2006/10/10

The "moral superiority" of Republicans

Open letter to Chris Matthews

Sources to write to him:

Chris Matthews
Chris Matthews

MSNBC
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Hardball
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Mr Matthews,
I must say, reading the snippet below and having read Digby's blog post, I'm really baffled as to how the Republican Party can claim any sort of moral superiority over their Democratic rivals.

Matthews: You didn't give us the deadliest which is that Democrats are now trusted more on moral values

Fineman: I thought that was the next question

Matthews: (incredulous) I mean that is a stunning ... the Democrats are the big city party, the tolerance party the ... in many ways libertarian on social issues and moral issues and now they're perceived to be more priestly, more honorable on moral questions ... I guess that includes sexual questions ... than the Republicans.


As you might remember, in late August of last year, New Orleans was flooded with water that was so full of junk and poisons that it was pretty much impossible to swim in it. People were trapped on their rooftops with very little in the way of clean water, food or shelter from the late summer sun. Citizens of New Orleans felt they didn't really need to stock up on anything because they were American citizens and could therefore expect rescue boats and helicopters to come along soon.
Please remember that G.W. Bush visited the home of "Saint" John McCain, the guy who later performed the torture bill kabuki, where he pretended to be a moral voice in the "debate." Bush celebrated McCain's birthday while the citizens of New Orleans died in the poisonous water and on their rooftops. The Vice-President remained at his ranch, the Secretary of State went to New York City to buy shoes and see a comedy.
The polls show that disapproval of the President's performance has actually grown by a modest amount in the past year, meaning NO ONE has forgotten, no one has forgiven.

Even when we leave all the conspiracy theories aside, the rock-hard, indisputable fact of 9-11 is that, in the very best possible case, the Bush Administration displayed negligence, incompetence and dereliction of duty. The website 911Truth.org lists 80 articles in both the mainstream and alternative press/blogs concerning Bush Administration foreknowledge/advance warnings about 9-11. At no time has Bush or any other member of his current Administration ever expressed the slightest regret over their dereliction of duty. How anyone can look at this record and say that Bush & Co are moral is, again, beyond me.

On the Iraq War, Bush has never once gone to the funerals of any fallen soldiers, his wife has visited wounded soldiers in the hospital, but secretly, as though there were something shameful in doing so, the Bush daughters could very easily have signed up to be Navy pilots after graduation from college and could be bombing targets in Iraq during the day and sleeping on the aircraft carrier at night. We have yet to hear calls to sign up for duty in Iraq from Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Sean Hannity, Michelle Malkin or any other right-wing pundits. Where is the morality here?

There has been a dispute over the past few years as to whether pharmacists can deny RU-486 to women who wish to head off their pregnancies. Wal-Mart came out in favor of pharmacists' "freedom" to do so, K-Mart said "No, pharmacists should do their job and dispense the medicines they're asked to dispense." Right-wingers and Republicans both appear to be in favor of allowing ignorant busybodies to interfere in a very serious and private matter with no controls as to whether they know the woman in question or anything about her situation. The Terry Schiavo case simply illustrated this general attitude in glaring detail.

In the case of former Congressman Foley and his pedophilia, Dr James Dobson, head of Focus on the Family and the fellow who "outed" Spongebob Squarepants as gay, took over a week to even mention Foley and as of 10 Oct 06, does not feature Foley on the home page of his website.

You've made the claim that Republicans are more moral because they believe in balanced budgets. Well, first of all, President Reagan may have believed in balanced budgets in theory, but a quick glance as to how he actually managed the budget makes it clear that he had, at best, only a vague, theoretical grasp of how to actually balance budgets. Second, a Marxist economist, as she would favor helping out people on the lower rungs of the economic ladder, has just as legitimate a claim to being moral as a balanced-budget-believer does. One could argue about which system is better in the long run, but it is simply impossible for one side to say "We're moral and the other side isn't."

The Republican claim to moral superiority is just that, a claim. Right-wingers and Republicans have absolutely no reason whatsoever to flaunt themselves as morally superior to liberals and I'd greatly appreciate it if you'd acknowledge that in the future.


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