Friday, January 23, 2009

Hate Club

I was zipping through TV channels last night just before going to bed when, for no reason really, I turned on Sean Hannity's new Fox television show, Hannity. Mr. “Reasonable” was sitting with his back to the camera, looking at a relatively large sound meter with a sign overhead that stated Hate Meter. In succession different voices became audible (all interestingly with what one might charitably call an Ozark accent); all ranting obscenities about Hannity which resulted in the predictable response on the Hate Meter.

Hannity finally turned to face the camera and claimed the voices were those of liberals who had been invited to call in and rant at him. It was all done altruistically, he claimed, so they could release their hate at him and not at his viewers. He then provided a phone number for future call-ins.

Aside from the fact that I think the voices were actually those of Hannity's parents, I couldn't help but recall in George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty Four something called the Two-Minute Hate. It occurred to me that Hannity (and other squawkers these days) rely on this sort of fear-mongering to incite their followers and enable them to loath and hate anyone different from them. Liberals have become Emmanuel Goldstein and it has been very successful. The word “liberal” is now conservative code word for traitor, commie, tax and spend socialist, etc.

So successful that local conservative bloggers who are losing arguments (most all) resort eventually to calling their debate antagonist a member of the hate left. One local blogger known for less than real debate has even taken to calling a local lefty the king of the hate left. It doesn't matter the subject, anyone writing anything that disagrees with most anything he writes is not only hateful, but the evil falsehoods will likely be sent on a short, quick trip down the memory hole (as does anything he writes that proves to be false).

This reinforces my belief that Hannity's show and the others like him (squawk radio host Charlie Sykes, Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage, etc.) are merely instruments for conservative brainwashing; the members of the incurious club who are affected most then carry out the demonization of liberals on the local level.

It's sad really. They never had a chance.


capper said...

This may be bad of me, but I do take the title with a little certain amount of pride. It tells me that I am doing something right.

I may have been hurt, but I just look at the source, and realize where they are coming from. They are only snapping at people out of fear.

Billiam said...

The right call the left haters, the left call the right haters. Both sides sit back, smug in their own knowledge of the others evil. I have been guilty of this in the past. Nothing changes, nothing progresses. Nothing new under the sun...

Other Side said...

I think your point is an oversimplification, Bill. Name one liberal national figure, or even liberal radio host whom you would consider a hater.

I have not ever heard such filth from liberals as I do from those conservatives who are given the task of inciting the masses.

Of course, most conservatives are not haters -- you are a prime example and I am proud to call you friend.

btw: What's up? Just decide to end the blog experiment? I'll give a call sometime next week to see how you are.

Billiam said...

I'll look forward to a call. Number one, the term hater is much overused. I would hope that we can agree on that. As to liberal radio, I've tried listening to Randi Rhodes, but she's pretty nasty. I've listened to Thom Hartman, and, sometimes, he's over the top. Never did care for Franken. I kind of like Ed Shultz sometimes. Garafolo wasn't a pleasant person, either. I've had satellite radio for about 6 years, and tried listening to Air America when it was on. Man, it was nasty. While I don't agree with it, I think that Obama may get a small taste of what some on the left gave to Bush for so long.

Other Side said...

Well, I have listened to those you noted and their rhetoric doesn't come close to the vitriol of Limbaugh, etc.

But, this winds up being a matter of he said, she said and doesn't get us anywhere.

btw: I think Franken is hilarious.

Billiam said...

Agreed, it doesn't get us anywhere. I only wished to point out it's existence on both sides. Neither side has the upper hand in virtue on this issue. I found some of Franken's SNL stuff amusing, but, not so with his radio show.
My cousin met him a few times and said he wasn't a bad guy until Politics came up.