Grassroots Commentary

Unprecedented Negativity?

Thomas Berry · May 22, 2012

The Obama re-election campaign’s “Truth Team” e-mail “Tipsheet” of May 20th was sent in anticipation of what it calls “the unprecedented level of negative campaigning we’re going to see from our opponents this year.”

Unprecedented, my foot.

What is being said and published in the effort to defeat President Obama and his agenda is nothing compared to the blatant lies and vicious character assassinations that his party have disseminated for the past several years against conservative Republican politicians and spokespersons, conservative causes such as Ohio SB5 and protection of religious freedom, and ordinary Americans like me who support them.

“Unprecedented negativity”? Ask conservative women about negative. Ask them about Playboy’s list of the top ten conservative women who should be “hate-f**ked.” Ask Laura Ingraham, whom Ed Schultz of MSNBC called a “right-wing slut.”

Ask Wisconsin Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch, whom Democrat talk show host John Sylvester accused of performing “fellatio on all the talk show hosts in Milwaukee” and of engaging in gang sex. Ask ordinary conservative women who are being called whores by Democrats – the party that is supposedly so sensitive to women – about negativity.

Ask conservative columnists Michelle Malkin, who has published a list of media attacks on conservative women on her site at, and S. E. Cupp. Democrats have called Malkin “(a) mashed-up bag of meat with lipstick on it,” and Cupp a demonstration of the necessity of abortion.

Ask Ann Romney, who was attacked for having “never worked a day in her life,” even though she raised five boys while suffering from breast cancer and multiple sclerosis – as conservatives are accused of being insensitive to the sick.

Ask Dr. Condoleeza Rice, who was smeared with vilely racist cartoons crafted by liberals – who call conservatives racially insensitive. The cartoonists would have been fired had they so depicted a more politically correct black person.

Negative? Congressman Paul Ryan has been depicted in an online ad paid for by the pro-Obama Agenda Project as gleefully pushing a wheelchair-bound grandmother off a cliff.

Negative? Democrats have publicly fantasized about President George W. Bush being assassinated and Rush Limbaugh and Justice Clarence Thomas dying horrible and painful deaths, and lamented Vice-President Dick Cheney’s successful heart transplant. They have actively campaigned on demonstrably false grounds to drive Limbaugh and other conservative spokesmen from the airwaves. This, from the party that supposedly advocates civility and free speech.

Democrats have characterized me, a conservative blogger and tea party activist, as bigoted, a terrorist, racist, a Nazi, a religious fanatic, an idiot, a liar, a failure, hateful, ignorant, un-American, uneducated, anti-free speech and, by the President himself, a hick who clings to his guns and religion. My opinions have been called slanted nonsense, laughable, trash, rubbish, childishly simplistic bombast, revisionist, blind, irresponsible, and manipulative, and I have been threatened with physical harm for expressing them.

The President personally smeared Congressman Ryan in his April 13, 2011, speech on deficit reduction, welcomes the backing of Bill Maher (who, among many offenses against civility, attacked Senator Rick Santorum’s children for being home-schooled) and other character assassins, and – speaking of unprecedented – used his 2010 State of the Union address to defame Supreme Court justices who dared defy his will by upholding election law.

Of course, there is also the rich history of negative campaigning, such as Thomas Jefferson and John Adams launching ludicrously vivid attacks on each others’ character and platforms during the 1800 presidential campaign. According to Adams, Jefferson would have, among other things, legalized rape and murder and impaled children on pikes, and Jefferson claimed that Adams was a morally vile, decrepit warmongerer who imported French mistresses.

The conclusion that the campaign to defeat Obama is one of unprecedented negativity requires two premises. First, that the Democrats’ attacks on conservatives are in fact not negative and, by extension, entirely within the bounds of social norms; and, second, that any statement made against Obama’s record is inherently negative and therefore uncivil and unacceptable.

In other words: Only Democrats are allowed to criticize their opponents, and there are no limits on the obscenity, crudeness, slander and deceit that are to be deployed in doing so; but conservatives, even though they make every effort to be civil and stay with the facts, are to be forbidden from speaking out in any way against the progressive agenda.

This mindset is precisely typical of Obama’s crybaby, the-buck-stops-there attempts to divert scrutiny from his hideous record of failed policies, broken promises, and betrayals of the Constitution, liberty and the best interests of the Republic.

Is that negative? No. Unlike the Adams-Jefferson hyperbole and the smears against today’s conservatives, these criticisms of Obama and his party are demonstrable fact.

Facts over Fear
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