One of These Things is Not Like the Other

Are there Left-wing nuts out there saying ugly things about John McCain and Sarah Palin?  Yes, though it seems to be confined primarily to anonymous commenters on blogs for the most part.  Is that the same as the delusional insanity wafting around the tin-foil hat faction of the Right concerning Obama?  Oh hell no!  Krugman is the right that this is the same strain of hate virus as Clinton Derangement Syndrome back in 1990’s, only with the added stench of odious racism.  In fairness to John McCain, at least he (unlike his running mate) has the common decency to be appalled at this, if only because he’s starting to realize the political end is nigh and this isn’t how he wants to be remembered.  Assuming an Obama victory, I look for a return to militia nuts, and huge boosts to the careers of Right Wing Howler Monkeys cranking out increasingly insane conspiracy theories in print and on teh interwebs.

UPDATE:  A rundown of violent Right Wing fantasies, long before they had Obama to fear.

UPDATE 2:  Glenn Greenwald makes the same point in disassembling the moral equivalency argument of Michael Crowley at TNR.

Race, Class & Economics

Thought-provoking article in The New Yorker about the difficulties Obama is having connecting the with working class white voters in Ohio.  It is common wisdom on the Left that working class whites are either racists or too stupid to know the Republicans are screwing them over, what with all their bitterness over guns, gays and Gods.  It was never that simplistic, though.  This, I think, is the heart of the article:

‘But they concluded that social issues like abortion, guns, religion, and even (outside the South) race had little to do with the shift. Instead, according to their data, it was based on a judgment that—during years in which industrial jobs went overseas, unions practically vanished, and working-class incomes stagnated—the Democratic Party was no longer much help to them. “Beginning in the mid-to-late 1970s, there was increasing reason for working-class whites to question whether the Democrats were still better than the Republicans at promoting their material well-being,” the study’s authors write. Working-class whites, their fortunes falling, began to embrace the anti-government, low-tax rhetoric of the conservative movement. During Clinton’s Presidency, the downward economic spiral of these Americans was arrested, but by then their identification with the Democrats had eroded. Having earlier moved to the right for economic reasons, the Arizona study concluded, the working class stayed there because of the rising prominence of social issues—Thomas Frank’s argument. But the Democrats fundamentally lost the white working class because these voters no longer believed the Party’s central tenet—that government could restore a sense of economic security.’

I would add that, now that the Democrats have wholly embraced NAFTA-style “Free” Trade, working class whites have little reason to come home.