[Read "We will raze your houses and rub salt in your wounds," by Mark Follman.]
American history ended on Nov. 2, 2004. Those of us on the losing, or wrong, side of this election need to grasp the reality that this cabal will never let go of the White House and will do exactly what the headline of this week's Right Hook says they will. We are Carthage and they are Rome. If anyone believes that America will ever come back to our progressive way of thinking, then they are mired in the illusion that votes, democracy and government mean something. The next four years and beyond are the beginning of the eradication of every bit of forward-thinking and enlightened legislation, theory and doctrine since Teddy Roosevelt created the national park system and regulations for the meat industry.
I call out to everyone who reads Salon.com to start planning and thinking about what will come about now that the mythology of America (liberty, freedom, and justice for all) is truly dead. If we all start now, then there may be a place for us after the right-wing, fundamentalist, neo-con elite has burned the corpse of this country to ashes using the Constitution for a match.
-- David Klein
So what are we going to do about all this? I'd like for these nasty ravings to be publicized far and wide in the "MSM" and let the rest of America see just how compassionate these conservatives really are. In the meantime, I'm forwarding all their ugly messages to my Republican family and friends.
-- Gayle Stamler
I think the best thing we can do with the right-wing gloaters is keep their comments on file, and then tattoo them on those big fat asses of theirs when the economy collapses, the war in Iraq is lost, global warming really sets in (especially in Canada) and Bush is impeached. Reality will happen for everyone soon enough. For Peggy Noonan, it's taken a long time, but I think a bitter old age is just what she deserves.
-- Jane Smiley
Whenever a conservative friend has come by to tease me about Bush's reelection, I have a simple reply: "It makes sense. The American people voted for four more years of peace, prosperity, greater international respect and lower global terrorism."
Never fails to wipe the smirk off their face.
-- Rob Trickey
Follman described various Republicans' reactions to the election as "nasty rhetoric and full-throated gloating." While much of the roundup did demonstrate the nastiness that seems to permeate the blogosphere, the comments of Grover Norquist did not deserve to be lumped into that category.
Norquist's comments were positive, optimistic statements of Republican values and policy objectives: "The next four years are a wonderful opportunity for the GOP. They're a chance for the party to see what its governors and senators can achieve in lowering and simplifying taxes, offering parents school choice, ending abusive lawsuits, protecting gun rights and other liberties, and furthering decent, limited government."
Now, as a liberal Democrat, I don't agree with most of those policy goals. (Or more accurately, I do agree with most of those goals, but I don't agree with how I know they will be enacted to favor the rich at the expense of the poor, minorities and the environment. It is hard to be opposed to "decent, limited government." It is easy to be opposed to gutting the EPA.) But there is nothing mean-spirited about suggesting the party in power should pursue its agenda. We'd be clamoring for the same thing from the left had we won. We'd want to see real movement on issues important to us.
The Republican primary process in 2007 will indeed also be virtuous. They are smarter and better than us at campaigning -- and they keep getting better. They will send up a raft of primary contenders who have experience and who have gotten results. There is no shortage of Republicans in positions to achieve a lot in the next four years. And they will rally behind one candidate early in the process to keep the infighting to a minimum. They are already setting the tone of the next election by suggesting Hillary Clinton is our inevitable candidate. And we are doing nothing to dissuade them.
So disagree with Mr. Norquist all you want. But even if you disagree with his objectives, give the guy credit for speaking reasonably and sensibly about what the future holds for Republicans. If we on the left are going to make gains politically, we have to stop treating all Republicans as the enemy. Elections are about choices, and Norquist was able to sum up in 22 words what his party stands for. In clear, concise language, he laid out the most important issues in the Republican Party's platform. Can we do the same? Until we can, how can we hope to offer a viable alternative?
-- Charles Russell
So glad we have Grover to pick our candidate for us. It would be so arduous and ultimately pointless to do it ourselves, so now we have saved our energy for the actual campaign.
And Adam Yoshida's gonna be pretty lonely, for two reasons: One, left-leaning women of suspect intelligence are all hanging out with Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny, and the rest wouldn't think to offer pleasures to him for an election do-over. My guess is he's just hoping they give him the reach-around when cornholing him with their bull-dykey monster strap-ons. I wouldn't pay to see that, but I'd sure pay to make it happen.
Adam, why don't you come on down to the good ol' U.S. of A. and give it a try stompin' on this liberal? I'll be more than happy to instruct you in the finer points of grinding your dick in the dirt. Bring some antibacterial and a whole lotta bandages, squaw.
-- Chris Forbes
Please do let us readers know Andrew Sullivan's forwarding address after he demonstrates his unequivocal support for President Bush by enlisting and volunteering for whatever front line we will next be crashing blindly towards. I will be more than happy to send him sun screen and even pitch in to help fund body armor and steel plates for his Humvee. You know, the ones that the Bush government seems unable to adequately provide U.S. troops, even as the they fail to secure some of the huge conventional-weapons stockpiles scattered all over Iraq.
-- Mark Sabin
I remember when my liberal views were trounced in a defeat of George McGovern. I'm used to being an outsider and voting for the losing candidate. I am proud to call myself a liberal.
I'm proud of the fact that I'm not a practicing Christian. I live by one of their tenets, the Golden Rule. I want the religious and ideological freedom to believe that humans are good and helping others achieve their goals is a noble pursuit.
I'm not afraid of what Bush's choice will mean for us liberals. This country was settled by those escaping the religious persecution of the majority. So we are again facing this in modern times. The American people prevailed initially and the pendulum will swing back again.
I will weather this just as I weathered the majority before. This is not the time to give up. This is the time to renew your liberal ideal. This is the time to become a "born-again liberal."
-- Allen Buck