The Campaign Spot

Just Another High-Minded Chat About Throwing People Through Windows

The Daily Caller strikes again, finding more from JournoList:

Michael Tomasky, a writer for the Guardian, also tried to rally his fellow members of Journolist: “Listen folks — in my opinion, we all have to do what we can to kill ABC and this idiocy in whatever venues we have. This isn’t about defending Obama. This is about how the [mainstream media] kills any chance of discourse that actually serves the people.”

“Richard Kim got this right above: ‘a horrible glimpse of general election press strategy.’ He’s dead on,” Tomasky continued. “We need to throw chairs now, try as hard as we can to get the call next time. Otherwise the questions in October will be exactly like this. This is just a disease.”

(In an interview Monday, Tomasky defended his position, calling the ABC debate an example of shoddy journalism.)

Thomas Schaller, a columnist for the Baltimore Sun as well as a political science professor, upped the ante from there. In a post with the subject header, “why don’t we use the power of this list to do something about the debate?” Schaller proposed coordinating a “smart statement expressing disgust” at the questions Gibson and Stephanopoulos had posed to Obama.

None of the participants are all that shocking, but the explicitness of their effort to ensure that Rev. Jeremiah Wright was considered off-limits for future discussion is pretty eye-opening. The petition that grew out of the discussion can be found here; as I said, none of the participants is all that surprising.

Having said that, if you’ve ever felt like left-wing journalists colluded to call people “racist” . . . well, Spencer Ackerman called for just that:

It’s not necessary to jump to Wright-qua-Wright’s defense. What is necessary is to raise the cost on the right of going after the left. In other words, find a rightwinger’s [sic] and smash it through a plate-glass window. Take a snapshot of the bleeding mess and send it out in a Christmas card to let the right know that it needs to live in a state of constant fear. Obviously I mean this rhetorically.

If the right forces us all to either defend Wright or tear him down, no matter what we choose, we lose the game they’ve put upon us. Instead, take one of them — Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares — and call them racists. Ask: why do they have such a deep-seated problem with a black politician who unites the country? What lurks behind those problems? This makes *them* sputter with rage, which in turn leads to overreaction and self-destruction.

Considering Weigel’s talk of setting Matt Drudge on fire, Ezra Klein’s off-color recommendation for Tim Russert, and now Ackerman fantasizing about putting conservatives through plate-glass windows, there is a bizarre addiction to lurid, violent, threatening language — not just among the commenters of liberal blogs, but among the folks who we are told represent their best and brightest. It’s disturbing, and the fact that it doesn’t bother more people is disturbing.

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