Monday, September 22, 2008

Dirty Tricks

I was a kid when I first heard about political dirty tricks. I think the story that intrigued me was from one of Dick Nixon's campaigns. At a campaign stop, Nixon was speaking from the back of a train. He had just begun his remarks when Dick Tuck, the Antinixon, signaled the the engineer that the speech was over... Nixon was hauled backwards away from from his own rally. Don't know why but I thought that was great. Probably I was impressed that anyone would think to do that.

These days dirty tricks are much more sophisticated. Sometimes you can find evidence of someone with a great imagination, but more often it just involves people who are willing to be dishonest. Michelle Malkin has a Rusty (if that is your name) Shackleford report on one such deceitful campaign smear. The fake smear is interesting but not terribly imaginative. The only cleverness attached to it came from Rusty, who traced the ad to its probable origin.

Though such ads may be partially effective, I'm not so concerned about liberals lying. I think that many times they underestimate the intelligence of the public, and their efforts end up just looking pathetic. What does have me concerned though is the Obama Campaign's willingness to use whatever means necessary to silence the opposition:

News has emerged that the organizers of that anti-Iran rally that famously got snarled up in Senator Hillary Clinton's ire at Governor Sarah Palin last week were threatened by New York Democrats with IRS action against their tax-exempt status if they allowed Palin to speak. CBS local NY news reported this little fact and so did NBC but most of the national news has ignored this outrageous threat to use the IRS to silence Governor Palin.

Accusing New York Democrats of using "McCarthyism" to shut Palin down, Democrat Assemblyman Dov Hikind was flabbergasted by the behind the scenes threats against the rally organizers. "It's an absolute shame that this has happened," CBS quoted Hikind as saying. "To threaten organizations … to threaten the Conference of Presidents that if you don't withdraw the invitation to Gov. Palin we're going to look into your tax exempt status … that's McCarthyism."

That isn't dirty tricks. That's fascism. And it's very troubling when you add the Obama's Action Wire attempts to tie up phone lines to talk radio shows, and recent Democrat interest in the "fairness" doctrine. Freedom of speech isn't the very first Amendment for no reason. It isn't just important, it's vital to our continued freedom.