Likewise I’ve no idea what happened to the earnest young socialist who visited my school and whose only memorable comment was to question Margaret Thatcher’s femininity. It’s a common theme I’ve encountered all too often; when some liberals talk about the opposition, be they Republican, Conservative or anyone who dare hold an opposing view, the gloves come off. Women who don’t toe the line have something wrong with them, non-whites are portrayed as betraying their race and whites are inherently racist. So many labels; I’ve lost count of the number of times the BBC has used the term “black Americans” or “white Americans” – are they kidding me?
I really shouldn’t have been surprised therefore to read another crude ‘news’ report on U.S healthcare reform; Why do people often vote against their own interests? Reform seems eminently sensible to me, but I know several Americans who oppose these measures. I respect their opinion, they’re not idiots, they just happen to have a different outlook that no-one, least of all the BBC, can be bothered to explore properly. In the same report Drew Weston, an ‘exasperated Democrat’ is quoted as saying:
Obama's administration made a tremendous mistake by not immediately branding the economic collapse that we had just had as the Republicans' Depression, caused by the Bush administration's ideology of unregulated greed.It’s an extraordinary statement with not an opposing view to be found. Indeed the story is so sloppily written it's not always easy to tell where the quote stops and the journalism begins. A balanced report might have pointed out that it wasn’t Bush who deregulated the banks, a measure widely held responsible for the start of our current economic mess, but his cigar loving predecessor Bill Clinton. If memory serves me correct, wasn’t he a Democrat?
Of course greed and countless other unpleasant attributes can be found all too easily in politics, but to be naïve enough to believe, and irresponsible enough to suggest that they reside solely on one side of the political spectrum serves no purpose. It's playing to the home crowd, it’s lazy but more than that it’s wrong. Just as conservatives need to stop throwing around ‘socialist’ as a form of insult, there are some liberals who need to be little more… liberal.