budget should be reduced significantly along with all other parts of the federal government. We can start by scaling back or eliminating the bases in wealthy countries like Japan, Germany, and South Korea who are more than capable of defending themselves.

    I also think that most if not all foreign aid, including to Israel, should be cut or reduced. Other countries will become more self-sufficient when they learn to live without freebies and handouts from the American taxpayer who is mostly despised and unappreciated around the world for "meddling in other countries' affairs."

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  • 354. At 9:41pm on 13 Jan 2011, Prsilla wrote:

    I have lost my only sibling and a close friend because of the political rift. I was scape-goated as a child. I have finally figured out that while I was being called to task, a girl 5 years older, my brother was being neglected! He is an angry Republican today. After I went in the USAF, he went in the Coast Guard. We both made O-3. Years later when he was promoted in the county fire department, I commented, "Well, brother, you finally made Captain!" he was mad as hell. And despite his good mind, he ENJOYS watching Fox! As for Palin, she is still capitalizing on looking cute in glasses and cute on the back of a motorcycle with a hunky husband. Fox and People magazine support her as a happening chick. And ignorant people fall for that! Down the line she will still be a dipstick, but with wrinkles.

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  • 355. At 9:55pm on 13 Jan 2011, RPC0609 wrote:

    As a Democrat living in the United States, our country is on the verge of becoming the next Roman Empire. Most people in England don't realize the impact and how powerful talk radio has become in this country. A good majority of people in this country no longer read and gather their supposed facts from Rush Limbaugh, etc. These people have never attended college and have no reason to voice their opinions on any matter of substance. Sarah Palin is part of this angry, vitriolic conservative movement, which is extreme and dangerous to America. She is an airhead, a lunatic, and a Charismatic Christian who speaks in tongues. They believe in prophecy and it is considered a cult in some regards, so she believed year's ago that she would some day become President. How someone that is so ignorant of the facts and is riding her fame to make as much money as she can, while never debating anybody, is appaulling to we Americans who have a brain! If she get's anywhere close to the White House, there will be a mass exodus of those Americans who are educated out of the country!

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  • 356. At 10:09pm on 13 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    352. At 9:35pm on 13 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote: Dr Buggerall might have trouble introducing socialist ideas into an America with many millions of unemployed and a health care system that Cubans and some African countries might be ashamed of. The whole shootin` match would be completely unaffordable...unless you scaled down the cost of the military and CIA and foreign aid to countries like Pakistan and Israel.
    -------------------------------------------------

    I hope I have not added to confusion. I am not trying to introduce socialist ideas in america or anywhere.

    But I share with your (I hope) the belief that too much is being doled out to other countries. In the UK they are cutting back everywhere, people losing jobs. And guess what: we are handing foreign aid to China, Pakistan and India who have a space programme that the UK can no longer afford.

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  • 357. At 10:22pm on 13 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    Since the Second World War, the great mass of the US public has been pampered with a "have-it-all" lifestyle, provided by low material costs, cheap labour and the exploitation of countries in S.America, the Caribbean, the Middle East and elsewhere. Now, their pig-out lifestyle is coming to an end and they are like children whose toys have been taken away, so they have to blame someone. Hence the moronic backlash of the right wing reactionaries, whose figurehead is a bespectacled moron from Alaska. It is they who have lowered the level of political vehemence to a point where any fruitcake like the Arizona nightmare can jump on the bandwagon with self-rightous conviction.
    Let's hope that Gabby Giffords survives this baboon to show that humanity transcends moronity. We wish her well.

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  • 358. At 10:30pm on 13 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    355 RPC...Though I don`t quite see it myself we are told over in Britain that a country gets the government it deserves......well I think the people of Britain and the USA have been deliberately dumbed down to turn us into shopaholic workaholic zombies and slaves of capitalism and rich financiers and foreign business interests.

    I suspect that Mrs Palin has a perfectly good brain ....but if she is so "stupid" then a nation worth saving might ask itself WHY she is like that ...rather than stand around lofily sneering at her....and by extension millions of other Americans?

    My impression is that our countries are run by free market liberal elites who think they know what is best for us....but if they are so clever how come we are subsiding into serious social decline while "communist" countries are outsmarting us?

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  • 359. At 10:33pm on 13 Jan 2011, Sybarite wrote:

    worcesterjim wrote: "326...Sybarite...I called you Samsonite because of all the baggage I associate with your tiresome BBC/Guardian cleverdickery..."

    Drat. You were being witty and I missed it. Well what a shame. Actually, since I have posted very little on the BBC forums. I would applaud your extraordinary ability to be able to pigeonhole/label me – perhaps it helps you avoid actually providing the evidence for your claims.

    worcesterjim wrote: "Open you eyes and take a walk through our sink estates and consider what democratic opportunities there are to challenge the rule of global capitalism and fundementalist reactionary religion over our virtual one-party state?"

    Setting aside your really rather juvenile rhetoric, I have lived in Hackney – apparently the second poorest borough in the country – for around 20 years. And I asked you for evidence of your victimhood.

    It is noted that you have not provided an iota of such evidence and are now attempting to move the goalposts.

    I respectfully suggest that you either provide the evidence that has been (entirely politely) requested from you to support YOUR assertions – or you stop playing pathetic little victimhood games.

    If your claims have a basis in reality, you will have the evidence. It shouldn't be difficult.

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  • 360. At 11:19pm on 13 Jan 2011, rtcon wrote:

    "So one of Palin's campaign ads with cross-hair symbols caused all this?

    What about the movie made by the left of a hypothetical assassination of President Bush?

    What about President Obama's comment "If they bring a knife to a fight, we'll bring a gun"?

    What about the cross-hair symbols used on ads and literature by the left? - there are many, many examples.

    What about all the violent threats thrown at President Bush during his term in office?

    The deranged killer in Arizona likely couldn't have cared less whether his target was a Democrat - He was most likely attracted by the fact that she was an attractive, public figure that had not paid him the attention that his sick mind felt he was due. She could have been a Republican, a Democrat or a Moonie and it would have been the same to him.

    If we want to start throwing blame and innuendo around, what about the local sheriff who did not enforce existing laws, who allowed this clearly deranged individual to roam the streets freely, to gain access to guns (For those who do not live here, not just anyone can walk into a shop and buy a gun. There are supposed to be checks and criteria that have to be met)"


    All of this would be good points except that the Left is actually acknowledging that we need to change the tone of debate in the country. The Right is becoming defensive and denying there is any need. Or worse seeking victim status. So the Left is stepping up they just need the right to do the same. All the Conservative talking heads have to do is say: "Yeah both sides have lost their way, lets move forward towards a more perfect Union."

    Also, did I just read a Conservative approve of gun control?

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  • 361. At 00:08am on 14 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    Jim wrote: well I think the people of Britain and the USA have been deliberately dumbed down to turn us into shopaholic workaholic zombies and slaves of capitalism and rich financiers and foreign business interests.
    -----------------
    I agree, Jim...but do people still care?

    I think that's the problem, its like some are so busy or blindsided they are sleepwalking through life...

    Bob Dylan has a good line from the song The Groom's Still Waiting at the Altar,
    "I see people who are supposed to know better standing around like furniture!"

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  • 362. At 00:31am on 14 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    359 Sybarite...My point of view is made plain by my posts ...and after forty five years trying to get some fairness for British people through our joke of a political system...incuding over a quarter of a century working as a social worker... I am not interested in your liberal "man of the people" nonsense....I`ve heard it all before from hundreds of crafty self-serving "lefty" apparatchiks.... who I watched talk themselves into positions of power only to abandon the working people whose interests they betrayed and hopes they dashed.

    If you live in Hackney then just be ashamed of the disgusting mess around you that you appear to want to justify....and stop pestering me with your third rate tiresome inquisitions.

    Now that`s all the time I am wasting on you....so find someone else to sell your barmy third world multicultural paradise to....and if you want some reading to supplement the Guardian and the Beano buy yourelf the reports on the deaths of Victoria climbie and Baby Peter Connelly.

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  • 363. At 00:34am on 14 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    The celebrated keeper of aLASka's coastwatch across the Bering Strait is continually being misquoted by the—uh—lie-beral lamestream meeja.

    In what respect has she been misquoted, Charlie?

    In her sentence beginning at 3m23s while reading from her id***board, the soundtrack of her video, for instance as relayed to us at . . .

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jb0VW8vnMhQ

    . . . clearly has her saying "pundints":

    "But, especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundints should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence that they purport to condemn."

    The former-this and former-that must be thinking the LLSM are being far too liberal towards her for continually taking pity on her by editing her utterances towards universal standard English. She would rather be presented as one who's fluent in the sidestream lexicon of her disciples.

    —Leigh Oats.

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  • 364. At 00:48am on 14 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    361 Lucy ....I feel the same...and wonder if the power of the rich is now so great that we are going backwards to another feudal age where there is a educated aristocracy with time to become educated and informed and many peasants who receive so little education and work so hard that they can never argue for their rights and improve their position in society.

    We were like that until about six hundred years ago there was a plague called the Black Death which killed nearly half of the people in England. This was a surprising benefit to many previous peasants because there were not enough of them to do the work and they began to receive money wages because their labour was scarce.

    These people went on to become merchants and craftsmen and shopkeepers and learned to read and write and demand some say in the government of the country.And some went off to found countries like the USA and Canada.

    But I worry about immigration being used to stop us protecting ourselves from overwork and exploitation.... and despite us having a lot of unemployment and a collapsing welfare state and not enough housing... both our main political parties frankly do nothing effective to control immigration.

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  • 365. At 00:52am on 14 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    Asks rtcon in #360 at "11:19pm on 13 Jan 2011":

    "What about the cross-hair symbols used on ads and literature by the left?"

    Dear rtcon, I seem to have forgotten about the said representations of crosshairs that have come from the "left".

    Would you be so good as to post links to pictures of them?

    —Leigh Oats.

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  • 366. At 00:52am on 14 Jan 2011, jeanette wrote:

    Sarah P. does not appeal to me. Does she mean to appear to have a level of hostility? It comes across that way to me. On the other hand, Pres. Obama's words are a balm to my spirit. To me he is an excellent president.

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  • 367. At 01:46am on 14 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    Jim wrote: and wonder if the power of the rich is now so great that we are going backwards to another feudal age
    -----------
    Perhaps...but its more than that. Its about who and what we, as Americans, are as a people. For you, its about who and what you, the British, are as a people. Its about what we or you stand for.

    USA used to be all about quality and we took so much pride in what we hand made...I have always felt everything we did was quality when I was growing up. If it said American, I felt it was something good. Growing up, I always thought USA could do and make anything ourselves. I never felt we really needed anyone, but that we liked most everyone.

    Now, I feel like many Americans are becoming addicted to cheapness in the aspect of cheap foreign goods, cheap food, cheap everything...

    Its not that we are cheap people, its just that some have gotten so used to recent cheap items that they don't want to go back to paying for quality items...

    I'm not rich, but I don't like cheap goods. I want to buy something quality at the price it took to make it. I don't want to buy something cheap that will break apart or give me lead poisoning. I don't know how many Americans are like me in that aspect...I want to listen to music that is real music, sung by real musicians, not music that is not written or performed or sung by the performer...

    I am jealous of Europe, including GB, in the aspect that many of you make hand made cars, crafts, ect. Even some of your handmade car engines are in jets, which tells you how good they are made.

    Even my brother, who likes to make silly jokes about other countries sometimes, admits that Europe is one of the last places in the world that still handmakes cars and other items, which is very impressive and its the reason why Europe will last and not go out of style.

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  • 368. At 02:12am on 14 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    Jim wrote: But I worry about immigration being used to stop us protecting ourselves from overwork and exploitation.... and despite us having a lot of unemployment and a collapsing welfare state and not enough housing... both our main political parties frankly do nothing effective to control immigration.
    ----------

    And what about future resources in GB- like fresh drinking water, food and land?


    Is this a way of creating 'legal' slaves?

    People who have no choice but to work for lower wages?


    The good news for you, tho, is that most of your immigrants are legal, right? So at least you know who's in your country, which is good...

    Us...not so much. Our borders are not secure and we know this due to our security finding tunnels dug beneath the border, finding illegals trying to come to America by sea, ect.

    And some people wonder why we want guns to protect ourselves!


    Its changing our society, too.

    People who come from other countries illegally may not feel the same allegience as someone like me, a nativeborn, only knows America, has had multiple generations from 1800's on, has relatives all across USA, and has had ancestors fight and die in our past wars, feels...

    ----------------
    Last year, several kids in southern Cali wore American flag t-shirts and the assistant principal made them turn their shirts inside out, because he told them it was disrespectful to wear American flag t-shirts or clothes on Cinco de Mayo day, which is Mexican Independence day...

    Did this make the national news?
    Not that I saw...

    In my opinion, it was a huge story.

    How can someone deny a kid the right to wear the American flag in America?

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  • 369. At 03:15am on 14 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #366

    "On the other hand, Pres. Obama's words are a balm to my spirit. To me he is an excellent president."


    You mean Jon Favreau is an excellent president.


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jon_Favreau_%28speechwriter%29

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  • 370. At 03:25am on 14 Jan 2011, KScurmudgeon wrote:

    369. At 03:15am on 14 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #366
    "On the other hand, Pres. Obama's words are a balm to my spirit. To me he is an excellent president."


    You mean Jon Favreau is an excellent president.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jon_Favreau_%28speechwriter%29
    -----------------------------

    That is a pretty bare thought and a weak attack, Clarkson - to give the praise to the speechwriter. Who writes for you?

    KScurmudgeon

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  • 371. At 04:14am on 14 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    re: 252 Oklahoma Rick:

    But then, I haven't been to Toronto in 15+ years now. And I have heard that it is not as clean a city as it used to be. But I refuse to believe that until I see it firsthand.

    Rick, you'll have to understand that as a displaced prairie boy (born and raised in Calgary Alberta, about 1500 miles north and west of you) living in Dullsville on the Rideau (aka Ottawa, the nation's capital, about a thousand miles north and east of Oklahoma), I find it hard to say much of anything nice about Toronto (it's a regional thing). Terrible hockey team. Bad traffic.

    Still, no 'no go' areas after dark. Great restaurants. Good shopping. Lots of entertainment venues great and small.

    Ok, maybe it's not so bad (but Montreal is better, Vancouver is sublime!)

    Anyway -- I'm not trying to sell you on gun control. I just wanted to point out that there are plenty of working democracies around that do tightly control firearms, and that such control is not the death knell of liberty. So that people who think such controls might be a good idea in the US aren't out to institute an authoritarian state.

    (Oh, and I do look forward in my dotage to acquiring a couple of modern day fowling pieces and training up a retriever. Nothing like wild duck, wild mushrooms, and a good Pinot Noir. Cheers!)

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  • 372. At 04:35am on 14 Jan 2011, William Johnson-Smith wrote:

    366. At 00:52am on 14 Jan 2011, jeanette wrote:

    "Pres. Obama's words are a balm to my spirit."

    Or an Obama to your spirit.

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  • 373. At 05:46am on 14 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #370

    "That is a pretty bare thought and a weak attack, Clarkson - to give the praise to the speechwriter."


    jeanette found Obama's words as balm to her spirit. Others judge people by their deeds. However ,if the words are the criteria to be used, the source should be acknowledged.


    "Who writes for you?"


    Watch the credits.


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  • 374. At 07:10am on 14 Jan 2011, Musric wrote:

    LucyJ wrote:
    "I am jealous of Europe, including GB, in the aspect that many of you make hand made cars, crafts, ect. Even some of your handmade car engines are in jets, which tells you how good they are made."

    This isn't really on topic, but I had to correct you here - if you're referring to Rolls Royce, and I can't think what else you would be referring to, the company that makes the cars has been completely different from the company that makes the aero engines since 1974. And, without wishing to cast aspersions on the car engines, I think you'll find that the technology levels and tolerances to which a jet engine is manufactured are significantly higher than a car engine. Regardless, a jet engine and an internal combustion engine are rather different beasts. Simply transplanting one to the other as you imply wouldn't _really_ work out.

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  • 375. At 07:28am on 14 Jan 2011, Dr Charles Benjamin wrote:

    Why doesn't this news story address the central controversy about Sarah Palin's connection to the mass murder? It isn't simply about Sarah Palin's fiery political rhetoric. Her campaign over the last year included a map, with political targets including Senator Gifford, and other politicians that supported health care reform and gun control, each marked with a sniper rifle crosshair. She advised her supporters to 'take aim' at the political targets. She refered to elections as 'salvos', the simultaneous firing of multiple weapons at a target. She then wrote on Twitter, advising her supporters "'Don't Retreat, Instead - RELOAD!'"

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  • 376. At 08:25am on 14 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:

    Says Musric in #374 at "07:10am on 14 Jan 2011":

    \_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_

    LucyJ wrote:
    "I am jealous of Europe, including GB, in the aspect that many of you make hand made cars, crafts, ect. Even some of your handmade car engines are in jets, which tells you how good they are made."

    This isn't really on topic, but I had to correct you here - if you're referring to Rolls Royce, and I can't think what else you would be referring to, the company that makes the cars has been completely different from the company that makes the aero engines since 1974. And, without wishing to cast aspersions on the car engines, I think you'll find that the technology levels and tolerances to which a jet engine is manufactured are significantly higher than a car engine. Regardless, a jet engine and an internal combustion engine are rather different beasts. Simply transplanting one to the other as you imply wouldn't _really_ work out.

    \_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_

    Don't bother, Musric. This is the innernets. Dorothy might tell Toto that we aren't even on planet Earth any more.

    Anyway, LucyJ means "envious" rather than "jealous". But I wonder what her habitual "ect" means. Perhaps it's short for "ectoplasm".

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  • 377. At 08:27am on 14 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #375

    "Why doesn't this news story address the central controversy about Sarah Palin's connection to the mass murder? "

    You must be a late arrival. The short answer is, because it doesn't exist.

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  • 378. At 08:57am on 14 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    368 Good points Lucy ....but I haven`t a clue how many of the foreigners milling around my town shouting into mobile phones in foreign languages are "legal" ...and it`s so easy to arrive here legally... or get assistance and legal aid if you do arrive in the back of a truck ...that it amazes me we have`t got the entire third world here already.

    As to the serious subject of how we end this evil injustice to MY people and avoid another civil war and genocide ...well that is a subject our new media enslavers at the BBC don`t care to discuss with us horrid racist original British folk!

    Who cares what we think at what they used to call "Your BBC!".....until they realised what a lie it was.

    They only care to slavishly copy the insane political and economic and social habits of the USA in order to ingratiate themselves with rich and powerful Americans...their real "core audience".

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  • 379. At 09:10am on 14 Jan 2011, roy smith wrote:

    The "blood libel" comment by Sarah Palin was a perfectly accurate way to describe the medias blame on her head. For goodness sake wake-up. As for past comments taken out of context, there is always a ton of fighting talk at election time ... on both sides of the aisle.

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  • 380. At 09:52am on 14 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote:

    Dr Llareggub(345) wrote "Well folks, it seems that Palin has been exonerated, she has won the argument with the left (at least that is what they call themselves) and despite her shortcomings listed on these boards, she is in good shape to take on the Presidency and I wish her well. Not for her, but for the little ordinary people who think, like Palin, that big government has failed".

    Well, it is nice to know that you have dropped the pretence of only being "concerned with journalistic ethics". As for "Palin has been exonerated, she has won the argument with the left", only a self deluding idiot could believe that.

    Anyone who has listened to La Palin with an open mind since she became the Vice-Presidential nominee for the Republican Party is unfortunately forced to the conclusion that John McCaine was over dosing on his medications when he made that decision.

    In short, she is utterly ignorant, shamelessly opportunistic, and has a capacity for mangling both English and meaning which puts both George Walker Bush AND Dan Quail in the shade.

    America may be declining, in relative terms, as China rises, but if American voters are stupid enough to elect La Palin as President, then America's decline will become precipitous.

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  • 381. At 09:57am on 14 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    365. At 00:52am on 14 Jan 2011, Leigh Oats wrote:Asks rtcon in #360 at "11:19pm on 13 Jan 2011":

    "What about the cross-hair symbols used on ads and literature by the left?"

    Dear rtcon, I seem to have forgotten about the said representations of crosshairs that have come from the "left".

    Would you be so good as to post links to pictures of them?

    —Leigh Oats.

    --------------------------------------------------------
    Another late arrival. The left wing paper, Kos, had Giffords in a target, but not mentioned. The Democrats have employed bulls eye targets on their strategy notes, posted everywhere.They even spoke of hitting targets behind enemy lines. This should be seen as normal political behaviour. Also check out BBC and other presentations of elections: they all use military metaphors; the respective parties target marginals, we are shown the battle lines with the swingometer etc.

    I have replied to this post at random, as so many posts are repeating this rubbish about cross hairs, and revealing their political illiteracy.

    Take some advice. Look at Palin's political objectives posted in her facebook and twitter sites, and in her books. Then argue with them, as I and others who care about politcs do.

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  • 382. At 10:26am on 14 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    It would be constructive to move this discussion on. Hopefully the clones who are still attributing the cause of the shooting to Palin's cross hairs imagery will not respond. They are actually the most frightening group in politics; they are told something that feeds their prejudices and despite counter evidence they keep repeating it. Just as they repeat what they have been told about the stupidity of Reagan, Bush and Palin. Oh God, not that North Korean stuff again, despite the fact that she has used the term correctly so many times and did so in the interview.

    People make verbal slip ups and nothing can be inferred from them, just as Obama's reference to visiting 57 US states is just a slip of the tongue. Geddit.

    OK, moving on. Palin has effectively won the argument against the blood libelists representing her media opponents, who are looking very cheap. Not a difficult argument to win, especially as their case rested on a partisan speech from a sherriff who should have been attending to the crime. But what of the future?

    It looks as if she will run for office. And this gets interesting for no one has ever fought a Presidential campaign with the mainstream media against them. If she approaches the mainstream media she knows they will edit and distort everything she says, so that the kind of clones posting on HYS will have something to fix on.

    So are we going to see a campaign where the challenger works outside of the media framework, will twitter and Facebook and a variety of internet sites, plus meetings, be sufficient? Can any candidate win without support from the mainstream media? These are the obstacles, and add to that the blue bloods in the GOP who will not be sorry to see her defeated.

    For me, Palin's bid for the Presidency, raises the possibility of a confrontation with the political classes and their media. She may probably sink, and this looks likely when you read the HYS posts here, full of prejudice, written by clones who mindlessly repeat what the mainstream media feed them with.

    To end with an anecdote - not unconnected with the Alaska/Russia jape.
    During the First World War, the English wing press concocted a story about an attempted Russian invasion, citing as proof that Russian soldiers had come from Siberia and were seen in Scotland with the Siberian snow on their boots. For over a generation this story was repeated and used against the emerging UK Labour Party. You see HYS, the stuff that has filled this board over the past few days, can be fed to the clones at any time.

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  • 383. At 10:38am on 14 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    380. At 09:52am on 14 Jan 2011, MacTurk wrote:Dr Llareggub(345) wrote "Well folks, it seems that Palin has been exonerated, she has won the argument with the left (at least that is what they call themselves) and despite her shortcomings listed on these boards, she is in good shape to take on the Presidency and I wish her well. Not for her, but for the little ordinary people who think, like Palin, that big government has failed".

    ---------------------------------------------------
    Mac Turk,
    This is a useless post. You simply insult me, which does not matter, and make hostile comments about Palin, which matters even less, but where is your argument, where is your evidence? Just hostile comments. Any Turkey can do that. Come on, put some arguments together, put up or shut up as we say in the hen house.

    And by the way, apart from lack of argument and political wisdom, you are dishonest. You say I have given up the pretence of being only concerned with journalistic ethics. Two lies. The first is your reference to my 'pretence'. Prove it is pretence or apologise. Second, I am not only concerned with journalistic ethics. This was my concern in earlier posts where I expressed criticism of one sided moderation. But the debate moves one and I have other things to say. Rational human beings follow arguments; turkeys just wait for Christmas dinner.

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  • 384. At 10:51am on 14 Jan 2011, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    370. At 03:25am on 14 Jan 2011, KScurmudgeon wrote:

    "369. At 03:15am on 14 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:"

    KS, I think you will find that 369 was actually posted by 'RHammond'.

    Surely you are not suggesting that JClarkson and 'RHammond' [and I think JMay] are one and the same person, posting under the pseudonyms of 3 different presenters of the BBC's Top Gear show? [Or at least I believe they are - I never watch it myself.]

    Interestingly, at # 373 he responds to being addressed as Clarkson...

    Why on earth would one person wish to post under 3 different names?

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  • 385. At 10:58am on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    It's true enough that elections breed muck-slinging, however the US has another layer of muck that doesn't exist, except in countries like Israel and Pakistan i.e. states founded on political and religeous dogma.
    Voltaire said "We will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest." The Americans have elevated "patriotism" to the level of kingship and then blended it with knuckle-dragging, fundamentalist religion to form a toxic brew that is truly sickening. It is this layer of excrement that they now bring to the political table, inflaming the passions of red-necks and semi-literate freaks like Loughner. The next time you're in the States, try watching FOX News or listen to Rush Limbaugh and you'll get an idea of the hand-feeding of the bottom-dwellers that's going on.
    Oh yes, and be prepared to vomit.

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  • 386. At 11:04am on 14 Jan 2011, Kingvagabond wrote:

    WorcesterJim in post 362 you bandy about names like Peter Connelly and Victoria Climbie like they're an offensive weapon. If you want to use them this way then feel free but remember that Labour decided to try and operate the ContactPoint system as a way to make sure that teachers, carers, social workers etc don't make mistakes in neglecting the welfare of children in the future and the right wing including the Tories, UKIP & the BNP all called it an unconscienable waste ofmoney. Remember this the next time you want to abuse the 'left wing' and its '3rd world multicultural paradise'.

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  • 387. At 12:05pm on 14 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    385. At 10:58am on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:It's true enough that elections breed muck-slinging, however the US has another layer of muck that doesn't exist, except in countries like Israel and Pakistan i.e. states founded on political and religeous dogma.
    Voltaire said "We will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest." The Americans have elevated "patriotism" to the level of kingship and then blended it with knuckle-dragging, fundamentalist religion to form a toxic brew that is truly sickening. It is this layer of excrement that they now bring to the political table, inflaming the passions of red-necks and semi-literate freaks like Loughner. The next time you're in the States, try watching FOX News or listen to Rush Limbaugh and you'll get an idea of the hand-feeding of the bottom-dwellers that's going on.
    Oh yes, and be prepared to vomit.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The problem is that one is only offended by Fox news and others if one shares your prejudices, which you present well although hostility and anger substitute for discourse.

    Here in the UK I watch Fox New and CNN on my little lap top every day.
    Why do I watch it? For the same reason that I read the Sun and the Mail in my local chip shop. For news, which I can use my amazing powers of intelligence to analyse and foreclose on rubbish.

    I used to go the BBC as my primary news source, Radio 4, the TV, and what is presented on the net. But I found that there were too many topics left unmentioned; there is a bias in presentation. eg. Pro multiculturalism, pro Islam, anti Trade Union, and so on. There is an obvious bias in Fox News, just as there is in the New York Times, and many other sources. But there is still some very good stuff which I enjoy. But nowadays I find that Fox News has the edge over the BBC, which is not to single them out for praise - just the best of a bad lot.

    By the way you misquote Voltaire: the quote appeared as a slogan during the Paris Commune, later adopted by the anarchists.

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  • 388. At 12:30pm on 14 Jan 2011, John B Schultz wrote:

    Mrs. Palin is a very unfortunate event in U.S. history. One hopes that the electorate of this country are not so benighted that they will ever elect her to another public office.

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  • 389. At 12:30pm on 14 Jan 2011, U14753205 wrote:

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  • 390. At 12:42pm on 14 Jan 2011, U14753205 wrote:

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  • 391. At 12:42pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    To Dr Larry Gubbins (387), we're both wrong as to the source of the quote. Apparently it was Diderot, a contemporary of Voltaire and well before the Communards, who may well have regurgitated it.
    The source is of little relevance alongside the sentiment.
    As to the BBC, you've got that one right. It has been "dumbed down" (an appropriate Americanism if there ever was one) to the level of tedium.
    Try Al Jazeera sometime. It's incisive.
    I have no idea to what "preudices" you refer. Is contempt for the intellectual absurdity and social suffocation of religion a prejudice ?
    Is recognising the fundamentalist nature of certain states a prejudice ?
    As to anger, I make no apologies for that emotion when faced with the hypocrisy and brutality of the US of A. I lived half my life in N.America and know its character only to well.
    No less a person than Abe Lincoln said he would prefer to live in Russia sooner than the US "for they take their tyranny pure, without the base alloy of hypocrisy."
    A Sun reader, eh ? I believe the two words are incompatible.
    Here's a guaranteed Voltairism which is very apropos......
    "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you perform atrocities."
    The USA has enough absurdities to feed the universe.

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  • 392. At 12:45pm on 14 Jan 2011, U14753205 wrote:

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  • 393. At 12:59pm on 14 Jan 2011, U14753205 wrote:

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  • 394. At 1:02pm on 14 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:


    So now the fanatical red neck tea party supporting Wall Street Journal publishes a defence of Palin's use of the expression 'blood libel'
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703583404576079823067585318.html?mod=WSJ_newsreel_opinion

    I said in earlier posts that she has won the argument. Move on, Discuss her policies.

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  • 395. At 1:05pm on 14 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    391. At 12:42pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    John Good post. Liked it.
    Al Jazeera I do watch. Frequently in my local kebab shop. It is good.

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  • 396. At 1:20pm on 14 Jan 2011, U14753205 wrote:

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  • 397. At 1:35pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    To Dr L.....croeso, bach.....but to what policies do you refer ?
    The TP's are similar in one respect to the NSDAP (Nazis), in that they attack everything and offer nothing. In 1930's germany, it was all "blut und boden" and "lebensraum". They attacked the Weimar politicians as "traitors", but the offered absolutely nothing of any rational policy. Sound familiar? The TP's are all about "taking back the country", but from whom and to what ?
    Mythology is the last refuge of the scoundrel (if you don't mind a para-phrase). It is very, very dangerous.
    As Robbie Burns once said "I don't care who writes the history, so long as I can write the ballads."
    Give my regards to DT.

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  • 398. At 1:49pm on 14 Jan 2011, rtcon wrote:

    "Leigh Oats wrote:
    Asks rtcon in #360 at "11:19pm on 13 Jan 2011":

    "What about the cross-hair symbols used on ads and literature by the left?"

    Dear rtcon, I seem to have forgotten about the said representations of crosshairs that have come from the "left".

    Would you be so good as to post links to pictures of them?"

    I'm not familiar with any myself. I was responding to a previous post but I did not separate the quotes very well. So I may have created confusion with that.

    To be fair to those on the Right the Left can sometimes get carried away as well. But I think the focus needs to be on where we go from here. The Right seems reluctant to take a look in the mirror while the left seems to be acknowledging that accountability is needed right now.

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  • 399. At 2:02pm on 14 Jan 2011, Interestedforeigner wrote:

    385. At 10:58am on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    "It's true enough that elections breed muck-slinging, however the US has another layer of muck that doesn't exist, except in countries like Israel and Pakistan i.e. states founded on political and religeous dogma.
    Voltaire said "We will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest." The Americans have elevated "patriotism" to the level of kingship and then blended it with knuckle-dragging, fundamentalist religion to form a toxic brew that is truly sickening. It is this layer of excrement that they now bring to the political table, inflaming the passions of red-necks and semi-literate freaks like Loughner. The next time you're in the States, try watching FOX News or listen to Rush Limbaugh and you'll get an idea of the hand-feeding of the bottom-dwellers that's going on.
    Oh yes, and be prepared to vomit."

    __________

    Sadly, although you have over-stated it, there is a fair amount of truth in the general thrust of your comment.

    We are inundated with US news here, and I visit the US fairly often. Still, it never fails to amaze me how difficult it is to get hard news in the US. All of the major news services are bad, without exception. In a half-hour news program there may be one nugget of hard news buried under a treacly, sensationalist over-burden of fires, murders, car accidents, weather events, natural disasters, and infotainment, infotainment, and more infotainment. Fox is clearly the worst, fair enough. But the others are extremely weak, too. None of them is anything to write home about.

    When I think about how far the CBS evening news has declined since I was a child ...

    The level of political discourse is correspondingly low.

    In British politics, there is still a premium on rapier-sharp wit. You find it alive and well in Australia and New Zealand. You certainly find it, still, in Canada, if in a somewhat modified form.

    But, for the most part, it is completely missing in the US - except at things like the correspondent's dinner, seemingly.

    Why is it that?

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  • 400. At 2:03pm on 14 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 401. At 2:05pm on 14 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:


    397. At 1:35pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:To Dr L.....croeso, bach.....but to what policies do you refer ?
    The TP's are similar in one respect to the NSDAP (Nazis), in that they attack everything and offer nothing. In 1930's germany, it was all "blut und boden" and "lebensraum". They attacked the Weimar politicians as "traitors", but the offered absolutely nothing of any rational policy. Sound familiar? The TP's are all about "taking back the country", but from whom and to what ?
    Mythology is the last refuge of the scoundrel (if you don't mind a para-phrase). It is very, very dangerous.
    As Robbie Burns once said "I don't care who writes the history, so long as I can write the ballads."
    Give my regards to DT.
    ---------------------------------------------------
    Thanks John,

    My understanding of the Tea Party is that it is a movement that has yet to define itself, broadly supporting states against the federal government, like the right of the tory party in favour of a small state and tax cuts. Palin has captured some of this populism and argues for energy independence, a strong christian moral flavour to politics, tough action against Iran, N. Korea, transparency in government, and much more all seen in her FB posts. No big ideas, but neither have any of the three major parties in the UK.

    My history tutor used to tell us that Hitler had very clear objectives. Sure they were not rational but he had them and they included re-drawing the map of Europe to re-address perceived wrongs inlicted on the Germans, he had economic policies, a God awful ethnic cleansing policy linked to his economic theory (jewish bankers) etc. Oh yes he had policies. But as my history tutor pointed out, none of Europe's politicians listened to him because they thought he was a liar and a promise breaker just as they were. Trouble is he kept his promises, he really attempted to apply his policies.

    So I don't think Tea Partyists have a clear set of policies, and this populism may die out or coalesce into something else. Who knows. Palin appears as a leading light. Unlike the Nazis, she defends the US constitution (Hitler would have demolished it) and appeals to traditional american values, mom, apple pie and so on. Her image and support is derived from Mr Smith goes to Washington a movie she loves to quote from. The little people, the hard working people etc.

    As for her tough violent gun rhetoric; this is more from Annie Get Your Gun that Wagnerian myths.

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  • 402. At 2:10pm on 14 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    re: 345 Dr. B*gg#r:

    Well folks, it seems that Palin has been exonerated, she has won the argument with the left (at least that is what they call themselves) and despite her shortcomings listed on these boards, she is in good shape to take on the Presidency and I wish her well. Not for her, but for the little ordinary people who think, like Palin, that big government has failed.

    Ah, you may have Sara and the little people, but we have Randy.

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  • 403. At 2:10pm on 14 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:

    John Davies. I forgot to add that my history tutor was called John Davies. As for DT, yes good chap. I believe I lived in no less than three houses he was alleged to have resided in in Swansea. And God knows how many relatives of Richard Burton I met in pubs in the valleys. Some family.
    All the best.

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  • 404. At 2:24pm on 14 Jan 2011, U14753320 wrote:

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  • 405. At 2:44pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    To Interested Foreigner, sounds like you're a Canuck.
    CBC TV isn't too bad. Their radio is good to excellent (Stewart McClean's Vinyl Cafe an' all).
    To be fair to our US cousins, there is still one source of news for those who walk upright on two legs. That is of course PBS (or "longhair television" as someone described it to me in Atlanta)
    The American public is 85% maybe 90% all about mythology. As Jack Nicholson said "You can't handle the truth." They want reinforcement of the fable, spiked with repeated "breaking news" that turns out to be someone breaking wind in an elevator.
    Truth is dificult and painful. Candy coated BS is just toffee.
    God, don't ya just miss the Trudeau years? Ya never knew what the hell he would come out with next.
    Je vous remerci pour le commentaire.
    A la prochaine.

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  • 406. At 2:50pm on 14 Jan 2011, RHCracker wrote:

    Mr. Merdell Wrote;

    The video tells us a great deal about Ms Palin. Even when attempting to make a statement about healing she cannot help but attack.


    She was attacked by the left within an hour of the shooting and pratically blamed for pulling the trigger.

    This was not just a statement about healing,she was defending herself from accusations of being an accomplice to murder.

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  • 407. At 2:50pm on 14 Jan 2011, Lenispal wrote:


    I have been trying to understand the reasons behind the hostility shown towards Palin and the Tea Party, especially now that she has clearly won the argument with her opponents and demonstrated that she is a very sharp, intelligent, perceptive politician. This link partly exaplains why:

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/nilegardiner/100070991/when-will-americas-sanctimonious-liberal-elites-stop-whining-about-the-tea-party-and-finally-accept-they-lost-the-midterms/

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  • 408. At 3:16pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    w.r.t 407.............."sharp", "intelligent", "perceptive"......as compared to what ? G.W.Bush ?

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  • 409. At 3:29pm on 14 Jan 2011, RHCracker wrote:

    108. At 7:27pm on 12 Jan 2011, HappyILeft wrote:

    If they (republicans) do not distance her from their pack, they must stand alongside the images of crosshairs marking congressional districts to be attacked. How inconvienient that some died under the crosshairs.

    Every one on the left knows that map was drawn up to show targeted swing districts.It meant these were the problem areas that needed to be focused on.
    Stop acting like a five year old,and try some independant thinking,do you really think it was a killing map?it was no different than marking red states and blue states.

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  • 410. At 3:31pm on 14 Jan 2011, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    # 407 At 2:50pm on 14 Jan 2011, Dr Llareggub wrote:

    "I have been trying to understand the reasons behind the hostility shown towards Palin and the Tea Party, especially now that she has clearly won the argument with her opponents and demonstrated that she is a very sharp, intelligent, perceptive politician. This link partly exaplains why:"

    It may very well be 'clear' to you that Palin has 'won the argument with her opponents and demonstrated that she is a very sharp, intelligent, perceptive politician.' It is certainly extremely far from clear to me, and, I am sure, many others.

    If I recall correctly, you're one of those who has bemoaned the liberal bias of the BBC and suggested that better sources are The Mail, Sun and Telegraph, those bastions of moderate, unbiased bipartisanship.

    So your link is to – The Telegraph. Surprise Surprise.

    Specifically to the fair and balanced Nile Gardiner. His use in his very first sentence of words like ‘pathetic’, ‘whining liberal elites’, ‘ever more ludicrous and hate-filled’ to describe Democrats clearly demonstrates his non-partisan nature.

    Who is he?

    Per Wiki

    · A British conservative commentator known for his work on the Fox Network, director of the Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom at right-wing think tank, The Heritage Foundation.

    · In his work as a polemicist, he is known for his support of the Tea Party movement, and other outspoken positions:- (eg) "Nick Clegg is the first major party leader to run for Prime Minister on an anti-British ticket. He is filled with a self-loathing for his nation and its institutions"

    · At Yale he was described as an activist for the Unification Church. (AKA the Moonies)

    · He supported the invasion of Iraq and defends the records of George Bush[6] and Richard Cheney.[7] His internet blogs also predominantly involve claims and accusations regarding Barack Obama.[8][9][10][11] He is an opponent of the EU[12] and has been critical of the supposed "appeasement" practiced by nations that do not support the War on Terrorism.[13

    Yup – if only Mr Mardell could be fair and balanced like Mr Gardiner.....

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  • 411. At 3:33pm on 14 Jan 2011, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    # 408. At 3:16pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    "w.r.t 407.............."sharp", "intelligent", "perceptive"......as compared to what ? G.W.Bush ?"

    Homer Simpson perhaps?

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  • 412. At 3:34pm on 14 Jan 2011, U14753414 wrote:

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  • 413. At 4:01pm on 14 Jan 2011, RomeStu wrote:

    412 ...... go straight to the store and stock up on tinfoil to repair the hole in your hat. Wierd messages are still getting through.

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  • 414. At 4:15pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    w.r.t 410, John from Dublin.....well said and well researched.
    The devil's always in the details.
    I once had the mispleasure to be introduced to some members of the Michigan Militia at a BBQ. One of these humanoids explained to me in great detail why they had fully-stocked survival camps out in the Upper Peninsular of Michigan (a state which I dearly love for its hunting, fishing and small town breakfast bars). It was a revelation. I had no idea there were life forms at that level which could actually talk.
    The things which stayed with me most were (a) the government would get a shock one day and take them seriously (this was long before McVeigh blew up the Oaklahoma City building) and (b) if a black man every became president, his days would be numbered.
    What's the relevence to the Palin issue ? It's all part of the same ball of wax (wacks?) The Rabid Right is all-pervasive and needs little encouragement from the Palins and Limbaughs to wreak mayhem on the world.
    Words are dangerous things from the mouths of public figures.
    No one really gives a cuss about what we write here, but when some fancy pants with backing money talks about "second amendment measures" or "reload" or puts cross-hairs on someone, then the neanderthals in the undergrowth start to howl.
    They have to be held to account for their words and suggestions.
    Obama got it right by not going after them. He didn't have to.

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  • 415. At 6:35pm on 14 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    386 Kingvagabond...Over the past forty years any number of declarations of political and procedural hot air have been bandied about and nothing works...because our society is built on the insane fantasy that professionals can hope to function successfully in a multicultural society to which they have very limited access for reasons I suspect you know very well.

    Folk like you are guilty of building and sustaining our Mad Hatter`s Tea party society...with your twaddle about "cultural sensitivities" and "snooping social workers" one minute ...and then blaming professionals when children are tortured to death by your darling "faith community members" because they are supposed to be possessed by demons!

    They are scapegoats in a dysfunctional nightmare of a society. As for bandying their names about I make no apology for shaming the odious creeps who run our disasterous society.

    "Lessons will be learned?"...my arse they will!Not while the Liblabcon Party carry on conning us!

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  • 416. At 8:03pm on 14 Jan 2011, SeamusCamp wrote:

    One thing is obvious - the rhetoric of politics is very different in the US and GB. The Oldham MP has just been debarred from elections by a court for lying about his opponent. For many US politicians (and media commentators) pernicious lying is part of the trade.

    Then again we have a US comment above calling his President a Socialist (evidently with opprobrium). In GB, Obama would be regarded as a middle-of- the-road Conservative.

    Personally, I think the killer was insane or drugged - uncaring about who he killed or injured - Jewish, Catholic, Atheist, adult, child, hermaprodite, hetero-, and homo- are all grist to this particular mill. A bit like the schizo constituent wielding a sword who nearly killed a (Socialist) Labour MP in GB a few months ago. If he had been able to buy a gun at Morrisons, no doubt we would have had a dead MP and several dead bystanders.

    What is different here is that we don't have rabid commentators (Dent, Limbaugh and their like) fomenting violence in the name of free speech - and then trying to duck the consequences of their own rhetoric. As Mrs Palin made clear, free speech for some.

    Of course there are people in Britain who seek the extremes, who foment racial and religious and gender intolerance, but they are constrained by the justice system and by public opinion. In the US, they use the justice system by invoking freedom of speech.

    When I was a lad, the US was respected (probably illogically given the personal immorality of its politics) as a moral arbiter on the world stage. Now it is more often seen as moralising and intolerant; if the outside world wants to see the US thus, Palin and her ilk certainly give out the right vibrations. To mobilise the media, as she did, so as to declare the part played by the media in promoting violent politics - that is either brilliant irony or moral blindness.

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  • 417. At 8:54pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    It's basic mathematics, Seamus ............

    "Freedom of speech" + "right to bear arms" = Arizona.

    Both of the two terms of the equation are, of course, caricatures of what the US constitution intended them to be.

    But then, that applies to the whole society. It went off at right-angles between 1861 and 1865 and never came back.

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  • 418. At 9:04pm on 14 Jan 2011, McJakome wrote:

    18. At 5:06pm on 12 Jan 2011, alb1on wrote:
    "...Americans need to explain why they have argued that pornography leads to sexual violence, and why .... is it of concern in these matters?"

    Bravo, very astute. Some of the same people who want to supress all sex and pornography because adults can't be trusted to use it nor to keep it away from Children can't see that the poisonous atmosphere and vile rhetoric can be equally damaging to those adults, children and innocent bystanders. I think they have a very similar opinion about Marijuana as well.

    The problem is that they are playing defense. If you point out the inconsistancies in their position they will either ignore you or attack you as a big government, leftist, communist Obamamaniac. If you expect them to be logical or able to be reflective or to admit any even theoretical possibility of being wrong, read their posts [I won't name names, but you know whose posts I mean].

    I do not mean Chryses, at least he is logical. His method is annoying, but forces people to think their positions through and try to justify statements. If he sometimes goes too far, well we need more introspection and thoughtful reflection in the world, and especially the US.

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  • 419. At 9:12pm on 14 Jan 2011, McJakome wrote:

    40. At 5:48pm on 12 Jan 2011, BillinNY wrote mystifyingly.

    Do you maintain that a person who kills and eats another is solely responsible for the act, and has not been influenced by cannibal society?

    Do you suppose that only individual Germans and SS members committed crimes, including genocide, and that no guilt attaches to statements made by Josef Goebbels and Adolf Hitler?

    Do you know that Germans who had had Jewish friends and neighbors were persuaded by the atmosphere of anti-Semitic hate and rants to turn on their neighbors?

    If so, yours is an extreme defense that no intelligent person possessing a conscience will be able to accept. Even Powermeerkat might probably have problems with it.

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  • 420. At 00:53am on 15 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    Jim wrote: As to the serious subject of how we end this evil injustice to MY people and avoid another civil war and genocide ...well that is a subject our new media enslavers at the BBC don`t care to discuss with us horrid racist original British folk!
    -----------------

    Who owns the BBC?

    ----------------
    Jim wrote: Who cares what we think at what they used to call "Your BBC!".....until they realised what a lie it was.
    ----------------

    What will it take for people to stand up and defend their country?

    -----------------
    Jim wrote: They only care to slavishly copy the insane political and economic and social habits of the USA in order to ingratiate themselves with rich and powerful Americans...their real "core audience".
    ------------------

    I'm unhappy wiht our immigration system, also...but I blame the politicians, the employers of illegals, the illegals themselves and the people helping the illegals...

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  • 421. At 01:48am on 15 Jan 2011, _marko wrote:

    To RHCracker #409

    Why do the Tea Party/Sarah Palin/Republicans complain about rap lyrics, hate speech from muslim extremists, what certain Middle East leaders say, other nutters etc. if the words and images have no effect?

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  • 422. At 10:02am on 15 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    410 John in Dublin is right...this is a battle for our freedom against the Evil Empire of Greed that runs our nations through its stranglehold on our global financial system or global "markets".

    They have the wealth to poison our media with nonsense about freedom and democracy ....when the truth is they have NO wish to create fair and equal societies. Britain and the USA have not been LESS fair for a very long time....despite voting in leftward leaning governments over and over again...to no avail!

    Our legislatures are packed with the children of the ALREADY rich and powerful capitalist dynasties. Look where they were all educated...was it at the sort of school you attended?

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  • 423. At 10:14am on 15 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    Lucy...please don`t blame the immigrants themselves....in a very unfair world they are only doing what we would do if we were desperate and brave.

    They would probably stay in their own country and home towns.... and raise their families like us....but the capitalists who run our countries have created a world where their families will remain poor and their children will turn to crime or drugs....unless they move to our countries.

    We need to concentrate our fire on those "patriotic" rich folks who have their money in foreign banks rather than pay taxes...and who employ immigrants because they are cheap and can be fired at a moment`s notice !

    When the immigrants eventually want homes and education for their kids just guess who has to pay for it?

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  • 424. At 1:36pm on 15 Jan 2011, hms_shannon wrote:

    The workers flag is deepest red
    could be blue if they`d out of bed.

    Up the revolution
    Yea,right up the revolution.

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  • 425. At 3:18pm on 15 Jan 2011, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    # 422 worcesterjim wrote:

    "410 John in Dublin is right...this is a battle for our freedom against the Evil Empire of Greed that runs our nations through its stranglehold on our global financial system or global "markets"."

    "John in Dublin is right"

    Of course

    "this is a battle for our freedom against the Evil Empire of Greed etc etc"

    Never said that. Your views, not mine.

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  • 426. At 3:57pm on 15 Jan 2011, hms_shannon wrote:

    423. At 10:14am on 15 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote God knows what.

    The capitalist system has put more food in more mouths than all else,
    Capitalism under the rule of law has totally out preformed any thing that has come to pass.Your tone,reminds me of all the charming left of the
    60 & 70`s Red Robbo & Scargill,what a load of unadulterated crap they use
    to peddle.I wonder how many jobs you have created for others ?.After a successfully business career I would like to die poorish helping others who have absolutely nothing,gosh people like me are insufferable smug prigs & you know what I`d wear that with pride,Aka the old completable`s,than be a bleating communist who missed the 70s by 40 years...

    UKWales I S P & bar

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  • 427. At 4:13pm on 15 Jan 2011, hms_shannon wrote:

    That should read" old contemptible`s" ,leaving school at 15 is proving a
    bugger even to this day..

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  • 428. At 4:19pm on 15 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    As Aldous Huxley once observed...........

    "Capitalism is the rule of the many by the few, to the exclusion of the intelligent."

    "Communism is the rule of the many by the many, to the exclusion of the intelligent."

    Nunquam lecesit bastardes carborundum !!!!

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  • 429. At 6:09pm on 15 Jan 2011, hms_shannon wrote:


    Elizabeth Bowen,Anglo-Irish writer 1899-1973 on Aldous Huxley

    The stupid person`s idea of a clever person.

    She said it not me :)

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  • 430. At 7:00pm on 15 Jan 2011, McJakome wrote:

    Would anyone be surprised at a Palin statement like this:

    My fellow "real" Americans. They say I am dumb and an airhead, but U know I am just like U, that is absolutistively the biggest lie. I am not an airhead, you are not air heads, there is no air in our "real" American heads, or nothing else, neither, you betcha.

    We know, because unlike people in Atlanta, Boston, California, New York and such cities, we are not foreign Americans, we are real Americans. We don't have fancy eddications, who needs that?

    What would this country be like if we let Democrats put eddicated, intelli- [intella-, never mind] world travellers in office? Who needs to know stuff like North Korea is our friend and ally [or is it South Korea? Never mind, I can see it from my kitchen window]?

    We real American's know that people who travel, who like foreign things, are mosly not "real" Americans. They would completely ruin and socialize the country into Nazi Communist stuff.

    Why should we care about lazy bumps who only want our tax money. There is not one single unemployed American, one of among us hard workers, like me, who is unemployed except by being lazy, U-betcha! And don't let them go after our rich friends, like FOX, because they are doing their part for unemployedment by providing jobs for people who are not over- but under-educated, as I can swear from personal knowledge.

    So vote for me and whom [or is it who?] never mind, anyone I say, and the U S of A, will be great again, U-betcha.

    S. Palin (:-))
    [Ghost written by JMM]

    Now watch them slam me for being hurtful. They can do that because I am [in their view] a liberal, Nazi Communist. But let Rush, Coulter or St. Palin say something like this and it is not at all harmful, U-betcha!

    I fully expect that the moderators, having no sense of humor, will make this disappear very quickly, so read it even quicker.

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  • 431. At 7:18pm on 15 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    Another quote(from H.L.Mencken a prominent American)................
    "No one ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public." Man, was he ever prophetic or what.

    (Or maybe it was Brigit McDoofus, an Anglo-Irish nobody who tried to garner attention by trashing people beyond her mediocre talents.)

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  • 432. At 7:51pm on 15 Jan 2011, John_From_Dublin wrote:

    431. At 7:18pm on 15 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    "Another quote(from H.L.Mencken a prominent American)................
    "No one ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public." Man, was he ever prophetic or what."

    AFAIK it was their intelligence he was commenting on, not their taste.

    He also allegedly said the following - "As Democracy is perfected, the office of the President becomes more and more closey aligned to the soul of the people. On some great and glorious day, the plain folks of the land will achieve their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."


    "(Or maybe it was Brigit McDoofus, an Anglo-Irish nobody who tried to garner attention by trashing people beyond her mediocre talents.)"

    I am not aware of her work. Perhaps you have a link?

    :-P


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  • 433. At 8:01pm on 15 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    John the Dub, look up "The heat of the day", an account of the London blitz.

    Are we sad, sorry sons of b's or what ? Nothing better to do on a Saturday night, other than join the Scriblerus Club. Lord save us all.

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  • 434. At 8:21pm on 15 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    To bring some balance to this orgy of US-bashing, let me say that I have lived my life mid-Atlantic for ever and I have some first-rate American-born friends. There is nothing more enjoyable than discussing life and the price of fish with an educated, enlightened, open-minded American.
    Problem is, they're in a group that's almmost invisible, it's so small.
    The majority of Americans are pleasant, generous, hard-working folks who have been brain-washed from an early age with a blind, unquestioning patriotism, which to old-world folks is as ludicrous as it is frightening. The Vietnam nightmare disallusioned some (like the 100,000 or more who moved to Canada) and entrenched others. There was no middle ground. It either made you burn your citizenship papers or become Sarah Palin. Overall, the free world should be thankful for the US of A. It has done more good than harm (but don't try explaining that to a South American). When Beijing rules the roost (any day now), we'll miss'em.

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  • 435. At 8:43pm on 15 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    Jmm,

    That is extra cheeesey....

    I find it sad that some like to make fun of people who are less smart or educated, but may have a bigger heart than the smarter or more educated ones...

    There's more to life than that...

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  • 436. At 8:57pm on 15 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    434.... What if China doesn`t want to "rule the roost" John!?
    We are fighting wars just yards from China`s border....and the Chinese are just letting us get our son`s killed doing it.Would the USA be so calm about war on her border?

    Same with Korea...again they are neighbours with China but let`s not pretend that the USA pours money into the South and fought a war therepurely out of the kindness of American hearts.

    Americans learned from British mistakes and created their empire using less obvious techniques to take control of foreign countries...but I can`t imagine the USA letting China fight a war for control of Mexico or Panama or Alaska without viewing it as a serious provocation...and threatening retaliation.

    Maybe China has developed the ultimate way of taking control of the world.... by not BOTHERING to have any sort of political control of other countries at all.....and just leaving the politics and governments alone in exchange for access to their markets and resources?All China needs is financial control and rest is easy.

    After all...China now has America in so much debt she can never repay it.....and if President Obama wants the Chinese government to alter the exchange rate of the Chinese currency he can`t send a gun boat or enslave the Chinese with opium like we did.....he has to ASK for their co-operation.

    And they are making him wait in that age old way that masters have of showing their inferiors who is boss!

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  • 437. At 8:58pm on 15 Jan 2011, chronophobe wrote:

    "Capitalism is the exploitation of man by man. Under Socialism, it will be the reverse."

    -- anon.

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  • 438. At 9:29pm on 15 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    China will be topdog. By default, if not by design. Their timescale is on a different plane than ours. When some Westerner asked Mao Tse Dung (in the 1970's) what he thought was the significance of the French revolution, the old boy replied :- "It's too soon to tell."
    You're dead right aboout their ownership of US debt. It is this fact which will make them masters of the world. All they have to do is refuse to buy any more US bonds, let alone cash in the ones they already have, and Washington is toast. The Americans know it and are defecating in their shorts. They're relying on the old maxim : "If you owe the bank $10,000 you've got a problem. If you owe it $10 million, IT has a problem." It's the same mentality that was adopted by the Russian Roulette jockeys on Wall Street. The government couldn't afford to let'em sink. The stategy pundits in Beijing will be considering when, how or even if they'll pull the plug, but one way or the other, they WILL some day be the puppet masters and then, as I said, the US lunacy and hypocrisy of the 20'th century might seem benign by comparison.

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  • 439. At 9:49pm on 15 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    438..I still think the wars and genocides in the last century had at their root the antics of Wall Street in period after the First World War John...and what the Chinese noticed was that the more trouble Wall Street caused the richer the USA got....while millions of people in other countries died and their lands were laid waste and their empires ended up under the control of Washington and the CIA.

    And the secret behind it all was what I call Marx Brother`s Economics ...of the sort that never gives a sucker an even break!

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  • 440. At 10:08pm on 15 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    There's an old saying, worcesterjim (is that a sauce, maybe?) .....

    "Might makes right". When a nation has power, either by conquest or by circumstantial evolution, then that nation WILL use the power.
    It's a corollary of Parkinson's Law. They won't be able to help themselves and Tibet and Tiananmen Square have shown us that the silken glove does indeed contain a steel fist.
    I'd lay money on Taiwan being the first to succumb, either quasi-voluntarily or by embargo. It's their historical thorn in the side and they most definitely do not forget (opium wars, neither!)
    It's good to chat with people who have something to say.
    Beats the hell out of CSI, that's for sure.

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  • 441. At 10:36pm on 15 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    I`m within a mile of the famous sauce works...but it`s owned by a foreign conglomerate ....and the sauce is made elsewhere I believe John.

    Certainly I can`t detect the odour of sauce these days..but as the works is in Pakistani-occupied territory I don`t go up there as much.

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  • 442. At 10:53pm on 15 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    I've lived in ethnically-diverse towns on both sides of the Atlantic and I appreciate the nervousness that some areas can foment. (I once inadvertently got off the N.Y. subway at South Bronx and promptly aged ten years in a half-hour.) I think the racial/religious question is even more troubling than the international politics we've been discussing.
    We'll leave that for another time, eh ?
    By the bye, I once blew up my motorcyle one Sunday midnight in Ombersley (about a zillion years ago) and pushed it all the way to Worcester.
    I smelled something that night, but I don't think it was sauce.
    Anyways, bedtime for bozo. Hasta luego.

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  • 443. At 10:56pm on 15 Jan 2011, hms_shannon wrote:

    Its all going to end in tears.

    China is buying US & Euro bonds for two reasons,& its win win.

    1/Because it can & by supporting this way "he who pays the piper",ect.

    2/If it did not the Dollar & Euro would drop in value giving them an edge
    over the Yuan.
    Thank goodness its not a good idea to shoot your best customer so for the time being China gets stronger & the others weaker until ???.

    John Davies,as one fellow human being to another,flee this blog whilst you can,it will get in your head,flee flee or your doomed, dooomed I tell thee.....

    Ps, 434 was a great post..

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  • 444. At 11:11pm on 15 Jan 2011, Interestedforeigner wrote:

    405. At 2:44pm on 14 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    To Interested Foreigner, sounds like you're a Canuck.
    CBC TV isn't too bad. Their radio is good to excellent (Stewart McClean's Vinyl Cafe an' all).
    To be fair to our US cousins, there is still one source of news for those who walk upright on two legs. That is of course PBS (or "longhair television" as someone described it to me in Atlanta)

    [[You raise two really important points.

    First, the CBC/SRC performs the role of an arm's length public broadcaster - the same role as the BBC and Australian Broadcasting. It plays the invaluable role in terms of keeping public debate honest. A democracy needs a non-commercial broadcaster that isn't subject to the editorial pressures and whims of advertisers. This is where the US broadcasters fall down so badly. It also needs a broadcaster with a national mandate to present serious public affairs programming.

    We often think only of television, but CBC Radio has for many years had outstanding public affairs programming. "As it Happens" is an institution.

    As it turns out the CBC also does superior presentation of sports, be it HNIC, the Olympics, or anything else, but that it merely our good fortune. This is a top-notch, properly funded national broadcaster, and a national treasure.

    If the CBC were not there, we would be stuck with CTV, and that would be a wasteland.

    The problem with PBS is that it is a tiddler as compared to the commercial alternatives. Its public affairs programming is excellent, but nobody watches it. That's the second point about the CBC: it is properly funded by the public. The public stipend for the CBC is one of the best value-for-money bargains going: for a very small amount of money it provides a very powerful defensive bulwark of the institutions of our democracy. Of course the present government hates the CBC. What a surprise.]]

    "God, don't ya just miss the Trudeau years? Ya never knew what the hell he would come out with next."

    [[Yes, I do miss him, even though I campaigned against him four times. I rather preferred Bob Stanfield, but that is not to diminish Trudeau. He was a remarkable man of substance and intellect, and a truly great civil libertarian, notwithstanding the imposition of The War Measures Act in 1970.]]

    "Je vous remerci pour le commentaire."
    "A la prochaine."

    [[Bien sur. De rien.]]


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  • 445. At 11:11pm on 15 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    442 and 443..I agree with both of you...
    John....Know Ombersley very well and get our meat there....no sign of abandoned BSA Road Rockets anywhere now!

    South Bronx...a mere walk in the park! I got myself lost in South Central LA with my nine year old son. Everyone was so surprised to find me sight-seeing on the sidewalk that no harm came to us...but perhaps that was because the police scooped us into a police car in seconds!

    UKW....is that a John Laurie/Dad`s Army "doomed"? I couldn`t agree more....let`s find something more constructive to do...like...er...um

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  • 446. At 11:20pm on 15 Jan 2011, Gea Vox wrote:

    If anyone spewed the kind of rhetoric Sarah Palin the Tea Party use, the whole of conservative America would be up in arms - and I mean arms! - but when the shoe is on the other foot, then reportng this reality is 'reprehensible.

    Well, America has had so many warnings about its unhinged, unbalanced young men, swept-up in precisely the =kind of rHATEoric of Sarah Palin and Sharon Angle, that the only thing that seems surprising to me that anyone IS surprised!

    Hate grows like a weed adn talking about 'love' and 'God' does nothing to suppress its insidious spread. A generation of young men and women are being poisoned by the conservative, right, conservapedia, the Tea Party, creationism, homophobia, islamophobia and a raft of other brands of hate speech

    The world has seen this before... In Nazi Germany!

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  • 447. At 05:13am on 16 Jan 2011, BienvenueEnLouisiana wrote:

    Gea Vox, the US is not Nazi Germany; by suggesting that Sarah Palin, Sharon Angle, conservatives, and the right are similar to the Nazis because of their "hate speech" you are watering the very weeds of hate speech you find insidious; it is no different than calling all Republicans racist which is equally inaccurate. The people on the right are not the monsters you think them to be.

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  • 448. At 05:15am on 16 Jan 2011, edswed wrote:

    Was it Aldous Huxley who said "the main problem with life is that the maniacs and psychopaths are so sure of themselves and the rest of us are so filled with doubt>"
    Who can doubt that Ms Palin will create one helluva hole she won't be able to get out of before she's - hopefully before - she's elected president!

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  • 449. At 05:38am on 16 Jan 2011, d_m wrote:

    re any #, worcesterjim:

    WJ, the world, I think, is a better place than you know, though reading blogs like this, and the news in general, might not always provide evidence of it.

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  • 450. At 05:55am on 16 Jan 2011, d_m wrote:

    re 443, ukwales:

    Don't overlook Chinas internal problems. They are considerable. A huge population with rising expectations and an inability to provide for those expectations. I believe considerable unrest boils just below the surface in China.

    Another current and significant worry for China is the melting of the 'third' pole. That would be the glacial and snow pack areas in the mountains north of India. Glacial and snow melt and annual rain fall from that area feeds all of China's major rivers, as well southeast asia. If global warming seriously affects that area, as it seems to be doing, China will have almost insurmontable problems to deal with.

    Here's one source to look at:

    http://www.nature.com/news/2008/080723/full/454393a.html



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  • 451. At 07:55am on 16 Jan 2011, hugh wells wrote:

    Sarah Palin is not acceptable to the GOP because she lacks necessary qualities including those necessary to win against other candidates from the republican party she let McCaine down badly last time round and would likely make a fool of herself next time.

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  • 452. At 09:43am on 16 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    McCaine's pandering to the Hispanic population, by favouring amnesty for illegal aliens, is what let McCain down. Funny how he changed his tune on that since he got kicked to the curb, by the American public and by his party as well.

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  • 453. At 09:54am on 16 Jan 2011, Roy Gathercoal wrote:


    It might be that Sarah Palin's antics are a strategic and cynical move in establishing a political career (and it helps sell a ton of books). It might also be that the political system--like an ecological system--selects in those who find an evolutionary niche. Maybe Ronald Reagan, Dan Quayle, Gerald Ford, George W. Bush and Sarah Palin keep happening because the system selects them in.

    A few things many British and other European observers of political life in America find incomprehensible.

    These comments might help make sense out of a lot that goes on. It is unstylishly long, but the political situation in the US is complicated, and from a distance--sometimes even a short distance--incomprehensible.

    (1) This country is huge. So big with so much space between populations that much that is said is ignored. We do not have a common language in the US, but a lowest common denominator of an incomprehensible collection of dialects and the "public language of ideologically identifiable groups."

    The very character traits that are prized in one part are loathed in another. "Fighting words" here is just strategic "trash talk" there. We all ignore most of what we just don't get. There just aren't many Country-Western rapper kings.

    Vice President candidates can be the exception--remember Dan Quayle? Yet Republican President George H.W. Bush believed he needed Dan Quayle's ability to talk with people who just didn't understand--or trust--an apparently well educated candidate from (essentially) the wealthy "don't buy your own groceries" isolated class.

    Initially in the US, the Vice President was the loser of the Presidential election. That system didn't work so well. We replaced it with a system in which the Vice Presidential candidate is supposed to be very different from the Presidential candidate, for one to pick up more of those votes from all those voters who just cannot understand the other.

    Folksy former actor (and California Governor) Ronald Reagan picked a conservative financial figure in George H.W. Bush as his Vice President, although a Sarah Palin figure would have been a much closer fit to his own rhetoric. Sarah Palin is more likely to become another Vice Presidential candidate if she is incomprehensible to whoever wins the Republican nomination than if she is in any serious way similar.

    There are just too many way-different people here to risk a running mate who makes sense to the Presidential candidate. Winning is not about consistency, it is about the diversity of your overall message, what you together can be to the most people.

    For aspiring US political figures it often seems "there is no bad publicity." Whoever you are most unlike is likely to be the villain personified by a substantial number of voters.

    (2) Our two-party system has effectively locked out any new serious political players. There are few exceptions, notably Roosevelt's Bull Moose party, and more recently the self-financed campaign of Texan Ross Perot. (He seemed weird, too--didn't he?)

    One important implication of this is the irrelevance of most of the parties' activities to most of the people. Unlike political realities in Canada, Italy, Germany, Spain and Great Britain, to name a few--we have no functioning regional political parties. There are no single-issue political parties here--even the Greens have been unsuccessful at breaking into mainstream political life.

    Instead, the two major parties, chameleon-like, morph to fit whatever the local climate might be. Former Democratic Speaker Tip O'Neil famously said "all politics are local." This has been taken to mean that local issues drive elections. It could also be understood to mean that there is no common national political election--only an amalgamation of the results of a million local issue triumphs. On the other hand, Mr. O'Neil, Newt Gingrich, Nancy Pelosi, and Sarah Palin never won a national election.

    (3) This leads to a greater importance of single-issue politics. Like water in the West, immigration in the Southwest, corporate desertion in the rust belt, and unimaginable population growth in many hot spots all over the map, So many, many people will vote for a candidate as one chance--even a long shot--that some sanity will return to some local issue. All successful national politicians have learned that if they say the right thing to someone who is shaking their hand, that same person will either not pay attention to national debates or will calculate that what happens on this one issue counts more than everything else combined.

    (4) When you factor in just how different the voting experience in various places in the US works and how inconvenient it is in most places, most people who vote are recruited with social power, or have relatively large amounts of time during the workday. Like juries, voters are not representative of the population.

    This effect is magnified by the electoral college model--as outdated a way to run an election as you are likely to find--in which elections are won by close contests in a few key states. Most voters don't understand the system--the average voter believes that their vote for a Republican in Hawaii or a Democrat in Utah makes a bit of difference. Even if 49% of the votes in California go to each party, the one with the highest "point" after the 49% wins all the electoral college votes for that state.

    Thus, even "landslide" honestly contested national elections are determined not by 70% or 80% of the vote, but by a few percentage points. The 45% of voters who will vote their party no matter what will not decide an election but the 10% of those who don't really care about the parties' ideological bases are critical.

    (6) National politics in the US has become a full-time occupation. Political office holders are always campaigning for public favor (the opposition in Italy reportedly doesn't want to pull down the government because they are unsure how they would do in elections given the current climate). But where else in the world are relative unknowns traveling to two small states to begin their campaigns two full years before the elections? You have to experience politics in Iowa and New Hampshire to understand why US politicians do what they do.

    This makes the two parties' primaries--not the national election--the main deal. Any candidate that does not exceed expectations (whatever they might be) in Iowa and New Hampshire will never make it onto the ballot--without regard to how popular they might be in New York, California, Pennsylvania or Florida.

    So Sarah Palin will succeed not by pleasing anyone reading this blog, but by the ordinary-but-not-representative-of-the-population voters in a few states. In a real sense only political losers care about whether a national politician makes sense during the campaign. It is just not relevant.

    (7) Finally, no one really understands the effect and the impact of talk radio on political decisions in the United States. Both Conservatives and Liberals (or at least, Republicans and Democrats) have their shows and it is quite easy to spend the whole day listening to a variety of apparently important people engaged in little other than massive character assassination and issue-misinformation.

    Democrat Al Franken--the comedian--was elected as Senator from Minnesota. His political experience and qualifications were based almost entirely on his opposition to Rush Limbaugh and then Fox News. His subsequent establishment of "Air America", a liberal political talk show network. Did much to establish his candidacy by raising the money and support he needed.

    It isn't often that the author of a book as pointed as "Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Liar" will become a national leader. Except, perhaps, in Italy.

    All this is not at all intended to be a defense for Sarah Palin's rhetoric or myopic worldview. I would consider her to be a disaster as a major player in Washington. But remember that she had been elected governor of a state. Obviously some people trust her more than the other guy.

    Maybe we get what we ask for: That just may be the most sobering reflection.

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  • 454. At 10:28am on 16 Jan 2011, amaryr wrote:

    Roy Gathercoal @ 453 - an excellent thought provoking post.

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  • 455. At 10:31am on 16 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    453...Well said Roy Gathercole for what resonates with me in your British colony as an intelligent but sympathetic overview of your society.

    The problem is that the narrative of myths and fantasies America has spun for itself are simply not up to the job of holding such a disparate and complex society together.

    It`s a bit like putting Wild Bill Hicock in charge of a lunar module armed with the Old Testament for an instruction book!

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  • 456. At 11:19am on 16 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    Well, good morning to the chattering classes ! 'scuse the late start.
    When you're 105 years old, it takes a while to "shake up the bones" (Bleak House?) And my nurse insisted on doubling my medication so that I can keep up with youz guys.
    Jimbob, it wasn't a Rocket, it was a DBD32 Gold Star and it didn't end up in Ombersley. As I said, I pushed the little effer to Worcester and slept the remainder of the night with it in a gas station lean-to (true love or what?) Ombersley, on a cold February night in 1970 was a quiet place, let me tell you.
    So we're all agreed then? The US is a dynamic, but flawed society and will probably not change much any time soon. I really can't see them being suicidal enough to elect a walking joke that makes Regan and GWB look like Salman Rushdie. But, you never do know, eh ?
    Can we now tippy-toe into the minefield that worcesterjim alluded to?
    i.e the ethnnic question, and let's be careful, eh? It's currently the most toxic and explosive issue in our Western societies (no pun intended)
    I'll kick off by saying that I've been around long enough to know that there are but two types of human....there are decent, considerate, honest folks and then there are the other kind. No group, defined any which way you like, has a monopoly on either. Personally, I adore spending time with people from a totally different background to my own, particularly with Asians, whose cultural history transcends the Western world by many centuries. In fact, a lot of Amero-European culture is derived from the East. The problem is that development on our planet has gone in fits and starts from day one, and since the Middle Ages, "the West" has been dominant. This resulted in colonisation, exploitation and sometimes persecution, not to mention a megabuck slave-trade.
    "History is bunk" said Henry Ford and he was right. But the problem is that when your present tense isn't too bright, your cultural history has the rose-tinted appeal of any other "mind altering substance".
    Billy Connolly, god bless his lunacy, once remarked that "Religion is just crowd control." Very astute Big Yin. ALL religion, not just Islam or Catholicism. ALL organised religion is about people telling you what to think and what to do (and oh yes, throw some money our way while you're at it)
    It's a collective responsibility. People from all sides of the ethnic divides have to be reminded constantly, that there's only ONE race...the HUMAN race, and that if you want to bend east and recite jibberish or bend west and recite mishmash, then fine, but you can't shove it up any one else's jaxi. That way leads to hell.
    Live and let live is the only way forward, and it's not easy. Let's try.
    Over to you.

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  • 457. At 12:34pm on 16 Jan 2011, Paul wrote:

    Sarah Palin 'doeth protest too much'. In her society, she states, all are entitled to an opinion. Except, in her opinion, those she refers to as stoking up a blood libel. Sarah Palin's rush to defend her self reflects more that she over-personalises these commentators remarks, and somewhat immaturely spites back, seemingly unable to see others commentary as an expression of their individuality. Don't most of us grow out of this as we become adults?

    That prized concept of individualism, that seems to be part of the american mindset, appears to inhibit their capacity to see the bigger picture and the role of social influence on how individuals function. I The general consensus, from what I understand, is that Sarah Palin and everyone else is a product of their family values and immediate culture. Maybe Sarah Palin's evangelical stance may benefit statementship skills.

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  • 458. At 12:44pm on 16 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    To Jim Gathercoal (453) Fine summary, sir. All so very true.
    There's an old Australian curmugeon called Clive James who has done a deal of commenting on TV from around the world, and in an attempt to explain the US psyche to the UK audience, he once remarked : "What you have to realise is that, in the US of A, all things migrate towards the condition of show-business". He is so right and this applies particularly to the media (with their info-entertainment mind-set) and politics, which has for a long time been a real-life soap-opera.
    I don't believe the US public would do anything but yawn if someone were to re-run the incisive Lincoln ~ Douglas debates of the mid 1800's.
    Palin's "u-betcha's" are the fast food they crave now.
    It was the contempt that GWB had generated which led to the election of the most mentally astute president since FDR.
    If Iraq, Afghanistan, N'orlins and the bank crash hadn't happened, Obama wouldn't have been given the time of day. Problem is, he's handcuffed.

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  • 459. At 12:52pm on 16 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    John Davies sounds like my sort of thinker ...but that`s perhaps because we originate from the same "socialst" post-war Britain where we realised that we were history and not in charge of it any longer now capiatalism was finished with us and had moved on to the USA.

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  • 460. At 1:30pm on 16 Jan 2011, hms_shannon wrote:

    445. At 11:11pm on 15 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:


    UKW....is that a John Laurie/Dad`s Army "doomed"?

    Yes there is no other :)
    --------------------------

    I couldn`t agree more....let`s find something more constructive to do...like...er...um

    Yes there is lots & lots to do,like ..er ..um,I know! one can not label
    fellow posters who have a different way of looking at things,then give them both barrels thinking thems the ones who gave one a hard time in the past.Of course Jim lad I am referring to "me" not you.

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  • 461. At 1:31pm on 16 Jan 2011, jamesthefoodie wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 462. At 2:01pm on 16 Jan 2011, hms_shannon wrote:

    450. At 05:55am on 16 Jan 2011, d_m wrote:
    re 443, ukwales:

    Don't overlook Chinas internal problems. They are considerable. A huge population with rising expectations and an inability to provide for those expectations. I believe considerable unrest boils just below the surface in China.
    --------------------------
    There are tens of million Chinese migrant workers that could upset the
    apple cart,but with folk just grateful for work at very low wages its a massive engine that is being harnessed.China has morphed in to capitalist
    semi communist/socialist thingy & built up its wealth on the backs of them who once had a hand to mouth existence planting rice.They also added
    to that mix,pride in the nation,this nationalism along with new found wealth in the hands of hard liners could lead to who knows what.They are playing a long game with a skill that has long disappeared here in the west.

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  • 463. At 3:26pm on 16 Jan 2011, Interestedforeigner wrote:

    453 ... was a good post.

    The thing is, while that list of problems is well known, the people who oppose solving any of them are very well funded, and have virtually unlimited access to broadcast media.

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  • 464. At 5:05pm on 16 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    463 Absolutely true "If"....and I wonder if it`s time we started to factor in religious sects ....and different parts of the media...and the powerful aspects of our economies..like the banks ...as POLITICAL PARTIES!

    Just consider this BBC website`s influence over your nation`s politics and then ask yourself to what degree there is any democratic oversight over the content and tone of what it chooses to "report" or not "report"?

    How much democratic control did you have over the 2008 financial crisis?

    How much control have you over the activities of religious orders in your country?

    No ....I am not leading up to making a case for a totalitarian Big Brother... state involving itself in every aspect of your lives...BUT

    I AM asking you to consider how much real power and influence we voters and our elected politicians can POSSIBLY have over how "successful" our governments term`s of office are by voting in elections and joining political parties?

    We all have various loyalties but in a complex multicultural multifaith multiracial society HOW can we govern society when there is such complex web of loyalties,motives and agendas...some of which are not even seen as political at all?

    An example would be the way that the bankers and their City of London ...and Roman Catholicism ...and Islam ...and the BBC as a propogandist... have far more influence over what "the British Government" does than was the case thirty years ago.

    But the British electorate have never marched through London ...or voted them their newly acquired power....or created political parties to press for this to happen.

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  • 465. At 6:46pm on 16 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    Was it not De Tocqueville who in the early 1800's defined democracy as :-"The tyranny of an ignorant majority"?
    Now, add to that a muck-raking, self-serving, profit-driven media that leads the ignorant majority round by the privates, and voila ..... modern day politics !!

    Vive la mort, vive la guerre, vive le sacré mercenaire !!!

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  • 466. At 7:58pm on 16 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #457

    "Sarah Palin 'doeth protest too much'. In her society, she states, all are entitled to an opinion. Except, in her opinion, those she refers to as stoking up a blood libel."


    You miss the point. Everyone is entitled to opinions. People are also entitled to disagree with each other on the content of those opinions.

    But not on the right to have them.

    It's a simple distinction, which most people are capable of making.

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  • 467. At 9:26pm on 16 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    465...John...a democracy in which the majority live in ignorance and without the benefit of education can be turned into a tyrrany by the media.....but can the media exercise the same influence over educated people with a variety of sources of information and ideas?

    What we constantly do after wars and genocides and other social disasters ....is avoid examining how apparently sophisticated educated and informed people in first world societies (like Germany/Austria between the wars) could come to act with such savagery.

    And what we are fobbed off with be the victors is nonsense about whole societies being "hypnotised" into acting totally outside their normal character and beliefs..

    We aren`t encouraged to examine this issue properly and
    scientifically ...though we are endlessly reminded of the more gruesome events....because our media seem to think we enjoy sadism and cruelty for entertainment.

    The reason I raise this issue is that the work of the Red Cross and Soros` Open Society Foundation (and many other well intentioned but unrealiistic people) seems to involve liberating folk like the Roma people to wander all over Europe unchecked ..... bringing their interesting cultural heritage to areas not previously used to their presence.

    Of course the kind but stupid people who encourage this idea have no interest in the problems this creates for settled communities....and cheerfully persecute anyone who does protest with accusations of inhumanity and bigotry and racism.As is our modern puritanical wont!

    What seems to have escaped them is that this is a rather chilling re-run of events in the last century....but as children are not taught about these things in any depth perhaps they just can`t see the connection?

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  • 468. At 10:40pm on 16 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    It all hinges, Jim Vertis, on what is meant by "education."
    My previous point about American society is that so much of their belief about their own history, and that of others, is dressed-up nonsense that's straight out of Hollywood. There are states which ban Mark Twain and John Steinbeck and to quote certain atheistic writers can get you hammered, or worse, in the Bible Belt.
    They've even opened a "creationist museum", which would be hilarious if it weren't so serious.
    Ignorance is a scalar quantity and you're right, lack of genuine info. and - even worse - possession of mythological "fact", invites manipulation by media, government, church and any other random con-men.
    By the way, don't tell me about the Roma. I've spent time in Bulgaria !

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  • 469. At 11:55pm on 16 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    468 Well John...I suppose the big problem is our habit of using the oldest form of politics....religion....and religion relies not on understanding or verifiable facts and science but on something called "faith"....which turns out to be more or less whatever the faithful want it to be.How remarkably convenient for humbugs everywhere!

    In my earlier discussions with the American "faithful" who claimed to "believe in the Bible" it soon became obvious that the New Testament section in American bibles has gone missing...and that when I drew a parallel with 9/11 and the "day of wrath" in Revelations or mentioned a few of the more well known sayings atributed to Jesus...like loving your enemy and turning the other cheek and not killing people and not storing up wealth ...and throwing moneylenders out of temples..etc.NO RESPONSE!

    Well John you really could have heard a pin drop around here ....(but not a penny).... until these "Gentle Jesus" God-fearing Christians folks started rambling about guns again....they certainly have faith in guns....but God is going to have to wait a while longer!

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  • 470. At 02:06am on 17 Jan 2011, lindabee1950 wrote:

    are you for real?

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  • 471. At 08:39am on 17 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 472. At 09:03am on 17 Jan 2011, Roy Gathercoal wrote:

    After having spent so much space talking about some of the realities--many of which are not particularly flattering--I think it is only fair to mention again many of the truly dysfunctional and popular governments and leaders of postwar Europe, Canada, Australia, etc.

    Can one really separate Reagan/Bush/Bush from Thatcher? (Wasn't she made a peer after she left #10?)

    Perhaps the only thing that surprised me more than George W. Bush's re-election was the immense political cover given him by the "Liberal" government in London, led by Tony Blair, who we thought was Bill Clinton's political brother.

    So the US is a megalomaniac, gun-toting, immature pseudo-republic run primarily by money. I can look around me and admit, with some despair and not a little shame, there are good grounds for at least some version of these claims. I still don't understand why we grabbed Florida on entirely silly grounds, went on a huge land grab from Mexico, ended up being the primary funder of the Korean war, got suckered into a French-inspired quagmire in Vietnam, invaded Grenada, captured a sitting president of an allied country in his own capital for trial on drug charges, or invaded Iraq after 9/11, among many other embarrassments.

    But I really can't understand why it was the British government--not that of the USA--which insisted the loudest about the need to go to war (again) with Iraq because Hussein was dangerous. My God, isn't the world filled with dangerous people and governments? What about Myanmar, Pakistan, Israel, Palestine, Syria, North Korea, and a number of now-mostly-unstable Central Asian countries?

    What is going on with Australia's treatment of the rest of the islands in those parts?

    Why has there been only good words and a few tokens sent to Haiti? (And from where and from whom did the classic developing world dictators, such as the recently returned Haitian former leader, get the resources to subdue their own countries, and the protection from prosecution after they have been ousted?)

    Isn't Haiti Francophone? Why is it the US, and not France, who is taking the lead (and committing national debt) to whatever humanitarian work actually makes it to the people who have been so desperately harmed?

    Sarah Palin is a political light-weight.

    She is an opportunist and has ill-advisedly abandoned her own state to make ill-advised endorsements of some really weird people in parts of the country she knows nothing about.

    She is politically inconsistent and went from naive to embattled to some strange status as representative of the "abused small-guy" who always gets beaten by much-better educated and unbelievably privileged people who always seem to get incredibly "lucky" at all the right times. Of course it looks like a small group of elitists profiting at the expense of the huge majority of people.

    Sarah Palin has enough political instinct to understand this. She knows that most folks in the US are so convinced that no matter what, the small, secretive, tightly networked elite are going to win. They will say the right things and end up twisting the political rhetoric around so that right and wrong are matters of charm and money.

    Who can really say that is all that different from many of the demogogues--some of which have actually been elected to national office (an accomplishment Sarah Palin has never yet achieved)--who have said and done really stupid things in other countries?

    I watched with great interest the last televised debates in the French elections. Huh?

    So let us practice a little "fairness doctrine" of our own, here. Most countries of the world have their embarrassments

    Who can explain just how Italy's governmental structure really works?

    What's with the Canadian Separatists--and those who seemed to thrive by baiting them? Why can't BC and Ontario seem to get along?

    Let's agree that sometimes, the idiots end up running the show, and it is not helpful to blame their actions and words on the people whose hurts and anger they have used to achieve their money and power.

    Whether Sarah Palin or someone even less prepared to govern wins a future major election in the US is more a matter of how content the people feel.

    It isn't fair and it doesn't make sense. But it is better than shooting, or poisoning, or socially humiliating, a political opponent.

    Can ewe agree on that much?

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  • 473. At 09:07am on 17 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    Once again the CIA controlled BBC is afraid to publish my post...which will lead me to ask why British folk are bullied into paying billions of pounds every year to provide an adoring handmaiden and mirror to the enorormous American ego.

    It seems that you folks are to be saved from facing the perfectly reasonable comments I made in response to poor dear little Linda`s vexed question @ 470....but then the BBC is as much out of touch with reality (and up its own backside) as you people are.

    I hope you aren`t happy together...because you both need a hefty dose of the truth!And a lot less of British people`s money!

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  • 474. At 09:25am on 17 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    The root-cause problem is that anyone who purposefully attempts to migrate into "public office" should be banned from doing so on the grounds that he (she) is either a fruitcake, a sheister or just bored with life. The first largely covers the UK scene, the second is US territory and #3 is definitely Canada. The Ozzies are just drunks.

    So, from whence do we get our civic leaders ??
    There's a Ph.D in that for someone.

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  • 475. At 09:42am on 17 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    472 Roy...it`s very simple.

    By the end of WW1 we were a busted flush in Britain ..and your financial psychopaths on Wall Street were free to wreck the entire global economy....which they have been doing ever since....until China played the ultimate joker and got you usurers into debt!

    By the end of WW2 Britain was entirely ruined and the USA took over effective control of what has been a completely fraudulent and surreal society ever since then.

    Nothing our politicians do has any bearing on how Britain proceeds and behaves in the world unless it is endorsed by and suits the interests of Americans...and never mind what happens to us Brits!

    Just look at "our" self-destructive... financially ruinous... self-defeating behaviour since WW2 ....and ask yourself why we might have done any of it if we had been acting in our own best interests as a nation ....and as a people who fought wars to build a land fit for OUR heroes?

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  • 476. At 10:57am on 17 Jan 2011, JClarkson wrote:

    #473

    "Once again the CIA controlled BBC is afraid to publish my post..."


    Those willy CIA spooks...

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  • 477. At 11:10am on 17 Jan 2011, U14752247 wrote:

    Sarah Who?*

    Sarah Palin on facebook.

    Hide Feedback (32,068) · Share

    * Republican hopeful + joke candidate

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  • 478. At 12:38pm on 17 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    476...So glad you agree with me.....that confirms what I`ve heard about the network of torture chambers you lot have kindly provided to remind us who is boss .....and what you really mean by freedom, democracy and the rule of YOUR law!. Very thoughtful of you Mr Clarkson-Hammond-May!

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  • 479. At 12:50pm on 17 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    477...Bob...It would be wise to think about what sort of impression a U-tube video of you expressing your opinions would make before casting the umpteenth stone at Mrs Palin.

    The liberal world you inhabit boasts some of the biggest wallies in Christendom whose comments are often so inane that the BBC`s little gang of "satirists" would destroy them in seconds.....if they didn`t happen to agree with their barmy ideas themselves....or realise that their jobs depended on only criticing the Beeb`s enemies!

    Go on....look back at some of your posts and try to be objective...sarcasm is the lowest form of pretty much everything!

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  • 480. At 12:53pm on 17 Jan 2011, Chryses wrote:

    Roy Gathercoal, (#472. At 09:03am on 17 Jan 2011)

    ”... I still don't understand why we grabbed Florida on entirely silly grounds, went on a huge land grab from Mexico, ended up being the primary funder of the Korean war, got suckered into a French-inspired quagmire in Vietnam, invaded Grenada, captured a sitting president of an allied country in his own capital for trial on drug charges, or invaded Iraq after 9/11, among many other embarrassments ...”
    I recommend studying History.

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  • 481. At 1:35pm on 17 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    480 He probably has studied history Chryses or he wouldn`t be able to form that comment.....but perhaps he relies on more conventional and accurate sources of information than the cinematic "Gospel According to Spielburg School of Fiction" that most Americans are raised on?

    And instead of being so cryptic...why not try to answer his question using joined up thinking based on something other than the Reader`s Digest Book of Put-Downs?

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  • 482. At 2:15pm on 17 Jan 2011, Chryses wrote:

    worcesterjim, (#481. At 1:35pm on 17 Jan 2011)

    “Put down?” What put down? The study of History seems to me to be the best course for Mr. Gathercoal to take. :)

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  • 483. At 3:24pm on 17 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    Sorry Chryses...I had forgotten why I made a mental note to steer clear and look elsewhere for a free-flowing intelligent debate.I won`t be so silly again.

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  • 484. At 6:48pm on 17 Jan 2011, Chryses wrote:

    worcesterjim, (#483. At 3:24pm on 17 Jan 2011)

    ... I won`t be so silly again.”
    We shall see.

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  • 485. At 9:56pm on 17 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    Jim wrote: Once again the CIA controlled BBC is afraid to publish my post...which will lead me to ask why British folk are bullied into paying billions of pounds every year to provide an adoring handmaiden and mirror to the enorormous American ego.
    --------
    The CIA is out there, Jim, yes, but why would they frequent BBC blogs?

    Seems a bit peculiar to me...

    But of course, I am an American who is pro-CIA...I know they've made mistakes because they are human and humans make mistakes, but I sleep better at night knowing they are out there protecting...

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  • 486. At 10:01pm on 17 Jan 2011, LucyJ wrote:

    Jim wrote: Americans learned from British mistakes and created their empire using less obvious techniques to take control of foreign countries...but I can`t imagine the USA letting China fight a war for control of Mexico or Panama or Alaska without viewing it as a serious provocation...and threatening retaliation.
    ---------------
    You're right about that...
    ----------------
    Jim wrote: Maybe China has developed the ultimate way of taking control of the world.... by not BOTHERING to have any sort of political control of other countries at all.....and just leaving the politics and governments alone in exchange for access to their markets and resources?All China needs is financial control and rest is easy.
    ---------------
    Sounds like a monopoly to me...
    ---------------
    Jim wrote: After all...China now has America in so much debt she can never repay it.....and if President Obama wants the Chinese government to alter the exchange rate of the Chinese currency he can`t send a gun boat or enslave the Chinese with opium like we did.....he has to ASK for their co-operation.
    ---------------
    Of course, we can repay it. It may take some time, sure. In all honesty, I don't really understand why we owe them money, but if its not helping us, maybe its time to take our business elsewhere, like Mexico, for example, or even India...

    If someone keeps walking by a thorny bush and gets scratched every time, at some point that person will likely cut part of hte bush down so they stop getting scratched...
    ---------------
    Jim wrote: And they are making him wait in that age old way that masters have of showing their inferiors who is boss!
    -------------

    USA is inferior to no one.

    And that's that.

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  • 487. At 10:09pm on 17 Jan 2011, LGB on LI wrote:

    It is a sad but true given that "(s)he who has the most money wins" in most political elections here in the US (the recent California races belying that truth). Saturation advertising costs money, so it is unsurprising that so many otherwise disinterested parties hitched their wagon to this tragic shooting merely to garner some free face time in the media.

    What is an interesting phenomenon about this huge country is how over the course of a few ticks of the news clock the story can change, as the news sweeps across Eastern, Central, Mountain & Pacific timezones. Here in New York, for example, we were treated to Ms Palin and her "victimhood" well before any left wing pundits began to correlate her vitriol with the tragic shooting –– interesting, no? Methinks the lady (and I use the term loosely) doth protest too much.

    Yes, we cherish our free speech, even to the point of having to actually spell out the bleeding obvious (not being able to yell "Fire!" in a crowded theater because we all know the mayhem that can result); the legal concept of incendiary speech is not new and has been beaten to death over the years. Despite my dislike of the woman, I do not believe her comments fall into this category. However, I do find the current level of political rhetoric needs to be reviewed & modified for another reason ––– it simply lacks class & gravitas, having devolved from a spirited exchange of opposing viewpoints to little more than schoolyard bullying ("Are too! Am not! Liar, liar, pants on fire!", etc., ad nauseum). It gives the appearance that the inmates are indeed running the asylum.

    I was raised to believe that the role of political discourse was to enlighten, not marginalize and wound. The past few administrations (both right & left) have become so divisive and off-course that our political machinations have been reduced to little more than a "Dynasty" cat fight in the fountain...

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  • 488. At 10:19pm on 17 Jan 2011, John Davies wrote:

    Hi Lucy J. Howya doin' ?

    Here's one for your image of US establishment integrity (let's not discuss Chile, Iran, El Salvador, Grenada, Panama etc etc)
    Did you know that the nuclear facility at Hanford, Wa. deliberately released radioactive iodine, strontium, caesium and god knows what else into the local environment and then gave "free" surveys to local farmers and townsfolk in order to database the isotope uptake ??????
    It's not the abuse of power that nauseates, it's the goddamned hypocrisy.
    "National security" is a blank cheque (not "check" by the way) for any US agency that wants to act with impunity. Your CIA are nothing more than state-sponsored criminals. OK, who cares ? But don't play the holier-than-thou game, eh ? "Might makes right", but don't pretend to be angels. The US is just another bully-boy empire and will eventually go the same way as all the rest.

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  • 489. At 10:40pm on 17 Jan 2011, Emps wrote:

    472 Roy Gathercoal wrote:
    What is going on with Australia's treatment of the rest of the islands in those parts?
    ---------------------
    Why,is there a problem we don't know about?

    474 John Davies wrote:
    The Ozzies are just drunks.
    ----------------------------
    Ok as an Australian my only appropriate response to that will be

    "Get done by as two profane words would describe."'

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  • 490. At 11:04pm on 17 Jan 2011, Emps wrote:

    473 Worcesterjim wrote:

    Once again the CIA controlled BBC is afraid to publish my post...which will lead me to ask why British folk are bullied into paying billions of pounds every year to provide an adoring handmaiden and mirror to the enorormous American ego.
    -----------------------------
    The truth is Jim,the british spooks only let the CIA believe they control the BBC. Come on old boy,you need to sharpen your pencil.
    Do you really think the british are bullied so easily?

    Keep up with the episodes old chap.

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  • 491. At 11:30pm on 17 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    490 Emps....Is this the British service that has the CIA`s GCHQ a few miles from me and Qinetiq ten miles away flying planes over my house day and night testing equipment.....or perhaps it`s the British service that doesn`t "do torture" but "knows a lot of folk who do"?

    Come off it ...since 9/11 the Americans have stopped financing the IRA and realised that Londonistan is a hotbed of Islamic bad behaviour...(like 7/7) and so they have taken over control of "our" security for the very good reason that we are daft... and have let folk like Abu Hamza run rings around "us"!

    You are possibly trying to save your job...and though I sympathise with that I also think it`s time Brits got real about our decreasing power and influence and importance as a sovereign state in a fast changing world.

    We do nothing that isn`t OK`d by someone in the USA...and we have the government policies and priorities to prove that beyond doubt.

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  • 492. At 11:48pm on 17 Jan 2011, worcesterjim wrote:

    487 LGB You touch on the funding of elections in this age of mass communications and media influence.

    I am going to put to you that you folks are as afraid to investigate the sources of funding as you are to acknowledge where all your political opinions come from that you hold so strongly.And whoever controls your media and funds elections has a lot more power than is healthy for democracy.

    Your elections cost a fortune (and involve corruption of the sort seen at JFK`s election) because the rich people who rule over you have more money and they know that they can influence politicians by threatening to stop funding them....and they probably do it all the time.It`s happening here too.

    Fair? Well perhaps Lucy thinks so... but it doesn`t take Sherlock Holmes to work out who runs your country ....and it isn`t you voters or even "your" politicians!And what`s more you know it....but you are too proud to blow the whistle!

    Something HAS to be done to control the capitalists who run the world...and if you Americans won`t even admit there`s a problem then the rest of us are in deep sh..erbert!

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