We've seen the likes of Time Magazine, MSNBC, the Washington Post, and Newsweek link the Joe Stack airplane attack to the conservative movement. But in an interesting twist, a political blogger for The Nation has inexplicably linked Stack to several players at the recent CPAC convention - including Tim Pawlenty, Scott Brown, and most notably Glenn Beck.
Leslie Savan wastes little time delving into despicable comparisons from the onset with the title to her rant:
Glenn Beck Dodges Incoming Plane at CPAC
From there, the associations to Stack stretch ever further. Savan somehow manages to draw parallels between Pawlenty's comment about taking a 9-iron to big government, and the attack (emphasis mine throughout):
"Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty strained to hit a Southern-sheriff note of populist threat by suggesting, rather oddly, that conservatives were cuckolded wives who, like Tiger Woods's spouse, should "take a 9-iron and smash the window out of big government in this country!"--thereby managing to invoke both the wall of shattered glass windows at the Echelon Building and the marital troubles that may have contributed to Stack's anger."
It would seem the term ‘metaphor' is beyond the writer's grasp.
Next up is an out of context quote from Scott Brown:
"It didn't help the damage control when conservative pin-up Scott Brown said of the attack, just hours after it happened, "I don't know if it's related, but I can just sense not only in my election, but since being here in Washington, people are frustrated." Which is scary close to saying Stack's terrorist act came from the same set of emotions and attitudes that put Brown in office (talk about saying "No"!)."
This smear has already been argued admirably at Legal Insurrection, as it stems from a weak attempt by Think Progress to disparage Brown over his comments during an interview with Neil Cavuto. What Savan is focusing on, the phrase "I don't know if it's related", is designed to make the reader believe that Brown himself questions if there is a link between the terrorist attack and the anger that got him elected. Shortly thereafter in the interview however, Brown clarifies by saying, "I am not sure if there is a connection, I certainly hope not..."
The smearing of conservatives in The Nation however, had only just begun, and Savan's worst venom was being reserved for the keynote speaker at CPAC - Glenn Beck. The first punch being thrown with:
"Whether or not Joe Stack had ever watched Fox, dug Glenn Beck, or ever darkened a website run by a Tea Party outfit (and we may never know the truth about these things, either), Beck was fast to assume that Stack's nutty tax-and-big-government-hating manifesto would tarnish Beck's own nutty tax-and-big-government-hating shtick."
First, Savan gets out in front of it, by avoiding a definitive link between Stack and Beck, but most assuredly is implying said link.
Second, Beck is wise to assume that he will be linked to Stack, as this is a tactic exercised by the liberal media ad nauseam - from the Kentucky census worker suicide, to the Alabama shooting case - despite a complete lack of evidence to support such claims.
Savan doesn't disappoint, throwing Beck and conservative opposition into the tank with Stack:
"Of course, Stack did not fly his plane into a capitalist redoubt, like a bank too big to fail; he flew it into an IRS office, which just happens to be the focus of radical constitutionalist anger."
Never mind the Stack manifesto rails heavily against the virtues of capitalism, also a focus of constitutional anger for its rapid elimination under the current administration.
"...Beck's daily rantings make about as much sense as Stack's suicide note."
Again, simply another attempt at linking peaceful conservative activists and pundits to the violent actions of a lunatic.
After referring to Beck and his audience at CPAC as violence-urging cultists, the article ends with this bit of wonderment:
"Which reminds me, where's the outcry? Why aren't the rightwing media and their auditioning politicians getting hysterical over Obama taking so much time to make a statement about the IRS attack as they did over Obama's "slow response" to the Christmas bomber? I mean, Stack killed himself and another person and injured 13, two of them critically; the Nigerian guy just scorched his privates."
While both the Stack plane attack and the Christmas bomber were equally terroristic in nature, the aforementioned statement actually minimizes the Nigerian's attempt at mass murdering over 200 victims by saying hey, he ‘just scorched his privates'. This demonstrates such a clear disconnect from reality, that Ms. Savan should probably avoid pointing fingers at Beck for his alleged ‘fairy tales'. Pot, please meet the kettle.
As for the question posed: Where's the outcry... over Obama's slow response? Conservative author Michelle Malkin made this statement less than 24 hours after the attack:
"You know, now would be a good time for a uniter-in-chief - an agent of hope and change in Washington - to call for civility and healing and a ceasefire on inflammatory attacks against peaceful Americans who had nothing to do with this attack. At 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, crickets chirp."
Unfortunately however, when it comes to the left wing media and a chance to exploit a crisis, there will never be a ceasefire on inflammatory attacks.