According to the right, things didn’t go wrong because the invasion was a mistake, or because Donald Rumsfeld didn’t send enough troops, or because the occupation was riddled with cronyism and corruption. No, it’s all because the good guys were stabbed in the back. Democrats, who undermined morale with their negative talk, and the liberal media, which refused to report the good news from Iraq, are responsible for the quagmire.Indeed, many on the right are paranoid megalomaniacs, but perhaps most Americans are not paranoid enough. Instead of believing these guys are capable of anything to retain power, the public just sensibly assumes, "Oh no, they couldn't have done that!" or "No, I don't believe it, what person would ever do that?!" Believe it people.
You might think it would be harder to claim that traitors are aiding our foreign enemies today than it was during the McCarthy era, when domestic liberals and Communist regimes could be portrayed as part of a vast left-wing conspiracy. What does the domestic enemy, which Bill O’Reilly identifies as the “secular-progressive movement,” have to do with the religious fanatics who attacked America five years ago?
But that’s easy: according to Mr. O’Reilly, “Osama bin Laden and his cohorts have got to be cheering on the S-P movement,” because “both outfits believe that the United States of America is fundamentally a bad place.”
Which brings us back to the Foley affair. The immediate response by nearly everyone in the Republican establishment — wild claims, without a shred of evidence behind them, that the whole thing is a Democratic conspiracy — may sound crazy. But that response is completely in character for a movement that from the beginning has been dominated by the paranoid style. And here’s the scary part: that movement runs our government.
On TNR's "The Plank," Chris Orr writes:
Can Republicans really have dug so deep into their spider hole of paranoia and entitlement that they can't even imagine having done anything wrong without it somehow being the fault of Democrats? Or has their own experience in hyping fabricated scandals (see Swift Boats, etc.) led them to believe there's no other kind?One could argue the Republicans are simply practicing the lie-and-deceive tactics they've used to stay in power for years. To a point, who can blame them since the uninformed public (thanks to the lax media and wet-noodle Dems) allowed the Swift Boat crap to work so well? Go ahead and accuse Bill Clinton of having a fit on FOX (not!), but he's always known how to effectively fight back against their slime attempts.
Will the public and media allow Foleygate to be Swift Boated? Stay tuned.