There's something to be said for candor, even -- make that, especially -- from a goo-goo leftist.
None of this disingenuous denial that Vice President Joe Biden maligned Republicans as terrorists, or the weaselly pseudo-defense that Biden didn't actually say this, he merely agreed after a House Democrat did. (audio clip after page break)
As far as radio host Bill Press is concerned, yes, Biden espoused it and, hell yes, he was justified in doing so.
Here's the audio from Press's radio show, courtesy of Brian Maloney at The Radio Equalizer --
PRESS: But because of that rule that they want, they refuse to fund the FAA and they're letting, and they're putting 74,000 people out of work. You see what this is again? These guys are terrorists! I'm sorry, I'm sorry, you know, you know Joe Biden, they say he's getting in a little trouble 'cause he called them terrorists. That's exactly what they are! They've taken us hostage again and they're demanding one hundred percent their ransom. And unless they get one hundred percent, they're holding a gun to our head. What do you call people who put a gun to your head and say unless you pay me whatever, I'm going to kill this, kill you or kill this program. What, you know what they call it? Terrorists! Exactly what they are over this FAA (dispute).
This from a man who just a few weeks back said he wished House Speaker John Boehner would be struck dead by lightning.
As timing would have it, Biden made his remark the same day House members voted on Boehner's proposal for the debt ceiling -- and Gabrielle Giffords returning to Capitol Hill for the first time since she was nearly assassinated in the Tucson rampage last January.
The convergence caught the attention of Jonah Goldberg at National Review Online --
Everyone "knew" the shooter was a tea partier. Except he wasn't. He wasn't even a conservative. He was a sick, demented nutball. And still it didn't matter! More bleating and caterwauling about the "tone" followed. More chin stroking and tut-tutting from the "Meet the Press" roundtables and "very special segments" on the "Today" show. More pizzas were ordered for the Media Matters galley slaves.
Finally, President Obama, our national healer, gives a speech. It was a good speech. Indeed it was one of the first speeches in a long while that got anything like bipartisan support. Civility. New tone. No more martial metaphors. These were the takeaways.
So flashforward to this week. Tom Friedman -- who knows a bit about Hezbollah -- calls the tea partiers the "Hezbollah faction" of the GOP intent on taking the country on a "suicide mission." All over the place, conservative Republicans are "hostage takers" and "terrorists," "terrorists and traitors." They want to "end life as we know it on this planet," says Nancy Pelosi. They are betraying the Founders, too. Chris Matthews all but signs up for the "Make an Ass of Yourself" contest at the State Fair. Joe Nocera writes today that "the Tea Party Republicans can put aside their suicide vests." Lord knows what Krugman and Olbermann have said.
Then last night, on the very day Gabby Giffords heroically returns to cast her first vote since that tragic attack seven months ago, the vice president of the United States calls the Republican party a bunch of terrorists.
And the reaction to this? "No one cares," Goldberg points out, at least not on the left --
And yet you know the next time there's the slightest, remotely exploitable tragedy or hint of violence, the same reporters, editors, producers, and politicians are going to insist that blood was spilled because of the right wing's rhetoric.
Well, go to Hell. All of you.
That includes you, Bill Press.