Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

What qualifies as unacceptable for a major party nominee?

"What qualifies as over the line? What qualifies as an unacceptable position for a major party nominee to hold in this year's elections?"

That quote comes from Rachel Maddow, framing the question very well during this segment on Sharron Angle's claim that folks may soon be resorting to "Second Amendment remedies" if Congress continues on its current course. It's definitely worth a watch:

As Maddow points out, Angle has largely refused to disavow this position under subsequent questioning. Maddow asks: "Is this considered a mainstream position now?"

As you regulars know, I've been pointing out that each individual claim by Angle in itself might not be such a big deal -- but taken together, they add up to something very troubling. Angle has also repeatedly refused to disavow her earlier agreement with a conservative talk show host that there are "domestic enemies" within Congress.

The key is that if you put these quotes together, they suggest that it's not outlandish to imagine that she actually believes the things she's saying. They dovetail very neatly with each other.

The conventions of political reporting mostly dictate that the press cover quotes like these in terms of how politically damaging they are. Is this latest quote a bad gaffe, or isn't it? How badly will it hurt her with independents? Will it actually help her with the base?

What's asked far less often is this: What does it say that a major party candidate for Senate actually believes these things? It's almost as if no one really wants to go there.

By Greg Sargent  |  September 9, 2010; 3:18 PM ET
Categories:  2010 elections , Senate Dems , Senate Republicans  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: More House Dems balking at ending Bush tax cuts for rich
Next: Obama heading to Wisconsin -- but Feingold won't be there

Comments

It's a scary world indeed. It's like McCain unleashed the forces of darkness when he picked Palin.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 9, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

The Googles is Angle's worst enemy. Each one of her attempted backtracks can be easily debunked. She's tried to walk back almost every extreme position she initially took.

What is she afraid of? Is she scared voters won't agree with her extreme views? Why not openly tell everyone she wants to get rid of Social Security, Medicare, the 14th Amendment, take out Reid using 2nd Amendment remedies, disallow students to wear black because it's not holy or something, don't allow puppies on cereal boxes because puppies are too fluffy.

Reid needs to just continue using Angles words against herself and make it crystal clear to NV voters that a vote for Angle is a vote for an extremism that would destroy what this country is based on.

Heck, she's to the right of Mussolini!

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 9, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Ahhhhh... our daily anti-Angel thread. Debt paid to Senator Reid. Now we can get on to more important issues. I'm sure Sarah Palin said something that would outrage the Progressive mind. Or how about another mosque post?  

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | September 9, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

mikefromArlington:

Do you also think that Thomas Jefferson was to the right of Mussolini?!

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it's natural manure." (November 13, 1787 letter to W. S. Smith, B.12.356)

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 9, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Liam,

What do you have left to say at the doors?

"it's better than the alternative"

That's it.

Posted by: Papagnello | September 9, 2010 3:01 PM | R
.....................

I tell them why Democrats are way better for working class people than the alternative. I remind them of which party has rescued workers from impoverishment, over and over, when Republicans; from Hoover to Bush2 have been the ones who lead us into those disasters.

I remind them of who has always stood by labor, and who have always fought for the minimum wage, while the Republicans blocked an increase year after year.

I remind them of who established Social Security for the elderly, and who keeps on defending it from those who would try to undermine it, and punch holes in it, until it collapsed in on itself.

I remind them of who has fought for equal work rights for all their Mothers, Sisters, Daughters, Nieces, and Wives.

I remind them of who has fought to let women handle their own legal reproductive decisions, in consultation with their doctors and their own personal belief systems.

I remind them, that most fat cats do not trickle down, because if they did, they would not be greedy fat cats, and that they have had the Bush Tax Cuts for long enough to prove that they have not invested them in job creation.

And yes; I remind them of the fact that John Kevorkian Boehner and Mitch Kevorkian McConnell were in the operating room for the past two decades, and they almost killed the patient, so why would you give them another chance at finishing off the middle class, permanently.

Trickle down is a sick joke.

Democrats believe in percolation, because if you put more money in the hands of the working class they will spend it on goods and services, where as the Fat Cat will sit on it, until the consumer demand returns.

That is what I call the Republican Catch22 Economics Philosophy;

It Is Robin Hood With Dyslexia.

They take from the poor to give to the rich. The rich in turn, sit on the extra money, until the working stiffs start spending, and create a supply side demand. However; since that is not creating jobs, wage spending stays depressed, keeping demand depressed, there by keeping the fat cats sitting on their big fat assets, except when they invest in a trophy sports team, or a new vanity wife.

Trickle Down Is a Ridiculous Catch 22 Economic Theory, and we have the current Great Recession, post Bush Tax Cuts, to prove it.

Spread the word.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Another Angle post by Greg ... and another donation to her campaign by sbj.

Posted by: sbj3 | September 9, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

so, what we have here is a pair of far left liberal talking heads trying to impose a benchmark standard on everyone else.

Yeah, right. trying to sieze the "main stream" is an old tactic. I remember Bush saying to Kerry: "there is a main stream in American politics and you are on the left Bank."

Greg and Rachel have joined Mr Kerry on that left bank. Now they have arrogated to themselves the right to determine everyone else's position. Not so fast red ryder.

What is perhaps even more frightening to the already upset Mr Sargent is the thought that many Americans may find these "radical" positions completely acceptable. Afterall, the left has always beleived that it has the exclusive right to be "radical". So BHO can has Ayers as a BFF but Ms Angle cannot voice opinions that make Rachel Madow uncomfortable.

This is really very entertaining. Hoisted by your own petard?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | September 9, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

"Second amendment remedies" are aka treason. I cannot fathom a major party candidate for the Senate suggesting this.

Unless, you know, its a antebellum secessionist Southern candidate. Nice company to keep.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | September 9, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Sharron Obtuse Angle is a Paranoid wack job. She also believes that we should not fluoridate our drinking water, and she also supports rehabilitating prison inmates by having governments pay the Church Of Scientology to give them Magical Scientology Massages.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

"Do you also think that Thomas Jefferson was to the right of Mussolini?!"

ahahahahaha

Pls don't tell me you're comparing Angle to Jefferson.


ahahahah...pls stop! Yer killin' me!

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 9, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

mikefromArlington:
Do you also think that Thomas Jefferson was to the right of Mussolini?!

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it's natural manure." (November 13, 1787 letter to W. S. Smith, B.12.356)

------------------------------

I think a politician in modern times who seemingly advocates armed insurrection in response to policies she doesn't like and refuses to back off from that, or pretends she didn't say controversial things when called out of them, is too extreme for either party.

Quoting the founding fathers doesn't suddenly change all that, and seems more like a distraction to avoid addressing Ms. Angel's comments than anything else.

Posted by: mustangs79 | September 9, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Still Nevadans are lucky compared to we in Florida....we have to sweat out or Gubernatorial election because the R's gave us Rick "Mr Medicare Fraud" Scott.

Tea partiers are nothing if not inconsistent.
They spout one thing and then vote for another. Scott bilked Medicare/Medicaid so egregiously his OWN BOARD OF DIRECTORS decided it was better to buy out Scott (fire him)for 8 million and 300 million and stock options and then paid a record 1.7 Billion dollar fine. Yet tea party morons here in Florida post crap like...he was a businessman not a politician..we duzn't want no more stinkin politicians.

He is a freakin failed businessman and a shady (being charitable here..IMHO he's a crook) who settled out of court because Physicians in his latest health care scam Solantic claim they were pressured to FAKE documents.

Whether you call it racism (certainly a significant percentage) or brainwashing by Fox with the endless terrorist, socialist meme's they float...most of these idiots suffer from Obama derangement syndrome.

Alex Sink was a former Bank of America President in Florida. UNLIKE Scott she doesn't have to say, "I take responsibility for that crime". She was actually successful!!! She spent the last four years as the State's Chief Financial Officer...she understands where the money is and how the state works...but what is the tea party opposition to her...Obama...Obama...Obama...DERANGEMENT truly is the best descriptor of this syndrome!

Kinda like SBJ's Reid derangement syndrome. He'd rather vote and contribute to a total wack job than see Reid win.

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 9, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

sbj3, we tremble in fear of your donation. Also, I personally fear the fact that you seem to condone the idea of shooting people who disagree with you and, of course, I fear the bottomless, vast stupidity that lets people believe Angle is at all fit to govern. Mostly the stupidity. Actually, just the stupidity.

PS @skipsailingrandomnumber, "can has Ayers as a BFF"? Are you taking the valuable time that could be used posting on LOLcats to troll now?

Posted by: eadsiv | September 9, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

mustangs79:

Just because I don't say that I agree with Sharron Angle on EVERY Plum Line thread doesn't mean that I am distracting to avoid addressing her comments.

mikefromArlington:

Pls don't tell me you're not going to answer my question.

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 9, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Only in the neoconfederate party in the year 2010 can the duly-elected democratically-elected government of the USA be considered a TYRANNY.

TYRANNY!

TYRANTS are NOT elected.

Representative democracy is NOT tyranny.

And anyone who thinks it is, is either certifiably insane or hates the very concept of democracy in the first place.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 9, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

And furthermore, I do not give a rat' arse what Thomas Jefferson may have said. If it is not in the Constitution, then it has no legal standing.

Jefferson also wrote in The Declaration; that we hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, and yet that same smug bastard lived of the back breaking work of people he kept enslaved, and did not even release, in his will.

"The pursuit of happiness" Really Mr. Jefferson; How were those Human Beings, which you kept enslaved, supposed to engage in that pursuit?

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

"What does it say that a major party candidate for Senate actually believes these things? It's almost as if no one really wants to go there."

Most importantly, what does it say that NOONE from that major party has come forth to defend the integrity of the Republic and the need to abide by the results of democratic elections!

Since silence means assent, ALL Republicans/Conservatives/Tea Partiers agree with her!

Posted by: AMviennaVA | September 9, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

O.K. I just read Jefferson's letter where this quote is taken from. Read what's before it...

"What country before ever existed a century & a half without a rebellion? & what country can preserve it's liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon & pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. It is it's natural manure."

http://www.theatlantic.com/past/docs/issues/96oct/obrien/blood.htm

Take a moment to understand just what he was talking about and when he says, "The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon & pacify them" he's referring to those that had the uprising. So in other words, what this Govn't needs to do is set the tea-partiers right as to facts, pardon and pacify them.

This famous quote of Jefferson's was only to downplay the riot in the eyes of the French because the English were trying to play it up as the U.S. was in anarchy.

So please, spare me the history lesson of quotes twisted to have another meaning. Jefferson was not encouraging riots in the U.S. He was trying to explain that from time to time, a growing nation will have its internal strife but it should be in no way interpreted as a nation in chaos.

Anyways, read the letter. I'm sure you will have another interpretation of Jefferson's intentions with the quote.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 9, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

"Sharron Obtuse Angle is a Paranoid wack job. She also believes that we should not fluoridate our drinking water, and she also supports rehabilitating prison inmates by having governments pay the Church Of Scientology to give them Magical Scientology Massages."

So, she's a Scientologist "whack-job" and not a fundamentalist Christian "whack-job"?  If so, can we really use the "First Commandment" argument?  It then doesn't mean what we think it means. Or does our inconsistency bother us?

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | September 9, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

mustangs79:

Just because I don't say that I agree with Sharron Angle on EVERY Plum Line thread doesn't mean that I am distracting to avoid addressing her comments.

------------------------

Then address her comments rather than trying to have "gotcha" moments with other posters.

Posted by: mustangs79 | September 9, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

What's even funnier to make what Jefferson was saying to make a straight line to explain today's teapartiers is this quote from the letter:

"Where did it ever exist, except in the single instance of Massachusetts? And can history produce an instance of rebellion so honourably conducted? I say nothing of it's motives. They were founded in ignorance, not wickedness. God forbid we should ever be 20 years without such a rebellion. The people cannot be all, & always well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions it is a lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty."

Now, if that isn't a perfect explanation of the tea party crowd I don't know what is.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 9, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

@eadsiv: Insult me again and I shall contribute yet more to Angle!

Posted by: sbj3 | September 9, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Do any Republicans have any thoughts on my post at 4:12pm?

Here it is again in its entirety:

"Only in the neoconfederate party in the year 2010 can the duly-elected democratically-elected government of the USA be considered a TYRANNY.

TYRANNY!

TYRANTS are NOT elected.

Representative democracy is NOT tyranny.

And anyone who thinks it is, is either certifiably insane or hates the very concept of democracy in the first place."

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 9, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if the tea party would use that quote if they all knew in the same breath Jefferson called rebelliers ill-informed, ignorant and misconceivers of the facts.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 9, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

I am always fascinated by those who insist they know what the 'founding fathers' thought and actually quote them at length. Somehow, those same people never quite quote them when it comes to gun ownership. For example, somehow Franklin & Jefferson & Washington (and others) wrote that of course (that is, it is beyond question) that criminals and unsavory characters do not have the right to own guns.

I suppose they were anti-American Communists!

Posted by: AMviennaVA | September 9, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

"Do any Republicans have any thoughts on my post at 4:12pm?"

Although I am not a Republican I can give you my conservative thoughts.

Your post at 4:12pm reads as if it was written at 4:20.

Posted by: sbj3 | September 9, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

So, ChuckinDenton, if Barack Obama ordered the Army to take over and occupy Denton (assuming you don't live in Greater Manchester), you still think that "Second amendment remedies" in response would be aka treason?. I cannot fathom an American suggesting this.

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 9, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

SBJ, what do you think about the substance of the post:

"TYRANTS are NOT elected.

Representative democracy is NOT tyranny.

And anyone who thinks it is, is either certifiably insane or hates the very concept of democracy in the first place."

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 9, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

mustangs79, do you also agree with Jefferson that those rebelling, AKA the tea partiers should be made to see the truth, forgiven and pacified?

Do you now see how using that quote as a justification for violence today is absolutely ridiculous on its face?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 9, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

TrollMcWingnut

She is not a member of The Church Of Scientology, to the best of my knowledge, but she was pushing for to have them rehabilitate inmates, with their Magical Scientology Massage program, which of course tax payers would fund.

Does it sound like she really has all her marbles, to you?

Don't forget, she is the one who has campaigned against government spending, but she wants to hand it out to the Church Of Scientology Hucksters?!

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

mustangs79...mustangs79....has anyone seen mustangs79?

bueller?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 9, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

"Although I am not a Republican I can give you my conservative thoughts.

Your post at 4:12pm reads as if it was written at 4:20.•

Speaking as a Republican, I agree with what sbj3 said. 

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | September 9, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse

@eadsiv: Insult me again and I shall contribute yet more to Angle!

Posted by: sbj3 | September 9, 2010 4:17 PM

............

He doesn't need to since you keep insulting yourself, everytime you contribute to her campaign, because you know full well that she considers you to be a sub-human, because of your sexual orientation. If she had her way, you would be treated as a complete outcast in America.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse


@eadsiv: Insult me again and I shall contribute yet more to Angle!

Posted by: sbj3 | September 9, 2010 4:17 PM

............

He doesn't need to, since you keep insulting yourself, every time you contribute to her campaign, because you know full well that she considers you to be a sub-human, because of your sexual orientation. If she had her way, you would be treated as a complete outcast in America.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

TrollMcWingnut,

What do you think about the substance of the post:

"TYRANTS are NOT elected.

Representative democracy is NOT tyranny.

And anyone who thinks it is, is either certifiably insane or hates the very concept of democracy in the first place."

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 9, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

All, check this out, critics set to ream Feingold for not campaigning with Obama:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/09/obama_heading_to_wisconsin_--.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | September 9, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

@liam: I'm not giving her money because I agree with her - I'm giving her money to even things up because Greg is constantly shilling for Reid and it pisses me off.

Posted by: sbj3 | September 9, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse


So, ChuckinDenton, if Barack Obama ordered the Army to take over and occupy Denton (assuming you don't live in Greater Manchester), you still think that "Second amendment remedies" in response would be aka treason?. I cannot fathom an American suggesting this.

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 9, 2010 4:25 PM |

..............

Nice fantasy strawman you are trying to set on fire.

So, Jake2D if your aunt had the testicles, that Quitter Palin claims Jan Brewer has, would that make her your uncle, and if you had them, would that make you her nephew?

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

mustangs79, do you also agree with Jefferson that those rebelling, AKA the tea partiers should be made to see the truth, forgiven and pacified?

Do you now see how using that quote as a justification for violence today is absolutely ridiculous on its face?

----------------------

I could care less what Jefferson had to say on the subject. I think what he had to say two hundred or so years ago is irrelevant to what Sharron Angel is saying now. I just was telling JakeD2 to stop playing games and address Ms. Angel's actual comments.
--------------------

So, ChuckinDenton, if Barack Obama ordered the Army to take over and occupy Denton (assuming you don't live in Greater Manchester), you still think that "Second amendment remedies" in response would be aka treason?. I cannot fathom an American suggesting this.

-----------------------
This comment is utterly bizarre. Yes, if Obama suddenly decides to start invading American cities for no apparent reason, then you can play Red Dawn to your heart's content.

Posted by: mustangs79 | September 9, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

""The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it's natural manure." (November 13, 1787 letter to W. S. Smith, B.12.356)"

Keep in mind, Jefferson lived in different times. He also thought the constitution should be shredded and re-written from scratch at least once a generation, and his response, after first having read the constitution, was mostly "meh". Indeed, he suggested, much to James Madison's chagrin, that they start over, despite the constitution having been derived from Jefferson's own (with George Mason) Constitution of the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Jefferson had his theory tested out in his lifetime in France, and the results were indeed bloody, but did not, at the time, appear to refresh the tree of liberty. Later on, the Russian Revolution would suggest that, more often than not, armed revolutions resulted in the blood of the people refreshing the tree of tyranny. Ergo, Jefferson's statements should be taken with a grain of salt, and not as exculpatory of Angle's assertions that some things might require 2nd amendment solution. Unless, of course, she's expecting an attack by the British, demanding that state militias respond in kind.

@Ethan2010: "TYRANTS are NOT elected. Representative democracy is NOT tyranny."

There ya go. Something we can both agree on, 100%, I think. You are exactly right--presidents may be *expletives*, but the system itself does not allow them the opportunity to be tyrants. Duly elected represents of a constitutional government are simply not tyrants (or dictators, or whatever), none of them, no matter what we think of them.

U.S. Presidents are, by political definition, not tyrants.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 9, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Liam-still:

Thank you for pointing out at least ONE AREA where Sharron Angle is better than Thomas Jefferson.

mustangs79:

I agree with Sharron Angle's claim that folks may soon be resorting to "Second Amendment remedies" if Congress continues on its current course. Therefore, I do not think it is unacceptable for a major party nominee to note the reality of what's coming.

mikefromArlington:

Don't worry, I won't ask you any more questions from here on.

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 9, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Kevin_Willis:

Maybe not yet ...

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 9, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

@mustangs79...haven't seen you here much before but glad to have you.

You'll soon find out that the vast majority of the righties who come here are guilty of what you correctly pointed out

"Then address her comments rather than trying to have "gotcha" moments with other posters."

That is their ONLY reason for being here...to have gotcha moments. Kevin W is the LONE exception...SBJ at least does it with wit and we all understand he's just effin with us for fun. The rest are here either to post inane stupid rants..STRF..Kaddaffi...people who are right at home with birthers and other looney tunes...but the rest of the "intellectual" righties NEVER offer anything constructive...they are here SOLEY to as you put it...get a gotcha moment.

If you think about it though..what else do they have to offer...their party for the second time in 75 years has completely crashed our economy..they foisted two unfunded wars on us..ran up the deficit...and botched Katrina so badly they made us look like a 3rd world nation.

What do their leaders offer in the way of substance by the way...any rational look at defense spending...nah...cut social programs...and above all cut taxes..cut taxes..cut taxes..and while carrying that bloated obscene defense budget cut the deficit by...yeahhh cutting even more social programs.

Gotta give them credit though for all their thoughtful input into fixing the serious problem of health care...let's see what did the R's offer? Death Panels...pulling the plug on granny...and yes..one of their top leaders Sen Demented did allow that the best he could come up with was "Obama's Waterloo".

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 9, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

@Kevin...great post at 4:40PM

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 9, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Kevin,

Not very long ago, Jake2D wrote; here on Plumline, that he was not considering assassination, and then added the word "yet". That is all you need to know about that turnip.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Liam-still, I find Sharron Angle much more rational than Senator Reid.

Ethan2010, I'll bite. There are Americans who thought President George W. Bush was a TYRANT, or maybe just a Tyrant, or even a tyrant. I'm sure some Japanese-Americans thought FDR was a tyrant and I'm guessing Eugene Debs thought President Wilson was a tyrant. 

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | September 9, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Liam-still, I find Sharron Angle much more rational than Senator Reid.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | September 9, 2010 4:48 PM

I wish you hadn't told me that. I always thought that your name was intentionally whimsical, and not to be taken seriously.

Now you had to go and spoil it, by revealing that you are not just a WingNut in name only.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

TrollMcWingnut,

Read this very carefully, because this is what I asked you:

What do YOU think about the substance of the post:

"TYRANTS are NOT elected.

Representative democracy is NOT tyranny.

And anyone who thinks it is, is either certifiably insane or hates the very concept of democracy in the first place."

Now, please, if you are going to respond, please at least answer the question I asked. It's really not that hard. And I can't imagine why you would refuse to answer it.

What do YOU think?

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 9, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

chuck I think you're missing the point here. an arrogant ruling class that has no fear of the electorate is tantamount to tyranny. These folks need to be reminded, from time to time, that Americans are well armed and unwilling to change the basic nature of their relationship with the government.

read the declaration again and note that according to that document it is our DUTY to abolish a government that no longer meets our needs.

Finally, what exactly will it take to prove to the power crowd in DC that we've withdrawn our consent to be governed by them.

Apparently the left has no problem with the antics of bill ayers. None at all. But let someone on the right even so much as hint at using the same tactics and the undies in a wad squad comes out in full force.

You guys sowed. Now you reap. If radicals on the left can engage in violence and obtain approval from BHO, why can't others?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | September 9, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

"@Kevin...great post at 4:40PM"

Second.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 9, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse


@liam: I'm not giving her money because I agree with her - I'm giving her money to even things up because Greg is constantly shilling for Reid and it pisses me off.

Posted by: sbj3 | September 9, 2010 4:35 PM |

...............

Wow!

Amazing admission on your part. I will see if I can persuade Greg, to start lambasting me on a regular basis, so that you can start sending me money.

I notice that you dodged my actual point, that Sharron Obtuse Angle would have you treated like a sub-human freak, and outcast, but yet you keep sending her money, to make sure that she has a chance to get in a position to degrade you more.

You poor lost soul.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

@Liam-still: "Not very long ago, Jake2D wrote; here on Plumline, that he was not considering assassination, and then added the word 'yet'."

Yes, well, folks like that at the conservative Ace of Spades blog (if he catches 'em in the comments) get their IP address and related information turned over to the Secret Service. It's a very bad idea to say that sort of thing, even in jest, because, generally, homey don't play that.

That being said, I'm a big fan of Jefferson, but it should be known that he wasn't necessarily right about everything. I disagree with him vehemently on rewriting the constitution once a generation, for example, but also his romantic notions regarding violent revolution.

@Troll: I don't know that Sharon Angle is more rational than Senator Reid. Even accounting for spin, I haven't seen a lot of sign of it. I still think I like her better, even so.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 9, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

SBJ, Skippy, JakeD2,

Kevin_Willis has -- rightfully -- agreed with me that, "Duly elected represents of a constitutional government are simply not tyrants."

What do YOU think? Do you agree?

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 9, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

"TYRANTS are NOT elected.

Representative democracy is NOT tyranny.

And anyone who thinks it is, is either certifiably insane or hates the very concept of democracy in the first place."

Well, I guess Bush is off the hook after all.

As usual, Ethan the miseducated confuses democracy and "representative democracy." The founders feared democracy precisely because of its proclivity for majority tyranny.

In any event, they designed our federal government in hopes that its mixed form would prevent tyranny through divided powers, checks and balances, limited federal powers, etc., all set forth in the Constitution.

But our government long ago shed its constitutional constraints, when FDR declared the Constitution a horse and buggy document, Congress chose to ignore it, and Courts began shredding it in compliance with Congress's desires.

On the whole, Ethan's claim is fatuous, because if we envision a leader who assumed tyrannical powers after being elected, Ethan would of course have to agree that a tyrant had been elected. He might quibble over whether the tyrant was elected to tyranny or seized it after election, but either way it means an elected government can become tyrannical. So either one believes tyrannical powers have been assumed, or one doesn't. The rest is just a matter of semantics.

Need anything else explained, chief?

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 9, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Lads and Lassies,

I am out of here. Time to have a meal, and then I am off to canvas some local voters, and regal them with tales of when Quitter Palin's Grandfatherand I killed ofd the last of the dinosaurs, by shooting them from Helicopters.

Not to be confused with the extinction of Dinah Shores, which I believe was accomplished by Burt Reynolds.

Keep the faith. We are going to do well, in November, if you just pitch in on getting out the votes.

Contact those you have in college, and remind them to register to vote by absentee ballots, and to also fire up their schoolmates to vote, and canvas for Democrats.

Have a good night all.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Nixon came the closed, in recent history, to trying to act like a tyrant, but he was removed by Constitutional means, and no one ever mentioned anything about having to resort to a violent 2nd amendment solution.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 9, 2010 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Keep twisting yourself into knots trying to defend Angle-its kinda fun watching the attempts.

Everyone seems to be forgetting that we have this little thing called the ballot box...

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | September 9, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse

SBJ, Skippy, JakeD2, Troll,

What do YOU think about the substance of my comments about tyranny?

"TYRANTS are NOT elected.

Representative democracy is NOT tyranny.

And anyone who thinks it is, is either certifiably insane or hates the very concept of democracy in the first place."

What do you think?

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 9, 2010 5:22 PM | Report abuse

skip-

Ah, the "Obama/Ayers" card. Didn't know he was also running for the Senate.

I'm not missing "the point". Its pretty simple, actually. The TeaOP cadidate for Senate in Nevada has suggested a "second amendment" solution to flouridation/"tyranny"/dogs peeing on her lawn.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | September 9, 2010 5:30 PM | Report abuse

just a couple of points:
(1) Yo, Mr Sargent. I don't think it is up to you or Ms Madow to determine what is acceptable. It is up to the voters.

but thanks for playing.

(2) What if Ethan threw a tantrum and nobody cared?

(3) Americans face two huge government related issues: First, a political ruling class that has contrived to sustain itself in office while looting the treasury on behalf of those they favor. Next, a massive, unaccountable standing government that has the same ability to apply co ercion as the political class. An unelected, unaccountable, unfireable official from oh say the EPA could cause as much damage to an industry as a poorly thought out policy enacted by congress. We can fire congress. Who fires the bureaucracy?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | September 9, 2010 5:30 PM | Report abuse

""TYRANTS are NOT elected.

Representative democracy is NOT tyranny.

And anyone who thinks it is, is either certifiably insane or hates the very concept of democracy in the first place.""

Ok, ok, my answer is that no, We have not elected a tyrant and no, our representative republic is not a tyranny (thanks to the Constitution). That doesn't mean that at some point we won't elect a Tyrant. All governments end, at some point, and as they end they often end with a Tyrant.   And tyrants have in fact been elected in other countries. Hitler and, arguably, Chavez were elected.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | September 9, 2010 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Kevin,

You aren't agreeing with Ethan on anything but a definition, or a tautology, if you will.

You say a President isn't a tyrant no matter what we think of him. Of course, no one is a tyrannt based on what we think of him. The existence of tyranny depends on power held and exercised. So, if a President assumed tyrranical powers, would he be a tyrannt?

By definition, yes, right? So being "duly elected" as President in fact does not answer the question at hand.

(And of course the same arguments can be made about Congress or the government as a whole, although perhaps tyranny becomes an incorrect term.)

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 9, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

TrollMcWingnut,

Thank you for having the intellectual honesty to answer my question. I appreciate it.

Clearly nothing about our representative democracy even remotely resembles a tyranny.

That's why using Thomas Jefferson's quotation -- "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it's natural manure." -- is so extreme.

Thomas Jefferson's quotation -- "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it's natural manure." -- was written in 1787. Our government first began its operations on March 4, 1789.

In other words, the quotation PRE-DATES our representative democracy and the government of the United States under the newly ratified Constitution.

THAT is why using the "Tree of Liberty" quotation is so extreme and dangerous.

Those who use that quotation are equating our current format of representative democracy with the government under the British Monarchy.

They either don't understand our current form of government or they are intentionally undermining it.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 9, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Ethan2010: "They either don't understand our current form of government or they are intentionally undermining it."

Plenty of people interpret quotes wrongly, or at least differently from me and are therefore, in my opinion, wrong. And I would argue that both skipsailing and quarterback1 have valid points about the size and scope of government, especially after FDR, that some could, considering the size and scope of government prior to FDR, be considered tyrannical.

People have differing opinions and can hold said opinions with undermining our current form of government. I bet you and I differ, dramatically, on a whole host of political questions. I don't think your opinions undermine our current form of government even though I'd probably think they're wrong. In the end, we're a couple of posters on an internet forum with virtually no influence outside of the other commentors here. I'm not worried about "violent revolution" being fomented because somebody think's Barry's a tyrant and I wasn't afraid of said violence because somebody thought Bush was a tyrant. Just like I don't blame greenies for James Lee being insane.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | September 9, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

So before we had Harry Reid running a scorched earth campaign to paint Sharron Angle as a dangerous radical. Now we seem to be admitting the possibility that Angle actually is in fact, a bit of a nut. Mind you I'm not complaining. I'm just wondering what changed.

Posted by: CalD | September 9, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Just reading through the comments sounds like crazy talk has taken over. Talk of revolution or acts of revolution against our elected government can be termed noble by the revolutionaries, but is considered sedition and ultimately treason, offenses that are gravely punished. If you would-be revolutionaries think your defense is a quote from T. Jefferson, well, don't hold your breath for acquital. You'll be just as convicted and just as punished as if you quoted Jefferson Davis or George Jefferson or any other Jefferson.

Don't be stupid just because you lost an election.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 9, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Lucky for me, I guess, sedition (short of conspiracy or actual espionage) is protected under the First Amendment. Hell, I can even BURN THE KORAN without being arrested!

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 9, 2010 8:29 PM | Report abuse

TITLE 18 > PART I > CHAPTER 115 > § 2385
Prev | Next
§ 2385. Advocating overthrow of Government

Whoever knowingly or willfully advocates, abets, advises, or teaches the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying the government of the United States or the government of any State, Territory, District or Possession thereof, or the government of any political subdivision therein, by force or violence, or by the assassination of any officer of any such government; or
Whoever, with intent to cause the overthrow or destruction of any such government, prints, publishes, edits, issues, circulates, sells, distributes, or publicly displays any written or printed matter advocating, advising, or teaching the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying any government in the United States by force or violence, or attempts to do so; or
Whoever organizes or helps or attempts to organize any society, group, or assembly of persons who teach, advocate, or encourage the overthrow or destruction of any such government by force or violence; or becomes or is a member of, or affiliates with, any such society, group, or assembly of persons, knowing the purposes thereof—
Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both, and shall be ineligible for employment by the United States or any department or agency thereof, for the five years next following his conviction.
---------------------------------
But, don't pay attention to this law. Let's all listen to Jake, the lawya.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 9, 2010 8:39 PM | Report abuse

Jefferson's "liberty tree" statement was probably Timothy McVeigh's favorite quote. It was emblazoned on the T-shirt he was wearing the morning of that day in 1995 when he blew up the Alfred P. Murrah Building in Oklahoma City,killing 168 persons. This is from the prosecutor's opening statement at McVeigh's trial:

"And on the back of [the] T-shirt that McVeigh was wearing that morninjg, the morning of the bombing, the morning he was arrested, was this phrase: It said: 'The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.' And above those words was the image of a tree. You'll see that T-shirt, you'll see the tree, you'll see the words beneath the tree, and you'll notice that instead of fruit, the T-shirt -- the tree on the T-shirt -- bears a depiction of droplets of scarlet-red blood."

Posted by: leifrakur2 | September 9, 2010 8:43 PM | Report abuse

I'll just copy/paste what I typed earlier. The quote is being completely misinterpreted.

"What country before ever existed a century & a half without a rebellion? & what country can preserve it's liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon & pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. It is it's natural manure."

http://www.theatlantic.com/past/docs/issues/96oct/obrien/blood.htm

Take a moment to understand just what he was talking about and when he says, "The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon & pacify them" he's referring to those that had the uprising. So in other words, what this Govn't needs to do is set the tea-partiers right as to facts, pardon and pacify them.

This famous quote of Jefferson's was only to downplay the riot in the eyes of the individual he was writing because the English were trying to play it up as the U.S. was in anarchy.

What's even funnier to make what Jefferson was saying to make a straight line to explain today's teapartiers is this quote from the letter:

"Where did it ever exist, except in the single instance of Massachusetts? And can history produce an instance of rebellion so honourably conducted? I say nothing of it's motives. They were founded in ignorance, not wickedness. God forbid we should ever be 20 years without such a rebellion. The people cannot be all, & always well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions it is a lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty."

Now, if that isn't a perfect explanation of the tea party crowd I don't know what is.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 9, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

12BarBlues:

Try reading Watkins v. United States, 354 U.S. 178 (1957) and Yates v. United States 354 U.S. 298 (1957) someday.

http://www.americanthinker.com/2010/04/sedition_is_constitutional.html

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 9, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

@leifrakur2,

I did not know about Tim McVeigh's t shirt. Interesting that it was the prosecution who used it in their case--not the defense. Perhaps, it is no defense much to the surprise of 21st century revolutionary wannabes.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 9, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Jake,

You just keep building your defense. I think I will try to stay a little farther from the line you are trying to walk.

I hope for your sake you will never need to use your defense. Good luck to you.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | September 9, 2010 8:54 PM | Report abuse

12BarBlues:

If you can't tell the difference between 1) my passive posts here and 2) Tim McVeigh killing hundreds of people, I don't need your kind of luck.

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 9, 2010 9:07 PM | Report abuse

@qb: "You say a President isn't a tyrant no matter what we think of him. Of course, no one is a tyrannt based on what we think of him. The existence of tyranny depends on power held and exercised. So, if a President assumed tyrranical powers, would he be a tyrannt?"

If he somehow managed to do that--and suspend the ever present check on tyrants, the vote--then yes. But my understanding was that the discussion is confined to Obama, history, and at least remotely possible future scenarios. Specifically, Obama is not a tyrant, nor is the Democratic majority, nor the Republican minority. President Palin won't be a tyrant, either. :)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 9, 2010 10:53 PM | Report abuse

The more progressives demonize Angle, the more they convice us to vote for her.

It would be suicidal to vote for Reid. He already has already harmed us more than terrorists:

-- Nevada's UNEMPLOYMENT is 14.2%, highest in the nation.

-- Every third house in Las Vegas is in FORECLOSURE

-- Nevada is dead last in almost every category

And what's worse: Reid forced us to swallow Obamacare, which will kill even more jobs and further destroy our economy.

We'll support Angle!

Posted by: AntonioSosa | September 10, 2010 12:25 AM | Report abuse

First, I will state that in making the proceeding arguments, I am not advocating a violent rebellion against the federal government. I do believe that "second amendment remedies" may in some cases be justifiable, but only once all non-violent avenues are exhausted, which is not the case at this time and still will not be should this election cycle yield unfavorable results.

Now, to address the argument being thrown around in this discussion that tyrants cannot be elected (though I am sorry to raise such a beaten-to-death example):

The man who is widely considered to have been perhaps the ULTIMATE tyrant, or at least the archetypal tyrant of the 20th century- namely, Adolf Hitler- was democratically elected. Do you consider this classification erroneous? Was Hitler, as an elected official, inherently non-tyrannical?

Posted by: cclomwest | September 10, 2010 2:19 AM | Report abuse

@cclomwest: "The man who is widely considered to have been perhaps the ULTIMATE tyrant, or at least the archetypal tyrant of the 20th century- namely, Adolf Hitler- was democratically elected."

Hitler was able to finagle a system in which he was not democratically removable. Once a democratically elected leader is capable of suspending elections, then they become tyrants. But, by definition, democracy is no longer involved.

"I do believe that 'second amendment remedies' may in some cases be justifiable"

This is garbage, appropriate for wrong-headed folks who imagine a noble martyr's death, ala Ruby Ridge. As that is what will happen to you, should anyone seriously attempt an armed revolution in this modern era.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 10, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Use all the mental gymnastics you want, but you can't change the fact that she was merely expressing a legitimate concern over the consequences of failing to rectify the outrageous "bail out" of the banksters and their wall street cronies. She is not advocating insurrection, she is trying to prevent it!

Posted by: hammerhead23 | September 10, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

"She is not advocating insurrection, she is trying to prevent it!"

AMEN!

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 10, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

If we were playing the game of 'Clue', I would have to say that Professor Plum did it in the library with the monkey wrench.

Posted by: hammerhead23 | September 10, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

hammerhead23:

Check out the latest misleading headline here at the The Plum Line http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/09/steele_small_businesses_dont_n.html

Posted by: JakeD2 | September 10, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

@cclomwest: "The man who is widely considered to have been perhaps the ULTIMATE tyrant, or at least the archetypal tyrant of the 20th century- namely, Adolf Hitler- was democratically elected."

Hitler was not democratically elected. He was appointed Chancellor by President Von Hindenburg.

Posted by: leifrakur2 | September 10, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

"This is garbage, appropriate for wrong-headed folks who imagine a noble martyr's death, ala Ruby Ridge. As that is what will happen to you, should anyone seriously attempt an armed revolution in this modern era."

If you read my entire post, surely you are aware I had just stated I DO NOT support an armed rebellion against the current government. I said that "second amendment remedies" "may be justifiable in some cases" once "all non-violent avenues have been exhausted"; for example, supposing the federal government were to begin constructing concentration camps and performing mass execution of "undesirables," I would support a civilian revolt to overthrow it. Is this position really "garbage" to your mind?

Right now, I do believe that the federal government is severely out of line, but it has not reached a point comparable to the one described above, and there remain a plethora of peaceful, non-violent means of rectifying the situation- hence, armed rebellion would be unjustified. What I am attempting to dispute is the notion that democratically-elected governments are somehow inherently non-tyrannical, or that revolution against such can never, in any situation, be justified.

Posted by: cclomwest | September 10, 2010 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Now, in response to those who have argued against my earlier example, allow me to apply the central point of said example in a way which does not admit of the sort of diversionary argumentation that the first edition brought forth:

Supposing that, for example, anti-Semitism were to see a resurgence in America, such that the majority of the voting public freely elected an administration intent on annihilating our Jewish population, and, in full violation of the US Constitution and utter disregard for the dignity of human life, said administration began to enact this wish. What, then, would be your position? "It can't be tyranny- they're democratically elected"? "Rebellion is unjustified- we must save whatever Jews remain by changing office-holders through the next election cycle"? Or would you admit that it IS entirely possible for tyranny to arise in a democratic system?

Posted by: cclomwest | September 10, 2010 10:41 PM | Report abuse

@leifrakur2

“Hitler was not democratically elected. He was appointed Chancellor by President Von Hindenburg.”

Chancellor was not an elective office. Germany had a parliamentary form of government. Thus, asking Hitler to form a government was not unusual. Hitler was sworn in as Chancellor on January 30, 1933. In the elections that followed five weeks later the Nazis won over 43 percent of the vote, the largest plurality by a significant margin. He was asked to form a government.

Eliminate the word games and it is fair to say Hitler was elected.

Posted by: RKB320 | September 13, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company