Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I just heard that 9 people have died from weather related accidents during the blizzard in the Southeast which is now moving up the coast from the Carolinas. That death toll is bound to increase. Fortunately, I see no way for Paul Krugman to attribute these senseless deaths to conservative rhetoric.

It seems to me that being concerned about the looming bankruptcy of the United States and exasperated by the apparent unconcern by our leaders is not vitriolic or hatred, but when those people ignore you, belittle you and accuse you of fomenting violence and hate, it's perfectly human to lose patience. Conservative leaders, commentators and activists have every right to advocate the defeat of liberals and a drastic change in the direction of federal power and spending. That doesn't make them haters, even if they are very angry.

What we are seeing is sophistry, the ad hominem attack which argues that one's opponents are bad people and therefore their position should be rejected. A modern spin is the reverse ad hominem which accuses ones opponents of using "hate speech" thereby making them bad people whose positions should be rejected. The "climate of hate" argument isn't new. It's just egotism run amok.


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