Healthcare, Hatred & Hypocrisy

The Reporter has published my latest flagrant act of speech.  Here’s the Director’s Cut:

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Barack Obama’s national healthcare plan [PDF link] has met tremendous opposition—polls show ObamaCare becoming less popular the more America learns about it, and townhall protests have many politicians cowering under their desks.

It’s easy to see why—the Congressional Budget Office contradicts Obama’s cost predictions almost as soon as he makes them. His promise that you can keep your current plan contradicts his campaign-trail desires to use a public option as a bridge to single-payer.  Despite claims to the contrary, FactCheck.org says ObamaCare will cover abortions, and the Congressional Research Service says it’ll likely end up covering illegal immigrants.  Countries like Canada are moving away from government and towards the free market to remedy their disastrous nationalized systems.

The Left is retaliating as they always do: demagoguery.  House leaders Nancy Pelosi & Steny Hoyer call the protesters “un-American.”  Pelosi makes blanket statements about protesters “carrying swastikas.”  Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid calls them “evil-mongers.”  The media routinely insinuates that anti-Obama sentiment is really just anger over a black man in the White House.

As usual, liberals are lying—most of the Obama-Hitler comparisons have come not from conservatives, but from followers of Lyndon LaRouche, a fringe figure who supports a single-payer healthcare plan even more extreme than ObamaCare.  MSNBC pondered the racism of those bringing guns to townhalls—while running selective footage hiding the black skin of the armed person in their video.

And lest you think their anti-hatred sentiment is sincere, recall the antiwar protests of 2002 onward, where Bush-Hitler comparisons (plus plenty of anti-Semitism) were all the rage (no pun intended).  Pelosi felt differently about “shouting down” opponents then—she told a group of Code Pink extremists: “I’m a fan of disrupters.”  As the Sweetness & Light weblog recently noted, there are over 16 million Hitler references at the liberal weblog Daily Kos—an organization embraced by Obama, Pelosi, Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, and Barney Frank.  Sen. Dick Durbin, Sen. Robert Byrd, Rep. Keith Ellison, and MSNBC’s Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann have all compared Republicans to Nazis.

Indeed, it was the “Lion of the Senate,” the late liberal icon Ted Kennedy, who arguably did more to debase modern political discourse than anyone in recent memory, with his famous screed that ““Robert Bork’s America is a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions, blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens’ doors in midnight raids, schoolchildren could not be taught about evolution, writers and artists would be censored at the whim of the government.”

Former Democratic National Committee Chair Terry McAuliffe endorsed Michael Moore’s fanatic, lie-filled Fahrenheit 9/11, whose DC premiere was attended by “Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle, Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin, Montana Sen. Max Baucus, South Carolina Sen. Ernest Hollings, Michigan Sen. Debbie Stabenow, Florida Sen. Bill Nelson, New York Rep. Charles Rangel, Washington Rep. Jim McDermott, and others.”  Moore also attended the 2004 Democratic National Convention as the personal guest of President Jimmy Carter, who called Fahrenheit 9/11 one of his favorite movies.

Obama himself saw no problem exposing his children to the bigoted Rev. Jeremiah Wright for years, or numerous relations with unrepentant Weather Underground terrorist Will Ayers, including a 1995 political “coming-out” party, a favorable review of one of Ayers’ books in 1997, and more.  In 2008 he routinely said his opponents would say Obama “doesn’t look like the other presidents on the currency.’”

Have some protesters acted badly?  Sure, every movement has its loons.  But so what?  It’s ridiculous to think the conduct of some conservative in Vermont should reflect on another in Wisconsin, and as anyone who’s ever tried to calm down Crazy Uncle Billy at Thanksgiving dinner should realize, it’s insane to expect that Michael Steele or Rush Limbaugh can somehow enforce behavioral lockstep among every member of a movement comprised of millions of people.

Indeed, if you think only bad movements have extremists, look up abolitionist John Brown sometime.

What matters is the character of the majority and the responsibility of the leadership, and here conservatism leaves liberalism in the dust.  For instance, a few fringe conservatives embrace the Obama birth certificate conspiracy, but most—the Republican National Committee, National Review, Human Events, the American Spectator, Michelle Malkin, Ann Coulter, John Hawkins, and more—have rejected it.  Can the Left say the same about “blood for oil” in Iraq, or President Bush’s National Guard service?

Savagery is at the Left’s core (as a stroll through the comment threads on fdlreporter.com can confirm).  It’s all about intimidating dissenters into silence.  Yesterday’s cherished hallmark of democracy is today’s intolerable act of treason.  Don’t fall for their lies—and don’t let them get away with their own sins.

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Once again, the comment section is a merry menagerie of missives from morons & malcontents (with a couple much-appreciated exceptions)—you’ve got the inability to distinguish between sweeping generalization and specific statement of fact, or between ordinary expression of disagreement and genuine hate speech; the standard-issue big business boogeyman (sorry, guys, but not quite), blurring the distinction between “reform” and a specific plan of “reform,” a groundless insult toward Hillsdale College (a conservative school, yes, but I daresay you’ll find more ideological diversity—both among faculty and students—here than the average state school) and my personal favorite, Marvin49’s suggestion that I’m a plagiarist.  Again we see that Internet anonymity does wonders for the dissemination of slander.

The Liberal Playbook: Gay Marriage

The Reporter has published my latest commentary on civil unions in Wisconsin, predictably bringing angry liberals out of the woodwork.  It’s interesting to note how predictable, one-note, and disinterested in what’s actually said, these guys generally are, and it’s important for conservatives to know what logical fallacies, sleights of hand, and personal attacks to expect when stepping into the ring with a liberal.

Take, for instance, the assumption that religion plays a leading role in my opinion, despite never being mentioned.  Liberal orthodoxy dictates that virtually no conservative opinion, especially on social issues, can possibly be held in good faith, so there must be an ulterior motive—in this case, hatred of gays and religious dogma.  Liberal orthodoxy further dictates that the slightest hint of religion (real or otherwise) in an opinion or discussion is something to be feared and immediately disqualified from consideration.

The other main objection is that, without civil unions, gays are denied equal rights.  I reject this premise entirely, for several reasons, the short version being just as I said in the article: “Many of the so-called rights gay couples are allegedly denied, such as hospital visitation and power-of-attorney related issues, are either already available to gays, easily achievable without creating new government relationship statuses, or were created to aid couples raising children on just one parent’s income, and are thus irrelevant to gay couples (as well as to dual-income straight couples).”  Moreover, I say “so-called rights” because most marriage benefits are not “rights” at all, but rather provisions offered as part of a contract.

I made clear that same-sex marriage was not the issue at dispute in my letter—the main topic was this measure’s constitutionality.  However, you’ll find that same-sex marriage advocates tend to struggle with the concept of “staying on topic,” and will completely skip your argument, instead jumping straight to why you’re evil for not supporting gay marriage.  If you refuse to let them change the subject and insist on staying on topic, you will be mischaracterized as either ducking the question or admitting defeat.

Regardless of whether or not you actually said anything demeaning towards homosexuals, no matter how much you insist you also want gay people to be able to visit their ailing partners in the hospital, you should still expect condescending lectures about how gays are people too, how homosexuality is predetermined (both propositions I accept, by the way…not that these armchair psychiatrists care), etc.  You will be psychoanalyzed with utter certitude, your opinions attributed to fear, hatred, or ignorance.  References to violence against gay Americans, black segregation, and even al-Qaeda will be thrown about with reckless abandon.

How do they know?  They just do.  They care, you don’t.  Bigot.

Also be prepared for raw hatred & childishness, such as casual references to “half-baked turd[s] of imflammatory mush” (this gem, incidentally, is from the author of the Daily Kos entry linked above, and once responded, badly, to another of my letters, noteworthy for its hypocrisy: she claims she doesn’t “want to write in anger.”).

You may even have outright lies told about you, and you may see long-simmering grudges boil over—bravely aired behind veils of anonymity, naturally.  “FDL54935” says:

Mr. Freiburger got his 15 seconds of fame since his parents went WAY overboard on a school issue. The man (Calvin) is one of the weakest writers in this community. If my sources are correct, he is barely making it through community college. I know times are tough and this is an issue that needs to be debated, but please limit editorials to those with an IQ over 75.

The issue to which our zip code refers is the case when a Fond du Lac High School teacher complained about my saying “God Bless America” over the school intercom, which the administration subsequently lied about.

Now, maybe Mr. Code was misled by news outlets that falsely reported my family was angry over the school’s speed in handling the matter, rather than their dishonesty.  Maybe he’s been lied to by propagandists whose sham reporting completely distorts the incident.  Then again, perhaps he’s the one doing the lying…after all, he’s angry enough about it to lie about my education, citing “sources” that probably don’t exist.  The real school I attend isn’t a community college, is nothing to sneeze at, and I think making Hillsdale’s Dean’s List for the second year in a row is a little better than “barely making it through.” (By the way, if you have the audacity to defend yourself by citing such facts, you can probably expect to be accused of bragging at some point, too.)

Hmm, it almost makes you wonder whether or not FDL54935’s got some kind of personal connection to the Fond du Lac School District…(crazy thought, I know.  The educational community is much too professional for that sort of thing, right?)

Hatred, anger, condescension, childishness, demonization, and persecution are all the rage (no pun intended) among the modern American Left, including the gay marriage movement.  For some liberals, I suspect, the root cause may be an insecure need for self-affirmation; for others, it is a manifestation of the liberal impulse to delegitimize opposing speech as soon as possible, to give it as little consideration as possible.  The Left wants to intimidate, not deliberate.

Don’t let them.  Don’t let yourself be shamed or silence by a movement that’s not exactly pure as the new-fallen snow itself.  Never apologize for believing that marriage matters.

Birthers Go Home

This week, it came out that John McCain’s campaign conducted an internal investigation into the rumors that Barack Obama was not really born in Hawaii, and is therefore ineligible for the presidency:

While they ruled out any chance of the ‘birther’ lawsuits holding up in court, lawyers for the McCain campaign did check into the rumors about Obama’s birth and the assertions made by Berg and others. “To the extent that we could, we looked into the substantive side of these allegations,” said Potter. “We never saw any evidence that then-Senator Obama had been born outside of the United States. We saw rumors, but nothing that could be sourced to evidence. There were no statements and no documents that suggested he was born somewhere else. On the other side, there was proof that he was born in Hawaii. There was a certificate issued by the state’s Department of Health, and the responsible official in the state saying that he had personally seen the original certificate. There was a birth announcement in the Honolulu Advertiser, which would be very difficult to invent or plant 47 years in advance.”

Granted, McCain hardly had the best judgment when it came to attacking Obama, but they were right to skip this foolishness.  As John Hawkins has pointed out, it’s got no legs:

The people at FactCheck.org have seen the certificate of live birth provided from the state of Hawaii to the Obama campaign and it is genuine.

Although Hawaii “state law prohibits the release of a certified birth certificate to persons who do not have a tangible interest in the vital record,” the director of Hawaii’s Department of Health [a Republican appointee] has certified that Obama does have a legitimate birth certificate on file in Hawaii.

In a print copy of the 1961 Honolulu Advertiser, there’s a notice that Barack Obama was born. In and of itself, this is a game, set, match conversation-ender on this subject unless people want to argue that this isn’t genuine or that there was a conspiracy going all the way back to the day of Obama’s birth to make him President.

Unfortunately, this isn’t enough for the Birther crowd, spearheaded by WorldNetDaily.  When you point this stuff out to them, they posit all sorts of hypothetical scenarios about how a birth certificate or newspaper clipping could have been issued to a non-resident, and so forth.  But that doesn’t cut it.  We could talk all day about how the moon landing might have been faked, or how World Trade Center Seven could have been destroyed by controlled demolition, but since the magnitude of the allegation is so severe—that the President of the United States is constitutionally illegitimate—it is morally irresponsible to give them serious consideration in the absence of affirmative reasons to believe Obama was born somewhere other than Hawaii.

Birthers claim to have such evidence, in the form of testimony from Obama’s grandmother that he was born in Kenya.  But that claim doesn’t withstand scrutiny either:

During the interview, which was conducted through a translator by a street preacher named Ron McRae, Sarah Obama does in fact say she was present. But it’s clear that there was a mistranslation, because as soon as McRae very excitedly starts to try to get additional details, the people on the other end of the line realize what’s happened and say, over and over again, that Obama was born in the U.S.

For some reason, the transcripts of the interview that have been posted on various right-wing Web sites all seem to cut off right after Sarah Obama says she was there when her grandson was born. So does this YouTube video with the audio of the interview. But as The Economist points out, McRae also released the full audio, in which the key parts of the conversation can be heard. Here’s part of it. (The other person speaking is translator Vitalis Akech Ogombe.)

MCRAE: When I come in December. I would like to come by the place, the hospital, where he was born. Could you tell me where he was born? Was he born in Mombasa?

OGOMBE: No, Obama was not born in Mombasa. He was born in America.

MCRAE: Whereabouts was he born? I thought he was born in Kenya.

OGOMBE: No, he was born in America, not in Mombasa.

MCRAE: Do you know where he was born? I thought he was born in Kenya. I was going to go by and see where he was born.

OGOMBE: Hawaii. Hawaii. Sir, she says he was born in Hawaii. In the state of Hawaii, where his father was also learning, there. The state of Hawaii.

When the house of cards all but collapses, the Birthers play their trump: “All Obama would have to do to satisfy us is release his original birth certificate.  Why doesn’t he?  That proves he’s hiding something!”  Hawkins gives the answer, which should be obvious:

Well, why would he at this point? He has a significant number of conservatives wasting enormous amounts of time on a side issue that can never bear any fruit and, as an added bonus, it makes them look somewhat unhinged to many Americans. When your political enemies are making fools of themselves, why stop them?

Heck, that’s what I’d do in this situation if I were Obama!  The Birthers undermine the Right’s credentials on honesty, intellectual rigor, and moral seriousness, which we need to maintain if we are to stand up to the Left’s real lies.

Rave Reviews!

See what the critics are saying about Calvin Freiburger:

“Typical know nothing conservative…” – Sheldon

“…Mr. Didn’t-Really-Do-Any-Research…” – Jay Morris

“As a resident of Wisconsin, I am embarrassed by Mr. Freiburger…” – Jude Noble

“Calvin Freiburger is not very bright…damn you’re stupid.” – bhd8ball

“…half-baked turd of imflammatory mush…Mr. Freiburger may be a legal adult, but he writes like a ten year old.” – cobweb1780, AKA Pan Zareta

“I expect in the future you will write articles about taking away rights from non-christians. Good Day Sir!” – ciretower

Calvin you’re a nitwit.” – Matt

Ah, yes, dear Mr. Freiburger and his little neocon fantasies.” Prof. Omer Durfee

Mr. Freiburger seems to devalue debate and disagreement within the American political sphere.” – Brent Schmitz

What makes me afraid is his self-righteousness and implied superiority in his writing.” – Daniel Sitter

“You, my friend, are a metaphysical laughing stock. You are a literal will-to-nothingness. You slave. You nihilist.” – Anonymous Fark.com user

“You must be a fag. Do you have a wide stance?” – Mike

“…rude, insulting and just not someone we want to associate with.” – Alex Habrock

Ideology-driven nutjob…crazy anti-sex, anti-woman…I am certainly willing to admit that you are capable of making sound arguments, when you’re not being hyperbolic and offensive.” – Brittany

“Scumbag…nosy and controlling neo-christian…cultist…bully…” – Aryeh

… why haven’t you joined the armed forces yet? Put that money where that mouth is, chicken-boy.” – Anonymous

20 years old + writing letter to editor = massive life fail.” – Etchy333

“Angry teenager alert…Why the hell would you want that sack of crap to endanger the lives of others when he’s crying in the middle of a firefight?” – NewportBarGuy

Well with any luck he’ll continue on his way and turn out a repressed gay Republican.” – Generation_D

“His world is like a mirror opposite of reality. A Conservative Fundamentalist, you could say.” – Javacrucian

“Reminds me of that jackass David Horowitz…” – Necrosis

“I know many see this as funny, but people laughed about the funny little guy with the funny little moustache making hate-filled speeches too. It’s just a slow creeping change from sane to insane until the totally insane becomes reality.” – Befuddled

“Is it me, or does this kid look like a Hitler Youth member? Seriously.” – alternative girlfriend

“I do find it funny that a socially inept kid that believes in a Sky Ghost thinks he can chide our education system…” – Shaggy_C

“…and he’s a racist to boot!” – AndyMan1 (based solely on a disparaging mark about gangsta rap)

“This child comes off like a product of Hate Radio madrasas.” – SherKhan

“That kid is teh uglay!” – hachijuhachi

“note that this douchebag is going to Hillsdale College, a bastion of right-wing nuttiness.” – gregario

“He sounds like a douche and was probably ridiculed at school for being an asshat!” – Torque420

“That’s what happens when you can’t argue successfully. You resort to cheap name calling. And like I said, I love it.” – Jayce Commo

“People like calvin have been around a long time…. For example, those who though blacks didn’t deserve the same rights as whites…Some people (ex. Calvin) really enjoy feeling like they deserve more liberties than others.” – Adam Kempf

“…kiss my liberal American butt…I don’t think you have the balls to say any of this stuff to my face…morally inferior.” – Scott Feldstein

“… a mouth-breathing sycophant with all the intelligence of a particularly dim species of refrigerator mildew.” – Chet

“…dubious, bordering on dishonest…” – AnotherTosaVoter

“…stop being an extremistyou’ve been touching nerves for a couple comments now, with your disregard for the truth…Sounds to me like you get your history from the pulpit.” – Eneasz

“Calvin is clearly such a bigot, especially since he has amply displayed his own bigotry in this forum.” – martino

“Go to hell article writer.” – jake3988

The verdict is in, and the Left agrees: Calvin Freiburger is precisely the kind of ignorant, intolerant, rightwing extremist scum your Homeland Security Secretary warned you about!  Calvin Freiburger Online: shouldn’t you be reading?