Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Conservative Amnesia

There seems to be a new problem among some prevalent conservatives out there these days. Some might call it lunacy, but others recognize it as something more dangerous than that: voluntary amnesia.

Two prominent conservatives, one a member of the GOP and the other a famous political commentator, have forgotten recent history in exchange for scoring political points with those they hope to influence.

Republican Party Chairman Michael Steele recently criticized the Obama administration and Democrats in Congress for prolonging the Afghanistan war, a war that was begun by a Republican president and is still supported by the Republican Party. Steele mistakenly characterized the war as Obama’s, telling supporters that it was a war "of Obama’s choosing."

The funny thing is that Obama never even voted for the Afghanistan war – he was still in the Illinois legislature when the war began in 2009. Obama’s recent push for the war is part of an overall strategy to begin drawing down forces in 2011.

Then there’s the king of talk radio’s recent lapse in memory. Rush Limbaugh, speaking on his radio program this week, criticized Obama’s handling of the economy, saying he believes Obama is purposely making things worse to avenge for slavery in America.

As absurd a statement as that is – Obama’s descendants were actually slaveholders on his mother’s side – it’s even more absurd by this little ditty provided by Limbaugh in the same rant:

"Obama tanked the economy on purpose, both as payback for 230 years of racial oppression and because Obama simply doesn't like America," Limbaugh said, ignoring the fact that the recession began during the Bush administration.

These two voices are symbolic of the contemporary conservative movement. They are selectively forgetting history, voluntarily omitting information they knew about in favor of repeating lies that will benefit their point of view. It’s wrong, and these two talking heads, and every other conservative that employs their methods, should feel shame for doing so.

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