Thursday, October 11, 2007

Isn't There Anything More Pathetic That a 7th Grader Being Swift-Boated?

"I think it's really a sad statement about how bankrupt some of these people are in their arguments against SCHIP that they would attack a 12-year-old boy." - NANCY PELOSI, Speaker of the House

Just when you thought political discourse couldn't get any nastier, a twelve-year-old seventh grader named Graeme Frost became fair game once he provided a response to President Boy George's veto of the expansion of the SCHIP bill. As Time Magazine and the New York Times notes, Frost and his family got the Swift-Boat treatment from right-wingnuts in the blogsphere and their sycopahnic choir -- and GOP operatives were clearly complicit in their latest installment of "Slime Time."

As the blog FireDogLake observes: The American people have many reasons to be repulsed by the Republican Party and their deeply unpopular President. This gang of thugs abandoned every principle they ever professed and instead became the party of corruption, dishonesty, incompetence, coddling the privileged and systematically neglecting the nation’s needs, while debasing the nation’s honor with torture, kidnappings, warrantless spying, aggressive war and unparalleled lawlessness. It is a record unequalled in our history...But even now, their capacity for meanness stuns us. That meanness is on full display in the right wing effort to smear and intimidate the Frost family for supporting SCHIP — and the Republican leadership’s silent acquiescence to having others do its dirty work...Welcome to the Republican Party in the Age of Meanness.

It goes on to note, But thanks to the sheer meanness of the Republican right wing, the SCHIP debate is now more than just about whether America’s children deserve health care. This is about branding the Republican Party, and Bush’s Party is giving itself a very ugly brand...Not only are the Republicans standing against providing health care for children; they’re standing for meanness, intimidation and smearing ordinary Americans who do nothing more than express their support for a public policy that most Americans support...The Republicans in Congress have argued that if a 12 year old expresses a view on a public issue, he and his family are “fair game,” allowing the meanest of their supporters to investigate his family, expose their personal finances, publish their addresses and phone numbers (thus implicitly inviting right wing morons to harrass and intimidate these people)... So exactly what it is about expressing such an opinion that turns this child or millions like him and their families into “fair game” for mean-spirited attacks, invasions of privacy, public exposure and threatening intimidation?...Who are these jerks who think children are “fair game”? And why does the Republican Party tolerate them, use them, invite them to the White House? Where are the condemnations from the Republican Congressional leaders, and especially this Republican President, who created this controversy by his misguided veto and misrepresentations? Do they have any decency left?

Also weighing in are Joe Brewer on AlterNet, Jwhere he comments, "When is a twelve-year-old boy with brain damage a threat? When he exemplifies the good a government program can do when it provides health security to middle-class Americans...Graeme Frost is such a boy, and his existence challenges the notion that health care is a privilege only the wealthy deserve. That's why conservatives are afraid of this little boy.

Additionally, Paul Krugman notes in the New York Times that "All in all, the Graeme Frost case is a perfect illustration of the modern right-wing political machine at work, and in particular its routine reliance on character assassination in place of honest debate. If service members oppose a Republican war, they’re “phony soldiers”; if Michael J. Fox opposes Bush policy on stem cells, he’s faking his Parkinson’s symptoms; if an injured 12-year-old child makes the case for a government health insurance program, he’s a fraud...Meanwhile, leading conservative politicians, far from trying to distance themselves from these smears, rush to embrace them. And some people in the news media are still willing to be used as patsies.

Can you imagine that? A seventh grader being picked on by politicians and bloggers behaving like schoolyard bullies?

Pathetic, isn't it?

Pepto-Bismol, please.

10-17-2007 UPDATE: Just when you think the whole SCHIP brohaha couldn't get any nastier, ThinkProgress reports that Michelle Malkin, the demented en tranvesti lawn jockey of right-wingnuts unleashed her virtol once again -- this time her slime target was two-year old Bethany Wilkerson, who was born with a serious heart defect and received life-saving heart surgery through the SCHIP program. This time, Malkin and wingnut cohort Mark Hemingway of the National Review led their lemmings off the cliff and really went bonkers, attacking her parents for being irresponsible and for making bad choices pertaining to the family's lifestyle.

Now what you expect from a sycophanic bunck of pit-bull attack dogs with diarrhea of the mouth who can't get their facts straight? Remember the controversy surrounding Terri Shivaro a few years back, when pro-life conservatives injected themselves into what would otherwise been a private family conflict? Now what could be more pro-life than expanding SCHIP? The hypocrisy among GOP social conservatives is so thick, you can cut it with a laser beam. And speaking of Michelle Malkin, doesn't she have anything more constructive to do with her life than pick on sickly children who were down?

Two Aleve, please.

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