On NBC's Set, Daily Kos Boss Told David Gregory to 'Quit' His Love for McCain

How do liberals really think journalism can be improved? By shrinking the amount of time and space Republicans have in the media. Daily Kos founder Markos Moulitsas lamented on Friday that John McCain would continue his streak as a go-to spokesman on Sunday morning news shows. Citing fellow liberal blogger Steve Benen, he complains McCain’s appearance on Sunday’s Meet the Press marks the 20th appearance on a Sunday morning talk show since Obama's inauguration: he's appeared on ABC three times, CBS 5, NBC 4, CNN 4, and Fox 4:

Quite the schedule for a backbencher with no power base within the party, a loser whose re-election to the Senate -- heck, survival in his own primary! -- is in serious jeopardy.

When I was on Meet the Press in December, David Gregory asked me what he could do to make the show better. I said, "stop having John McCain on". He and his producers nodded, seemingly acknowledging the ridiculousness of McCain's incessant appearances.

And yet there he is again. They really just can't quit him.

To Moulitsas, even moderate McCain is incessantly ridiculous, not worth considering the air time. The networks should "quit" him (complete with gay "Brokeback Mountain" humor, which apparently liberals can get away with.) So when Keith Olbermann doesn't allow one Republican to get a word in edgewise year after year, he is truly acting and echoing the Daily Kos spirit.

Speaking of Olbermann clones, the Kosmonaut diarist known as "sowsearsoup" simply cannot believe that everyone hasn't seen the historical parallels between witch-hunting Puritans of the 1600s and today's conservatives.

The Puritan persecutors of 1692 and the modern conservative movement of 2010 are the same. They are not just infected by the same sickness, the same blight, but are carriers of that illness as well, contaminating their respective societies with a disease of fear.

The author Frances Hill is cited on the witch hunts: "the steps are easy to trace by which a few deranged, destructive human beings led ordinary mortals down the dark paths of fear, hatred and envy to demonize and destroy innocent victims." Eureka!

Does this sound familiar to anyone else? FEAR - of "Demons" (terrorists) and "witches" (liberals). HATRED - of "Spells and witchcraft" (socialism and taxes). It all clicked in my head. The vitriol, the hatred, the racism, the vile attacks of the right: It all resembled the past in a specific way....

How many times have we heard the right repeatedly and relentlessly call Democrats and Democratic leadership all kinds of weighted names ("Hitler", "Stalin", "socialist", "marxist", "brutal dictator", "communist", or god forbid even a muslim) because they hope the negative connotation sticks even if it's patently untrue.

What obviously links the two scary social movements together, in a liberal's mind, is the religious impulse. That is the "sickness" and the "blight" that holds society back. But the Kosmonaut gets this backwards:

The tendency for witch-hunts to start, and continue, is exacerbated by a society or group's insistence on its monopoly of righteousness. The countertendency is promoted by an understanding and acceptance of the fallibility of all human beings, including ourselves.

You can smell the anti-religion theme in that thought. Christian conservatives would not insist they have a personal "monopoly of righteousness," even if they would insist they have in Jesus the one "answer," the "way and the truth" of it. But a true believer begins with the fervent belief in human fallibility -- especially one's own -- which is why the Founding Fathers set up our government to be limited.

It is the left that believes in the perfectibility of man, and perfection achieved by government action, a worker's paradise where unintended consequences never ruin wonderful intentions.

NBC Meet the Press Markos Moulitsas
Tim Graham's picture