23 February 2011
Civility Street Is A One-Way Path
After the assassination attempt against Representative Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ 8th), the University of Arizona announced that it was establishing the National Institute for Civil Discourse, to be co-chaired by former Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill J. Clinton. The civility center is described as “a non-partisan center for debate, research, education and policy in civil discourse.” In the abstract, it sounds like a noble but nebulous notion. In practice, it will probably be as insipid as the U.S. Institute for Peace or perhaps it can aspire to evolve into a organization like the feckless kleptocracy of the United Nations.
Such a civility institute should examine the media coverage surrounding the inception of the center. Immediately after the Congresswoman was shot, most of the Lamestream Media jumped on the thesis that the Tea Party was to blame and this should be the end of Gov. Sarah Palin’s political career. The Lamestream Media meme continued long after it became apparent that Jared Lee Loughner, Gifford’s assailant, was troubled man who spouted 9/11 conspiracy theories.
Lamestream Media coverage sought out any wacky protestors at Tea Party events and decried when they found depictions of President Obama as Hitler. Of course, these liberal Lamestream “reporters” failed to mention that such protest placards were produced by Lyndon Larouche, a perennial Democrat Presidential candidate. Strangely enough, Big Media never seemed offended or even aware of the many unflattering depictions of President George W. Bush at the anti-war protests During the current showdown at the Wisconsin State Capitol by pro-Union protesters, how often does the Lamestream Media show the crude comparisons of Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) as a dictator or even as Hitler? Hmm, that’s strange but no surprise as the liberal Lamestream media focuses on what fits in their ideological framework and magnifies anything attributable to their opposition.
The crux of the walkouts by Democrats in the Wisconsin and now the Indiana legislatures is about right to work legislation. Instead of standing firm like Gov. Walker, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R-IN) chided his party for pursuing controversial legislation and urged the Republicans to drop the matter. While speaking to reporters, Daniels saluted the Democrats for participating in the political process (by fleeing from their duties in the Statehouse) and hoped that by eschewing controversy he can lure dissenting Democrats back to the table. Certainly the Lamestream Media will characterize Daniels as being a Statesman and Walker as intransigent.
Civility is a cudgel used to bloody conservatives to relent from their principles to strive for consensus, which is remarkably similar to liberal political objectives. But when Republicans strive for bipartisan cooperation, as President George W. Bush attempted early in his administration, the concessions are one way. This “kinder and gentler” governance allowed the 43rd President to be vilified when political choices got tough. So much so, Rahm Emanuel (D-Chicago), Obama’s former chief of staff and the newly elected mayor of Chicago, could be crude as President Bush arrived at Obama’s inaugural. Perhaps Gov. Daniels is modeling his governance after President Obama’s inaugural address which offered to “extend a hand if they unclench their fist”. That has worked out so well for the Obama Administration’s foreign policy.
Granted, the Civility Center is based at the University of Arizona. Seeing the way the memorial service for the fallen in Tucson was quickly organized as “Together We Thrive” pep rally, which echoed an organizing for America theme, it is easy to understand the center’s orientation. Come to think of it, the National Center for Public Discourse may be as meaningful as City College’s Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service.