These Rocky Mountain right wingers, Rachel Maddow complained last night, there they go again, trying to thwart voting rights.
Seems that a conservative group in Colorado mailed out a flier in response to a Democrat state lawmaker filing a bill that would make it easier to vote. (Video clip after page break)
The flier included a photo of people lined up to vote -- and two people of color had been photoshopped out of the line. The company hired by the group to prepare the flier said something to the effect that the photoshop work was done to convey the ease of actual voter fraud. This came across as a stretch to Maddow and, in a rare instance that I agree with her, to this observer too.
But I'd have an easier time believing Maddow's moral outrage was genuine if she had refrained from a form of airbrushing all of one night earlier.
On her show Tuesday, Maddow recounted the latest developments in the Boston Marathon bombings case. In recent decades, Maddow pointed out, instructions for bomb-making have become widely available online and in print publications.
From there, Maddow took a selective stroll down memory lane, revisiting the rash of bombings in the United States during the late 1960s and early 1970s --
Bomb-making is essentially open-source information and it has been that way for a long time. It has been that way since before the Internet. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, the U.S. went through a period when we had lots of bombings. In 1969, for example, bombs went off at Pomona College in southern California and San Francisco State in northern California, also in the Department of Commerce and the federal building and an Army induction center and a criminal court building, all in New York City. The next year, somebody bombed the University of Wisconsin at Madison and the Portland, Ore., city hall. Now, the death and injury toll was never in very high numbers for any one of these attacks but still, in the late '60s-early '70s, bombs were going off a lot in our country, in that time in our history, bombs set off by politically motivated assailants.
Good gosh, many younger Maddow viewers must have wondered as they looked up from their PlayStations --- who was responsible for all those terrible bombings? And there's a reason why Maddow didn't tell them, as every conservative reading this already knows -- because the vast majority of them were committed by left wingers. And when leftists commit crimes, only the crime is acknowledged on MSNBC while the perpetrator gets a pass.
Same with shootings and bombings at abortion clinics -- MSNBC will most assuredly break the news if a crackpot cave dweller who once voted for Nixon is the guilty party, and of how he's symptomatic of the GOP's alarming lurch to the right. But when it comes to jihadists -- such as the one now in FBI custody at a Boston hospital -- motive becomes a mysterious thing indeed, at least within the Ministry of Truth over at 30 Rockefeller Center.
The problem for Maddow during her sojourn to the groovy '60s is that it brushed way too close for comfort, since one of those "assailants" she could not bear to mention was ... Bill Ayers, co-founder of the Weathermen, a roving band of flower-power bomb tossers and a longtime friend of President Obama. And not just Ayers but his wife too, Bernadine Dohrn -- another former Weatherman (Weathergal?) and Friend of Barack.
If there was anything resembling an actual journalist in Maddow, it would surface in moments like this. The light bulb would flicker above her head, she'd belatedly connect the dots and then decide, you know what, it's actual newsworthy that a roving guerrilla from the '60s, whose only regret is that the Weathermen didn't bomb enough government targets, is also downright chummy with the president of the United States.
O-kay, in fairness to Ayers and Dohrn, they were far younger in those zany '60s and what with all the drugs they were ingesting, most of it is probably a blur. Heck, if I could take back my truly awful high school yearbook photo, I'd do it in a New York minute, But then again, none of us can change the past, as most of us eventually learn. If a person decides, for example, to dedicate his or her youth to plotting bomb attacks on the White House and Pentagon and Capitol and sundry other targets in large part because that person woke up with a hangover and couldn't remember the name of the gal waking up next to him, such conduct might actually have consequences, immediate and long term. Unless you're a left winger, in which case your crimes will eventually be airbrushed away by the American television version of Pravda. Not only that, years later your sins will be forgiven by like-minded lefties and you'll be accorded a comfortable sinecure in academia, all the better to influence generations more of impressionable youth.
Imagine, if you will, that Mitt Romney won last year's election. And in the wake of the marathon bombings, an intrepid reporter at MSNBC (hey, it could happen) remembered that one of Romney's earliest supporters, who helped launch Romney's first bid for public office, ghost-wrote an otherwise incoherent tribute to the candidate's father, and who remained a confidant to President Romney after he took office -- imagine that after the marathon bombings, this MSNBC reporter remembered that the Romney backer bombed a gay bar in New York City in response to the Stonewall riots in 1969. Then four years later, just after the Supreme Court ruling on Roe v. Wade, the same future Romney supporter blew up an abortion clinic. And that the Romney supporter was charged for his crimes but sprung on a technicality in court, all of which was duly covered by the media at the time, followed by the Romney supporter later becoming a hugely successful hedge fund trader.
Within this hypothetical, we can safely assume two things with all the certainty that the world accords beyond death and taxes -- A), that MSNBC viewers would be reminded of the erstwhile bomber's identity and connection to Romney; and B), the story would dominate MSNBC's news coverage for months. Or at least until Romney's ex-bomb-throwing chum decided he'd had enough of the death threats and bullying of his children and slashed tires and 24/7 armed security and deemed it high time for plastic surgery, a reconfigured identity, and new home at an undisclosed location in New Zealand.
None of which Bill Ayers ever has to worry about, because of A) apologists in the media like Maddow who are willing to look the other way on behalf of Ayers' friend in a very high place; and B), those who find Ayers most abhorrent are conservatives.