Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

NY Times shills for the shills.

When the Fairness Doctrine talk started, you just knew the Times wouldn't stay silent. But what these poor saps did today was just make things worse for the senators that already have a target on their backs. But hey, even the Times can be helpful even when they're trying to go after ideological foes. The piece is talking about the visceral response these senators were receiving from their constituents, but before you know it, they're taking swipes at talk radio:

The threat came in the weekend mail.

The recipient was Senator Mel Martinez, Republican of Florida, who has been a leading advocate of the proposed legislation for changing the
immigration system. His offices in Washington and across Florida have received thousands of angry messages in recent weeks, but nothing as alarming as that letter he received at his home.

“I’ll turn it over to Capitol police, and we’ll go from there,” said Mr. Martinez, who declined to elaborate on the nature of the threat.

On the eve of a crucial vote on the immigration bill, the Capitol Hill switchboard was deluged again Wednesday as thousands of citizens called their members of Congress — and, perhaps, someone else’s — to weigh in. Not since the impeachment of President
Bill Clinton, several Senate aides said, have the lines been so jammed by a single issue.

Republicans who support the immigration bill are facing unusually intense opposition from conservative groups fighting it. This is among the first times, several of them said, that they have felt the full brunt of an advocacy machine built around conservative talk radio and cable television programs that have long buttressed Republican efforts to defeat Democrats and their policies.

See, it's all talk radio's fault that this started. And I'm sure the Times, like Trent Lott, think that talk radio needs to be dealt with. That's what this piece turns into. Blame the pundits for informing the nation of a bad, bad bill. They started it, right? Wrong. They helped educate an unsuspecting populace because these bastards wanted to do this all in secret. Why? Because they knew if we knew what was in it, this is what our reaction would be.

While the majority of the telephone calls and faxes, letters and e-mail messages have been civil, aides to several senators said, the correspondence has taken a menacing tone in several cases.
Senator Richard Burr, a North Carolina Republican who is undecided on the final immigration bill, said his office received a telephone call recently that “made a threat about knowing where I lived.” Mr. Burr passed it along to the authorities. “There were enough specifics to raise some alarm bells,” he said.

Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican who is one of the architects of the immigration overhaul, said he also had received threats in telephone calls and letters to his office. Mr. Graham said several other senators had told him privately that they also received similar messages.

There’s racism in this debate,” Mr. Graham said. “Nobody likes to talk about it, but a very small percentage of people involved in this debate really have racial and bigoted remarks. The tone that we create around these debates, whether it be rhetoric in a union hall or rhetoric on talk radio, it can take people who are on the fence and push them over emotionally.”

Yes, senator, there is racism in this debate, but it's from a tiny minority of idiots. Those weren't the most vocal opponents of this bill. He might want to peruse Michelle Malkin's site, or Hugh Hewitt's site, or Captain Ed Morrissey's site, or NRO's Corner. There's three vocal opponents, and nothing they said had anything to do with racism. As a matter of fact they all went out of their way to avoid that sort of talk, and admonished those that were perpetuating a racist-like debate. The simple fact of the matter is that the vast majority of those across the nation that were opposed to this bill were against it for one simple reason: Amnesty wasn't the answer to the problem, and we couldn't trust DC to be serious about security and enforcement.

The immigration legislation, a priority of President Bush’s, has divided the Republican Party. For the past month, no other issue has been debated as passionately among conservatives as this bill, which calls for the most sweeping changes to immigration law in two decades.

I guess the times forgot about McCain/Feingold, Harriet Miers, and the Dubai Ports deal that the conservative base passionately and vehemntly debated. And the Times is incorrect -- there would have been no real changes to our immigration laws. It would have been a blanket amnesty, not only in terms of legaliuzed status but also in back taxes owed, and the public wasn't going to stand for it. In addition, the entire bill was concocted in secret, minus the normal committee meetings, and they were vilifying the experts raising question after question over the bill's varied flaws.

At the heart of the opposition rests conservative hosts on talk radio and cable television, which often are a muscular if untamed piece of the Republican message machine.

Muscular? Untamed? Untamed means that nothing holds hosts in cgheck, and that's simply not true. Take it from someone who works in the business. There are plenty of "safeguards" that talk show hosts have to abide by. The muscle comes from the listeners that hear what's said, and then beging to do what most common sense individuals do. They started researching to make sure the talk show host is correct. I dare any senator to call out hugh Hewitt, and say he didn't know what he was writing about when he broke down the bill, it's provisions, and the God-awful mistakes in it. Anyone who does decide to take that challenge had better bring their own squeegee and bucket. He's going to mop the floors with them.

Several senators said Wednesday that they did not care to be identified speaking critically of the broadcasters, fearing the same conservative backlash that befell Senator
Trent Lott, a Mississippi Republican, this month when he declared: “Talk radio is running America. We have to deal with that problem.”

Organizations that have mobilized tens of thousands of people to speak against the immigration legislation said they did not advocate threats. A leading group, Grassfire .org, said that its members had made 250,000 contacts this week with offices of United States senators.

John W. Warner, Republican of Virginia, said he had never seen an issue stir such a public response. “In my 29 years, I’ve experienced all the events in that period of time,” he said, “but this is clearly the high-water mark.”

Since Mr. Warner arrived in the Senate, technology advances have made it easier to deliver more messages to members of Congress. Many e-mail messages sent to the Senate are copied to multiple offices, including one that was forwarded to the authorities this week. Referring to supporters of the bill, it closed with the line: “They need to be taken out by ANY MEANS.”

I sincerely doubt that this particular e-mail advocated violence. If anything, it bears a warning to the shamnesty supporters that 2008, 2010, and 2012 could be election years where long knives are drawn to clean out the parties. The electorate didn't appreciate being handed such an underhanded piece of legislation, and they sure as Hell didn't take kindly to the visceral reaction from the Senate. You don't attack your constituents. We get a little ticked when that happens.

Sgt. Kimberly Schneider, a spokeswoman for the United States Capitol Police, said it was the department’s policy not to discuss potential threats against lawmakers.

As Mr. Graham walked back to his office on Wednesday, he said he doubted that senators would be deterred by any threats. “I’m sure a lot of the people who have taken a high-profile position on this have been threatened, but what are you going to do?” he said. “You saw what happened to
Senator Daschle.”

Yep, sure did, and it was richly deserved. The same fate, we hope, will befall Trent Lott on 2012, and that Lindsey Graham will be bounced from office in 2008. That's what we're talking about. We want these guys out of office because they're not helping the nation. they're helping themselves and ignoring our concerns. Daschle did that, and his obstruction sealed the deal. The comments made by both Lott and Graham sealed the deal for them this time. And if Trent Lott thinks that memories will be short, think again.

Mr. Graham was referring to Tom Daschle, the former Democratic majority leader from South Dakota, whose office received a mailing of anthrax in 2001. The case remains unsolved.

“One of the requirements of public service in modern America is dealing with a few voices that are full of hate,” Mr. Graham said. “And our discourse and the way we politic, the way we engage each other, brings that out.”

No one's saying that @$$holes aren't going to be involved in any debate. But to basically make it sound like we're the ones doing it -- that the majority of people ticked at this bill -- are full of racist hatred. The majority were upset because the bill was bad and the Senate wasn't listening. We were the ones being attacked for having complaints about a terrible piece of legislation. While talk radio may have been the catalyst to the public standing up to the Senate, but we're the ones who stood up. We're the ones that were upset and voicing ourselves to them.

If some people are offended that we spoke up, tough. That's our job as Americans. Thomas Jefferson once stated that "The price of freedom is eternal vigilance." That wasn't just said in defense of the nation. It was meant to be in defense of our rights, as well because Jefferson knew that a government could become despotic. The people are the ultimate check against the government. And I think it's time we start exercising that check to remove the dead, bloated weight from both parties.

Publius II


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