Schadenfreude doesn’t normally do it for me, but I have to admit watching people who think they’re about to lose political power engage in panic-stricken hysterics has a certain appeal.
I’m sure, by now, you’ve heard that the end is near-ish. About a week away. Sure, there were rumblings it was coming when we passed net neutrality. Those who survived were subjected to the fiery lake of burning sulfur known as the Trump tax cuts, which Nancy Pelosi had presciently noted was “armageddon.” “People will die if Trumpcare becomes law,” she warned. Then came the overturning of Roe v. Wade — a decision that “released the whirlwind.” And, now, here we are at the midterms of 2022, the most momentous election not only in your life but perhaps in the history of mankind.
Last night, the President of the United States, a man whose pathological lying has been ratcheted up to surreal levels lately, gave one of the most transparently toxic partisan speeches in memory. Biden, quite paradoxically, warned that American “democracy” could only survive if the nation functioned under one-party rule. Despite historic early turnouts, the president lied about widespread attacks on voting rights, preemptively engaging in the kind of election denialism he contends is “un-American.” Biden has probably forgotten that virtually every major Democrat was an “election denialist” not only in 2016 but in 2000, as well.
The president then blamed the actions of the mentally ill, drug-addled individual who viciously attacked the husband of Nancy Pelosi on all of MAGAdom — which, according to Democrats, includes everyone who disagrees with any of their positions, including a pro-life movement that’s been around forever. Biden, who has likely engaged in more blatant executive abuses than any post-war president, leads a party that makes little distinction between “democracy” and its own power, treating any deviation, whether it be by the courts or voters, as illegitimate and “undemocratic” — a word that has been sapped of any real meaning.
This corrosive hyperbole isn’t only found in the rantings of absurd Twitter celebrities or in the desperate, last-ditch campaigning of a cognitively suspect president. Erstwhile historian Michael Beschloss, a man who imparts his alleged wisdom on the president, warned that the nation was “six days away” from a new GOP dictatorship in which innocent children were at risk of being “arrested and conceivably killed.” This is not the first time Beschloss has dropped insane hyperbole, not long ago claiming “that we are all in existential danger of having our democracy and democracies around the world destroyed,” and it surely won’t be the last.
Sunny Hostin, a cohost of the most popular daytime television show in the country, claimed that white suburban women who backed the GOP were “like roaches voting for Raid.” Hostin is a historical illiterate, perhaps, but surely even she understands that comparing people to bugs is dehumanizing, racist language that would never stand if “white” was replaced by any other identity. But, then, identitarianism is now so firmly embedded in left-wing rhetoric, I doubt she even realizes it. If Tucker Carlson had suggested something similar about anyone, we would be knee-deep in a national conversation, and the ADL would be sending all-points bulletins declaring the country at Defcon one.
That’s just in the past 24 hours.
No one is innocent, of course, but there is a popular myth that maintains the left generally engages in prudent, thoughtful, scientific, non-inflammatory rhetoric, while the right does little more than incite violence and luxuriate in its “sadism.” The “cruelty is the point” is the kind of vacuous phrase that brainless partisans living in hermetically sealed bubbles think is smart.
The media will be out scouring the land to find some nuts who are mocking the Pelosi attack to prove that one side is hankering for violence while largely glossing over the outlandish rhetoric regularly spouted on our biggest platforms. Most Democratic voters surely don’t see the world in these Manichean terms. The “election-denying” left-wing punditry class and media, however, who spy Hitler lurking behind every milquetoast Republican governor, have no problem smearing all those with a slightly different worldview as fascists. In this world, there is no policy debate; there is only alarmism and crass projection from those who desire a one-party state.