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The Free Ride

chrisbush.jpgWhen last I bothered to pay attention to the pearl-clutching twitterings of the StarTribune’s very own Miss Gulch, one Katherine Kersten, she was whipping herself into transports over a nonexistent smack epidemic in the pastoral college town of Northfield, Minnesota. It wasn’t that she made a mountain out of a molehill. It’s that she made it out of thin-flippin’-air.

But lately she’s claiming that a bunch of harmless cyclists having a monthly parade is such a threat to Western Civ that it justifies very nasty measures.

What makes her agent-proschlockateur tactics harder to shrug off is that her ideological ally, local blogger and radio guy Mitch Berg, is doing much the same thing: Pre-emptively accusing lefties (in this case, the expected throngs of protesters for next year’s RNC convention in St. Paul) of all sorts of nastiness, so as to a) seemingly encourage equally-nasty behavior on the part of Republicans, and b) justify this behavior ahead of time.

And then, on a national level, we have two notable recent incidents: 1) the insane and amoral feeding frenzy started by the right-wing bigotsphere (aided and abetted, if not actually directed, by such leading GOP lights as Mitch McConnell) against the Frost family; and 2) the media’s looking the other way when Republican Attorney General nominee Michael Mukasey compared U.S. officials to Nazis, or when Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.) accused Democratic lawmakers of treason, yet throwing themselves into near-orgasmic transports each time a Republican smear merchant rings their Pavlovian smear-dinner-bell.

And we also have the Gathering of Eagles crew, egged on by such conservative moral forces as Michelle Malkin and Melanie Morgan, committing thuggery in DC one day and meeting with Bush the next. As Spocko says, what happens the day after they spill blood?

And why oh why, as Bob Somerby notes on the Frosts as he has noted several times on several other issues over several years: Why are our leading mainstream media pundits looking the other way when righties do this sort of thing, yet are oh-so-eager to pounce on lefties for any reason or none?

Why are the righties getting a free ride on all of this? (And as Digby observes, the righties’ insanity has only got worse, rather than better, of late, so it’s not as if the press’ giving them a free ride has made them calm down at all.)

Can anyone think of a plausible explanation that doesn’t involve being bought off or scared off? I sure can’t.

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