My dad had a saying. Once is a mistake. Twice is stupid.
Three times is a spanking.
I want to take a look at the various death threats that have been issued since the health care reform bill passed, and perhaps some of the origins of the, well, insanity.
Before the bill passed, you had Michael Steel stating that the world would end and Armageddon would come if health care passed.
Chuch Grassley making the claim that health care reform would pull the plug on grandma. Why would he say that? Well, because Betsy McCaughey, lobbyist for health care industries, said that the Medicare "End of Life" counseling that would provide payments to doctors to discuss options for terminally ill patients amounted to a panel that would decide who lived and died.
Not, that is, helping people make decisions when someone is already dying or on the edge of death about what they're options are. No, according to such luminaries as Sarah Palin, this would be a system that would have decided to kill her mentally challenged baby.
Even though this is nothing at all what the bill intended. Certainly not helped along when the same Betsy McCaughey came out and said that IMAC (Independent Medicare Advisory Council) was going to force doctors to only do what the IMAC wanted in treating patients. Completely ignoring that IMAC is a recommendations only body that has no power, and its recommendations can only be accepted by the President and if Congress accepts.
In other words - IMAC just looks at current health care research, makes a recommendation on what actually works and what doesn't, what works the best at the lowest price, and the Executive Branch can either go "Ok, sounds good" or "Nope" in regards to how Medicare is paid out. Doesn't mean any doctor is forced to do anything, that anybody's grandma is killed - just recommendations on what best practices are.
But, of course, no, these are Death Panels in the eyes of people like Palin and Grassley and the others.
And, of course, if a health care bill is voted into by the duly elected representatives of the people of their districts, clearly that is totalitarianism and the end of America. Which, of course, is silly, since Republicans are calling for the way to end totalitarianism is by the voters getting rid of the Democrats.
Um - it can't can totalitarianism *if you have free elections where the opposition can run*.
Of course, that's not all.
Once again, you've got Palin leading the charge. With a map showing crosshairs of where Democrats are at they want to defeat, and a message to "Don't Retreat, Instead - RELOAD!.
Helped along by Daily Caller showing people how IRS agents in full military gear and guns will be coming to your house to force you to buy insurance.
So, where has all of this talk lead us?
It lead to Mike Vanderboegh, former head of the Alabama Constitutional Militia calling on his followers to break the windows of the Democratic congressperson's offices. Something out of, say, Kristallnacht.
His listeners followed with the breaking of windows of Democratic congresspeople across the country.
People being told that health care is a plot to kill them leads Tea Party terrorist leaders to give out Democratic Rep. Tom Perriello’s brother's address, leading to a disconnected propane line that could have killed the family.
It's lead to protestors showing up to shout nigger and faggot at congresspeople. To civil rights leaders being spit upon as he walked into the House of Representatives. And along with that, there's the other racist nooses being with racist language and Jewish congresspeople getting swastika's in their hate mail.
It's lead to people showing up with coffins on congresspeople's doorsteps, cause nothing says "rational discourse" like "This is what you deserve to be in."
How about death threats to people's children? That's always a great way to express your anger, right?
It's lead to pro-life groups issuing death threats even to other pro-life congresspeople because they voted for health care. Even though the health care bill *still* holds that you can't use federal dollars for abortion - but that's not good enough, evidently.
It's lead to people shooting pellet guns at politicians offices. Probably after hearing Michael Steele say that Speaker Pelosi should be on a firing line.
Perhaps tied to Tea Party protesters letting people know that if elected representatives can't change something, then perhaps shooting them with a gun can.
And the Republican response to the violence, to the racism, to the threats? Congressperson Nunes from California seems to feel that hey, when you have a democratic vote by elected representatives (or as he calls it, "totalitarianism") people are going to get upset.
Sure. Whenever I get upset, I reach for racist language.
Republican Leader of the House Boehner was kind enough to put out a statement that threatening people wasn't cool. Gee, thanks for telling people to channel their anger into voting, instead of telling people knock the shit off with threatening the lives of children.
I really don't know what else to say about this. What did they expect? When you tell people that Obamacare is going to kill people, that this bill will be the "end of America", that they should "reload" and "put people on a firing line" - *just what in the flying fuck did they expect their followers to do*?
And these milktoast "Well, you know, we don't *mean* for people to start shooting at Democrats really" isn't cutting it. Sooner or later, somebody is going to be shot, and killed. And when the Republican leadership starts the waterworks of "Oh, we didn't *mean* for this to happen!", we'll have the whole sordid trail I've laid out showing how they incited every possible emotion to get people to the point of murder.