Friday, October 17, 2008

Lessons of History Often Go Unheeded

I just read "Lenin's Tomb" by David Remnick about the end days of the USSR. A passage from Volkogonov, a guy who published a negative biography of Stalin in '88, struck a chord. He spoke at a Minidef session and was denounced by Gen. Falin for a lack of patriotism, so he said: "I am no less a patriot than Falin and love the Motherland no less than he...but you cannot change the consequences of history. I agree with those who say there are many faults in this volume...but let's discuss and debate them...But, no, Comrade Falin and some others do not engage in scholarly debate, but rather make accusations about a lack of patriotism."

The rightwing Communist hardliners - the same ones who attempted a coup against Gorbachev and who hated perestroika - often accused those with whom they disagreed as being unpatriotic.

Perhaps Sarah Palin's job as Russia's babysitter has affected her outlook on things. Last night, she said this: “We believe that the best of America is in these small towns that we get to visit, and in these wonderful little pockets of what I call the real America. Being here with all of you hard-working very patriotic, um, very, um, pro-America areas of this great nation."

Here's a clue, Sarah. America is not only small towns. People in big cities, people who are university-educated, people who drive hybrid vehicles, people who eat organic food, we're all Americans. Enough with your Soviet drivel. We're tired of it!

Isn't it time the American right discards the tactics of the anti-democracy Soviet hardliners? Does "Joe the Plummer," who has said similar words in the last couple of days (and who is neither Joe nor a plummer), honestly believe that the thousands of people working and volunteering to get Barack Obama elected hate America? What kind of mental disorder does one have to have to believe Barack Obama and his supporters hate America and wish to destroy it? How much hate-filled talk radio does one have to listen to before one can be considered brainwashed? Why are Democrats forced to wear flag pins on their lapels so the right won't scream "Traitor!"?

Isn't it time for this insanity to stop?

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