Earlier we noted that on his radio show today, Rush Limbaugh tore into Sasha Abramsky for his Salon.com column about President Obama, and in doing so, mistakingly called Abramsky a woman -- more specifically, a “stupid babe.” Abramsky responded:
Now, I don't mind being called a “babe,” though one would think that a radio superstar like Rush could afford fact-checkers -- you know, the people who do complicated research tasks like google the name “Sasha Abramsky,” look at the websites of the people about to be savaged (in my case it's particularly, and unsurprisingly easy to find, at www.sashaabramsky.com), and realize that a photo of a person with a goatee is, in most circumstances, a guy and not a “babe.”
What I argued in my article was that Obama believes in good governance, and that he'd hoped he could convince people from across the political spectrum to raise the caliber of the political discourse once he was in the White House. I also said was that this was a mistake -- that it led Obama to try to find common ground with political adversaries who made a pretty explicit decision not to work toward good policy solutions in the first years of the Obama presidency but to do anything and everything to oppose his policy initiatives so as to make him look weak. Hence the bizarre spectacle of Republican congressmen and senators opposing policies they had previously supported: decrying policies intended to stabilize the financial system that many of them had signed on to when they were initiated by Republican president George Bush; opposing even incremental parts of the healthcare reform package that they had previously advocated; trying to stop Democrats from extending unemployment benefits for the long-term unemployed (yes, the hard-hurting people Rush supposedly wants to liberate from Big Government intervention), opposing even minimal cap-and-trade policies designed to rein in greenhouse gas emissions; and so on.
This isn't the politics of good faith, rational compromisers; it's the politics of ideologues -- which is why Limbaugh is so delighted.