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A reader writes:

I just saw this article by Paul Burgess, who was one of Bush’s lead speechwriters: He basically whips himself into a lather of rage and self-confessed hatred against what basically amounts to half of his own countrymen (anyone who doesn’t like Bush or the Iraq war, he hates). My point is, do you think we can have a moratorium on talking about “unhinged” liberals and Democrats?  It actually frightens me that the Bush administration would have people like this working for them, people who literally hate America (or half of America, anyway). Digby has a good summary of this particular Republican/conservative malady:One thing to keep in mind about this: he’s not getting his hate on about politicians. It’s about his fellow citizens. They complain mightily about “Bush hatred,” and there’s been plenty of it. But there’s a difference between hating the leader of a political party and hating your fellow Americans. Take a look at the Amazon listings of political books and you’ll see the difference is stark.
Well, I’m not in favor of any of the hatred described in that article, but I don’t think that the distinction between hating a political leader and hating ordinary people really works here. Burgess seems to hate Democratic leaders and pols, although a very few of his constructions admit of a broader reading. And I have certainly read liberal op-eds and blog entries that express contempt for Bush voters as a class. My sense is that at the present historical moment, there is more “unhingedness” on the left than on the right, although the reverse would have been true circa 1996-97. But I have no deep investment in the idea.


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