Friday, January 20, 2012

Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy? Really?

With the South Carolina primary looming, things are certainly heating up. And some are arguing that there is now a concerted effort to derail Gingrich's campaign, as the latest polls have him moving in front of Romney in South Carolina. For instance, an Investor's Business Daily editorial says:
In reaction, the major media have launched an all-out nuclear strike at Gingrich — the eve of the conservative South Carolina primary being the perfect time to release the most damaging dirt on a conservative candidate.
The language is a bit much--"all-out nuclear strike"--but the point is taken. Other pundits from the right are saying similar things. The dirt in question, of course, is Newt's marital history. ABC News chose to run an interview with Newt's second wife--Marianne Gingrich (strange that she keeps the name)--wherein she talks about Newt's affair with his current wife and his request for an "open marriage."

It is--in my view--an ugly history. And it dredges up memories of Bill Clinton's moronic affair with a staffer, the denials of the same, and Hillary Clinton's claims of a "vast Right-wing conspiracy." The last, if you recall, generated a lot of heat. Hillary supposed there was such a conspiracy because her husband was just so "dangerous" to the Right, a conspiracy that she supposed had been in place since the day he announced his run for the Presidency.

The silliness of it all--especially considering that the affair with Ms. Lewinsky was a reality--eventually turned it into a punchline. And an even-handed look at Clinton's Presidency shows a truth that many on the right are loathe to consider: Clinton wasn't that bad. He really wasn't. Sure, there was the ill-fated attempt to revamp healthcare, the AmeriKorps, and some judicial appointments. But by and large, Clinton stayed out of the way, when it came to the economy (which is why there was such a boom, by the way). As a conservative, I have to say that things went far better than I could have possibly hoped for under Clinton.

The Right-wing conspiracy claptrap did nothing but make Ms. Clinton look foolish. Clinton's second term ended and it was gone in a puff of smoke (expect in the minds of hard-core, clueless partisans, where it remains to this day). And that brings us back to Newt. The IBD writers and others would have us believe the same sort of fairy-tale, that there is a "vast Left-wing conspiracy" aligned against Newt Gingrich. Hell, the editorial just about says it, straight out. And why? Because--in the minds of some--Gingrich scares the left; he's just too powerful of a true conservative and just too much of a threat to Obama. To that end, this oft-repeated meme appears in the IBD editorial, as well:
But the big question is whether the liberal media will succeed in using her as a tool to destroy a major conservative presidential candidate — someone who, they know, might just wipe the floor with President Obama in a one-on-one debate.
Aside from the fact that debates aren't the end-all-be-all when it comes to elections, that's an awfully arrogant claim to make. After all, Newt's a flip-flopper on Climate Change, says things that he thinks are brilliant even when they aren't, and is hardly a model of virtuous behavior. His debate skills are strong, it is true, but so are the President's. And if this Left-wing conspiracy was really in place--spear-headed by the media--wouldn't most of the debate moderators likely be in the tank for Obama, to begin with?

Sure, there's bias in the media, as I've noted before. But it's a mistake to portray it as a full-blown conspiracy. People that go down such a road--like Ms. Clinton--end up looking like clowns, to everyone but the wingnuts.

Cheers, all.


  1. The only conspiracy I've seen regarding Newt is his multiple personalities working together in an attempt to fool people into believing he's a sensible choice for President.

  2. I just can't bring myself to accept the idea of a "President Newt."


  3. I would hope that any vast conspiracies on either the left OR the right would result in a system quite a lot less lame.

  4. The problem is, Mac, all the really smart people are at Apple, not in DC.